Whether it’s a 23 year old Argentinean medical student’s road to self discovery – and that of the entire South American continent – on a Norton 500 or Ted Simon’s Jupiter Travels in the early 70’s on a Triumph, some journeys can be transformative.
Maybe it’s the peace of mind or the little things you learn about yourself, motorcycle trips are a great way to relax, reflect and recharge – R & R & R. Ask anyone who’s taken a motorcycle road trip and they’ll tell you about a ‘moment’ that changes everything.
Wanderlust aside, here are a few reasons why taking a long motorcycle trip might actually be good for you.
It will give you the most wonderful stories
On the road you will meet new people, experience new lifestyles, try local cuisines and enjoy various local festivals. All of this will give you enough stories to last a lifetime and maybe write a memoire. One of the most remarkable things about having a motorcycle trip is experiencing nature and humanity first hand.
It will teach you a lot about yourself
Mixing trips with self discovery may sound clichéd thanks to Eat, Pray and Love, but it is true. Travelling on your own or with friends does teach you a great deal about the kind of person you are. You start off by understanding what your basic necessities are. Do you really need the shirts which apparently were all your favorites? Do you really need a separate shower gel and soap bar? Do you really need all those matching shoes or you can survive with just one comfortable pair? A trip would help you understand how unnecessarily loaded your life has become.
The preparation for this trip can help you psychologically as well. By considering what to take and what to leave behind, think about the things weighing you down in your life. These could range from bad relationships that stress you out to gadgets you’ve come to depend on. The preparation will be the first step towards being on your own and shedding ‘dead weight’.
It will make you a lot more independent
When you travel solo on a bike, you learn how to take care of yourself and your belongings wherever you go. Such a trip would teach you who to trust. For instance, at home, you would be comfortable leaving your things around because you trust the people and know the place. But when among strangers, your reptilian brain will take over and sharpen your senses.
A solo bike tour would also teach you how to cook, what to eat, how to manage your money, how to clean up after yourself etc, making you self-reliant.
It will teach you a lot about your bike
A long trip will change the way you look at your motorcycle. You will pay extra attention to the maintenance. All those little things you had been ignoring – the clutch that feels a little wonky – will take priority. You would look at the tires more closely, wiring, indicator lights and all the little things you didn’t worry too much about. When you go for a detailed check-up, you will be surprised to see how much tinkering your bike needed.
Plus, you will pay close attention to the right bike riding gear. You would want proper hydration packs, protection suit, helmet, motorcycle boots, and gloves and so on. In the past, you may have overlooked these things when riding around town, but for a long trip, you would not want to take any chances.
You will find yourself in places you’d never think to visit in a car
Small alleyways and tiny pathways should not be a problem. With two wheels you can make your way through many absolutely wonderful places – quaint towns, crammed culturally rich market places and food streets. And the best part about long trips on motorbikes, parking should not be an issue – well most of the time. Think Long Way Round and Long Way Down.
It will make you realize how travelling on cars/buses/planes is just not good enough
Once you’ve taken a long road trip on a bike, you will understand and learn to enjoy the beauty of this exhilarating experience and how no other vehicle comes close. The sense of freedom that comes with fresh air hitting your face is unparalleled. So much so you would want to take these solo road trips all the time and that too for longer periods.
You will come in contact with lots of new people
While travelling cross state, country or continent for that matter, you are bound to come across all kinds of people. They will hail from every walk of life, belong to different cultures and have unique preferences. You will learn a lot about people, their natures, what affects their behaviors, how they express different emotions and how they celebrate.
You will not be able to find this rare insight into people in any book or memoire. This is one lesson that needs to be experienced firsthand.
Going on a motorcycle trip can be an experience of a lifetime. It is something every motorcycle rider should embark upon at least once in their life. It may need a bit of an investment and a whole lot of preparation, but the returns are far greater than what you could ever imagine.
(Via: Maximo Moto)