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Horizons Unlimited Travellers Meeting

Ninth Annual USA East

September 7-9, 2012

Cooler weather!

in cooperation with
Quality Touring equipment worldwide.
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Why Come to a Horizons Unlimited Motorcycle Travellers Meeting?

You can meet people who don't think you're crazy for wanting to ride your bike to South America or Africa or across Asia, or even around the world! Admit it, all your 'normal' friends and most of your family fears for your sanity! So, this is your opportunity to meet the people who will encourage you in that craziness, share their experiences and advice on how to do it, and maybe you'll meet them again in Mongolia or Timbuktu!

A recent HU Meeting in UK, filmed by a participant Greg Ciesla


How you can help - put up a few posters! NEW Poster available! Event poster available! Please post it everywhere!

Want to know what people thought of other HU Meetings? Is it worth coming to the Meeting?

"I'm so looking forward to another HU meet. My only problem is that I simply can't get to every talk I want, such is the amount of terrific presentations on offer. Each year I've been astonished at how articulate, intelligent, informative and entertaining the speakers are. I'm willing to help with anything that doesn't keep me from a talk - and my timetable will be full to bursting!"

SPECIAL Raffle Prize this year!

Along with a number of great prizes for you to win in the Charity Raffle Draw in aid of Motorcycle Outreach, a great charity that we've supported for years. Motorcycle Outreach is very similar to Riders for Health, which you may have heard of. The main difference is that Riders operates in Africa, and MOR in Indonesia, and they really need our help. We know most of the people running it, so we have great confidence that your donations go straight to where they're needed.

Courtesy of Mortons BMW, Compass Expeditions and Edelweiss Tours, our Grand Prize is:

$500 discount off a Compass Expeditions Southern Lakes tour, courtesy of Compass and Morton's BMW. This is a tour that Morton's BMW owner Jeff Massey went on at the end of last year, and it was a great experience. It is also the tour on which Compass is donating a spot to the winner of the 2012 HU Calendar Photo contest too!

Morton's BMW will also be donating a $250 gift certificate for any Edelweiss motorcycle tour. Either tour (Compass or Edelweiss) must be booked through Morton's BMW.

Morton's BMW

Compass Expeditions

Edelweiss Expedtions

 

The Plan

The plan is simple. Show up on Thursday or at the latest Friday afternoon, meet people and setup. Travel Presentations and Tech clinics are planned throughout the meeting, starting Friday night. More Detailed Schedule here.

We can always use some help! If you want to assist, please sign up to volunteer to assist on the day or here for advance work or to ask questions. Thanks!

 

2012 Speakers and Tech Clinics (so far, more to come)

Get Inspired!

  • Ten Years on 3 Wheels
    • David & Emy Woodburn
      Traveling with a 2yr old daughter RTW on a BMW R80 G/S with sidecar from 1990 to 2000.

David and Emy Woodburn

David and Emy Woodburn

Zaire

David and Emy Woodburn

Jay Levesque.

Good roads!

  • Two Ways Down
    • Bill Hooykaas and Greg Powell
      Tip to tip in the Americas. Two friends head out to Ushuaia in 2011, one rode solo, one with GlobeBusters. We'll discuss the pros and cons of each method, so bring your questions!

      Bill: "I have been riding BMWs non stop since 1972 and a BMW MOA member for nearly 35 years now, and have well over 1 million kilometers in various saddles. I am very slowly working my way around the world over the span of a lifetime (funny how raising a family and having a job can delay things). I rode Europe and parts of North Africa on a BMW 75/6 that I bought new in Rotterdam in 1974 after finishing school. I have now gone tip to tip in the Americas, and the only piece missing will be the remainder of Africa. I will have then completed my longitudinal RTW in the footsteps of Grant and Susan and others who followed. I hope to finally complete this journey by 2014 so that my 40+ year BMW RTW dream will be complete. Join me now as I take you along, on this, my recent ride to Patagonia."

