It's summertime, and people are loading up their bikes in preparation for the open road. My buddy Skiddoo has prepared everything for a trip to visit family in Boise, Idaho. He sent me a picture.
It appears that Skid has packed for every contingency. I can recognise some items; bedroll, tent, tacklebox. He has two coolers. He has some bags and boxes tied on to the outside of other stuff that wouldn't fit in his saddlebags. On top of it all, a Davy Crockett coonskin cap. Why? I don't know. Skid's an odd dude.
But the best part has got to be the way the front wheel hangs in the air. Skid has loaded so much junk on his bike, it's in permanent wheelie mode on the centerstand. I mean, it's like he's got a big bag of lead sinkers in his tacklebox. And he probably does. He likes taking pictures of himself with ridiculously huge catfish. You need some heavy weight to get down there where they lurk.
I made some snarky comment to him, and Skid started sending me pictures of motorcycle loads around the world. In some places, a family of five loaded onto a Honda 250 is not worth a second glance. You can stack even more people if you place them properly. Any Tetris master could accomplish this easily.
Now, if you want to move a goat, the trick is to hobble its legs together and wear it like a backpack. Multiple goats, you have to bind them and stack them. Apparently you can only wear one at a time.
Carrying a pig is a whole different problem. Apparently they will bite your ears off if you try to sling them like a goat. Therefore, there are two ways to transport swine; as tiny sucklings or deceased.
Baby pigs will fit in baskets lashed to your bike like panniers. You can put an extra basket behind you on the seat, if you're not wearing a goat at the time. But any hog bigger than a weaner pig will only transport peacefully if deceased. You can google it, I did.
The one guy who thought it was cool to put a severed hog's head on his front fender? I'd advise him to dump it. You will not pick up dates smelling like a Body Farm. After two days in the hot Vietnamese sun, that boy, his bike, and his buzzing pig head are going to be most unattractive and probably unwelcome everywhere.
I've mentioned traveling with big sport fish before. On two occasions, I used my bungee net to secure them; one a 24 lb. white sea bass, and one a 30 lb. frozen yellowfin tuna. I secured them to my rear rack both times, and webbed them in stretchy hooks. You'll notice I did not mention the 10 lb. sand bass I caught off San Diego bay. That was a really nice bass. I bungee'ed it onto my rack. By the time I got home, it was gone.
Can you imagine following a bike shedding large seabass? I'm sure it was neatly spread over the freeway by the time I got home. Wasn't gonna go back and try to find it, either. Seafood has to be handled carefully. Dropping it on the freeway does not count.
My angler brethren in Asia take the same approach when transporting large fish. I've seen pictures of tiny motorcycles loaded with massive, 250 lb catfish. One guy had what looked like a monstrous bat ray strapped to his 125 Honda. He clearly could not bank in turns without scraping a wing.
Smaller fish and poultry travel in baskets. Lots of baskets. They seem to be the container of choice over there; airy, dry, flexible and sometimes waterproof. You can stack them, but remember to put the piglets on the bottom. Chickens on top. If you have to ask why, hire someone to transport for you.
As a messenger, I transported a few dicey things. Really long blueprint tubes, a whole computer system with CRT monitor, mysterious envelopes to fashion photographers south of Market. Once I moved a huge roast turkey and platter. Guess what time of year that was! The computer system was horrible; lashed on well, but you still keep in mind that the thing cost over $2000 back then. Really expensive deliveries were nerve-wracking. I know I'm good, but I don't know what the rest of the people on the road are liable to do. Whew!
Everybody's seen people with their little dogs, or cats riding with them. Sometimes the wee beasties sport little helmets and goggles. However, the very best 'cruising with your pet' moment I ever saw was a guy on a Harley equipped with ape hangers and a sissy bar. On the sissy bar was perched a blue and gold macaw. It was hanging on the the rider's jacket collar. What a sight! Hope the bird never had to sneeze, you know. I quit taking my bird around when he started saying “Hi, baby” to homeless guys pushing their carts across the street. IT'S NOT ME, IT'S THE BIRD! They never believed me, I fear.
My buddy Jim carried a snake for three days somewhere behind the plastic of his Honda Hurricane. For whatever reason, he liked to bring the snake riding with him. One day, he neglected to zip his snake pocket securely, and his beautiful Mountain King Snake got into his bike. He had to take some of those plastic panels off, and there it was, all cozy under the seat.
I can pile up stuff, oh my yes. Tents and tarps and fishing tackle, and bedding, and stuff, and more stuff, and stuff I might want, and stuff I might need. You might like to bring along solar powered lights for awesome camping evenings. Extra blankets, inflatable doodads, tools, coolers, tiny stoves, you can surely outfit your motorcycle to travel just as well as some geezer in an RV, if you lower your standards a wee bit.
And if you wind up somehow acquiring a 300 lb. catfish? I bet you can find some guys back at camp to help you with that!