Inaugural Trike Tour 2015 Trip - Statistics

        Total Trip

Total Days 20
Days on the Road 9
Total Miles 3247
Miles/Day 363
Low Mileage Day 228
High Mileage Day 424

        Gas and Mileage

Total Gas Stops 30
Total Gallons 103.8
Total Gas Cost $295.71
Average Miles/Gallon 31.45
Average Cost/Gallon $2.85
Low Cost/Gallon $2.599 - Crow Agency, MT
High Cost/Gallon $3.309 - Cooke City, MT


Total States Visited 6
Total National Parks Visited 2
Total National Monuments Visited 2
Lowest Temperature 34.4°
Highest Temperature 101.0°
Lowest Elevation 1'
Highest Elevation 10,973'
Days with Rain 0
Nights in Motels 7
Average Cost/Night $111.94
Low Cost Night $74.83
High Cost Night $161.72
Wireless Connections 7
Wired Connections 0
Telephone Connections 0

        Web Statistics

Since I didn't get the majority of the pages published until almost a week after we returned, I didn't look at statistics for the pages from this trip.

I was interested to see how the entire site statistics compares to previous years reports:

gardnerswebsite analytics

The above chart only includes the top 20 of 125 different pages viewed during the month and the site had 1349 page views and 947 unique views for the month which again compares with 2848 page views and 1737 unique page views for a similar period 3 years ago.  I was a little surprised at the reduction but I really haven't been adding much new content and I haven't been posting the link on forums, etc.  Besides that, I really do this for our own use to document where we have gone, etc.  Okay, enough statistics.

Final Thoughts and Plans

This was the ninth motorcycle trip that we documented on our site.  This trip was different for several reasons.  First it's been3 years since our last trip, second it was sort of broken up into two parts, and third it was our first trip on the new trike.

There were several reasons we missed taking a trip the last two years.  Last year we did the Best of Europe tour instead of a motorcycle trip and two years ago we chose a car trip so we could do more hiking etc.  On top of those reasons I think we both had become more concerned about the bike itself - well not the bike but my ability to handle it in some situations.  Specifically the problems were at very slow speeds, in stop and go traffic, and u-turns.  All of these situations were becoming more and more stressful.  All of these finally contributed to our choice to have the Goldwing converted to a trike and now we wish we had done it earlier.  The ride was very comfortable and much more relaxed.

Originally we planned to do the entire trip on the trike but, after thinking about it, we decided that the ride from Bismark to Minneapolis to Cleveland and then back to Bismark would not be fun.  The route would mainly be on Interstates and we would be riding with lots of trucks - it just wouldn't have been enjoyable.  Mike offered us the use of one of their cars and we took him up on it.  We drove to Minneapolis for the 50th Anniversary celebration and had a great time seeing Linda's brothers and sister and many of her cousins.  Then we went on to Cleveland to visit my mom who is doing well and seems to be comfortable in her current home.

Back to the ride.  We were on the road 9 days and had zero rain - that was amazing.  We had some cool weather along the way but, with the heated vests and heated grips, we were pretty comfortable.  The Goldwing performed great.  I guess my only disappointment was the reduction in gas mileage.  We averaged about 31.5 miles per gallon versus a little over 38 miles per gallon on our last trip.  In the end the cost isn't really as much of an issue as the fact that you have to stop more often and plan for gas stops a little more.  In this part of the country and on back roads it can sometimes be a long way between gas stations.  We used to go 180 to 200 miles before we had to stop.  Now we can only go about 150 to 160 miles.  There were also several things that significantly affected the mileage.  Speed is huge, we got significantly better mileage at 60 mph than at 75.  And at 45 mph we got even better mileage.  The other issue is wind.  On one day we were on I-84 going 75 mph into a headwind and got around 22 to 23 mph while going 35 to 45 in Yellowstone, we got close to 38 mph.  I may consider getting an auxiliary tank that carries 1 to 2 gallons to carry as insurance.

A big point in favor of the trike is increased storage space.  There are large areas above the wheel wells where we could store lots of stuff that is seldom used like tools, tire patch kit, compressor, etc. We used to put this stuff in the trunk where it took up space and just got in the way.  There is also more space in the area between the wheels that takes the place of the two former side bags.  We could put both of our bags in there and still have space for a gas can and maybe extra clothes - a definite plus.

We had a problem with the camera in that it lost it's time and date twice - not sure why.  There's supposed to be an internal battery that keeps this data even if you take out the main battery for up to three weeks.  This battery gets charged whenever you put in a recharged main battery.  The problem with all this is that there is an incorrect time and date stored with the picture and, when combined with the GPS tracklog, the pictures don't show up at the correct location and I had to spend extra time fixing the maps.  I'll have to make sure if this happens again, I reset the time and date immediately.

The Roady2 worked fine but we seemed to have more towns where the FM station I was using was being used so the broadcast station overlaid the Roady2 broadcast and some of these stations broadcast for many miles. I also had a little trouble with the wired modulator connection.  I re-soldered the connection when I got home but may purchase a new radio before the next trip.  Speaking of the radio, our communication cables worked great which is a good thing since replacement cables are $69.

The GPS logging worked well.  The only thing I don't like is the temperature logging.  As I mentioned on the last trip, when you stop, the heat from the engine causes the temperature to rise artificially.  I said I was going to fix the program to compensate for this after the last trip but didn't do it.  I'll do it soon so I don't forget before the next trip.

I don't think we forgot anything on this trip which is nice.  I guess we've been doing this enough to have it down.

I used two apps on this trip.  I used to write down my gas fillup statistics in a little notebook each time we stopped and then copy the info to a spreadsheet each evening.  This time I used an Android app on my phone called Fillup.  Each time I stopped for gas, I entered odometer reading, gallons, and total cost.  The app then instantly computed mileage for that tank and kept a  running average of mileage as well.  After the trip I could export all of the data to a csv file - very easy.  I also used Trivago to look for motels along the way.  Speaking of finding hotels, the Garmin GPS was also very helpful for this.  At any time I could check for lodging or fuel stops and the GPS provided a list of all of the alternatives sorted by closest distance.  I could then pick one of the options and tell it to go there and it provided turn by turn directions - nice.

We continued with our plan to try to stay in a little nicer hotels but we didn't always have a choice and sometimes we stayed at higher priced hotels than we normally do and sometimes we stayed at lesser quality hotels just because there weren't other options.  It seems that room cost is more dependent on location than quality.  The highest priced rooms were in Sandpoint, Id and Pullamn, WA while one of our nicer and cheaper rooms was a Best Western in Hulett, WY.

We're already thinking of next years trip and are thinking of the Washington, Oregon, California coast which we haven't dome in a long time.  We'll see...