Coast to Coast in 50 Hours – Days 7-9

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Days 7-9 – October 24th-26th, 2018 – Orlando, Florida to Jacksonville, Florida: ~200 miles


Did you miss Day 6? October 23rd, 2018 – Byron, Georgia to Orlando, Florida: ~350 miles.

My work commitment started around 2pm, which meant I had a few hours to take care of one loose end – the H2 SX SE needed new tires! I was paranoid about this on my way out, so I arranged for a new set of tires to be delivered to the Orlando area in advance through Kawasaki and Bridgestone. Kawasaki asked me to go to a dealership just outside of town called Kissimmee Motorsports.

Because KMS was expecting me, they immediately got to work. This was sincerely appreciated.

Apparently the exhaust needs to come off for a rear tire change.

While the tires were being swapped, I explored the facility.

I think I forgot what a H2 SX SE looks like when it’s clean!

RIP Alta. I’ve only ridden the Redshift Supermoto before, and I had an absolute blast. I seriously considered picking one up as a commuter when the company announced they were closing and dealers starting hacking prices down.

In the waiting area I saw a copy of Rider magazine. I opened it up and saw a story penned by my buddy Jenny Smith.

Soon, the H2 had new shoes and was ready to tackle the Iron Butt Association 50 Hour Coast to Coast challenge! I requested the Battlax T31 sport touring tire as I didn’t need immense lateral grip, I just needed something that would absorb hour after hour of high speed highway droning without giving up the ghost.

Stuff like a tire change is easy to take for granted, but if there was an issue it could have really screwed me on my cross-country run. Thanks to KMS for taking care of me and doing it right!

The next few days were spent at the annual AAPM&R (American Academy of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation) convention. My boss is the gentleman on the left – he runs several companies in the world of inpatient rehab, also known as physiatry. I help him with a software company, but in this photo he’s wearing his recruitment hat, as he also places physicians across the country.

Because we were in Orlando, the convention organizers had some minions visit us, I guess?

While I was in work mode for a few days, my buddy Mike Ngo was riding a Honda Gold Wing out from Los Angeles so that Nathan would have a camera bike to ride back with me. I can’t thank Mike enough for getting the Honda out to Jacksonville safe and sound, because it also would have screwed us if he crashed it or if there was any other sort of problem with the Wing.

Each year, my boss and I are normally at the conference from Wednesday through Saturday. This time around, my boss let me take off Friday afternoon so that I could head to Jacksonville. The plan was for Nathan and I to take off early Saturday morning, that way we could hopefully be done in the wee hours of Sunday night/Monday morning, get a few hours of sleep, and go to work at our respective jobs.

Mike had arrived yesterday with the Gold Wing, and he let me know that he left the Honda in long term parking at the Jacksonville airport. Nathan would be flying in later this afternoon. Before I left Orlando, I downloaded the Rever app to see if it would be a suitable replacement for a Spot tracker. For a ride of this length, it’s helpful to have a GPS tracker running and recording your track when it comes time to showing proof of your ride completion to the Iron Butt Association. I turned on the app, and headed towards Jacksonville.

I got to the airport about 15 minutes before Nathan’s flight landed, which gave me some time to analyze how Rever did for me. There were issues with the settings that could be fixed easy enough, but I was concerned about how hot my phone was getting while running the app. It may have been a fluke with my phone, because I couldn’t find any other mention of this concern when I looked it up online later. I made a note to look up some other options later at night, but I thought this was a good backup. There were a couple of things I’d need that were only offered in the Premium ($5.99/month) version such as GPX file exporting and live GPS tracking, but it seemed very reasonable to pay 6 bucks for those features over the next couple of days.

Finding Nathan’s bike a few minutes before his flight arrived.

Once Nathan arrived, he got the Wing packed up and we headed towards our surprisingly expensive hotel room. I was actually shocked about how much I had to spend, but it was all explained when nathan and I got to dinner. We struck up a conversation with people sitting next to us, who informed us that it was the night before a big college football game where the University of Florida was hosting Georgia. Especially when it comes to SEC games, hotel rooms book up early and they get expensive – our dinner neighbors told us a story from the previous year where the two of them and their boss had to share a 2-bed room at Motel 6 for an Alabama game that cost them over $800/night! Suddenly, I didn’t feel so bad.

While enjoying dinner, I remembered that I hadn’t locked down the GPS backup that we’d be using for the ride! A few minutes of searching online led me to Bluelane, an app that claimed to offer everything I needed for free. I tried it out during dinner, and the results seemed simple enough.

My day to day pair of gloves for the last couple of years has been the Velomacchi Speedways – they’re so comfortable that I’m willing to put up with how weird they look. But I had somehow lost my pair after my Royal Enfield Himalayan story, so I asked Velomacchi if they’d send me another pair for the cross country run. With most gloves, I’d detest the idea of breaking them in on a 50 hour endurance run. With these gloves, I wasn’t worried – plus I had the gloves I wore on the route east as backups. I’ve heard enough horror stories from industry buddies that showed up to a launch only to find that a company had sent them two left gloves to know I should have backups just in case.

I went for a quick 3 minute ride to confirm that Bluelane would work while on the bike. Everything seemed to work fine, so I settled into bed to catch the end of Game 3 of the World Series before falling asleep. Problem was, the game kept going! It was tied 1-1 at the end of the 9th…and then the 10th, 11th, and 12th. The Red Sox put up a run in the top of the 13th, so I figured I’d watch through the end of the winning and hopefully catch a Boston victory. Of course, the Dodgers tied it up, so I took that as a sign to just go to bed and stop postponing my sleep.

Finishing up our bike prep.

Well, that’s it. Tomorrow’s the big day!

Time to take this sticker back across the country!

The gas log ends!

City
1. Palm Springs, CA
2. Blythe, AZ
3. Tonopah, AZ
4. Tucson, AZ
5. Bowie, AZ
6. Las Cruces, NM
7. Van Horn, TX
8. Monahans, TX
9. Colorado City
10. Ranger, TX
11. Royce City, TX
12. Texarkana, TX
13. Little Rock, AR
14. Braden, TN
15. Centerville, TN
16. Murfreesboro
17. Cleveland, TN
18. Helen, GA
19. Forsyth, GA
20. Valdosta, GA
21. Ocala, FL
22. Ormond Beach
AVERAGE VALUES
Gallons Consumed
3.607
3.687
2.983
4.102
3.637
4.605
4.480
3.630
4.235
3.768
4.326
4.267
4.238
4.574
4.027
3.921
3.305
4.139
4.704
4.321
4.356
4.112
4.047
Price Per Gallon
$4.139
$4.299
$3.499
$3.119
$3.999
$3.799
$3.439
$3.729
$3.639
$3.159
$3.299
$3.499
$3.351
$3.699
$3.459
$3.139
$3.399
$3.799
$3.499
$3.299
$3.409
$3.339
$3.550
Miles Covered
116.2
133.3
99.2
156.5
120.4
158.5
182.1
129.7
152.4
140.8
167.9
155
152.5
167.6
138.7
160.1
131
154
193.2
165.6
155.3
162.5
151.3
Miles Per Gallon
32.215
36.154
33.255
38.152
33.104
34.419
40.647
35.730
35.986
37.367
38.812
36.325
35.983
36.642
34.443
40.831
39.637
37.207
41.071
38.324
35.652
39.518
37.108

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