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Hey guys! I bought my 2020 ninja used with 1100 miles in January and started riding it in February. I’m at about 11k miles now and thinking about taking a quarter off college and traveling around long distance while I’m young and can. Wondering if you guys have any tips or recommendations. Starting in Seattle, WA.
20133
Also hit the track for the first time to celebrate the six months riding last week 🖤💚
 

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Love my N400, but in all honesty I don't know how people can tour with this bike. I just did a 200 mile trip down yesterday and then back today. I feel sore. After 2 hours it just starts becoming really uncomfortable.
 

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2019 Ninja 400 ABS, Pearl Storm Gray
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and thinking about taking a quarter off college and traveling around long distance while I’m young and can.
Wow, if you have not seen our national parks, you have Glacier, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, and Acadia all on the northern tier, perfect for spring/summer/fall tours -- New England into Acadia is just stunning -- I actually did them all by bicycle many years ago... With miles less of a concern, you could easily link in the parks in Colorado (Rocky Mountain, near where I started, climbing the spine of the Rockies north) and even Utah (Arches, Canyonlands, Bryce, Zion!), which are great in winter -- it will be like traveling to another planet! I loved the northern tier because it was quite temperate and uncrowded -- I also went thru 1000 miles of Canada (and their Waterton NP, near our Glacier NP), if you fancy country border crossings!

Have fun for sure -- I hope you meet an endless number of super nice people, like I did! (I stopped watching the news when I got back, because I realized the country is not a scary place like it is endlessly portrayed there -- mostly people just want to help, and be a tiny part of your story!)

-- Rich
 

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I’m from the Seattle area as well, and if I were doing a trip of that sort I’d probably do something like the pic below…lots of great places to visit and see.

With two college-age daughters of my own, let me put on my Dad hat and encourage you to have the bike thoroughly inspected by your dealer or trusted, experienced mechanic, get a mount for your phone for real-time GPS, buy a mini portable air inflator (and tire gauge) and an AAA membership, a good disc lock with alarm, an emergency First-Aid kit, and a PLB (Personal Locator Beacon). All are good insurance / peace-of-mind for a safe and enjoyable trip.

20134
 

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You have a lot of great choices nearby. I've been wanting to ride the Going to the Sun Road in Glacier Nat. Park. I've also wanted to ride the Beartooth Pass in Montana and the Chief Joseph Highway in Wyoming (I've done them in a cage; both Cody, WY and Red Lodge, MT are good stopping points, esp. Red Lodge Ales and then stay at The Pollard). And you're close enough to ride the Great Salt Desert (yes it's flat and hot, but it's an experience), Rocky Mountain Nat. Park, the Million Dollar Highway and the Peak to Peak Highway in CO (both still on my someday list), and don't forget the Columbia River (also someday) is just around the corner from your location. Hmm, brewery fresh Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale in Bend, OR?

You probably can't go wrong riding anywhere in the Cascades or the Northern Rockies, as well as Banff if Canada stays open. And you can meet the most interesting motorcycle travelers just when filling up!

Here's what I did to turn my N400 into a solo touring bike: Touring Build

Here's the most indispensable touring accessory: Norton Racing Supersport Seat Review

And here's my example of how the setup works for achieving a high-mileage day: Saddle Sore 1000 around Lake Michigan

I still have to carve out the time for a multiday road trip on the 400, but our bikes are meant for traveling.
 

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Wow, if you have not seen our national parks, you have Glacier, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, and Acadia all on the northern tier, perfect for spring/summer/fall tours -- New England into Acadia is just stunning -- I actually did them all by bicycle many years ago...

-- Rich
Just wow! Most people are afraid to make that kind of decision, this is why it is impressive. It must have been an amazing adventure. I bet the 400 saddle seems comfy to you. ;)
 

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The only bike I had at 18 - 19 was a Kawasaki Mach III. Toured it into Mexico and Canada because I didn't know any better but the adventures I gained stayed with me through my whole life. View attachment 20137
You guys are impressive. Maybe one day, when the kids are older I will do something like this. The more I think about it, the more I realize that it must be done at least once in a lifetime. For me, at least.
 

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Tips for riding long miles;
heated grips, heated gear, Aerostich, throttle lock, Norton SS seat, Android Auto (BT'd to yer helmet.) and I ike my SHOEI GT AIR with the drop down visor. I like a magnetic tank bag, 'n keep Cee Baily's windshield cleaner, 'n micro cloth; w/ the throttle lock, you can clean yer face shield on the fly.
 

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The first bike I ever did any touring on was a 1974 Suzuki Ranger 185cc 2stroke.

Pack light but make sure you have what you need. If your going to splurge any money anywhere, I'd put it into a good tent. One acceptable for long hunting Alaska. An appropriate good quality sleeping bag. A leatherman surge and some small quality knife like an Esee Izula. 3 ways to start a fire and a quality metal thermos that can be used as a backup pot. A good firearm or 3, and a couple pounds of beef jerky. Good rain gear and a couple changes of clothes. Pairs of Thck and thin wool underwear and socks. A fishing kit, I carry a fenwick breakdown in a tube and it rides fine sitting on the mirror arms and latched with a good knot. Practice a few knots too, so you can tie them in the dark and in a hurry, justit's about.

A couple pounds of jerky and an assortment of whatever candy or snacks you like. Top the rest of your bag(s) off with as much water as you feel like toting.

As far as riding, I'd let my heart lead the way. I always liked it better when I didn't have a destination. If I had 5 days to ride, I'd ride 2 and start my voyage back, hitting a few local areas if I had a day to spare.

That's how us aging hillbilly bikers do it anyways lol

Just enjoy it, that's what its about.
 

