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Book Overview: The Essential Guide to Motorcycle Travel Planning, Outfitting, and Accessorizing

A revised version of The Essential Guide to Motorcycle Travel has been published and it's well worth a look if you're planning a trip. There's tons of pictures and while some of them appear to be kept from the 2007 version you'll still get the idea. A camera mount for example might have a 2007 edition of a camera - tough to keep up with the technology there but the mounts will still work fine with more modern gear.

Overall we'd say it's a highly useful book if you're interested in motorcycle travel or if you're already motorcycle traveling and want to learn some new tricks. The updates are mostly related to the latest information on using and integrating mobile and Bluetooth communications, GPS navigation, high-efficiency lighting, action cameras, and high-tech materials and fabrics.

Full details here:

Touring on two wheels is one of life’s simple pleasures. And learning how to do it right can help keep it that way. This new 2nd edition of  Dale Coyner’s popular Essential Guide to Motorcycle Travel is full of the collected tips,  tricks, and advice of seasoned travelers and experts from the motorcycling community that help to maximize the ride, while minimizing lessons learned the hard way. In sharing their  broad experiences, along with his own, bestselling author and straight-shooter Dale Coyner  offers up the wisdom riders need to plan their own dream trips, accessorize their bikes, outfit themselves and their passengers, and deal with contingencies as they inevitably arise, whether out for a day-trip on home turf, a riding vacation in another part of the country, or preparing to conquer the far asphalt reaches of the globe.

Coyner leads both newcomers and veterans step by step in the right direction, outlining a template for estimating mileage and expenses, and offering advice for evaluating the many excellent gear and apparel choices veteran riders use to stay warm, cool, and dry in the face of the elements. Small adjustments to ergonomics can also make big differences in comfort. Numerous and versatile luggage options can be mixed and matched to keep gear secure, and trailers can open up new possibilities for camping or hauling necessities.

Since the fun factor decreases when things aren’t fundamentally safe, Coyner also teaches how to manage the variables under every rider’s control, which can include choosing tires and accessory lighting, packing well, performing preventive maintenance, and adding electrical gadgets responsibly. Today’s two-wheeled travelers can easily integrate into their cockpit all the benefits and convenience of smartphones, Bluetooth communication, digital entertainment, GPS navigation, and action cameras, and Coyner shows you how. Knowing what is available and how to install it allows one to make savvy choices that will increase enjoyment on the road.

And, after all, isn’t that the whole point? 

About the Author:

Dale Coyner is an avid, experienced motorcyclist and the owner of Open Road Outfitters, a motorcycle accessory shop in Sterling, Virginia, that specializes in the sale and installation of motorcycle trailers, lighting, and electronics. His first book,Motorcycle Journeys Through the Appalachians, remains a popular guide for motorcyclists planning trips through the mid-Atlantic and his newest touring guide,Motorcycle Journeys Through North America, catalogs and describes the iconic destination highways that have inspired riders over the decades to take to the road.

In 2006, Coyner was appointed to the Governor’s Motorcycle Advisory Council for the  Commonwealth of Virginia to promote motorcycle tourism, safety, and economic development. He speaks frequently at rallies and motorcycle club meetings on motorcycle travel and related technical topics.

Format: 8.25 x 10.5 inches
Pages: 189
Art: approx. 275 color photos and illustrations
Retail price: $27.95 USD
Amazon price: $17.55

Book Overview: Motorcycle Journeys Through the Pacific Northwest

Book Overview: Motorcycle Journeys Through the Pacific Northwest
Details: Paperback, 5.5 x 8.5 inches, 320 pages, full color illus and maps, list price $27.95 USD
Published By: WhiteHorse Press

Not only does this newest edition of Motorcycle Journeys Through the Pacific Northwest showcase unforgettable rides in Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia, its author’s enthusiasm for still more motorcycle exploration will also entice visitors to return to this gorgeous region for multiple looks, and reacquaint lifetime locals with the beauty and uniqueness of their home territory. From twisting mountain roads with vast tall forests and stunning views of snow-capped volcanoes, to curving coastal roads winding past pristine sandy beaches and rugged rocky cliffs, the diversity of riding in the Pacific Northwest is breathtaking.You can discover ancient river-cut canyons, high purple desert, crystal-clear lakes, misty romantic islands, and friendly people lost to time and logging or fishing—all on the same day.

