Around the World on a Motorbike

Month: January 2017

Tarp – The Kelty Upslope

Tarp Kelty Upslope

Picture: www.kelty.com

In addition to my tent, I also will carry a Tarp on my trip. Likewise the tent, I choose the manufacture Kelty.

Using the motorbike, I can build an extension with the  Kelty – Upslope to increase the living area in bad weather conditions.

Replacement as a tent

I already used the tarp in France and on my Coast 2 Coast trip as a replacement of a tent. It was absolutely dense and stable. Even a heavy thunderstorm in France could not harm Tarp.

Kelti upslope tarp in france just before the thunderstorm

in France just before the thunderstorm

The Kelty Upslope on my Coast to Coast trip

Camping Equipment

30Stove

The stove, the most important part in the outdoor kitchen, this is why there are as many opinions as cookers exist.
In the end you have to choose which features are important for you

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Kelty Tarp

Picture: www.kelty.com

Tarp – The Kelty Upslope

In addition to my tent, I also will carry a Tarp on my trip. Likewise the tent, I choose the manufacture Kelty.

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Carinthia Defence 4 sleeping bag

Picture: www.amazon.co.uk

Sleeping Bag

Sleeping is essential for our health. The sleep quality decides whether we can start the day and tackle with enough energy.

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ThermarestMatress

The mattress is almost as important as the sleeping bag for a good sleep. I have been using Thermarest for years, quite expensive but worth every penny

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The Bike

The motorcycle, the heart of this journey

Sonnenaufgang

Finding the right motorcycle is not so easy. Here you should very carefully all the pros and cons, or simply take the bike which is currently in the garage.

Royal Enfield

2010, just before I flew to South Africa, I bought myself a Royal Enfield, with which I wanted to travel around the world. Why? Great motorcycle, simple technology and you can repair them everywhere.

Flensburg

After my year in South Africa, I moved to Flensburg. There I worked as a bartender, barista, waiter and Christmas market poster.
Flensburg is a great city and the almost 2 years were great. I got to know a lot of nice people, broadened my professional abilities, and often drank a thirst.
Yes life can be really hard in the gastronomy.
Despite a great life in Flensburg the distance traveled faster than expected, and so I began after a year to resume my plans of the travelling the world on a motorbike.

Selection criteria

One thing was clear from the outset that I would opt for a bike that has little electric and other frills and builds on proven technology to repair the bike in the next workstation in nowhere. That’s why many from the start schonmal all “moderen” motorcycles away.

Here is the list, which motorcycles were with me in the selection

  • Honda XR 650
  • Suzuki DR650
  • Suzuki DRZ400
  • Yamaha XT600 Tenere
  • Kawasaki XL600V Tengai
  • KTM LC4 400
  • KTM LC4 640

KTM LC4 400 Military

In the end I decided to go for the LC4 400 Military
Why? Here are a few reasons

Pro

– Still light enough to set it up againIrland picking up Motorbike
– Good off-road capability
– More than enough power available
– No electric frills
– Pure driving pleasure
– Good suspension
– quite robust engine with good care

Contra

– relatively high consumption (approx. 6l / 100km with normal driving)
– Very loud (I do not mean the exhaust;)
– strong vibrations
– Short service intervals (every 5000km)
– quite susceptible engine with poor care (warming is a must!)

KTM LC4 640

KTM LC4 Enduro Motorrad

Meine LC4

Preparations on the motorcycle

Change of camshaft bearings and water pump bearings

Upgrade the transmission input bearing

Stove

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The stove, the most important part in the outdoor kitchen, this is why there are as many opinions as cookers exist.
In the end you have to choose which features are important for you.

Gas or Petrol stove

The first question is which fuel will be used for the stove. As I am traveling with a motorcycle, choosing a petrol stove makes a lot of sense. As I’ve got always fuel in my tank, there is no need for spending money on cartridges. Fuel is always present and there’s no need to get stressed of looking for cartridges. If your bike run out of fuel, at least you’ve got a bit left in your stove to bring you a couple of miles.

