How to Plan an Epic Motorcycle Journey


The riding season is upon us, and it’s time to plan that epic motorcycle journey for this summer. 

But where do you go? Solo or with friends? Organized tour, or a self-guided adventure? We put together a list of tips that will help you along!

Decide on the Goal

What makes a journey truly epic? Sure, it’s about the nature, the roads, and the motorcycle. But most importantly, it’s about the adventure! Decide on what sort of an adventure are you after, though. A relaxed weekend riding quiet back country roads? A two-month challenge along the Trans America Trail? A cruise along the coast? It’s important to manage your expectations so you don’t end up disappointed: be honest with yourself, think about what type of riding you love most, and plan accordingly.

How to Plan an Epic Motorcycle Journey

Schedules vs Improvisation

Some people thrive on Excel sheets, others prefer to wing it as they go along, and most balance somewhere in between. What’s your perfect blend of planning and improvising, only you can tell, but make sure you at least plan for the essentials: have a look at weather forecast, hotel or campsite and fuel availability, and road conditions, especially if you’re planning to go off-road. On the other hand, allow some “free time” besides riding, have different meal options, take into account roadworks and other possible delays, and make sure you have wiggle room in your route planning.

How to Plan an Epic Motorcycle Journey

Choose the Perfect Adventure Motorcycle

What is the perfect adventure motorcycle? The short answer: there is none. But most of the time, the perfect adventure bike is the one you already own, so don’t stress about the latest models or the newest farkles (except for MirrorLok, of course). Do a quick service check before you go, make sure your liquids are topped up, your chain well adjusted and your tires in a good condition, and go!

Route Planning

If you’re going to plan an epic motorcycle journey, route is important. Choose a Back Country Discovery Route, parts of the Trans America Trail, or your local trails if you’re an off-road maniac; stick to paved roads if you prefer easy cruising. Whether you use paper maps or apps like Rever or ADV Tracks for route planning, just make sure you choose easy distances and doable terrain. Challenging yourself and pushing your edge is important, but don’t attempt the Black Bear Pass if you only got your motorcycle licence a few months ago – an epic adventure can quickly turn into and epic mishap if you don’t pace yourself.

How to Plan an Epic Motorcycle Journey

Summer Riding

Who doesn’t love riding in summer! But keep in mind that hot weather can sometimes be dangerous: always hydrate properly, make sure you have enough water if you’re headed into a desert, and keep your snacks light and healthy. A gas station burger might look delicious, but in the heat of the summer, do yourself a favor and have a salad or fruit instead: fruit and veg contain a lot of water, so you’ll both feel full and add some extra hydration.

It may be tempting to ditch the jacket in hot weather, but don’t give in and keep it on. If you ride in your t-shirt, not only you aren’t protected, but you may also get a severe sunburn and dehydration. ATGATT, remember?

plan an epic motorcycle journey

Buddying Up

Deciding whether you’re going to be riding alone or with friends is important, because good company can enhance the experience while differences in riding and traveling styles may lead to some heated conversations. As a rule of thumb, just do what you usually do: if you prefer solitude on the road, go alone. If you normally ride with friends, convince them to come along.  An epic motorcycle adventure is all about freedom, so don’t feel obliged to invite Neighbour Todd to come along if you don’t want company, and vice versa – bring your best trail buds with you if you thrive riding in a group.

plan an epic motorcycle journey

Did we forget anything? Let us know in the comments below!

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