Written by veteran motojournalist Bruce Hansen, Motorcycle Journeys Through the Pacific Northwest details thirty-one trips through this motorcycle paradise with colorful commentary, useful relief maps, dazzling color photographs, and clear route directions. Each trip takes one to two days to complete and is guaranteed to lead riders to new places of interest on lost roads that are a delight to find. Here are the best-kept secrets and most famous rides of the Pacific Northwest, the very things that make motorcycle travel so special.Those riders familiar with the first edition will want to try the new rides in this edition, including road’s end on Vancouver Island, a Hells Canyon getaway, and an Auderheidi Hot Sprint ride. 

As a local rider, Hansen recommends restaurants, diners, places to stay (including campgrounds), and interesting things to see and do from an insider’s perspective. His tips will save precious vacation time for visiting motorcyclists and locals alike. Helpful sidebars give you information on where to rent a motorcycle, how to get lower rates on accommodations, up-to-date regulations on crossing the U.S.- Canadian border, and tips for hot weather and desert riding. Trip 31, called Deuce-and-a-Half, shows how to cover the whole Pacific Northwest in 14 days and 2,500 miles. If you have just two weeks available and the determination to see it all, this book will help you make the best use of your time and money. 

Canadian readers buy it here:

Book Overview: Motorcycle Journeys Through Western Europe

Book OverView: Motorcycle Journeys Through Western Europe
Details: Paperback, 5 ½ x 8 ½ inches, 384 pages, full color illus and maps, list price $29.95 USD.
Published by: WhiteHorse Press

Whitehorse Press has announced the publication of Motorcycle Journeys Through Western Europe, the latest in its popular “Motorcycle Journeys” series. A trip to Europe is high on every touring motorcyclist’s travel list because it offers great roads, beautiful scenery, and centuries of history. Some riders may have the false perception, which this book dispels, that travel in Europe would cost too much and take too much time to figure out exactly where to go. Veteran traveler and motoscribe Toby Ballentine shows in this new travel guide that Europe by motorcycle is both affordable and do-able, and provides riders with all the ingredients for a two-wheeled fantasy trip.

Whether you prefer banking your way past an endless display of medieval castles, cheering for the running of the bulls in Spain, or retracing the steps of the historic World War II Band of Brothers, you can discover the Europe that has existed for centuries. Each of the sixteen core rides is organized around a different theme and illustrated with stunning full-color photographs, detailed relief maps, and full route descriptions. Practical information on where to rent motorcycles, proper driving etiquette, customs, money, camping, inexpensive accommodations, and the great places to sample regional cuisine are also included. The last chapter, “The Grand Tour,” suggests ways to link many of the core rides for travelers with more time to spend and a yen to explore at a relatively leisurely pace.

From the chateaus on the Loire River in France and the Renaissance hilltop towns of Tuscany, to the pilgrimage towns on the northern coast of Spain, or the enchanting Black Forest of Germany, Europe offers countless delights, many of which are detailed in Ballentine’s book. It is also the perfect companion guide to John Hermann’s popular Motorcycle Journeys Through the Alps and Beyond, now in its fourth edition. While Hermann focuses on the great motorcycling roads in the alpine area, Ballentine explores more broadly in Western Europe, placing as much emphasis on the history and culture of the different countries as on the ride itself. Each author offers his own unique routes, personal views, and individual perspective on how best to plan a custom trip to the places of most interest to you on a budget you can afford.

Canadian readers - purchase it here:

Book Review: How to Set Up Your Motorcycle Workshop

Book Review - How to Set Up Your Motorcycle Workshop (Third Edition)
Author: C.G. Masi
Published By: WhiteHorse Press
Softbound, 8 1/4inches x 10 1/2 inches, 205 pages,  color photos, and illustrations.

Summary Review:

Overall a good and useful book to help you organize the one part of the house you probably get to control the decorating of! Even if you're just setting up a little spot in the garage to do some repairs this book will come in handy - offering tips from the pros. Setting up a motorcycle workspace seems easy - until you do it wrong.  Get it right - the first time!  Order yourself a copy of this helpful guide.

