4 months before the trip

It’s the beginning of July, and I’ve got about 4 months until my trip.  I’ve been logging a good amount of miles since I started riding again after the accident, and I’ve ridden about 4400 miles in just 6 months.  My leg strength has returned, and while it is still not quite where it needs to be, I am able to work pretty hard at the gym, and I’m also able to quickly and easily stand on the foot-pegs whenever necessary.

In June, I attended one of the Doc Wong clinics for Off-Road riding.  In this clinic, we rode to Hollister, CA, and then traveled another 60 miles or so to the start of a dirt road, which leads to an old abandoned mining community.  We rode around within the park (after getting a permit from the BLM) and of the 10 bikes on the ride, it seemed like the fastest riders were those of us on the big bikes, while the guys on the smaller enduro bikes were still learning, and were slower as a result.  Nevertheless, we all had a ball, and the day was a nice blend of fun, and that nervous tension that comes from riding a big, heavy motorcycle up and down complex terrain, with mixed levels of grip, and sharp turns.  Said another way…  What’s not to love?

I purchased a large duffel bag from The North Face outlet in Berkeley, CA, and I’m confident that this bag will hold my boots, helmet, coat, pants, and all of the other incidentals that I’ll need to transport to Santiago for the start of the trip.

I’ve also decided that the JVC Adixxion camera is the best choice for me, and I’ve begun to capture some video footage, and using Nero Platinum 2014, I’m building up the skills necessary to render video that will be exciting, and fun.

The camera is very capable, and it takes great video, but perhaps the best part of this package are the capabilities that you can access from the iPhone application. From within the app, you can look at as many as 4 cameras streaming video, and you can start/stop video, take still pix, change recording modes, etc.  All of this is done over a WiFi link that the camera exposes as a hotspot, and which my iPhone must connect to.

I’ve paid my money/fees to the country of Argentina to grant me access to their country during the tour.  The cost was about $165 USD, and it will grant me access for several years, if I choose to return.  When I enter Chile, I’ll need to pay for the reciprocation permit when I arrive.  Apparently Chile does not allow you to buy it in advance, while Argentina requires an advance purchase. Go figure…

This weekend, I’ll be heading down to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca to watch qualifying for the World Superbike race that is happening there on Sunday.  This should be a ball.

I’m also an instructor for the Audi Club, so I’ll be instructing teens in the art of accident avoidance, and “Stayin’ Alive” during a teen clinic which is happening on Sunday.  The clinic is in Santa Clara, at one of the colleges.

Back to packing…

So, in the next 30 days, I’ll assemble finish purchasing all of the goods for the trip, and do a test fitting to see if everything fits in the North Face duffel, as I expect that it will.

Oh, and I almost forgot…  After reading Lois Pryce’s books, I simply had to write her a note telling her how much I enjoyed the books, and that I’m planning on writing an article for Compass Expeditions, which we expect to have placed in the BMW MOA magazine for North America.

On a related note, I’ll be attending the BMW MOA rally in Minneapolis in a couple of weeks, and while the rally is sure to be fun, I’m disappointed that I was unable to rent a motorcycle.  So, I’ll bring my gear, and hope for a very long demo ride.

That’s it for now,

Back again soon

About the Author

Cliff Musante

Cliff Musante is a technologist, business leader, motorcycle enthusiast, father, grandfather, and more. In June, 2013 his passion for motorcycles was revitalized, and he set out to ride across Patagonia. Since then, he's logged thousands of miles, ridden across the US, and on July 10, 2019, he began a 120 day trip through Europe, and then on to Russia, China, and parts East. This 'Blog is the story of all of his adventures.