Monday, September 25

Sojourner Welcomes Guest Blogger!

I've never wanted this to be an entirely Sojourner dog and pony show. On occasion, I will invite special friends to post their tales, pics and reviews. Thus, this morning I'm introducing a friend, his name is Lucas. He rides a BMW F650 (I'll let him tell you about his bike). Lucas is a newbie whose been piling on the miles and preparing for his first trip next weekend.


The Road to Tobermory: A beginning motorcyclist first moto-trip

Dispatches from Lucas: Saturday September 9, 2006 – First Day of Planning

First real day of planning commences. I’ve looked at the weather forecast for my trip and the weather seems to be looking positive for the 4 days of my trip. The trip dates are September 29th through to October 1st. I’ve allowed one extra day on Tuesday.

I went to the Canadian Automobile Association and upgraded my membership to CAA Plus to cover the motorcycle. I also picked up a map of Ontario.

A visit to the local Radio Shack (now known as The Edge by Future Shop) provided me with some parts to build a battery pack for my XM Satellite Radio. This will be used to provide campsite entertainment. An evening of Vivaldi or Berloitz or just some plain ol’ Hank will provide some relaxation after a day of riding.

Raining today. After doing my errands, came home and built my battery pack for the XM radio. Didn’t take much to build; Radio Shack has a 4 AA battery case with an on/off switch. The case had two leads coming out of it, I added some heat shrink to the wires for protection. Then I soldered the ends into a compatible power jack. It worked. Just not sure how long the batteries will last, I bought extra just in case.

My intinerary is as follows:
· Friday, September 29th
o Leave St. Catharines at approximately 10:00 am. The first leg of the trip should take 4 hours according to mapquest to reach my destination.
o By noon I should be near Cambridge, Ontario (home of Mistress K). I’ll find a resting spot, check fuel, bike and luggage. Bag some lunch.
o Between 3 and 4 pm I should be in Kincardine. This is the largest town near my final destination for the 29th, which is Invehuron Provincial Park.

· Saturday, September 30th
o From Inverhuron Provincial Park take Highway 21 north to Sauble Falls Provincial Park. This should be about 1 hour of ride time.
o Check in and get a spot. Use as base camp.
o Use Saturday to go to Tobermory.

· Sunday, September 31st
o Leave Sauble Falls Provincial Park, head south to Point Farms Provincial Park.
o Arrive Point Farms Provincial Park.
· Monday, October 1st
o Leave Point Farms Provincial Park, head south on Rt. 8 back to Hamilton and St. Catharines.

Things to do:
Get camping gear down from garage loft. Inspect sleeping bag, tent and pad. Find all of my backpack straps.
Get cooking gear out and inspect stove and check for fuel.
Make list of food supplies. I’ll buy minimal – expect to buy more on trip.
Make list of moto parts. Again, minimal. Not much I can do with the bike if it breaks down. I have a tire plug kit and the BMW tool kit. Also, I have spare bulbs and fuses. I’ll bring some duct tape, water, some extra oil.

Local Weather:
St. Catharines -
Kincardine -
Tobermory -

Camping Locations:
Inverhuron (9/29) -
Sauble Falls (9/30) -
Point Farms (9/31) -

Final Destination -
Sunday, September 24, 2006 – Revising Route Plans
I looked at the map this morning and looked at some possible route alterations that may make the trip more efficient. The main problem will be getting out of Hamilton. It’s a large older city that sits in between my starting and final destination for Friday’s leg of the trip. One way streets and flying cages will be my biggest peril in this section. There is no alternative other than taking the QEW.

Once past Hamilton, I’ll start reaching country that is lest populated and congested. Although, congested is a relative term. I’ve seen congested after living in Los Angeles for 10 years. When you see a 6 lane highway (that’s on each side) completely gridlocked – then you know congested. I’ll breathe easier once past Guelph. That’s where I’ll be able to settle into a rhythm. The road side will become more rural, fields and farm equipment will replace housing subdivisions and crowded downtowns. As I get closer to Lake Huron the air will change into that open air moist smell of the lakes. It’ hard to describe as the lakes are fresh water and don’t have that sea air smell. It’s similar but without the smell of salt. -- Lucas --