Full Review:

Whether you're organizing a corner of the garage set up for routine maintenance or a dream motorcycle shop, How to Set Up Your  Motorcycle Workshop, 3rd Edition will help you create a motorcycle workshop that makes the most of available space, and equip it with the tools necessary to get any job done.

Whether you plan only to keep your bike clean and in good repair or you want to become seriously involved with restoration, customization, or even professional repair, this book will show you how it’s done.

There are in-depth shop profiles that include: personal garage workspaces, professional shops, specially-built professional restorer’s shops, multi-purpose shops, and race shops. Each profile has a scaled layout of the shop with color photos, as well as thoughts and tips from the owner and designer of that shop.

Author C.G. Masi also explains the basic principles of planning and designing workshops, with practical advice on what equipment you’ll need. He offers helpful suggestions about which tools to keep with your bike, which tools you’ll need in emergency situations, electric power tools, computers in the workshop, and valuable advice on which tools to purchase, which tools you can fabricate, and best of all, how to use them properly. Amusing anecdotes recount real-life experiences, with examples of what to do and what not to do.

With more than 200 color photographs and detailed illustrations, How to Set Up Your  Motorcycle Workshop is a must-have, money-saving reference you’ll return to time and again.

It is one of Whitehorse Press’s perennial bestselling titles.

Book Review: The Comprehensive Vintage Motorcycle Price Guide 2010/2011 Edition

A new book has just arrived at Canadian Motorcycle Rider headquarters! It's a comprehensive vintage motorcycle guide in handy pocket-sized form. Compiled by the Vintage Japanese and European Motorcycle Club it's a convenient reference from Whitehorse Press that any vintage motorcycle enthusiast would appreciate.

Think of it as the little black book for vintage motorcycles. Now, it's a little more difficult to judge the values of vintage motorcycles than the typical makes, the VJEMC has conducted hundreds of hours of research for this updated version. They've gotten the opinions of dozens of dealers, auctioneers, collectors, and experts in the vintage field.

The book is updated in include motorcycles that are 15 years or older.

Full details below:

Antique, classic, and special interest motorcycles  Model years from 1901 through 1995.
Whitehorse Press is pleased to announce publication of the fourth annual edition of The Comprehensive Vintage Motorcycle Price Guide, compiled by members of the Vintage Japanese and European Motorcycle Club (VJEMC) who collect data from auctions, vintage dealers, marque experts, and internet sales throughout the year.

Designed by enthusiasts for enthusiasts, it includes price data for dozens of motorcycle brands from the U.S. and around the world, from Ace to Yankee and including major marques such as BMW, Ducati, Harley-Davidson, Honda, and Triumph as well as lesser known or more specialized ones like Ariel, Buell, KTM, Pope, and Whizzer.

Each year, the guide is expanded to add another year, so as to be consistent with the VJEMC’s policy of including all motorcycles 15 years old and older in the “vintage” category.  Formed by the opinions of dealers, auctioneers, collectors, and experts in the vintage field and confirmed by hundreds of hours of research and data entry, it is the most accurate price guide written for vintage motorcycles. Prices are derived from actual sales between knowledgeable enthusiasts and are given for six quality grades, ranging from rat-bike to like-new.

The guide opens with an overview of which bikes are hot and which are not, with commentary by experts on why prices are changing as they are. It also includes a full description of how each price grade is defined and how to recognize which grade a particular bike belongs in.

Printed in a handy pocket-size, it is the perfect companion to have with you at the next motorcycle rally or auction you attend, or even when you chance upon that rare specimen in a neighbor’s garage or a farmer’s barn and want to make an offer to “take-it-off-the-table” immediately. Just one insight gained from this price quide will earn back many times the book’s cost on your next sale or purchase. 

If you're interested in this book get a great price AND help support CMR by purchasing it here:

Read more CMR book reviews HERE.

Book Review: Riding In The Zone - Advanced Techniques for Skillful Motorcycling

Book Review: Riding In The Zone - Advanced Techniques for Skillful Motorcycling
Author: Ken Condon
Published By: WhiteHorse Press

If you've ridden a motorcycle before, chances are you've experienced the sensation of being at one with the bike. Perhaps you experienced this sensation on a twisty road while powering out of a corner on a beautiful day - you're totally focused in the moment and on all the sensory inputs the bike is providing. You feel great; almost Zen like.

