November 30, 2012
The house has been empty now for just over a week. The sleeping bags and blow up mattresses on the floor where our bed used to be, have us feeling like a couple of big silly kids. Much like nights spent under that stellar fort you built in your parents living room when you were 6, exploring beyond what you knew to be your everyday norm. Even at a young age, this was a known privilege and today that feeling is not lost on us.
There’s a sense of renewal and release on our welcome mat these days and this lightness we are experiencing, in this moment in time is much appreciated. The last three months have been full of transition, controlled chaos and all of that other grown up type stuff. Feeling like a kid again, at least on the inside, has to be a good thing.
Now with the metamorphosis from home to basecamp complete, the time has finally come to open up the garage doors, wheel out the bikes, pump up the lift and roll up our sleeves. Bike maintenance and prep is the next priority on our pre-launch agendas. Work is done and its time to play.
In addition to the items that we have been accumulating over the past few months, we were able to get our hands on all of the remaining goodies that had been on our wish list for the journey ahead. One stop into the Touratech USA showroom in Seattle, with help from our Portland support team (Uncle Ahmed) to get us there and suddenly the smell of shop class was once again in the air.
Issa and I had heard so many great things about the Touratech USA facility since we had started touring a few years ago. We were thrilled to finally visit the space and meet the crew for ourselves. I mean any establishment that uses GPS coordinates as a way to give you their address, has got to be worth checking out. Nearly three hours into our wet West Coast drive up from Portland on April 5th 2012, we found ourselves finally there. N47° 34.037′ W122° 19.373′. See more photos.
We found ourselves about 20 minutes earlier than expected and didn’t mind at all. This gave us plenty of time to look around before our sponsor rep, Kimmo Lassila, would be there to greet us. The lovely Hallie began the process of bringing out our order, on a dolly! Oops. Who ordered all of this stuff? Hee :) Five large boxes and a postal service bucket later and we were both uh-oh-ing in the back of our giddy brains. Thanks to the skills of our clever Uncle, we managed it all in, with the back window still clear enough for practicing, ahem, safe driving techniques.
When Kimmo arrived he was just as we had hoped, full of enthusiasm, information and completely open to sharing it. We chatted briefly about how things were going on our end and before long, a full on tour of the showroom and product/shipping warehouse was underway. We were introduced to the owner Tom Myers, General Manager, Paul Guillien and Social Media man Justin W. Coffey. Who’s last name Issa only wishes he could adopt.
Having a reliable source for parts and accessories at our backs for this grand adventure and a team that would be keeping their eye on us along the way is such a bonus. A nice added touch of security and exposure for our experience and fundraising goals, over the next couple of years.
Along side all of the standard pre-trip checks and changes, we’ve been looking forward to going far beyond anything we’ve ever done in the past to ensure that our two noble steeds would be ready on launch day. And although watching weekly reruns of Bear Gryll’s Man vs. Wild may not be the best thing to do before setting off into the wilderness on your motorcycle, we remain believers in being over prepared. As my parents would say, “you can always take layers off!”
Here’s a peek at some of the items we initially installed for our Trans-America 2010 and Western US / Canada routes in 2011
In photos from left to right.
Laminar Windscreen Addition (F650GS)
Hand Protectors (both bikes)
Headlight Guards (both bikes)
Upper Front Fender Protectors (both bikes)
Rear Luggage Racks (both bikes)
Reflective Tape (F650GS)
TKC 80 Tires (both bikes)
Extra Fuel (both bikes) – no longer available
OTHER ITEM NOT SHOWN IN PHOTOS INCLUDE:
We understand that many have gone before with much less, but all I can think is, the if you bring a raincoat it won’t rain saying, doesn’t quite apply here. We will inevitably face nearly everything imaginable and taking certain precautions now will only allow us to better work through the challenges later. So the saying should really go, “No matter how prepared you think you are… your knowledge will be put to the test and that ‘know before you go’ technique can only go so far for a couple of world travelling rookies.”
So with that said, lets get down to the nitty gritty!
WHAT WE’LL BE INSTALLING FOR OUR TRANS-WORLD ADVENTURE:
In photos from left to right.
Zega Pro panniers (both bikes)Fuel bottle rack (both bikes)
Rear Splash Guards (both bikes)
Windscreen Addition (R1200GS)
Pannier Reinforcements (both bikes)
Folding Gear Lever (F650GS)
Rear Luggage Rack (upgrade R1200GS)
Break Reservoir Guard (F560GS)
Break Reservoir Guard upper (F560GS)
Break Pedal Extender (F650GS)
Fuel Line Protectors (R1200GS)
Fork Seal Protectors (R1200GS)
Water bottle rack (both bikes)GPS and Mount (F650GS)
Stay tuned as we work through the final stage of prep before the launch. Shop class is now in session at Camp Breibish!