I use the Colemann 442 Feather Ultalight. The stove is great, works like a gas cooker, but is operated with petrol. The Coleman is very quiet and easy to use. Fill the petrol into the tank, operate the pump a few times, open the valve and ignite the mixture, that’s it.

You should let it burn for one or two minutes before putting the pot on, as the petrol in the generator needs to be heated to get an optimal combustion, otherwise you get soot-covered pots

The stove is really handy and stays stable as a result of the integrated tank. This is an disadvantage when it’s come to packing, as the stove is more stubborn.

Previous defects: The diaphragm of the pump was worn. It is advisable to coat the existing with some grease or silicone spray to minimize the friction and wear and tear. I always carry a spare diaphragm in my bag.

My conclusion: Absolutely ingenious and simple cooker. Even after many years the stove works absolutely reliable.

Matress

The mattress is almost as important as the sleeping bag for a good sleep. I have been using Thermarest for years, quite expensive but worth every penny

My First Thermarest

I bought my first Thermarest in 2008 for my pilgrim on the St James route. My plan for this trip was to have as less weight as possible as I damaged my back before when I had 20kg backpack, hiking through the highlands

I choose the Thermarest PROLITE, in the small version with 1.20m length and only 350g weight.

This and some other factors brought my backpack down to 6.5kg when I started to do my first steps, in the footsteps of past pilgrims.

The Isomatte offers an amazing comfort for its thickness and down to the small length, the mattress fits perfect into the Ruckdack. In order to isolate the feet from the cold ground, I used the backpack.

2013 Start of my World Tour

I decided to have a more comfortable sleeping mat for my Bike tour, as I’m travelling by bike and I don’t need to look for each gram.

I decided after recommendation from different motorcyclists for the Thermarest NeoAir Voyager

This air mattress has a very low pack size and is still extremely light with only 650g.

The comfort is also really good, unfortunately I have never really got used to the mattress as it’s a different kind of re and so it was for me out of the question, which must serve for my next trip something other than mattress.

Also, the inflating of the mats has disturbed me. The last thing you want after a hard day on the machine, is to spend the first 5 minutes inflation your mattress. I would highly recommend the Thermarest Pump bag, The bag isn’t cheap but pretty sure worth the money. Unfortunately I was too tight to spend £23, so I can’t give any information about the quality.

Conclusion: The Thermarest NeoAir is a great idea and definitely worth considering. However, it is a different kind of lying than on a foam core. I would highly recommend a test before buying. I also would buy to Wide version with a width of 63cm, as the regular is quite narrow (53cm) and you can easy slight from the mattress.

Current mattress

With these experiences, I started looking for a new mattress for Canada. There was no question to buy another Thermarest, as I am simply convinced by the comfort and quality of the mats.
So I made a list of selection criteria for the new mat.
Must be foam core
Comfort (thickness of mat)
weight
Wider version (63cm instead of 51cm)
price
Packing size

After a long research and reading numerous of reviews on amazon, only the Thermarest Trail Lite and the Thermarest Trail Pro came into a consideration.
Finally, I chose the TrailPro in the large version. The Pro version is more expensive than the Lite, but with a foam core of 5cm instead of 3.8cm and only an extra weight of 150g (total weight 1.26kg) compared to the Lite the significant comfort and sleep quality increase, spoke for the Pro
The TrailPro was tested together with the new sleeping bag on the Coast to Coast Trip and felt very well. Sleep quality, heat insulation and quality are amazing.

Coast to Coast North England

Map Coast to Coast

The Lake District in the north of England is one of the most visited areas of the United Kingdom with over 15 million tourists annually.

What many don’t know, is that the north of England is also a paradise for enduro enthusiasts.

With Jonny Walker and Graham Jarwis, two of the most famous representatives of Endurosport, the north of England has been confirmed to be one of the best locations for forging top enduro riders.

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