Bill Hooykas

Greg: "I bought my first motorcycle in 1981 (a Honda Z50 minibike) and my second motorcycle 26 years later (Yamaha V-Star 650) and 2 years ago the Honda Varadero. (Amazing how getting 3 accounting degrees, married and divorced interferes with the important things in life – motorcycle travel). I have ridden various rented motorcycles in Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand) while on short vacations. Finally in 2011, 3 months after getting my full M license, I quit my job, sold my house and left for a journey across the Americas. I rode from Toronto to Newfoundland, then to Alaska and all the way to Ushuaia Argentina for a total of 65,500 kilometers over 10 months. I am now addicted to motorcycle travel and have returned to Canada to make money so I can do another trip. My next trip will most likely be Russia, Eastern Europe and into the Middle East. Not sure what bike I will take but I am thinking of buying a Ural in Russia and keeping it through the Eastern Europe part, then perhaps a Honda Transalp."

Greg Powell

  • From Great Wesser Creek Scooter Fire, to Coast to Coast
    • Lee Allison
      Who says you got to have a big shiny toy to have a coast to coast adventure?

Lee and the resurrected scooter

Wesser Creek
Looks like Lee has it right!

  • South America
    • Doug Teague
  • India
    • Doug Teague
  • Mexico 2012
    • Merrill Glos
      again! Merrill's been MANY times, so you'll get the real story!
  • Solo to the Circle - Ridin' in the Rain
    • Curtis "Kurt" Nugent
      Alaska!

Alaska

  • Mexico and the American West - From Love Motels to Walla Walla
    • Curtis "Kurt" Nugent
      3.5 month trip to Mexico and the American West, including Overland Expo

Mexican accommodation

  • The $500 Bet
    • Ben Myburgh
      Betting my mother $500 she wouldn't ride around the world with me.
  • South East Australia 2012
    • Dorelle Barber, Australia
      Started as 6, finished as 2, where did the others go?
  • Riding in the 'Stans
    • Dennis Barber, Australia
      What could possibly go wrong riding across Eurasia on an 18 year old BMW in 2009?

Get Ready!

  • International GPS Use: Where the streets have no name
    • Peter Bodtke has been fascinated with maps since childhood. Hear the tale of navigating through Central America in 2008-09 armed with a poorly configured Garmin Zumo 550. Peter will share the skills and resources gathered in preparation for his upcoming Central and South American adventure.

      Getting lost is half the fun of motorcycling… but finding your hotel at the end of a long day is a different matter. Practical strategies and techniques for using a GPS outside of the US.
    • Topics:
      • Turning your bucket list into trip plan (Google Maps, Wikipedia, GeoHack and Tyre)
      • Map resources: free, commercial, non-routable, topographic maps and Google Maps/Earth
      • Using BaseCamp to design your route
      • Getting fluid with your tools
      • Plan B navigation, alternative maps and folding maps
      • Sharing your trip from the road
      • Tips and tricks…
  • Reentering the workforce
    • Greg Powell
      How to reenter the workforce after a long motorcycle adventure! Will you starve, or will they be begging for you?
  • GPS Systems
    • Homer Krout
      Using POI's for Garmin Zumo 550 & 665 as well as the Garmin Montana 650. Information covered will include: POI Resources, Using Garmin's POI Loader and some general information about POI.
      • Introduction
      • General Information
      • Definitions
      • What do you need?
      • Process of installing POI
      • Tips/Tricks and a list of Resources.
    • Homer Krout lives in Europe about 8 months out of the year and teaches f2f as well as on-line undergraduate and graduate classes for a US based university. Subjects include; information systems, programming, systems analysis and design, instructional design and other topics.
      He has been riding a motorcycle for over 50 years both for transportation and for pleasure. Over the past 10 years he has participated in a number of Iron Butt Rides (11,000 miles in 11 days) and has traveled extenively on a motorcycle in the US, Canada, Mexico and Europe. In June 2012 he attended the HU Meeting in Germany.
      Homer's interest in GPS systems and .GPX programming has been put to extensive use during his rally and pleasure rides. He owns and uses a number of GPS systems, including a Garmin Zumo 550, 665 and a Garmin Montana 650. His presentation on POI (Points of Interest) represent a short summary of information he has collected and uses on a regular basis.
  • Latin Logistics, Over Planning and flying by the seat of your pants!
    • Peter Bodtke rode from New Jersey to Costa Rica and back in 2008-09 on an overloaded motorcycle with insufficient suspension and the wrong tires. Peter will share road experiences and preparation advice.


