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Me and the wife are taking our first extended trip next month. I was wanting to get some advice on what we might need to take or even a suggested route.

We live in Noblesville, IN (about 20 miles north of Indianapolis) and are traveling to Sevierville, TN. I know about a rough estimate on how we are going to get there and I have the wife as my navagation unit if needed.

We dont have any kind of trailer that we can pull so everything has to fit on the saddle bags, trunk and luggage rack ('12 Wing).

Any hints and suggestions are welcome. Thanks in advance.
 

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Well I take it you are staying at hotels. If you are, pack light 2 outfits each + lounge wear for the hotel is plenty. Check out some hotel possibilities & verify that they have "Guest Laundry" different than "Laundry Service". That way you can wash your clothes & keep yourself fresh. I have also heard of people just going to Dept Store & buying new stuff as well. Just be careful if you ship dirty laundry home it will have quite an odor when you get back. I never did that but know someone who did.

My wife & I did a 29 Day Cross Country trip in 2010, we packed a bit extra & the 1st UPS shipment home he sent some clean stuff back. Finished the trip with 3 outfits each & lounge wear & that was for 29days.

Most hotels have hair dryers so make sure she leaves that home, take a small 1st aid kit just in case. I also had some cable ties (used some), elect tape, tire plug kit, air pressure guage for tire check, a couple extra tools not in the G.W. kit like long nose vise grips, side cutter, & a knife.

Now some quick travel tips that worked for us.

Get Hotel at area you plan to visit the next day. That way you get in early to sites & exhibits before crowds.

Also if you get a hotel that serves Breakfast you eat before you saddle up thus saving time. Remember every stop you make & have to get out of your gear you are burning daylight & miles you can ride.

Along those same ideas What we did was when we arrived at the hotel for the evening we would check in. The wife would either get us something to eat or start laundry. I would get back on bike go get fuel, food if need be & put the bike to bed.

In the am I would get up, get the bike uncovered, clean the W.S. check oil, tires & general go over, by that time she was up & moving, we would grab breakfast as I already said, pack up, & check out ready to roll to our Site Visit.

Sorry this got long winded. Let me know if you need anything else.

Good Luck with your plans.
 

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Having made several two week long trips, I agree that 2-3 days clothing is enough.

Next month our group is leaving for a three week trip, traveling from North of Los Angeles, CA to Calgary, Canada, then to Vancouver and down the Pacific Coast to home. Still going to stick with the 3 day rule.
 

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Fossil about covered it. My only input would be DO NOT OVERDO IT FOR THE FIRST TRIP! I took my wife on short trips so as to keep it pleasant for her. Me, I want to go hard and see a lot. For her keeping it short and pleasant started it off right. Just MHO.
 

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Along with everything else, don't forget the highest SPF sunscreen you can buy. Put it on your nose, cheeks and lips as well as exposed extremeties at every gas stop. Plus, freeze those plast drinking water bottles at every overnight stop.
 

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Fossil about covered it. My only input would be DO NOT OVERDO IT FOR THE FIRST TRIP! I took my wife on short trips so as to keep it pleasant for her. Me, I want to go hard and see a lot. For her keeping it short and pleasant started it off right. Just MHO.
Crownfire brings up a great point. Since it's your 1st long trip (besides what Mark said). There may be a tendancy for you to ride hard to cover miles. Be sure to be sensitive to her needs. If you have headsets, what I do is every 100 miles or so just say "hey babe need to stretch your legs, get a drink or anything". It goes a long way in the pleasentry of the trip. Additionally be sure to make sure that she is hydrating. Women (unless they are athletes) will typically try to take a short cut on this to minimize potty breaks. Before you know it, she'll be overheated & in trouble. My little lady pulled this once but I stayed on top of it & we had no issues.

To echo what GWTrike said it is easy to get burnt & not realize it. We use Firstgear UV Long sleeved shirts, very comfortable, been worn in 100+ weather, the fabric is designed to wick moisture from your skin providing "evaporative cooling" effect & great UV protection. There are other brands as well like LD Comfort that offer not only shirts but riding shorts (one of the best gear additions I ever purchased) & helmet liners.

Hope your getting enough info.
 

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One thing to cut down on space, things like LD comfort or Tilley have quick dry socks underwear and shirts. Two to Three pair will get you though unlimited days on the road and they are very comfy.
 