It's a tough sensation to describe but it's the goal of every motorcyclist to experience it. This is the type of moment that the author is referring to when he talks about being 'in the zone.' He describes it as a state of being. It's the experience of being physically and mentally present in the moment, where every sense is sharply attuned to the ride. That sounds like a better description than mine I think!

The goal of Riding In the Zone seems to be to help riders maximize those 'in the zone' moments. Why ride a motorcycle if your goal isn't to maximize the enjoyment you get from it and to improve the level of skill that you ride with? -- Makes perfect sense to me!

There's no denying that motorcycling requires concentration, skill, and coordination. Even if you're an intermediate or experienced rider it's always a smart to revisit your skills periodically. It's also a good idea to practice those skills too. Knowing in theory about emergency braking may not help much in a real emergency if you've never practiced that skill. While you can't prevent a car from turning left in front of you, there are things you can do to reduce the chances of it and to be better prepared for the situation. Just one of the many useful bits of information contained in this book.

Condon says it's a very good idea to practice your braking skills in a safe environment, such as an empty parking lot. Practice will help you become more aware of the capabilities of your motorcycle and allow you to develop the skills that will become second nature when, or if, you have to use them in a real emergency, on-road situation.

He's also a big believer in track days as a way of developing skills. Track days aren't necessarily racing, they're a chance to test your abilities in a safer environment than the road, plus you may be able to get input from trained professionals about areas you could improve on.

Riding in the Zone is geared towards early-intermediate to early-advanced riders. There's three major categories in the book: the confident rider, mental skill development, and physical skill development. Condon identifies the many factors that help you enter "the zone." He addresses each one individually, from the development of awareness and mental skills to mastering complete physical control of your motorcycle. At the end of each chapter are drills designed to transform the book's ideas and concepts into advanced riding skills that are natural and intuitive. A companion DVD is included with the book to demonstrate these concepts and techniques and show exactly how to perform each practice drill so the lessons may be applied quickly and easily to actual street riding. It's all very good stuff.

The book includes extensive color-photography and illustrations that help you clearly visualize the concepts and techniques. It's one thing to read how a technique is performed and another to see it being performed so that you know exactly what it 'should' look like. The companion DVD is a fantastic feature that's included with the book - I know I'll be referring to it again. I want to stress that the DVD alone is worth the price of the book. You can watch the entire video at once or you can pop the DVD on and navigate to and focus on specific areas you want to learn about or revisit at some point in the future.

You've got not excuse to brush up on your skills. Condon has made it as clear, and as easy as it's going to get!

Having also read Keith Code's - Twist of the Wrist II, I couldn't help but make some comparisons. Riding in the Zone does offer instruction covering many similar concepts as are discussed in the the classic rider guide book Twist of Wrist II but Condon puts his own unique spin on it and includes several techniques I don't recall being covered in Twist of the Wrist. Interesting to note that Condon does give a little shout out to Code and others, within the book, as people who have tried to make motorcycling safer and more enjoyable for those who ride.

As a bit of background on Condon and what qualifies him to be writing a book on the subject of rider skills, he's got a long history of motorcycle experience. He's been a motorcyclist for more than three decades and is the current author of the monthly Proficient Motorcycling and Street Strategies columns for Motorcycle Consumer News. He's also the chief instructor chief instructor for Tony's Track Days and is an experienced Motorcycle Safety Foundation instructor.

Thanks to Condon as well for sharing his experience and knowledge in this fine book and DVD. I know that I've learned a few things from it and have been reminded of some things I already did know. I've begun using some of the techniques demonstrated in the books in my own personal rides. In fact I used some strategies from the book today! You too will be able to put information presented in this book to use immediately in your own riding. Even though it's indicated to be for early-intermediate to early-advanced riders I think all riders - particularly beginner riders can benefit from Condon's message in Riding in the Zone.

This book represents excellent value for money. I recommend that you check it out.

Book description: Paperback, 8 x 10 inches, 144 pages, full color illus, $29.95. Copies are available at your local bookstore, motorcycle dealer, or directly from the publisher, Whitehorse Press, 107 East Conway Road, Center Conway, NH 03813-4012. Telephone toll-free 800-531-1133 or visit

You can also get the book at a discount from retail price and help support Canadian Motorcycle Rider by purchasing this book (and any other books you're interested in) via our Amazon bookstore: