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Yep, That was one of my bucket list trips. The Natchez Trace. And while I was at it, may as well include a little bit of the Tennessee, North Carolina twisties. Bonus was a “Meet and Ride” with Tracy and Holy Kaw.

So, 7 days and 2243 miles later I can chalk up a safe ride on the Ninja 400. Oh, and narry a drop of precipitation. What are the odds of that?????

Day1. Central Florida to Enterprise Alabama
Day2. Enterprise to Natchez MS
Day3 Natchez to Florence Alabama
Day4. Florence to Nashville and Maryville, Tennessee
Day5. Meet and ride the Local area.
Day6. Maryville to Waycross Georgia
Day7. Waycross to home.

Here are the pin drops of Fuel stops. MPG averaged 66.3, with a low of 60.3 and high of 74.1

7E680A39-8208-4FE5-AF44-6E8A70083C1B.jpeg
9698EA5A-9563-42F3-BAB5-E17D13C79DBB.jpeg


I used all “backroads”, with only a 20 mile Interstate jaunt to bypass Ocala FL, (twice) and I used the Super Slab from Nashville to Maryville. Now, backroads were sometimes 4 lane divided highways. In fact, a LOT of the time. But, surprisingly, traffic was light.....all week. A high of 420 miles one day and a low of 120 another. Average was 320.
Speed rarely got over 75mph. In fact most was 60-65, or maybe 60 on the Nat hez trace where the limit is 50. It was fun though to let the go fast stick stay in a mostly open position for some stretches or passing opportunities.

I took and wore a collection of gear that I have amassed over the last years. It is some quality stuff and I appreciated having acquired it.

Here are several things that I was glad I had and wouldn’t do another trip without them.

Voltmeter/USB charger. That kept my phone topped off all day long. In fact, that was the first mod I did to the 400.
Cramp Buster/Throttle Rocker. Sure saved my hands from being wrapped around the grip for long stretches.
Ram Mount for the phone which I used as my primary nav source when I needed some nav help.
Wild Ass Inflatable seat cushion. Kept my butt from being sore at the end of day.
Pin Lock visor. It worked fine to keep my visor from fogging up on chilly mornings. But my glasses fogged so that was a wash.
Ventura pack rack. A real quality system and secure mounting for the gear. Rok straps and a couple of bungees kept my two bags tethered.
Denali sound blaster air horn. Now that right there saved me more than once. Frequently I would blast it to scatter the vultures away from road kill. And the BIG save was a car merging into my lane that got as close as being iseen near the rear tire in my mirror. The roadrunner beep beep OEM horn is less than acceptable. It just checks a box to meet some standard.

F9F605FB-5F40-4606-9CA0-8AD9D2958E88.jpeg


Above. The Ninja at Windsor Ruins, 30 miles north of Natchez.

A few observations.
Wind noise was always there. No matter where I put my head. It was annoying. I have a helmet that is supposed to be quieter. But for this trip, it wasn’t. But, my head never got buffeted. Go figger.

The Zero Gravity sport touring windscreen kept me from being buffeted. Although I did have a visor covered in bugs at the end of the day. A warm washcloth left on the visor for a few minutes softened the debris to be easily wiped off.

Speaking of buffeting. Large trucks would put off a bow wave that I would always go into a “tuck” position for. The lightweight of the 400 is really apparent. Several times I was glad I was holding on tight. I saw the Ninja being moved a foot or 2 in my lane as I encountered the soiled air of large vehicles.

Braking...meh....Twice I had to haul in the stop lever for stop NOW instances. Once for a dog that ran into the road, and another for a traffic light that went yellow with me close to it and doing 65. The dog encounter I wasn’t going really fast and had no problem reeling in the speed. But, the traffic light, Hmmmmm i went about 10 feet past where I had wanted to stop. I did not activate the ABS, but said to myself, different brake pads are in order.