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When we go on a trip the saddle bags are full and the trunk is left empty. We use the trunk for snacks, drinks and other goodies. By the time we get home the trunk is usually full with things we picked up on the way (it leaves room for her to do a little shopping or at least the potential for it)
 

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We carry a small cooler in the trunk for beverages during rest stops every 100 miles or so, and at the motel. Do laundry every 3-4 days on a scheduled "short day". Rarely ride any 4 lane unless it is just plain a convenient way to get to the next 2 lane or through a city. No chain restaurants Our best travel time is on the road by 7 and looking for the next motel by 4 or 5. We use the evenings to take in local attractions or short side trips.
 

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Fill your luggage with it already inside your saddle bag. Saves time and frustration. Less is more. By the time you put 2 rain suits extra shoes so you dont have to walk around in ridding boots,space is gone. Ride safe an enjoy your time together. Its all about keeping her happy.
 

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This looks like it will be a 1 day trip to and from for you. About 400 miles, 6 hours on the highway, longer on the back roads, but still probably a day. An excellent way to get started.

Everyone's advice is excellent. My wife likes a butt-break every 100 miles or so, walk around a bit, stretch etc. She's good for 400-450 miles in a day. If you are taking the back roads, you might want to schedule 2 days for the trip, and break it up with an overnight at the halfway mark. Since this is your first time out, a slower leisurely ride will be much more fun than pounding down the superslab for hours, jousting with the big trucks. And it is most important that this trip is fun for her.

If you are staying in Sevierville, (Your OP sounds like that is your plan) you might want to ship some stuff ahead, then ship it back at the end of your trip. Fedex ground is pretty reasonable.

I'll echo some of the others for gear.. Rain gear for sure, jackets / sweatshirts / enough to layer to keep warm in the AM or bad weather, maybe a couple of those bandanas that you soak & they swell up with water to help keep you a bit cooler if it gets hot.
I like a Tourmaster mesh jacket, it has a good warm liner, and liner out it really flows air while offering good protection.

Long term, I have added a luggage rack so i can use a rack bag. The rack bag lets me keep light stuff like rain gear and sweatshirts accessible without taking up internal space. Just keep the contents light.
http://www.kuryakyn.com/Products/1362/Convertible-Luggage-Rack-Bag-with-Protective-Cover
This is just one example, there are lots of other similar options.

One of my top 5, maybe even in the top 3, accessories is my Pakit Rak. This gives me another 2 cubic feet of fluffy stuff, another 20 pounds, that I don't need to find space for on the bike. You don't notice it at all while riding. I keep checking my shadow to make sure it's there..
It is easier to store than a trailer, goes on & off very easily, and gives me enough extra room to take the things my wife considers essentiial.
https://www.pakitrak.com/index.php?dispatch=products.view&product_id=19

Keep us informed of your progress, let us know how it goes.

=Dave=
 

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My first trip with my wife on the bike I told her she could take anything she wanted - as long as she could packit one saddlebag! We left the trunk free for common used items and trinkets during our trip.

Love our pakit rac for shorter trips, easy to store and doesn't take a bunch of space. also unlock the strap, pull the strap out and lift the bag off just as any luggage. We've used it quite a bit.

If you are heading down I-75 through Kentucky be prepared for a traffic jam about the 141 mile marker, went through 3 weeks ago and they have the bridge out and you cross over the median to the other side in one lane so stay in the left lane once you see road construction signs.

Also don't expect to just cruise through Sieverville quickly, seems that no matter what time you try to go through there from I-40, it's a traffic jam! Be very careful going through Sieverville and Pigeon Forge because it's tough to see traffic and there is so much going on around the area. Nice ride into Gatlinburg once you get through Pigeon Forge. Plenty of great roads to ride outside the tourist attractions. Deals Gap, Cherohala Parkway, Foothills Parkway, Cades Cove to name a few. The road from Gatlinburg to Cherokee is an interesting ride it'self.

Too bad we can't come along, so many great scenic rides and not enough time to ride them.
 

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By the way, make sure you pack rain gear! Seems to get a shower or two everytime we go down, though they don't last long most times.
 

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Our longest trip,so far, has been 22 days with just the trunk and saddlebags; our rain suits were in the rack bag. We packed a clean T and undies for 7 days, took 2 extra pairs of pants/jeans, plus the clothes on our backs, and did laundry in the motel's laundry every 7th day. However, we were never in any one motel more than 1-2 nights, so who knows what you wore the day before? Who cares? All you're doing is sitting on a bike and taking in all the wonder and beauty of the ride. How dirty could you be? Chill, pack light, & enjoy.
 

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A little advice On hotels that Crownfire found pretty helpful....if you stop at a rest area near your destination and ask the attendant, they will have some coupons for hotels. Big money saver.
 
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