Category Archives: Fishing

Easy Rider; 30 days in the wind and under the sky

Well I am planning my next ride. Not my most challenging ride ever so I am being slack on the planning but this post should help folks who are sort of new to long distance ridding or camping or the combination of both.

I want to do 30 days under the sky, the bike (and sidecar) dog and me. This will be a proof of concept test ride for my trip to Alaska next year. I will meet up with a couple of friends, test out the gear, see how things go with the dog and side car plus route recon ie explore some areas so I won’t get sidetracked when I do the Deadhorse AK  run, tryout some camping spots, meet some guys who own bike shops along the route in case I have problems etc etc.

I have done some hard ridding over the years, and loved setting out with nothing much more then a saddle roll, a gun, pocket full of cash and a toothbrush stuff into my boot top. I took a great deal of pride in ridding coast to coast with limited gear or old-school gear our great-grandfathers would have used. The wear and tear has added up and I got to start throttle back some so I can stay on the road longer. Plus Alaska is a no shit kind of ride and I want to ensure my gear is good to go and comfortable for 11000 miles, round trip.

The 1st thing I tend to before rolling out on long rides like this is the bike. If I had a particular destination in mind I would start with route selection, but I’ll be mostly fucking off on this ride.  I keep my bikes in good working order and all I needed for this trip was new break pads. Because I ride often I understand how long tires and breaks last given my bike and ridding style.  Because I ride almost daily, the battery stays charged and healthy. All my lights work, all oils, break and clutch fuild checked out fine, both in quantity and quality. I tightened every mounting bracket and hardware I could get a tool one without removing the tank or fairing. Anything that was loose got some thread locker to help keep things in place. I also readjust my highway pegs. They always slip on long rides and I want to start off in the most comfortable position.

Next I look at my tools. Normally I am a tool snob but snobbery is wasted on roadside tools. These things stay in my saddle bags for months at a time. Typically they don’t come out of their bags unless I am cleaning them for a road trip. They all got a nice WD40 bath/ rub down. I carry a toolkit I picked up from Cycle Gear  for $40. I use to cary a lot more tools but bikes have improved, a lot and so has my tool skillz and my thinking. Fact is you only need a few tools to help get yourself back on the road, and the more experience you aquire the easier it becomes to get by on less. My tools are in small zip lock bags, and then placed into customs tool bags designed to fit into some of the dead spaces of a Harley’s saddle bag. They look like “L”‘s and i bought them at a bike rally years ago. These are nice because space is at a premium on a bike. There are a lot of small, clever items like that out there for biked, especially Harleys. I have a small electrical repair kit, wire, fuses, circuit tester and some bulbs. There are fuel cans designed to fit into the dead space of a Harley’s saddle bag. In theory they hold a gallon of fuel, I figure it’s more like. 8 gallons when you figure in spillage but I have one in each saddle bag plus a quart of oil in each bag and a small, unopened bottle of DOT 5 break fuild, which for me takes care of both the clutch and breaks. 1.6 gallons of fuel extends my range by 45+ miles. Not to many places in the lower 48 where you are more then 45 miles from gas or help.

Because I ride often, I get the maximum life out of my batteries but I still cary one of those portal jump start boxes. Any one of us can leave the lights on over night and drain our battery. No point be stranded when $80 will get you back on the road if you do something dumb.

By far the most common problems I see on long trips is shit falling off bikes and tires. People tend to strap shit everywhere on these long trips. I bring a goodly number of zip ties in a variety of sizes, plus duct tape and electrical tape. I bring 3 ways to repair and inflate tires. The most simple is fix-a-flat. You can find small bike size cans of it on the interwebz. I bring two tire patch kits, two -45 gram size cans of compressed air, two cans of fix-a-flat and a small air compressor that plugs into the cigarette lighter on my bike. I keep the fix-a-flat handy but it’s all cross loaded between the  bags.

I always cross load my gear so loosing a bag or something loosing it’s water resistant seal or a bag opening up on the road and dumping its contents while I ride or any number of things won’t leave me zero balance on something important.

