The Three Elements of a Smooth Road Trip – Safety, Music and Health

Road trip

Wind in your hair, the rhythmic sound of the rubber on the tarmac, the charming melody of Clapton’s blues, the vibrations of the engine roaring, the feeling of the mind uncrinkling and the element of omnipresent excitement – That is all a biker lives for.

We were riding towards a theatre/place in Wisconsin which plays movies, in the field, on a large weatherproof TV. It is always good to reach the end of a road trip but it is the journey that you would take home with you. A good road trip comes not just from the good company but there are a number of aspects that a biker needs to prepare himself for before hitting the road.

Tips for the Trip: Not all those who wander are lost!

Some of the most beautiful paths are discovered by people who are not afraid of getting lost on their way. While the feeling of discovering new paths is second to none, it is essential to be prepared for surprises when you set out on a road trip. Your preparation is an important ingredient of the unadulterated fun that you’re looking forward to. There are a number of ways to ensure that you have a great road trip and some of these aspects can be summed up as follows:

  • Safety First: If you’re going out on a road trip with a group of friends, ensure that you carry a first aid kit or a safety kit to avoid any hiccups on the way. Have your bikes repaired and take along a repair kit as well to deal with any problems you may face on the way. There is nothing better than a smooth ride and in order to ensure a pleasant journey, safety first is the mantra!
  • Bring along your music: Riding for hours pleases your senses but your mood and soul simply dance around when the music starts to play in your ears. The way you look around you when on your bike changes into a new experience altogether. All those pastures you pass by, all those green hills you come across and the blue of the lakes that calls to you make for a totally different experience when you’re possessed by the melodies of your favorite songs. Make sure that you bring along a wireless Bluetooth speaker like a Boombotix Rex to make your ride even better.
  • Eat and Drink: So you did come across that lovely hillside lake that you saw on the map. As you lose yourself in the wondrous serenity of nature and treat yourself to some of the amazing views nature has to offer, your body needs the energy to get back on the path. Staying hydrated is an important aspect of a successful road trip. A lot of problems like headaches and exertion stem out from dehydration and therefore it is always good to ensure that you carry a lot of fluid and healthy food to support you on the way.

If you are out there on the streets and have made a number of road trips in the past, you would know exactly how important the three elements of a road trip are – safety, music, and health! As you plan your next road trip, keep in mind these words that may help you find your purpose in little things and may help you take home the blues. Some of us travel forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls but most of us travel far enough simply to meet ourselves.

Trips Through the UK

One of our greatest adventures ever as the V4 Riders as we use to call ourself was our trip through the United Kingdom in 2008.  After initially keeping to mostly continently United States trips, we got together with a few MCs in the London area and decided to set something up overseas.

Now when you travel overseas it is an ordeal in itself, when you do it and need to transport your own motorcycles, it becomes even more pricey.  Not only is everything that you ship needed to be checked through customers, but there are a hell of alot of fees that you must pay for that you never thought of before.   Besides the shipping fees, which costs all of us in the thousands, we had to providespare tires, helmets, licenses and several other things.  What we decided to do was inquire with a local manufacturer that was carrying cargo from the States and was able to get this over for a relatively ($4,500)  cheap price for 7 bikes, 9 spare times and a few other oddball items we through in.UK

The Trip

The trip itself was probably the greatest 14 days of my life on the road.  Besides my daughters being born, this definitely has taken the cake as one of my greatest moments.  We started off by picking up our bikes outside of Newquay and started our adventure from there.   When comparing riding the United States vs. the UK there is a few similarities but so many differences.   The actual amount of people that are “riding” in the UK seems to outweigh the number of people in the States.  It might not be more overall, but the roads definitely have many more bikes out there than the United States.

We drove our bikes to Stonehenge on our first two days and was taken back on how great that experience was for all of us.  Thank God we had a couple extra spare tires with us as Big Al and Zack both hit some bumpy roads and had to swap out our tires.  Luckily we found a little tire shop right outside of Stonehenge that had some spare motorcycle tires that we could use to replace the ones that were flat.   Thank you Grady !


The highlight of our trip was definitely hitting London and the surrounding areas.  For those of you who have experienced the UK, but have not experienced it on a hog, please do so before you die.  Not only is this one of the greatest trips ever, but you just have a calm feeling driving through the old scenery around the UK.  While the United States has its great parts, the UK’s tradition is several thousand years old and many of these places are still intact.

While I’m not much of party animal as I was in my younger days, the London night scene was truly amazing.   It is like the city never sleeps and you are truly amazed in each and every pub that you enter.   Also, the different MCs that we met up with were truly awesome and accepting of our American ways.

Overall I cannot say enough about the United Kingdom and their hospitality.  If you are looking for a once in a lifetime trip through the UK, I would highly recommend it.  Make sure to pack some extra tires, helmets and cash as it will run you close to five figures but it is well worth it.

The V4 Club Expands

The original V4  club was four of us from the Roanoke, Virginia area who decided to embark on a three week road trip on our bikes over a summer in 2002.  After three years of this pace, we made a pact to do this as long as we were riding and on God’s green earth.

Over they years the original four has kept at it for the most part, with a few of our members, mainly Al leaving us for a year or two do to conflicts with other things in life.  Since that time we have expanded our group to up to six riders and have made it more of a one weekend a summer thing, where we would travel across country or hit up something like Sturgis Bike Week.  With that being said, we are looking forward to 2014 and to add a new member to our group,  my brother-in-law Jason Rhodes.nas

Jason joins our biking and traveling team after getting the “bike bug” as we call it, at the age of 32.  Now 34 with two years experience as a “biker”, Jason is ready to join us for our summertime adventures.   Jason, who owns and operates his own pressure washer business, just recently bought a new Harley Davidson 2013 Road Glide and is ready to take this hog on the road.  With summer being the busy season for Jason’s pressure washing business he is making a huge sacrifice by taking 4 days out of his busy schedule to join the other V4 members.

Next year we are looking to expand our ride to perhaps North Carolina area and our looking to find a bike show to attend.   After Sturgis last year, we realize that the trip through the Dakotas isn’t something that is advised year in and year out.  It is not only very taxing on the pocket book, but it also takes a toll on our aging bodies to ride 10+ hours a day in hot conditions.   We might take a look at the NASCAR schedule for next season and maybe revolve our trip around one of their events in the area.

Jason was given a history on the V4 Club and is ready for what he calls the most exciting thing that he has done in years.   Luckily being an owner of power washing business has its perks, as Jason is having one of his workers meet us with a RV so that we can get the full experience of staying a couple days at a NASCAR event.

The best thing about next year’s run is that the orginal V4 club are all in line to go and barring any setbacks we should have about 8 guys on this year’s run.  I can’t wait !