Riding to the Sea. For the Journey.

posted in: Motorcycling, Outdoors, Review | 4

It’s a few weeks ago now that we had an entire day spare just to head somewhere on the motorbikes just to enjoy the ride. For me it was also an opportunity to try out two new things – the fab new topbox I got from LincsGeek for Christmas and a great new travel shirt by Craghoppers that the lovely people at Outdoor Look sent me. Both are things that will hopefully be useful on our North American road trip.

BMW F650GS and Blue Sky

When your bike and the sky match you know it’ll be a good day. 

The Sea Was Still There

Naturally, and as you might expect, we headed to see if the sea was still there, and as we were on the bikes wanted to explore some of the more windy roads to be found in Lincolnshire. The main roads here are generally slow and busy – we have a lack of dual carriageways and even the main roads are basically country roads which get clogged up with lorries, cars (and tractors). While they are great for bike riding when they are quiet, they get frustrating quite quickly. The joys of living in the countryside. Anyway, when you get off the main roads (and ask TomTom for a “winding” route), Lincolnshire is a beautiful county for motorcycling.

The Beach and Sea at Chapel Six Marshes, Lincolnshire

The beach at Chapel Six Marshes, Lincolnshire.

From home we headed out towards Bardney, and across country to and across the Lincolnshire Wolds – beautiful views – and then over to the East Coast. We stopped in a couple of places close to Anderby Creek and Sutton on Sea (up the coast from Skegness) – Chapel Six Marshes and Wolla Bank. You’ll not find either on Google Maps (no idea why, but they’re not there!), but they’re worth hunting out. There’s no facilities at each to speak of, other than somewhere to park your car/bike and get onto the beach. You’ll be pleased to know the sea was still there – in both places. Phew.

The Beach and Sea at Wolla Bank, Lincolnshire

The sea at Wolla Bank, Lincolnshire. 

Givi TopBox

My shiny new topbox is the Givi Trekker Monokey Top Case (the TRK46N), a monster 52 litre black and silver plastic case that I think works rather well with my official BMW GS panniers. I wanted something rugged looking that wasn’t over the top expensive that fitted with my bike’s aesthetics, that would allow me a bit extra space when touring. Top boxes are great for the important things you need to get to easily (camera, water bottle, snacks, cables, handbag, jumper, you know), and act as somewhere to put your lid when you get off the bike for a wander around. You can’t put much weight in it, and I wouldn’t want to as it would make the bike rather top heavy, but I am so pleased with my Christmas present. Should make Zartusacan a lot easier to pack for than previous road trips. I was a teeny bit worried it would affect the handling of my bike, but so far it’s been great. I’m really pleased with it.

My BMW F650GS and new Givi Trekker Topcase

My bike and new Givi Trekker Top Case. 

Craghoppers Shirt

When dressing for motorcycling I treat it as an activity like hiking and skiing – I tend to choose materials and styles that are wicking to keep me dry and comfortable all day. And I wear a sports bra. It’s probably not completely necessary but I feel like it’s the right thing to do. Outdoor Look know I like to hike and ride and ‘donated’ one of the Craghoppers Nosilife Khahi shirts, suggesting it would be perfect for travel – long sleeved, light, soft, stretchy, moisture wicking, easy to wash and quick to dry, hard wearing, and a nice style too. I like a shirt any day of the week but this is my first travel shirt and I have never tried one under my motorcycle, but I’m already converted. Even better, I can screw this one up in my bag and don’t need to worry about creasing, and it should be easy to wash in the sink and dry overnight to keep me clean and sweet smelling on our ten week road trip this summer, and even keep me slightly smart when I’m out for dinner in the evenings. The size 12 fits okay (my belly is a teeny bit large at the moment…), and I was so impressed with how comfortable it was – I’ve also worn it hiking (up Mam Tor), and will definitely be ordering a second one in a different colour so I have one to wear and one to wash while we are away.

Hiking on Mam Tor

Er… I promise I’m wearing the shirt. Underneath the coat. Ah. Ummmm… I’ll get a photo with it showing next time. Sorry. 

For the Sake of the Journey

One of the best things about having a motorbike as my weekend toy (although it might have to become my main form of transport soon – my car is really not happy!) is that when I ride it I am doing so for pleasure. And just for pleasure. When I ride I can take my time, enjoy the road, enjoy the scenery, enjoy the destination. For me riding a bike is the absolute epitome of life being all about the journey – one windswept mile at a time.

When was the last time you took the long winding road to the sea? Just for the journey? 

 

The shirt was a gift from Outdoor Look and will be coming with me on our Zartusacan road trip – I’m certain you’ll see lots of photos of it this summer!

If you ever want me to be more detailed in my hiking or biking routes (i.e. include maps and full route descriptions here on Splodz Blogz) please pipe up and say. Or if you’re happy to keep enjoying a few words to go with my photos that’s great!

4 Responses

  1. bigdavezz

    Givi top box looks good Zoe, 52ltrs is a monster…. but I’ll bet you’ll manage to fill it along with your panniers and wish you had just a little bit more space during your road trip….

    • Splodz

      It is indeed a monster but that’s so I have space for my lid and paraphernalia when we stop for a get off. Up until now I’ve had to carry everything with me, which is a bit of a faff to say the least 🙂

      • bigdavezz

        so is your plan to carry the bulk of your gear in your panniers leaving space in your top box for your helmet, gloves, jacket, etc when you stop off visiting places? I took a look at the Givi site and there’s a neat rack that fits your top box…. might be useful. But as you say you don’t want to load up the top box too much as it may change the handling of your GS. Are you any good at wheelies? 🙂

  2. Kezzie

    GHa ha, show us the shirt-prove it!!! Ha ha!!
    The topbox looks brilliant and HOW gorgeous that beach looks!
    OOoh, it’s my 11th Blogiversary today, come and join the fun!!x

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