Route Map, Peter Bodtke
Peter's planned route - click for larger version

Organizing your trip of a life time? Some prefer to wing it, others prepare a detailed military grade tactical battle plan verging on obsession. Find the middle path for your trip size and personal comfort zone.
Key topics:

  • Setting up your motorcycle,
  • cost estimating,
  • personal supplies,
  • timing,
  • research and
  • keeping the home fires burning while away.
  • Peter will be leaving the meeting for 6 months of travel through Central and South America!
  • Photo and Video on the Road
    • Peter Bodtke and J.D. Dooley
      Going on a trip of a life time? Bring home great souvenirs with photographs. Motorcycling presents a few unique challenges to travel photography, but not many. We'll discuss road warrior photography, breaking old habits and simple techniques that create good pictures. Tips, tricks and secrets of the masters revealed.

Photos on the road, by Peter Bodtke

  • Peter Bodtke's decades long involvement with photography started in high school, lead to a degree from Rochester Institute of Technology and a career in New York City (featured lots of rap musicians.) Peter is now an information technology business analyst that takes pictures for fun.
  • Transform your trip photos from boring to fabulous! Bring 10 photos on a USB key or SD card for discussion - what's missing, or not quite right, or just plain BAD - and how to correct the mistakes we all make. Bring some photos on a flash drive if you'd like a critique.
  • Women only
    A very popular session - I'm told it's a must for the ladies, so plan on being there!
  • Experienced Travellers Panel - ask the experts anything you want! This has been VERY popular - ask anything - well almost... ;)
  • and more to come! How about you? We're all here to learn, and there's LOTS to learn! We want to do more presentations and clinics - but we need volunteers to give them! Any topic you can contribute having to do with motorcycle travel, maintenance, planning etc, lasting 20 minutes or more, would be great. Please contact me here to volunteer.

Just chilling at Ironhorse Motorcycle Lodge, HU North Carolina Meeting, 2009.

Here's what we had in 2011:

2011 Seminars

  • 11 Years on the Road, RTW
    • Grant and Susan Johnson
      Grant and Susan's updated show of their RTW trip.
  • New Jersey to Costa Rica and Back
    • Peter Bodtke
      Latin good times!
  • The Achievable Dream
    • Grant and Susan Johnson
      How you - yes, even you - can do trips you might not imagine. Proper planning is essential, and we'll give you a taste of what to expect and how to plan your trip so you have a great one!
  • GPS Tips for International Riders
    • Peter Bodtke
      or, "don't make the mistakes I made;" work arounds and open source maps for your GPS
  • Motorcycle Camping Gear
    • JD Dooley (HUBB: blueridgemotoblog )
      The latest in lightweight backpacking gear adapted for moto camping.
  • Easy Motorcycle Video Production
    • JD Dooley (HUBB: blueridgemotoblog )
      Make your ride videos look professional. No previous experience necessary
  • Women only
    • a very popular session - I'm told it's a must for the ladies, so plan on being there!
  • Fix that flat! How to change a tire anytime, anywhere
    • How to prevent flats in the first place, and fix them when you get one. The best tools and how to use them for tube and tubeless tires. Hand's on practical and tire changing contest for beginners to experts.

Grant's ever-popular tire-changing session at the HU North Carolina 2009 Meeting.

Grant's ever-popular tire-changing session at the HU North Carolina 2009 Meeting.