I also keep a set of frog togs for riding in bad weather on my bike, two cords to charge my phone/ tablet, WD40, JB weld, super glue, thread locker, roll of quarters, 3 hondos stashed in 3 different places, two lighters, ear plugs, ear buds, baby wipes, sun block, rubbers, spare set of sunglasses, two sets of clear eye protection, pair of smart wool socks, baby powder and more zip lock bags. Just about everything goes into a zip lock bags before being packed into a weather resistant bag. Double the water proofing. Ever and always double down on water proofing your shit

One of the reasons I suggest Harleys to folks is the support gear that goes with them. I have a set of these that pair up with the fuel cans. Very helpful product. Easy to get in and out of your saddle bags even after you pack a lot of shit into them. Something like this let’s you keep all manner of small stuff handy. Like chapstick, sun block and bolts to throw through windshields. My least favorite way to add extra storage but they are helpful. These sit on top of the saddled bags. They look like ass but are hella convient, easy on and easy off.  I keep stuff I need quickly or stuff I need everyday in these bags. Fix-a-flat, socks, toothbrush etc and stuff I want to take indoors with me if I am saying in hotels or with friends. Two easy quick connect fasteners and off you go with the shit you need for a night or two. My camping stuff goes into one these, with the tent and sleeping bag rolled up and stuffed into the bag on top.

I use a homemade version of this to hold my tablet to the gas tank. Again, looks ugly, works like a boss, putting my map/ navigation and music within easy reach. Use to be back in the day you had to stop to read your map, or write your exits numbers and milage on your tank with a grease pencil. Now you look down and there is a 10 inch, live update map, turn by turn directions and local weather reports courtesy of Google, not to mention Molly Hatchet pouring out your speakers .

I have a lot of storage on my bike and yet space is a major factor when camping off a bike, even more so when you plan on staying out for 30 days. A lot of shit will happen in 30 days, some you can predict. Some you cant. Somethings will certinaly happen, but you can’t predict when. Like when you will get rained on. You need to pick gear that will cover more then one oh shit or you will consume your space in no time. I will have the side car, but that will be full of dog and dog stuff. Normally how you pack, with the weight evenly disturbed is an important factor as well, but the side car makes it less so.

The number one way to save space is to cut down on the clothes your bring. Which means buying a new shirt and new pair of socks every few days or doing a small load of laundry every few days, or getting really fucking nasty. Or some combination of all three. Well I don’t wear underdraws so that will save space. I will  be wearing under armor shirts and socks ie $$$ so that will mean laundry every few days or smelling really, really bad. Body order and wood smoke gets rank. I’ll probably do laundry every 4th day. Which means packing 4 pairs of socks, 2 extra shirts (one long sleeve, one short sleeve) and one pair of gym shorts for when I am washing my britches. Weather can vary a lot during this time of year but not so much I need to bring a lot of winter gear. Once again it will be under armor stuff, this time the long John type. That plus ridding leathers, gloves and a pair of smart wool socks will get the job done and then some.

Ps don’t forget the shower shoes

Part two will cover the camping gear I plan on bringing, how I will eat and drink and sleep.

 

 

Prepping for a road trip

I’ve been home for to long. To many nights sleeping in a bed is bad for the soul. The road is calling. The solitude is calling. Wind burn, sunburn, the cold, the rain…. the desire to see just one more mile of road, to see what’s around the next curve, to find that perfect spot to camp for the night…

Heading out on a bike for a few weeks isn’t a trek to the Artic Circle, but it does take some planning. Most folks plan routes. I don’t cotton to such things myself. Lest wise not most trips. I have an agenda in mind but no time line. I’m headed South. I want to hit Miami to meet up with a potential business partner, then I’ll run down to the Keys to link up with a dude from my Ranger Batt days. After that? Who fucking knows? I’ll figure it out as we go. We? Me and my Lady Pit will be on the road for 2-3 weeks.

I don’t know how many bike trips I’ve done, so this is routine for me. What will be new is taking the dog and the side car. Oh, and the bike is relatively new to me. I’ve put about 2500 miles on her. It’s an ’09 Electra Glide, 96″ motor, 6 speed transmissio, a 6 gallon tank, I bought it a few months ago just for the trip. I picked this bike because she is stock, which means less vibration, which means less mechanical problems, less fatigue and no searching for aftermarket parts in strange towns when I run into mechanical problems. I wanted an 09 or newer for a few features. 6 speed transmission for one. The 6 gallon tank extends my saddle time between fill ups, an extra concern with this trip because of the weight of the dog and side car. The 96″ motor gives good power and the extra weight hasn’t caused the power plant to struggle at highway speeds. This is also the year Harley made some changes to reduce engine heat. It breaks well, and withought the side car, handles better then my 04. I also wanted stock exhaust. Makes it easier on my doggies hearing, and noise can increase fatigue. I’m feeling my age and the little things adds up these days.

