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Old 08-07-2018, 12:15 PM
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Question Narrowed down our choices: Motorcycle Trip -or- Hiking across Italy

So the lovely Mrs_Bob and I are planning our next trip and we are pretty undecided on what to do. We are both 57, will be 58 when we take the next big adventure.

OPTION #1: Motorcycle the 6500 mile Great Lakes Circle Tour

Its a trip along the shoreline of all the Great Lakes, both the US and Canadian side. Follows mostly rural roads, but hits several major cities. Never done anything like this. 24 days of riding at roughly 250 miles a day. Figure 30 days for the trip with some rain delays, sight seeing, butt resting. It would be a whole new experience for us. Neither of us are seasoned riders, both of us have been on small motorcycles, scooters, etc many times. Both of us are comfortable/confident on smaller motorcycles.

OPTION #2: Backpacking Italy from Florence to Assisi to Rome

Fairly rugged hiking, only 280 miles, but lots of mountains/hills. Slow hiking. Carrying everything in our backpacks. This is something we have both done, multiple times. Both longer and shorter distances. Roughly 30 days of walking, add some rest and tourist days and its more likely a 40 day trip.

The conundrum is this:
We are not getting younger and we figure the clock is ticking on our ability to do a long (prolonged day & day) distance motorcycle trip. The reality is that BOTH of these trips are wear and tear on the body. Any trip, by foot or in a seat, with a daily grind tends to really wear down the body and cause aches and pains. We both have the strength now to do either.

The advantage to HIKING is that if you get tired, blister, etc along the route you can simply shorten your daily distances, take a rest day, hop on a bus for 10 miles, etc and you can continue to hike well into old age. We have hiked with people well into their 80's. As long as health reasonably prevails we can hike until death do us part.

The MOTORCYCLE trip is something that could also be cut short, shorten days, but can't really hop on a bus and skip a day while still seeing sights. Its unlikely we'd want to undertake a trip on motorcycles well into our 60's. So we are leaning at doing the motorcycle trip sooner rather than later. The more years it is put off, the more likely it will not happen.

Cost wise I honestly figure both trips at about the same price; 40 days in Italy is expensive, even with a backpack. For the bike trip we'd need new motorcycles. I have a little 150 now. Looking at buying a pair of Honda NC700x or 750x motorcycles (new or used). Adding side cases and a few other do-dads. Need to update our cycle licenses. Need to do a lot more riding to get back into the swing of things.


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while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage
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