SS1000 Ride from SFO

#1
Hello fellas,

I recently moved to US, Sunnyvale California. I was off riding for close to 1 year and now i wish to start my riding again. I am thinking to start off with a SS1000 ride from Sunnyvale CA. I have a tiger explorer. Can someone please suggest a route plan that i can take from Sunnyvale, California? I would like to kick off the ride at 3AM on the day of ride also i need the return route to be different for my ride. What is the best month from weather perspective to take up this ride? Any suggestions/comments appreciated

Naufal
 

Scott Parish

Premier Member
#2
Well from Sunnyvale - you basically only have 3 options i.e. north, south or east. I would not recommend heading west as salt water is corrosive to our bikes... :) That being said - I would recommend you build your own route using whatever routing application you are most comfortable. For me - I use My Maps through Google. Since this is your first SS - you might want to consider a route with the starting and end in the same location - A loop route would ensure you are never more than 500 miles (give or take) from home without riding the same roads to and from. As for time of year - heck; I'm in San Diego and as you know - the weather this year has been very warm. You could knock out your SS this weekend and not worry too much about weather unless you are crossing a mountain range. Generally, I would start my riding season late March/April as you have to consider the weather of where you are going more so than from where you are starting. Go ahead and create a route and post on this thread and I am sure you will receive some feedback. Welcome to the site.
 

DelB

Premier Member
#4
101 to 84(or use 92, free this direction for both bridges) to 880 to 80(toll at Carquinez Bridge $5) to 505 to 5 north to 36 to 99 to 5 south to 126 to 101 north to home

Approximately 1058 mile
 
#5
Sunnyvale-->Sacramento-->Yuba City-->Medford-->Crescent City-->Santa Rosa-->Sunnyvale Shows 950 Miles(50 miles i assume will be offset when i am on road actually) so i guess it would be close to 1000+. Google map shows 17 hrs for this. I was expecting 16 hrs to complete. Any comments on the above route-map? Road conditions, usual traffic conditions etc. any inputs welcome :)
 

DelB

Premier Member
#6
You ask what is the best month to ride, well, the above ride would be "never" unless you like cold, wet, windy around Crescent City. I have ridden south from Oregon on 101 in the middle of July and hit high winds, heavy fog and drizzle. Also, why would you want to ride through SF?

For California, the best riding time is Spring and Fall. For your first SS1K, stay on the freeways whenever possible. You can get fancy with 2 lane roadways later.
 

Scott Parish

Premier Member
#7
Sunnyvale-->Sacramento-->Yuba City-->Medford-->Crescent City-->Santa Rosa-->Sunnyvale Shows 950 Miles(50 miles i assume will be offset when i am on road actually) so i guess it would be close to 1000+. Google map shows 17 hrs for this. I was expecting 16 hrs to complete. Any comments on the above route-map? Road conditions, usual traffic conditions etc. any inputs welcome :)
Google map times will not factor in fuel stops times etc. Your Tiger should allow you 200 mile legs easily; figure approximately 5-6 stops at 10-15 minutes each; adds another hour to 1.5 hours over driving/ride time at a minimum. As stated by DelB - you might want to stick with major interstate/highways for an overall higher average MPH. I would definitely stay away from major cities if possible; or time your passage during off-peak commute times. As DarkoDanny posted - half the fun is planning your own route since ultimately you are riding it. This would be a great time to practice routing in your preferred application. My Maps within Google enables you to save/share routes and/or copy from others; import a GPX file; save your route to a KMZ file-open in Base Camp-and save to a Garmin GPS if you have one etc. Lots of tools available to help you get started. I would recommend with creating a map in google and posting to this thread for others to more easily view and offer advice. Mark your planned fuel stops along the route.
 

kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#8
I'll take up a couple of other points...

<...>I would like to kick off the ride at 3AM on the day of ride also i need the return route to be different for my ride.
Do you normally get up and moving around this time?

There's been a couple of threads around here and elsewhere about messing much with your normal circadian rhythms. If you believe you will be conscious enough to operate a motorcycle for 18+ hours, starting at 3AM, then it's the best time for you to start.

Otherwise, only YOU are able to clearly understand times, traffic patterns, et. al. in your ride situation.

As far as the second point you brought up.In doing a ride like this, that's considered a 'loop', by not returning on the same path. Ideally, a ~520 mile out-and-back is the simplest routing of all, but I can truly understand the desire to see different things on this trip.

Others above this post best described a couple of routing suggestions that only you would be able to acknowledge.

Good luck; let us know how it transpired!
 
#11
Thanks so much guys for the inputs. I feel very confident now. :)

One question. What food items or drinks are good to carry during the ride? nuts/chocolates/bars/red bull/ any suggestions?

thanks @Andy for the beautiful route suggestion
 
#12
I generally stick to my regular diet items of fresh fruit and nuts. I always have Cliff Bars in my tank bag and can eat while riding. I'm not as rigid about coffee as some because I like it and limit myself to one cup a day. I maintain hydration by wearing a 3L Camelbak and chew the occasional electrolyte replacement tab. I'm not a fan of energy drinks so I stay away from them; but they work for some. I will drink a Gatorade occasionally; but will usually consume an Orange Juice instead as it contains more replacement value than Gatorade. For short day rides like a Saddlesore or Bun Burner - I will make a PB&J sandwich and eat at the halfway point so I don't end the ride feeling too hungary. You know your body and habits better than others so my advice is to not vary a routine too much for a ride. If you normally eat fast good; then continue. If you are on a Paleo diet etc. it is easy enough to pack appropriate food. My one recommendation is just consider overall time and mileage and how you want to divide stop time and moving time. If you can have something handy to snack on safely while moving; you don't lose time. However, it is also good for your body and mind to be off the bike. The last Saddlesore I completed with my wife as a Pillion - we planned our first two and last two fuel stops short to bank time at the halfway point to sit down for 30 minutes and eat the sandwiches we brought. We completed the ride in 16 hours and 45 minutes without really feeling rushed. This is also why I recommend you plan your route so you know exactly where you are going to stop for fuel/breaks as well as knowing your time split. I use a very simple Excel spreadsheet so I always know if I'm ahead/behind schedule at each stop.
 

kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#13
Food/drink? Scott covered that well, and it's true. This is a one-off ride, no real need to do anything crazy to accomplish a ride like this.

I'll now take a slight detour from Scott's advice on the planning of such a ride - especially being your first.

If you already have a pretty good idea how long YOU are comfortable on YOUR bike, simply take Andy's route, using something as simple as Google Maps, plot those distances. If your bike has a range of 220 miles, plot your fuel stops at 180 or 190 miles apart. Thus, there's five locations, plus start & stop locations that you need at a minimum to accomplish your ride.

Andy's route is a large circle, so some of the locations you'll choose may be predicated on needing to show a 'corner' (defined as a significant directional change of the route). As it's been stated, part of the fun & enjoyment is what we term "Plan the Ride, then Ride the Plan". It can get excruciatingly detailed; this is your first ride, don't get hung up on this part of it.

Take all the time you need at stops, but remember, for every minute you're not moving, you might be a mile further toward your goal. See my ride report on a recent ride I did on how many stupid little things I ran into on a single ride like you are planning. :)
 
#14
Thanks for the advice on food items. Below are the points where i plan to gas my bike. Next thing i will figureout exact gas station addresses in these locations and then create a map in navigon app on my phone. I will start my ride at 3 AM and will get at least 7-8 hrs of sleep before this ride.

Sunnyvale - Colfax (168 Miles) 3 hours
Colfax - Fernley (117 Miles) 2 hours
15 min Break
Fernley - Caoldale (162 Miles) 3 hours
CaolDale - Beatty (134 Miles) 2.5 hours
15 min break
Beatty - Trona (107 Miles) 2 hours
Trona - Bakersfield (128 Miles) 3 hours
20 min break
Bakersfield - Cantua Creek (123 Miles) 3 hours
Cantua Creek - GIlroy (100 Miles) 2 hours
20 min break
Gilroy - Sunnyvale(44 MIles) (starting point gas station) 1 hour

Total 1083 Miles
 

kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#15
Here's where we get to help with personal knowledge of the area:

"Caoldale" is Coledale, NV - it's a ghost town, there's nothing there!

The only gas between Fernley and Tonopah is in Hawthorne, NV. There is no gas between Tonopah and Beatty, either.

So, expounding a bit, I came up with this generic routing & stop locations:

https://goo.gl/maps/RQtJEjPrewM2

18 hours and change, according to Google Maps at the time I made this route. Factor in at least ten minutes per stop (some could be shorter), you're at around the 20 hour mark.

If you've never been in western Nevada, you'll be doing it during the day; beautiful and desolate area out there! Looks like a fun ride!
 
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#16
thanks @kwthom i think i should also carry 2 2 gallon spare gas with me on some containers. just to be on safe side. Gave my bike for service. Before this ride I will do a test ride to Big Sur to check bike. Feeling confident and excited about the Nevada ride! I will keep this thread posted. Thanks for the support
 

Andy

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#17
What bike are you riding? How many miles per tank of gas do you get? If you do my loop and can go 200-250 miles you'll be fine without carrying extra gas. On 80 to Fernley you're never more than a few miles from a gas station. Fernley is a corner so get gas there no matter what. I never leave Tonopah without a full tank, you can gas in Hawthorne in between Fernley and Tonopah if you need to. Beatty is another corner so gas there. Watch your speeds in Nevada towns. As others have said keep the wheels turning. I always take a break in Rhyolite because I like it there.
I've done this loop in 16 hours so you have plenty of time without stressing. You can make good time down through Nevada and through Death Valley ;).
Leaving early you should make it through DV and back into California before dark. Take a camer along. Have fun and ride safe.
 
#18
@Andy I am riding a 2014 tiger explorer 1200. I will be riding it without the side boxes. On papers it shows the range to be 210 Miles. I will work out a final plan with your inputs on gas stations and post it here. Thanks for the wishes
 

kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#19
...Before this ride I will do a test ride to Big Sur to check bike. Feeling confident and excited about the Nevada ride! I will keep this thread posted. Thanks for the support
@Andy is spot-on. The consensus is you don't need the worry and the extra weight of four additional gallons (~25 lbs) could actually slightly reduce fuel economy. I think you have ~5.3 gallons of fuel when full, and it would appear you should be able to achieve 200 miles per tank at normal highway speeds reasonably easily. Remember, this is NOT a race. If you feel good, you keep going. If you don't, you live to ride another day.

Your Big Sur ride may not give you a completely accurate fuel economy measurement at highway speeds. My suggestion for your test ride:

Take US-101 south to CA-198, then east to Coalinga. That's ~170 miles. Fuel there; calculate MPG's. Take I-5 back (I know...) back to Patterson, then have fun along CA-130 back to Sunnyvale. That's ~190 miles. Fuel there; calculate MPG's. Now average the MPG's.

Now you have a better idea of highway range, and how much fuel you'll use in a couple of different scenarios.