  • Photo Composition for Travellers, and a Critique of YOUR photos
    • Grant Johnson, Canada
      Transform your trip photos from boring to fabulous! Bring 10 photos on a USB key or SD card for discussion - what's missing, or not quite right, or just plain BAD - and how to correct the mistakes we all make. Bring some photos on a flash drive if you'd like a critique.
  • Prep your bike for the long trip!
    • Grant Johnson, Canada
      Is your bike ready for long distance travel? Grant will conduct a hands on assessment and discussion of bike set up and prep, looking at YOUR bike.
  • Experienced Travellers Panel - ask the experts anything you want! This has been VERY popular - ask anything - well almost... ;)


There will be slide shows and tech clinics on Friday and Saturday evenings, and all day Saturday. Come early and make it a great weekend! We recommend riding on Thursday Friday and Sunday, and participating in the clinics evenings and Saturday.

Rideouts

Rideouts

A guided ride, Saturday:

"The ride mapped out is 140+/- miles. It is very tight both gravel and paved roads for the most part except for a couple 6-8 miles sections. There will be a number of 'bail out' points to return to Ironhorse. Best suited for XR650, KLR, 640 Adventure, DR650, DRZ400. I have ridden all these roads on 950 Adventure as well and the big Tigers, GS's etc should be fine for anyone but novice off-roaders. All on roads, no single track. Plan on min moving time of 4-5 hours. The roads are tight and mostly 2-3-4 gear stuff."

We'd like to have a volunteer to lead this ride. Let me know here if you can. Thanks!

Russ Corn has volunteered to lead a ride! Thanks Russ!

And there'll be more too! Book your place as soon as you get there, numbers will be limited.

Ride leaders and sweep riders wanted!

Do-it-yourself Ride information.

Self-guided Ride details
Tail of the Dragon / Cherohala Skyway Loop ride

More ride info to come. Send in any you have!

Vendors

If you know of any travel equipment vendors who should be there, please suggest it to them! Vendors please contact me for details.

Schedule will be posted here, with a print version as well, when it's ready...

...so check back and plan what you want to see. The schedule is subject to change, so don't hold our feet to the fire - stuff happens! But we will try very hard to ensure that it goes off as planned. Check the latest schedule to be posted at the meeting on the day.

All times - and everything - approximate! big grin

An up-to-date schedule will be posted at the Meeting.

As presenters may or may not get there on time - or at all - this schedule is seriously subject to change.

Thursday evening

Nothing scheduled, event starts Friday, but there will be people there. Garmin gdb file with loads of info here.

Friday

CHECK-IN and sign up! You MUST be registered to go on a ride or entry to any events, clinics etc.

9:00 Ride briefing. Be gassed up and ready to ride if you're going. details here

Friday night

7:00 pm Speakers presentations start, so be sure you've eaten early! Order subject to change.

Saturday morning

8:00 - 9:00 - Breakfast

10:00 Rides

Saturday Lunch

1:00 Lunch

Saturday afternoon,

Tech Clinics. We have a number of informative and exciting tech clinics planned, so check the schedule Friday on-site for latest details.

  • 2:00 Fix that flat! How to change a tire anytime, anywhere
    How to prevent flats in the first place, and fix them when you get one. The best tools and how to use them for tube and tubeless tires. Hand's on practical and tire changing contest for beginners to experts.
  • Rider Ergonomics - make that bike fit YOU!
  • and more!

Saturday evening,

7:00 pm sharp:

Speakers presentations

Sunday

Breakfast

Head for home, hang around and chat, or head out for a last ride!

Miscellaneous notes:

Organizers will be there most of Thursday, hopefully Wednesday too, if anyone wishes to arrive early and just hang out or go for a ride in the area.

Reservations and Registration

Camping is NOT included with your admission to the meeting. Reservations for camping (not required, but requested) and cabins, bunkhouse, rent-a-tent, (REQUIRED) here.

Reservations SVP - THERE IS A LIMIT on the number of people - 300 is all the location can accommodate.

We have to let the facility know as soon as possible how many we're expecting so they can have enough staff on. If you haven't registered and you just arrive, you might not get fed! ;) NOTE: Food and drink is NOT included, but we're assuming you will want to eat!

Pre-Register and save $10!

  1. Register and PAY before August 28, is $40.
  2. At the door, admission is +$10

Entry fee includes admission to the slide shows on Friday and Saturday night, and other events during the day Friday and Saturday. Important: On-site Camping / accommodation / food is NOT INCLUDED with your registration!