The interwebz has a lot of pre-trip checklists so I won’t speak on that much. Same thing with toolkits, but have one and do the other. Start with fresh tires, breaks and oil. Well not to fresh, but more then 200 miles on them, and hopefully most of those miles on one run. I don’t require a lot of personal gear, I’ve done coast to coast trips with a sleeping bag, tooth brush and ridding leathers. I do carry a fair amount of gear for the bike.

One of the nice things about owning a Harley is options. In this case luggage options. There are kits that will let you get the maximum use out of the limited space in your saddle bags. Use them. I carry a fairly extensive tool kit; with the right aftermarket tool bags they all fit into what would have been dead space in the saddle bags. I also have 2 one gallon fuel cans that also tuck into some not very useful space in the saddle bags. I always carry two quarts of oil, a small bottle of break fuild, Marvin’s Mysrty oil, octane boost, wd40, duct tape and a shit ton of zipties plus three different ways to repair tires along with two ways to inflate my tires. Method #1 is an electric airpump you can pick up at Napa. I have a hand full of air cartridges that you screw into the val stem, takes a couple per tire, but they can get the job done.

I’ll still have room in the saddle bags for my leathers and some water.

I… not sure what you would call them but I have a set of bags designed to sit on top of the saddle bags. I love those things. They are super easy to get on and off the bike and I can get all I need for short trips/ non camping trips into those two bags. Couple of quick releases, they come right off and are easy to carry into the hotel. Toothbrush, couple pair of socks, maybe a clean shirt, sun screen, spare glasses, gloves, long sleeve shirt… all the small things you like to have easy access to while your on the road. You can also fit rain gear in them if your a pussy and use those types of things.sisoursly though, lots of folks love rain great and it’s smart to keep it handy, I have never liked rain gear and would rather put my leathers on. This trip will be mostly camping and everything I want in the tent will be in those bags.

Lots of folks have touring packs/ trunks on their glides. I dislike them for several reasons. I go old school, a nice tall sissy bar, bags and zip ties. These days I have some luggage designed to be used/ strapped to the sissy bar. This is where all the camping stuff and a full face helmet goes.

As a rule, I hate helmets, but a full face helmet is nice to have when it rains. It’s winter time in the South, so I will for sure get rained on. Which is why my socks and what not will be in zip lock bags. Same with the box of spare ammo and mags for my XDM. I’ll also take some under armor in case it gets cold, 2 sets of gloves, hand/ foot warmers and a spare pair of boots

The main topic I wanted to address is camping gear. There is some cool camping shit out there but storage space is limited on a bike, you have the shit you would like to have with you like a towel and a bar of soap and you have shit you absolutely need like moonshine and condoms. Weight is an issue as well, and you need to pack all that shit on your bike in such a way you can get to your stuff in a hurry when you need it and in such a way as it doesn’t negatively affect your bikes balance and center of gravity. Camping in cool places is a big deal to me on this trip. I want to do a little fishing, a little drinking and a lot of sitting around the fire drinking, grilling and singing Johnny Cash songs with my dog so on top of the stuff you need like a tent and a sleeping bag, I want to bring a fishing pole, camping stool, hatchet and some cooking gear.

I’m not going to tell you what gear to buy but I am going to tell you a group of people who have successfully solved the camping gear vs size and weight problem

Backpackers have all that shit figured out. Light weight sleeping bags, light weight tents, stoves, cooking gear, dishes…. they sell all that shit and for less money then the places selling motorcycle gear.

Also I recommend a 2 man tent for the extra space and sleeping bag good to 20F with a poncho liner for extra weight. Saves you money and space and between the 3 things you’ll stay pretty warm even when it’s balls cold

Cut off and happy

I loved watching the storm last night. I opened all three French doors, pulled the recliner over, grabbed a bottle of apple wine, put my Lady Pit in my lap and settled in. The Girls slid up next to me before long.

I am, at this moment, physically cut off from the rest of the world. Its a good feeling. The road that takes us from my little sliver of the inter-coastal waterways to the main land is under water. Not sure how deep, don’t much care, but it’s a couple hundred feet wide. Don’t much care about that either. If I did, I’d put my kayak in the water and find out the depth, maybe find the road under the water, mark the path and drive my truck into town. If driving to town is posdible. Doesn’t seem to be much of a current but if there was, it woukd only take me to town. Which I am happy enough to be separated from.