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I did a trip to Yosemite when I first got this bike to help wear out the stock rubbers haha. The trip was about 5 hours each way, and my bum was hurting after 3 hours. You can probably get by longer if you have hefty glutes. In hindsight, I wish I wore my comfy bicycle shorts underneath.

Hey, if you pass by Los Angeles (Southern Cali) area, DM me! We can hit a canyon, and let's grab some good Asian food, my treat! I've actually always wanted to do what you are. Let me know how it goes!
 

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Question about the Aerostitch: I see many of the touring guys here swear by it. How is it in hot and humid weather? I assume the cold in not really an issue, if you wear layers.
 

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I hate to sound like a miserly curmudgeon, although that's pretty accurate. And I don't doubt Aerostitch's worth and durability. But that's a pretty stiff investment for an old guy that doesn't even buy green bananas, for fear I'll not last long enough for them to ripen. Sure it'll last a lifetime.... but that's not asking much. And, my spouse's already said she's finding someone taller (and nicer among other things) next time around.. so it'll do him no good either. :whistle:
 

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I've done some long distance solo touring. Do it while you can! Once you're out of college its harder to take time off (until you get laid off or something ahah!) Grab a couple Butler maps or a Rever.com subscription to find the cool roads. Get your bike serviced. Have a plan if everything goes wrong. Choose a date and go!
 

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Mr lazyeye is right. Make sure your bike has been serviced, change the oil, check your tyres, pack a couple t shirts, socks and underwear, wear your most comfortable riding gear, and take your credit card (and cellphone of course).

Last time I did any serious long distance travel was two up on my old RD400C. The Ninja is a far better bike, so you'll have no problems.
 

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Baxter's write up is probably going to provide the best info and tips as well as what to do.

But, for me the two things I have found about this bike that make it uncomfortable is the seat and how you sit on it and the throttle hurting your wrist.

Some kind of "safe" throttle lock(like the one Baxter) posted or make-shift cruise that can easily dis-engage when braking or etc. so you can rest the throttle hand and a different seat. I have a gel pad that I put over the seat itself, but even then my boney butt gets sore. I also have bicycle shorts that have padding in them, but I just did about 600 miles yesterday riding around the Smokey Mountains and NC with @Tracy yesterday and I, like a dummy, did not wear them.
I have yet to test them out on a trip and see if combined with my gel seat pad will elevate the sore bum.

Outside this, the rest of the bike behaves closely to any other bikes I have rode long distances.
Of all the bikes I owned my V-65 magna with a great wall of china clear windshield was probably the most comfy and had plenty of power.
I owned a couple other bikes that were also pretty good for long travels and better than the the 400 is the way it comes.

I also have a friend that I use to work with that sold everything he owned, and took off on a bike for 2 years it was........or maybe 3, I forget now. He rode all around Alaska, down the West coast, and all the states neighboring the West coast states, and into South America where the road ends and back all over South America.
He had a Suzuki v-strom and loved it, put 300,000 miles on it. Took millions of pictures and wrote a book about it, been years though, probably 10-15 years, long before COVID-19, so things may have changed some since then.

He was in every climate from hot dry deserts to freezing cold mountain tops riding in snow and ice.

He slept in old run down abandon houses/building in South America. At one point he had tire go out he could not fix and had to have it ordered from somewhere in the states, which was like us ordering stuff from China on the slow boat. He said it took 2-3 months for it to arrive so he lived in a small South America town working at a little motorcycle shop to earn a living, since he did not have enough money to live there in once place for that long.

This was also the place he meet his wife, a native of the area, who he has been married to since he came back. After he came back, he traveled back there the normal way and lived there for some time when they got married. They both share a passion for traveling and spending alot of time in the outdoors, he now has like 4 or 5 bikes at any time, most of them adventure bikes for him and her and they are always travel to new places and adventures.
 

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Question about the Aerostitch: I see many of the touring guys here swear by it. How is it in hot and humid weather? I assume the cold in not really an issue, if you wear layers.
I hate to sound like a miserly curmudgeon, although that's pretty accurate. And I don't doubt Aerostitch's worth and durability. But that's a pretty stiff investment for an old guy that doesn't even buy green bananas, for fear I'll not last long enough for them to ripen. Sure it'll last a lifetime.... but that's not asking much. And, my spouse's already said she's finding someone taller (and nicer among other things) next time around.. so it'll do him no good either. :whistle:
Actually, the Aerostitch is a bargain compared to Klim gear. I'm on my 2nd one, 'n probably should get a 3rd, butt like airhead, not sure how many good years of ride'in I have left? :unsure:
Both have been the 2 piece because I used to be able to unzip 'n put the 2 pieces in my saddle bags when I used to watch moto gp at Laguna Seca, among other places. Takes less than a minute to get in or out of.
Have'in crash tested both my suits, I'll tell you they give good protection, and hold up well in a crash. (y)
Leather is better for crashing, butt sucks in rain or heat. And speaking of heat Teorist, they're Gortex so they breath, and have vents at armpits, butt when it's hot out yer gonna get hot. I have the old style, butt they have a light version which costs less, 'n doesn't have a liner, which would be better in the hot, butt mot as good in the cold. Never used one, butt the have fancy cooling vests now, so that'd prolly be good riding in the heat?
 

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Thanks guys! I am always keeping an eye for good gear / stuff so when the time comes to upgrade, I will have a clear idea what to get. I have a huge wish list that I have to prioritize (right now ECU flashing is at the top).
 

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Baxter's write up is probably going to provide the best info and tips as well as what to do.
Thanks!

And you're absolutely right on the throttle boss and seat. Bicycle pants sounds like a great idea to try.
 
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