Please PRE-BOOK by filling in the form below and click the "Count me in" button below it. NOTE: Use one form per person!

Option 1. Pay by PayPal

a. You will shortly receive an e-mail confirmation. Check to ensure the details are correct. If you don't receive an e-mail confirmation within a few minutes, it means your e-mail address wasn't correct, (or the Internet has eaten your e-mail). Try again. A human being will actually get a copy of the e-mail, and we promise we won't sign you up multiple times. ;-)

b. After you have filled in the form and submitted it, you will have an opportunity to pay by Click to go straight to the PayPal Payment link..

OR:

Option 2. Pay by cheque

a. You will shortly receive an e-mail confirmation. Check to ensure the details are correct. If you don't receive an e-mail confirmation within a few minutes, it means your e-mail address wasn't correct, (or the Internet has eaten your e-mail). Try again. A human being will actually get a copy of the e-mail, and we promise we won't sign you up multiple times. ;-)

b. PRINT THAT EMAIL (or write out the important bits by hand if you don't have a printer) and MAIL it with a check (in US$ or CDN$ - prices quoted are US$,

made payable to Grant Johnson, and mail to:

Grant Johnson
102-15910 Fraser Highway
Suite 472
Surrey, BC   V4N 0X9
CANADA

Payment and Registration details AFTER August 28, 2012:

1. Please fill in this form below to let us know you're coming. NOTE the registration fee is + $10 at the door!

2. You will shortly receive an e-mail confirmation. Check to ensure the details are correct. If you don't receive an e-mail confirmation within a few minutes, it means your e-mail address wasn't correct, (or the Internet has eaten your e-mail). Try again. A human being will actually get a copy of the e-mail, and we promise we won't sign you up multiple times. ;-)

3. Print the emailed confirmation form and bring it to the meeting.


Sorry, online registration is now closed. There is no problem for space, so just come along and join in!



Membership - Show you're proud to be a Horizons Unlimited Traveller!

Just to clarify the membership situation: Currently there is no requirement to be a member to access the website, the HUBB or to receive the monthly e-zine. For now, what you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive.

We will also upgrade your status in the HUBB to Contributing or Gold Member. In addition to recognising your contribution through your status, this will allow you to upload a custom profile picture and custom avatar, store more private messages, upload more pictures, add events to the calendar and create polls.

If you wish to buy a t-shirt, mug, fleece jacket or other Horizons logo product from the Souk, you can purchase Member or Gold Member logo products at the basic price. Just let us know and we can arrange access to the Members Private Store.

Note that new Memberships with your Meeting Registration are applied as of the Meeting date or as soon as possible thereafter, not earlier, unless you make a special request in the Comments box when you register.

T-Shirt Deal

Cotton: Top quality heavy cotton t-shirts in black or grey.

Synthetic: (Dri-Fit) t-shirts are in a beautifully made wicking material, and make great travel / riding t-shirts as well as all-round wear t-shirts. Available in a variety of colours at most meetings, and always black or grey. The order section will list the colours available.

Note that we will have a very few t-shirts extra at each meeting, but very limited - we can't carry many! So please pre-order and pay in advance so you can be sure of getting what you want.

2012 Tshirt slogan "The open road is calling, and I have a world to ride!"

Back:

(large, full back)

The open road is calling, and I have a world to ride!

Front:

Front 'Pocket patch' logo on all tshirts

You can help!

If you have a few minutes, please download the poster ( Adobe pdf format) and print off a few and hand them round your club or your local bike shop or anywhere seems like a good place.

Poster in pdf format (500kb) full colour Event poster. (You may need to right click and choose "save target as...")

Thanks!

The Meeting Location

Iron Horse Motorcycle Lodge, Cabins and Campground
1755 Lower Stecoah Road,
Robbinsville
North Carolina 28771

For more information:
Telephone: 1-828-479-3864


Camping facilities at the HU North Carolina meeting.

Camping facilities at the HU North Carolina meeting. Does it get any nicer?

The Iron Horse Lodge and grounds, camping on the right.