It’s a peaceful easy feeling. We lost power some time back. Made our inlet nice and quiet. Of sorts. The storm was noisy, but there is no hum from the refrigerator either. I have a generator. Haven’t used it yet. I am enjoying the sounds of nature, family and my neighbors to much. Maybe I’ll crank it up when I run out of ice. Yeti coolers are money, so maybe I won’t run out of ice.

I was up early as I always am and the 1st thing I noticed (beyond the Hell jounds and the Girls) was the silence. No wind, no rain, no sound from the refrigerator. Quick check of the house while Girl glares and my Lady Pit bounces around. Neither would go out for the bathroom in the rain. Ton Spawn was sleeping in, the storm kept him up, the house was intact.

The water is high, maybe 5 ft, right at the edge of our retaining wall and over lapping my dock. We use to be surrounded by wet lands. To our front, the river/ bay, ocean and one of our larger and more popular barrier island. Which i am sure did its protecting us from the wind and storm surge. On the other three sides was wet lands and a road. Now  they are under Lord only knows how much water. I climbed up to the roof/ bbq area of my boat shed and checked out my street. We all did well. The one tree in my street, happens to be in my yard, fell. Ground was to wet to hold it, and it fell across the street. Not much of a tree or obstacle but since you can’t really drive around it now, it needed to be #1 on my to do list. Our little road was cut, and since no one was hurt, or in immediate danger, restoring our high speed avenues of approach became the priorty #1.

I love the silence. We are always quiet,  but this morning it was silent. I wanted to keep it going so I used a pocket saw instead of a chain saw. Made two cuts, which made three peices of tree and cleared the road. A short walk took me tout the next obstacle. Water. The road was cut at the community boat ramp. Not much one can do about that so I turned around and walked back.

And I do have power of sorts. Couple solar panels, couple of deep cycle marine batteries and we have been keeping our phones and tablets fully charged. Could do the same with either the truck or the SUV, but I haven’t cranked either. My neighbors have. In fact the guy at the far end of the road has a small generator going. I hear it occasionally and he came by to let us know we could stash food in his freezer, charge our phones etc. Which we took advantage of. The food storing.

He laughed when I told  him I had a generator but wasn’t using it. They all think I am crazier then a shit house rat but seem to enjoy my company any which way

I did cook for everyone earlier today. By God’s good graces we don’t have much clean up to do. Us even less because I stashed most of our stuff. Nothing major, burgers and dogs, some chicken and fish. Stuff we needed to cook before it went bad. I cooked, kept an eye on some older kids and drank slightly chilled homemade wine while they all worked.

One of the other guys tried to AMOG me.  Some lame joke about me cooking and baby sitting. I laughed, said I didn’t want to break a nail and took a long pull off my bottle of wine. Amature. There he was picking up various bits of debris,  there I was enjoying myself, grilling, drinking and watching the kids and dogs run.

It’s a pretty good life

Truly we are blessed

Life is funny. I could tell the road being cut bothered some people. A quick plan, made up on the fly settled them down. Overt displays of masculine confidence and mastery over the world around you always settles the bitches. Of both sexes. The Girls slid up next to me after the ad-hoc meeting. Daddy likes

All the shit I have on hand for emergencies and I’m not really using any of it. It’s been a very mild disaster for us. More like camping at home. I could be bossier, but why?

I had some regular non treated 2×4’s stashed in the rafters of my garage. A little work with a hand saw and now we have some fire wood. I invited the neighborhood over, all 5 families but not sure any will show up.

Almost everything amuses me. This storm hasn’t been any different on that front. Was interesting watching the Betas be stoic and sort of flippant about the storm. Good, strong  family men. Yeoman worthy of the tittle. The kids have had a blast. My Lady Pit has run wild today because there is no place for her to run off to now that we are a mini island. She has knocked all the kids down at least once. On purpose each time. Girl hasn’t left Ton Spawn or the Girls alone. She sticks to them like glue these days.  I can tell the other dudes wives are happy. Their men were right, no need to evacuate, they can now rest in the strength and decsion making skills of their man. Lest for a few days.

Everyone enjoyed that feeling you get when things are better in the morning. I could tell they all took pride and enjoyment out of cleaning up after the storm, pride and enjoyment in the various clever tricks they came up with to over come the obstacles of having no power, running water and what not. Plus the shared experience of sheltering in place

Time to go put sauce on the chicken and check my trout line before it’s fire pit, wine and pitching woo time

I know many folks are suffering right now, but the Lord was kind to me and mine last night.

