#LongWayUPMi

My riding buddy and I have started a tradition of going on a motorcycle road trip each year.  The inaugural journey was a seven-day, 2700 mile road trip from Ann Arbor to the Skyline in Virginia, down to Mississippi and Louisiana, an overnight in New Orleans and then the long ride home.  The pace was pretty stout, over 500 miles per day.  We decided that’s more than either of us wanted to repeat, so this year’s ride was around our home state of Michigan.

WholeTrip

The trip was originally planned as a ride around Lake Michigan.  But Uly had ridden through Chicago on his way back from a long solo trip out west and didn’t want to ride through the city again.  I’m not a fan riding urban environs either, so we modified the plan so we could take the S.S. Badger back across lake Michigan from Manitowoc to Ludington.  I’m really glad we did.  The ride on the Badger was a treat.

We rode some of the most scenic coastal roads in the state, and over the Mackinaw bridge (the first either of us had ridden a motorcycle over the Mack).  An unexpected treat was the M26 along the coast of the UP on Lake Superior.  Riding from Copper Harbor to Eagle river was excellent, even in the waning light.  The video is on Youtube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6WQ2u9Aefc&t=186s

I’ll be uploading a few of the videos from the trip, so you can check back in the next couple of days to catch the rest of them.

One of the best things about the ride was spending time with a good friend.  I’m not a big solo rider, even though I understand the desire to get out and get away and spend some quality time getting perspective.  It’s what I often do on the short jaunts, on the bike or in the Jeep, on a quiet country ride.  We all need to unplug.  But adventures are best enjoyed with friends.  Talking on the intercom breaks up the long stretches of road where the scenery isn’t engaging and helps keep the focus on the road.  There were plenty of potholes and gnarly sections of road that challenged us, not to mention traffic and the occasional wildlife.

EmpireParking

I hope you find occasion to go on an adventure with a friend.  You don’t need any special equipment or gear.  Any bike will do.  Take a camera (phones work too) and notepad and scratch down some notes so we can hear about it when you get back!

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