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Thread: Tent camp?

  1. #1
    On Budget MCDOGGY's Avatar
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    Tent camp?

    I have been busy and not much riding in last season
    2015. I want to try bike camp touring.

    I have been staying at hotel for 3-4 days trip.
    Recently, thinking about tent camping with bike.

    Who does bike camping here?
    Any annual trip by GSB?


    Scott. Fix your BMW GT and let's go camping this year.

  2. #2
    Senior Member BlueLghtning's Avatar
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    I've done a bunch of tent camping over the years. It really helps cut the cost down on a multi-day trip and I actually enjoy it. There is no way I could have done all of the long trips I have if I was always staying in a hotel.

    One really nice thing about camping, especially if you camp at a motorcycle specific campground, is that you tend to mingle with other people, meet them, hear their stories, and it really makes some great memories on the trip. When you stay in a hotel, you generally stick to your room and watch TV and miss out on all the interaction.

    Some things I've learned. The smaller you want the gear, the more you'll pay for it. The good thing about larger touring bikes though is it isn't as critical as hiking as far as weight/size are concerned, but don't skimp on the gear. Buy a good quality tent, sleeping bag (for the temps you'll be in) and a nice pad to sleep on. Depending on the bike, hard luggage really makes it pretty easy to pack up. Cooking at camp is another whole animal. That is kind of fun too and enjoyable and sometimes after a long day, its nice to just sit at camp and relax vs getting back on the bike to go find food.

    My wife and I both ride our own bikes, so that does help too as we can split the load some. Camping off a big bike is easy. It become much more challenging when we are camping off our small dual sport bikes and weight really does become an issue there.
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  3. #3
    On Budget MCDOGGY's Avatar
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    Thanks Dan.

    I have been checking gear on ADV rider site and got idea about compressed sleeping bag and 1person tent.

    Maybe I will try to make your meeting in SW Atlanta area one day and you can school me on that.

    My wife rides too but we sold her Honda 599. And she has no ride now.

    I do not have dual sports bike, but would like to join with ZRX if suitable this year.

  4. #4
    Senior Member BlueLghtning's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MCDOGGY View Post
    Thanks Dan.

    I have been checking gear on ADV rider site and got idea about compressed sleeping bag and 1person tent.

    Maybe I will try to make your meeting in SW Atlanta area one day and you can school me on that.

    My wife rides too but we sold her Honda 599. And she has no ride now.

    I do not have dual sports bike, but would like to join with ZRX if suitable this year.
    If you are new to camping, one thing to keep in mind is that the tent capacity's are a joke. Generally speaking, a 1 man tent is tight for one person. I would suggest at least starting with a 2 man tent. That's where camping on the bike allows to spurge a little bit with space. Now some guys do fine with a 1 man tent, but they are crowded and you really don't even have room to bring some of your stuff in the tent with you. Remember, you are going to have your riding boots, riding gear, helmet, clothes from the previous day & next day, maybe a bag off your bike. Tents with a decent vestibule do pay off too because most likely you'll want to leave your boots outside your tent, may some of your riding gear, but still keep it dry. If your wife plans on joining you, then a 3 man tent.

    We have the Kelty Gunnison in the 2-man and 3-man configuration. We tried to make the 2 man work for us, but it really was just too tight, so when we camp together, we take the 3 man, when I'm solo, I take the 2 man version. That tent has 2 doors and vestibules on both sides, so that works out great. It's not the tallest tent, but it gives me plenty of room. There are a lot of great tents out there, you just got to decide what you want.

    Some other things to keep mind. At all costs, I try to avoid the tents where you have to slide the poles through the fabric. That is a royal pain and eventually you usually end up breaking the string that holds the poles together because you are tugging/pulling on the poles, or you rip the fabric eventually. Our tent just uses these quick release hooks and makes setting up and taking down a breeze. Also keep in mind how long the poles are and how many sets there are. I can fit my tent in my side bag if I pack the poles in the top case separately.

    Sleeping bags are probably the most important part of camping because you need to be comfortable. Mummy bags pack small, but don't leave you a lot of room to move around. I decided to forgo the small size and buy a Nemo bag that gives me lots or room to move my legs around and even sit up cross legged if I want. It's a little larger sleeping bag, but makes sleeping so comfy. The temp range of the bag is also important. Most bags are rated with the assumption that you'll have a sleeping pad that adds some R-value to it, so their temps are often fudged a bit. My 45 degree bag (synthetic) gets down right chilly at anything below 55-60. I've decided it just keeps you alive at 45. On the other hand my 30 degree bag (down) seems to do a great job of keeping me warm down to about 30 degrees and I can stay comfortable. I also paid a lot more for the down bag, but I love it.

    Sleeping pads are another big preference. We've been through several to find what works. We started with some very bulky pads that were comfy, but they just ate up too much room. Now we have found some air only ones that pack up really small, yet are still plenty comfortable. Again, its always a trade off on space, weight, & size. Hikers really get desperate when they have sleeping pad that only has enough room for their upper body.
    Last edited by BlueLghtning; 01-28-2015 at 11:14 AM.
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  5. #5
    On Budget MCDOGGY's Avatar
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    Camping is not new to me, I have done planty of it before kids longest one was 16 days. However, always on truck or car. Never motorcycle.

    My wife will not join bike camp at this time.
    We have kids and she needs more comfort at this time of her life

    About tent, I read about better to get plus 1person size. Solo=2person tent
    Also tarp (cover) to secure shade and shelter from rain.

    Sleeping bag, browsing 20 degree rate synthetic inner (because of the cost)
    My plan is to try Camp at near by. Figure out must have and nice to have item.
    Cooking at bike camp will improve more I do. First time, freeze dry food, can food and maybe ramen noodle. Lol.

    Thanks for input and I will ask you more later.

  6. #6
    Just Ramm it Georgiacbr's Avatar
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    sounds like fun MCDOGGY me and a few friends are going to Va and trailing in April .
    - I'm Eric and I approve this message

  7. #7
    On Budget MCDOGGY's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Georgiacbr View Post
    sounds like fun MCDOGGY me and a few friends are going to Va and trailing in April .
    Nice Eric. I did not know you do bike camp.
    Assuming BRP rides? R u taking CBR with camping gear?

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