Y’all take care now

 

Freedom, Firepower and FuckYeah “(c) 2016 Ton’s Place” ….. The Ton life bitches

The Ton Life is a life long quest for Freedom, Firepower and FuckYeah! (FFPFY) “(c) 2016 Ton’s Place”. … ie Bikes, Booze, Brawls and Bitches. In that order but men age and things change….

What is Freedom, FirePower and FuckYeah! ? FFPFY is the masculine life taken to its limits, the rush men feel when living an unrepentant, unapologetic life of unreconstructed masculine Frame. It’s that combination high of testosterone and adrenaline as you knee drag your 1st corner, pull your 1st big deadlift, land that trophy bass…. it is fleeting and addicting, pushing you toward knee dragging the next corner.’  FFPFY is being fully alive vs the mass of living dead seen shuffling around you. It’s also the only addiction worth having and I reckon all other addictions are a proxy high for the adrenaline/ testosterone combo. Addictions to pussy, booze, pills or cards leave men broken, hollow and shambling around in the same living dead condition as the zombies on Walking Dead or that sparky who lives three doors down.  Addiction to  testosterone and adrenaline may very well lead to a broken body and a short life, but it gives your kids great ways to brag about their Old Man and you damn sure won’t be hollow inside.

Freedom the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action

the quality or state of being exempt or released usually from something onerous               <freedom from care>

the quality of being frank, open, or outspoken

boldness of conception or execution

unrestricted use

Now that’s some scary shit if you are a bitch ( either the kind with a gash or dude without balls). Men doing what they want? Cannot have that. They might drink a little to much, spend some time mudding around their favorite fishing hole, refuse to wear a seat belt or helmet… hell they might even smoke in public and not work those extra 400 hours a year to support some ungrateful bitch I mean loving wife. He might just smoke a little weed, lose some money at cards, not be heard from for three days because his dog is better company then his old lady and kids or because the deer stand more fulfilling then some bullshit job. His employer might have to make a little less money off him, Madison Avenue might not be able to con him into buying shit he doesn’t need, church pews might be a little less full and the man hating preacher out of simps to AMOG, the government might have to do with a little less tax revenue and banks might have to make a little less off their usury…. and bold open non politically correct language might hurt someones wittle feelings…. O the humanity

Sounds an awful like they hate your Freedom because you might choose not to live a life of soft slavery.

FirePower is the military capability to direct force at an enemy…… Firepower involves the whole range of potential weapons. The concept is generally taught as one of the three key principles of modern warfare wherein the enemy forces are destroyed or have their will to fight negated by sufficient and preferably overwhelming use of force as a result of combat operations.

Through the ages firepower has come to mean offensive power applied from a distance……is thus something employed to keep enemy forces at a range where they can be defeated in detail or sapped of the will to continue.

Best definition I’ve read in a while right there but for our purposes a Man’s FirePower isn’t only about the gun in his pocket(though you better have one). It’s about his Frame, the strength of his mind and his iron will.( read G Gordon Liddy’s book Will) A man who values his Freedom doesn’t want to live that life of soft slavery. A man with FirePower will resits that soft slavery. He’ll ignore the shaming language and the man up rants. He won’t be cowed by his boss, he won’t give a fuck what the so called elites have to say, He won’t tip his hat and say yes sir to some petty tyrant with a badge

FuckYeah! isn’t simply an expression of defiance, or a quite resignation toward a job that needs doing. It’s a a statement of excitement. It’s not simply a willingness to engage in risky behavior, or to rebel for the sake of smashing shit. It is a statement full of joy and lust for the challenges ahead. It is not “let’s do this”; it is “let’s roll ’cause this shit makes my cock hard”

It’s difficult to control men who are hooked on testosterone fueled Freedom, FirePower and FuckYeah……resistant to manipulation, difficult to control, difficult to predict, primal and bordering on the feral….. which is why nice guys, the nanny state and women fear it.. Want to know why they beat the masculinity out of little boys? It’s because they fear he’ll grow into a man, unbowed, unyielding, wild, free and dangerous.  Weak men and women are driven by fear and their need to control life around them to offset their fear.

Don’t let the bitches win; don’t let them turn you or your son or the dudes in your crew into bitches.

This post fueled by moonshine, homemade muscadine wine and the two sexy ass bitches singing in my shower