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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #1  
Old 3 Oct 2010
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I need your thoughts! Research into Adventure.

Folks,

I am currently writing a dissertation on motorcycling adventure for a masters degree in Outdoor Education through Trinity College, University of Wales.
I have undertaken an adventure ride or two myself but need further info from our international community for my research.

There are academic studies on biking culture from a marketting perspective or how to sell stuff to us bikers but hardly any research on the Adventure Experience.

I want to know what you think makes motorcycling adventurous, so either an account of your most adventurous moment, your personal take on adventure biking or just what you love about the biking thing would be very useful, especially if you are doing a trip right now and are "in it."

Please give me a few minutes to send me some ideas via my e-mail tubeless-@hotmail.co.uk or respond to this thread and keep it going.

My methodology is based in naturalistic inquiry which means that the thoughts, feelings and philosophy of Adventure Biking participants are valid and any thing you can offer will help me hugely. Any data used will be kept anonymous.

Many thanks for you help.

Tubeless
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Old 3 Oct 2010
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Well, you picked a heck of a topic for your dissertation. If you find a way to get your university to sponsor a round the world trip to gain first hand experience... I might just go back to school.

Adventure travel: a phrase with meanings as plenty full as people asked to define it. I'll stick to just travel by motorcycle.

What appeals to me:
-being exposed to the elements in the course of travel. A challenge for the senses, i.e. feeling, smelling, seeing, tasting.
- chance interaction with total strangers of the same culture and language as well as different culture and language in a given situation (being lost, having technical problems, needing shelter, drink, food, sharing laughter, listen & learn)
- Lack of predictability from day to day. Yet, preparedness to deal with the unpredictable.

Hope that helps...
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Old 3 Oct 2010
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I suggest you buy and read some of the excellent books written by Sam Manicom, Ted Simon, Lois Pryce, Ian Mutch, Simon Gandolfi, Dan Walsh, Geoff Hill and Bob Goddard to name just a few. They all contain the thoughts, feelings and philosophy of the writers as they write about their experiences.
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Old 4 Oct 2010
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For me a holiday turns into an adventure when unexpected things happen and you have to be creative to stop it derailing the entire journey.

For instance, defrosting my starter motor in southern germany in spring was an unexpected event, and using a blowtorch to my beloved bmw was not something I'd ever imagine doing. But it worked a treat!
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  #5  
Old 4 Oct 2010
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For me, the adventure is in the travel...not the motorcycle.

I travel because of the unknown. I travel because of the problems I will encounter and the people I will meet while I solve those problems. I travel so that I can see the world from another person's point of view. I travel so that I may visit locations other people have only seen on TV. I travel because my comfortable daily routine never quite satisfies me.

I could do this just as easily in a car, on a boat, on a bicycle, or on foot. All are equally valid ways to meet this adventure. The motorcycle is simply my preference for how to meet the adventure of travel. I travel by motorcycle because it is exposed enough I don't have a feeling of having a "home" yet fast enough I can easily move from place to place.
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Old 7 Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by othalan View Post
For me, the adventure is in the travel...not the motorcycle.
There is a lot in that but for me the motorcycle element is significant. Over the years I've traveled on foot, by bicycle, motorcycle, car, 4x4 and quite a few others methods and the most pleasure has come from the bike trips.

Why is the difficult bit to explain. All of the stuff about being part of the surroundings on a bike and isolated from it in a car is true but there have been times on many bike trips when I'd have been very happy to be isolated from the surroundings. Nevertheless I usually look at whether it's possible or sensible to use a bike on the next trip.

I do smile slightly when I see the term Adventure Motorcycling. I've been "adventuring" on a bike since long before the term was ever coined but it was just touring to us. AM seems to have been slotted into the marketing spectrum to represent a kind of hardcore "out there on the edge" touring that requires a kind of quasi military approach and serious "rufty- tufty" equipment derived from the MX or enduro world - a kind of two wheeled version of an expedition Land Rover (or TLC !). It's a marketing mindset that wants you to believe that if you're doing a long trip you need serious equipment - and here it is, available to buy. "Touring" is now just a quick trip to the south of France on a Pan Euro or similar that doesn't require much prep.

Having said all that the adventure comes in many forms. A year or so ago I started writing up some of my early (70's) trips on a website (Pisquicktours - see below) A couple of weeks ago I got an email from my ex wife who'd come across the site. I haven't spoken to her since the early 80's. That's the sort of thing I need military grade equipment to deal with!
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Old 7 Oct 2010
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I agree. Adventure biking is a marketing term to sell BMW GS', etc. I travelled half way around the world and sure, I had some adventures. But you can have them in any mode of travel and the longer you travel the more likely you are to have them.

Some of my "adventures" were self-inflicted, like dropping my bike into a ford in Thailand that I didn't even need to cross.
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  #8  
Old 7 Oct 2010
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Originally Posted by backofbeyond View Post
There is a lot in that but for me the motorcycle element is significant. Over the years I've traveled on foot, by bicycle, motorcycle, car, 4x4 and quite a few others methods and the most pleasure has come from the bike trips.

Why is the difficult bit to explain. All of the stuff about being part of the surroundings on a bike and isolated from it in a car is true but there have been times on many bike trips when I'd have been very happy to be isolated from the surroundings. Nevertheless I usually look at whether it's possible or sensible to use a bike on the next trip.

I do smile slightly when I see the term Adventure Motorcycling. I've been "adventuring" on a bike since long before the term was ever coined but it was just touring to us. AM seems to have been slotted into the marketing spectrum to represent a kind of hardcore "out there on the edge" touring that requires a kind of quasi military approach and serious "rufty- tufty" equipment derived from the MX or enduro world - a kind of two wheeled version of an expedition Land Rover (or TLC !). It's a marketing mindset that wants you to believe that if you're doing a long trip you need serious equipment - and here it is, available to buy. "Touring" is now just a quick trip to the south of France on a Pan Euro or similar that doesn't require much prep.

Having said all that the adventure comes in many forms. A year or so ago I started writing up some of my early (70's) trips on a website (Pisquicktours - see below) A couple of weeks ago I got an email from my ex wife who'd come across the site. I haven't spoken to her since the early 80's. That's the sort of thing I need military grade equipment to deal with!
Hi Backo, your Pisquicktours is a gem and it's great you've done it. You've produced not only some nice reading/pics, but also added to the archives of the history of 60s travel. The B+W pics add flavour so no worries there. Well done. I've lost all my 70s pics of bikes etc so I enjoyed yours.

PS I was near your place in Alpe d'Huez recently, just chilling out with bike and tent on the twisty roads round you. I came over from Auvergne on one of my therapeutic trips with moto and tent.

PPS I know exactly what you mean about normal touring (as something that you always did), now being repackaged etc.....
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  #9  
Old 7 Oct 2010
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The best/most interesting things that happen, weren't originally part of the plan.
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  #10  
Old 6 Mar 2011
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many thanks!

To you folks who responded many thanks to you all!

I've had a great time exploring what I would suggest is the post modern adventure experience. Can I insist that you travel to the international journal of motorcycle studies? - IJMS - (google it) For many philosophical rambles that make all but Dan 'the man' Walsh come up wanting.

Steve McQueen and Karl Marx in a place that makes it all seem obvious. Foucalt and a fishbowl - OMG!

Dissertation ready for final proof reading! It's been a ball and I still love my bike. very cool.

Tubeless x
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