Several Highlights in the trip. One, the WIndsor ruins, just off the Trace, 30 miles north of Natchez. The 160 year old columns are still standing. A wealthy gent built the place in 1859-1861, It burned down in 1890 and left the columns. They still stand as a testament to the construction techniques used in building this home.
D43E4EB9-0EF7-463C-9ABF-BF13101304B1.jpeg


Another Highlight...The Meet and Ride with Tracy and Holy Kaw. These two gents showed me a great time riding in their “backyard”. First class fellas and two REALLY good riders. They know how to make the Z dance. They graciously tolerated my slow pace, for a rider from the flatland of Florida. Well done guys. An awesome day.

I’ll add a post or two to this if I think of any more bits that might we worthy of sharing.

In the final analysis.....The Ninja 400 IS capable of touring. Now, Is it a capable tourer....You’ll just have to take it on a trip and see for yourself.
Get out there and RIDE......Safely..

RK
 

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Great write up chap! That's a good knock for sure and I'm guessing you saw some bits of the country you'd never seen before? Good to hear the bike went like a charm - as if there was any doubt!
 

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Yep, That was one of my bucket list trips. The Natchez Trace. And while I was at it, may as well include a little bit of the Tennessee, North Carolina twisties. Bonus was a “Meet and Ride” with Tracy and Holy Kaw.

So, 7 days and 2243 miles later I can chalk up a safe ride on the Ninja 400. Oh, and narry a drop of precipitation. What are the odds of that?????

Day1. Central Florida to Enterprise Alabama
Day2. Enterprise to Natchez MS
Day3 Natchez to Florence Alabama
Day4. Florence to Nashville and Maryville, Tennessee
Day5. Meet and ride the Local area.
Day6. Maryville to Waycross Georgia
Day7. Waycross to home.

Here are the pin drops of Fuel stops. MPG averaged 66.3, with a low of 60.3 and high of 74.1

View attachment 15778 View attachment 15779

I used all “backroads”, with only a 20 mile Interstate jaunt to bypass Ocala FL, (twice) and I used the Super Slab from Nashville to Maryville. Now, backroads were sometimes 4 lane divided highways. In fact, a LOT of the time. But, surprisingly, traffic was light.....all week. A high of 420 miles one day and a low of 120 another. Average was 320.
Speed rarely got over 75mph. In fact most was 60-65, or maybe 60 on the Nat hez trace where the limit is 50. It was fun though to let the go fast stick stay in a mostly open position for some stretches or passing opportunities.

I took and wore a collection of gear that I have amassed over the last years. It is some quality stuff and I appreciated having acquired it.

Here are several things that I was glad I had and wouldn’t do another trip without them.

Voltmeter/USB charger. That kept my phone topped off all day long. In fact, that was the first mod I did to the 400.
Cramp Buster/Throttle Rocker. Sure saved my hands from being wrapped around the grip for long stretches.
Ram Mount for the phone which I used as my primary nav source when I needed some nav help.
Wild Ass Inflatable seat cushion. Kept my butt from being sore at the end of day.
Pin Lock visor. It worked fine to keep my visor from fogging up on chilly mornings. But my glasses fogged so that was a wash.
Ventura pack rack. A real quality system and secure mounting for the gear. Rok straps and a couple of bungees kept my two bags tethered.
Denali sound blaster air horn. Now that right there saved me more than once. Frequently I would blast it to scatter the vultures away from road kill. And the BIG save was a car merging into my lane that got as close as being iseen near the rear tire in my mirror. The roadrunner beep beep OEM horn is less than acceptable. It just checks a box to meet some standard.

View attachment 15787

Above. The Ninja at Windsor Ruins, 30 miles north of Natchez.

A few observations.
Wind noise was always there. No matter where I put my head. It was annoying. I have a helmet that is supposed to be quieter. But for this trip, it wasn’t. But, my head never got buffeted. Go figger.

The Zero Gravity sport touring windscreen kept me from being buffeted. Although I did have a visor covered in bugs at the end of the day. A warm washcloth left on the visor for a few minutes softened the debris to be easily wiped off.