More info on their website, and a review of Iron Horse in "Motorcycle Consumer News." (128kb .pdf)

Getting There - GPS, Maps

GPS Co-ordinates: N35 deg 23' 20", W83 deg 40' 38"

Iron Horse is located in Graham County, North Carolina, on Lower Stecoah Road just north off Highway 28. A short 30 minute ride to the Tail of the Dragon at Deals Gap and the scenic Cherohala Skyway, two of the best motorcycle destinations in the United States.

Click to enlarge the map.

more maps here

Other Accommodation Possibilities

Note: Camping is NOT included with your admission to the meeting. Reservations for camping (not required, but requested) and cabins, bunkhouse, rent-a-tent, (REQUIRED) here. Book EARLY!

Phillips Motel, Robbinsville, NC

Two Wheel Inn, Robbinsville, NC

 

Suggestions anyone?

Information about the area

Can you supply us with links, and other info on the places to ride, and interesting things to see in the area? Let us know here.

  • Ironhorse is in Graham County, NC. www.grahamchamber.com promotes the county and has driving directions to Graham County from Asheville, Atlanta and Knoxville. Even though the directions are not directly to Ironhorse, this site might be useful.
  • Great information on the "Tail of the Dragon" - otherwise known as US129, near Deal's Gap, with 318 curves in 11 miles, can be found on the "official" Tail of the Dragon website. An awesome road! We will have a few maps from the website, but it would be wise to print your own in advance. Available here. There is also info on Deals Gap, Cherohala Skyway and 2 Dual Sport rides.
  • North Carolina's 'Scenic Byways' website has a lot of great information on various scenic roads in North Carolina. They also sent Karen a book she says is great. It will be on display at the Meeting. Viewable online in pdf format or can be ordered from their website for only $5.00 each.
  • Wheels Through Time Museum a "35-year collection of rare American motorcycles and automobiles...230-vehicle collection in the lovely community of Maggie Valley, North Carolina, located just a few miles off of I-40 and the Blue Ridge Parkway. Maggie Valley is a quiet community of 400 people nestled in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains." Owner Dale Walksler has very generously donated door prizes for our meeting, and wants to invite you to come visit the museum - he'll be delighted to meet you!

Any info you have on the area, rides etc, please let me know.


Local Bike Shops

Let us know any good dealers nearby!

New BMW Dealer in Asheville

And a special thanks to all the local sponsors and supporters!

  • Mortons BMW, Fredericksburg, Virginia. Mortons have been a long-time Horizons Unlimited supporter, so a special thanks to them, and for coming all the way to the meeting! Say hi to Steve, he'll be wandering around the meeting...
  • Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley, NC - "rare American motorcycles and automobiles"
  • Bluemoon Cycle in Norcross, GA. - "one of the largest volume BMW motorcycle dealers in the Southeast."
  • Fraziers Harley Davidson in Buford, GA. - "Our goal is simple. We want to keep everyone happy."
  • Atlanta Triumph Ducati in Atlanta, GA. - " a haven for motorcycle enthusiasts to hang out and discuss bikes with like minded fanatics."
  • Precision Cycle & ATV Sylva, NC. - a full-service shop - "Mechanics are the backbone of the business"
  • Smith Power Sports "products to make your outdoor living easier and more enjoyable. We offer experience, fair prices, and a friendly atmosphere." Kawasaki and KTM.
  • BMW Motorcycles of Atlanta, "the leading BMW dealer in the southeast, with all the latest models, genuine BMW accessories and your exclusive source for BMW clothing in Georgia"

Please drop in for a visit and thank them for their support.

Local Hosts

is the local host for this event - we're VERY grateful to him for stepping up and really making it happen with a lot of legwork and effort, there were a lot of complications to make it happen. We could REALLY use some help on the day too - please volunteer to help out for a couple of hours!

Editors note:
We accept no responsibility for any of the above information in any way whatsoever. You are reminded to do your own research. Any commentary is strictly a personal opinion of the person supplying the information and is not to be construed as an endorsement of any kind.
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All text and photographs are copyright © Grant and Susan Johnson, 1987-, or their respective authors. All Rights Reserved.