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Trip Planning, Surviving a breakdown in the middle of nowhere


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Hey everyone.   I posted about my oil pan breakdown ad nauseum on this forum over the last week (there is a link to that write up in the link below), but I wanted to share something that could help others in the bigger picture for trip planning. 

I am a Sr Trip Leader for the Colorado Mountain Club for backpacking and have a good bit of training on trip planning and emergency preparedness for things going to shit.   I use that knowledge a lot in my motorcycle adventures, and figure this kind of method and way to look at planning and dealing with an emergency while on the road could help others:


I wanted to catalog the various lessons, and thoughts I’ve had...

I know many people see issues others have and it concerns them or scares them from taking big fun trips, or going off the beaten path.   I hope this can help folks realize with some basic planning and a clear head these situations aren't as dire as they may seem. 

Edited by Clegg78
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@Clegg78 - There is a lot of good info on your blog, thanks for posting.  👍

I can relate to the fuel situation as I always check the route for fuel stops prior to leaving (I always base it on 150 miles just to be conservative).  Bing Maps is good for this as there is an option to show gas stations on your selected route, but the most useful, at least to me, is the GPS option to show "up ahead" gas stations on your exact route, not just in the area.  Additionally, if I know that I am going to be in a more remote area I always top off even if I just got gas 50 miles ago, just for the reasons you mentioned.

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***2015 Candy Red FJ-09***

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Yeah using Waze, Bing, Google for finding gas stations is a great plan.  I also used Gas Buddy, but keep an eye on the last update for pricing and availability in those apps.   I've seen a few instances where Google / Bing reported gas stations open and available that were not open for years.   

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Read thru the linked experience.  Amazing how much of the stuff you carry I also carry.  A few times I've found nothing but 87 gasoline, have used it without any problems on my previous bike and have already had to do it one time on the Tracer GT.  When I do that try to not accelerate hard or lug the engine and fill up with premium at the first opportunity.  I have a Garmin inReach Mini which is super nice as well as an older SPOT.  The SPOT is nice and actually has a Help button in addition to the SOS button.  The Help button is for stuff like flat tires out of gas etc.  It also has an "I'm OK" button which I like to use to let my wife know I'm OK.  I was going to cancel the subscription but missed the opportunity the last two times as I was on a trip and didn't get it done.  I have some sort of roadside assistance with it also.  AA is changing their coverage to only tow 50 miles at the beginning of the year - for motorcycles it's part of an extra package.  RV or something like that.  I have a big MSR type bottle but have never even filled it so left it at home for the last trip.  Keep looking at some of the 1.5 gallon fuel containers but haven't done that yet.  I also have found paper maps to be handy.  The Zumo XT is waterproof but before that have navigated with a carefully folded paper map in the top of the tank bag.  Have not needed the SPOT or inReach Mini and hopefully never will.  Have learned the hard way never pass up a gas station as you never know where the next one will be.  On first long trip would have run out of gas if it weren't for a single gas pump at a crossroads in Wyoming.  Only gas for a very long way!

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