Speaking of buffeting. Large trucks would put off a bow wave that I would always go into a “tuck” position for. The lightweight of the 400 is really apparent. Several times I was glad I was holding on tight. I saw the Ninja being moved a foot or 2 in my lane as I encountered the soiled air of large vehicles.

Braking...meh....Twice I had to haul in the stop lever for stop NOW instances. Once for a dog that ran into the road, and another for a traffic light that went yellow with me close to it and doing 65. The dog encounter I wasn’t going really fast and had no problem reeling in the speed. But, the traffic light, Hmmmmm i went about 10 feet past where I had wanted to stop. I did not activate the ABS, but said to myself, different brake pads are in order.

Several Highlights in the trip. One, the WIndsor ruins, just off the Trace, 30 miles north of Natchez. The 160 year old columns are still standing. A wealthy gent built the place in 1859-1861, It burned down in 1890 and left the columns. They still stand as a testament to the construction techniques used in building this home.
View attachment 15780

Another Highlight...The Meet and Ride with Tracy and Holy Kaw. These two gents showed me a great time riding in their “backyard”. First class fellas and two REALLY good riders. They know how to make the Z dance. They graciously tolerated my slow pace, for a rider from the flatland of Florida. Well done guys. An awesome day.

I’ll add a post or two to this if I think of any more bits that might we worthy of sharing.

In the final analysis.....The Ninja 400 IS capable of touring. Now, Is it a capable tourer....You’ll just have to take it on a trip and see for yourself.
Get out there and RIDE......Safely..

RK
It makes a great read, Thanks for the story, I am envious of that great ride.
 

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Thanks for your interesting and intelligent trip report. `Twas a great bike adventure by a cool biker! Meeting and riding with you was a pleasure and you did very well on our TN curves. Your generous comments are appreciated. :)

Tracy (L) and Roadking100 (R) at Deals Gap Resort (home of Tail-of-the-Dragon).
15790
 

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Great Ride! Thanks for the write-up. I hope to get there sometime soon once my circumstances permit. But it's also good to confirm that our bikes will travel.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It makes a great read, Thanks for the story, I am envious of that great ride.
Thank you Kieran, But, it wasn’t ALL Fun n games. Mile after mile of some level of boredom. 😜
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That was one great trip. Thanks for the write up. I am now looking at the maps near me to do some overnighters. Thanks!
There ya go Atomicmonkey. IF I am able to inspire only ONE other person to take the wee Ninja/Z out for a trip, then it is well worth my effort.
RK
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Man! That was a cool trip. I am truly glad that HolyKaw and myself were able to be part of it. The pin drop map is a great visual of your ride...Well done RK
🐉
Tracy, the Highlight of the trip goes to you and HolyKaw. Great time, great riding together. When I share my experience with some buddies, I tell them that it was like we three had been riding together forever. Sure felt that way for me.
RK
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for your interesting and intelligent trip report. `Twas a great bike adventure by a cool biker! Meeting and riding with you was a pleasure and you did very well on our TN curves. Your generous comments are appreciated. :)

Tracy (L) and Roadking100 (R) at Deals Gap Resort (home of Tail-of-the-Dragon).
View attachment 15790
Kind words, Thanks HolyKaw. I appreciate your effort to Meet and Ride. Made the entire 2243 worth every minute we rode together. Hope we can do it again.
RK
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Great Ride! Thanks for the write-up. I hope to get there sometime soon once my circumstances permit. But it's also good to confirm that our bikes will travel.
Baxter, yep they WILL travel. To the grocery, a Saturday afternoon on the curves or mile after mile of pushing those handlebars down the road. It’s just what level patience you have for the ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Y
It is awesome just imagining your trip!
Teorist, If you are in the Toronto area then plan yourself a trip. Head over to Guelph and the Elora Gorge area. Great roads and lots of sights. Or, take that lil puppy up to North Bay for a hamburger. You CAN do it. For me, the planning is almost as much fun as the ride. Almost.....😜
 
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