Got Iron Butt? Tips for riding 1,000+ miles in under 24 hours.
Who DOES that, you might ask??? Me. I do that. Kind of a lot. (5 or 6 'official' IB rides and another 5 with no official paperwork because I started out unknowing that I would be riding that far...) Why would someone do an IB ride???? Well, for starters, I don't need a lot of money, I don't so much care what I earn per hour at work so long as I have vacation time. And I am what you could call a vacay hoarder. I try my best to make THE best of the limited vacation time I have (15 days + 5 bonus if yada, yada..). In order to see the States as I want to, utilizing my time off means hauling ass to get to my general destination, then having enough time to stay, play, ride, and repeat. Yes, I do this VOLUNTARILY and am in fact, usually the ring leader of the idea...and yes, I have a few crazy followers in my riding circle - they all rock! Anyways my most recent Iron Butt ride came about for the sake of time. I took off for Montana and had minimal days to play... so, instead of lolly-gagging and taking 2 days to get to Montana like most sane people, I decided we would BLAST out to Missoula. While we only made it Great Falls (965 miles - we ended up bypassing it to get the remaining miles in, but quickly learned there were NO more lodging options for hundreds of miles, so we circled back and make Great Falls the end of the ride, logging 1,038 miles total in just 19 hours. Leaving at the crack of dawn, I met Shelly at the gas station, and this part is CRUCIAL when doing an IB ride (gas is also crucial but...) we got situated, made sure our gear was working for the temps, made sure we had water in our cupholders, and made sure we were literally ready to ride the second we were done pumping gas. Before we pumped gas, we needed a witness. You see, the people of IB world don't just 'believe' that you do the ride, they require proof. Proof as in a starting witness and an end witness who have to sign off on the IB form that you were indeed at the starting/finish location, at the time said, and with the odometer reading verified. So we wandered into the gas station, fully geared up, explained what we were doing, and asked the gas station attendant to be our witness. (This witness is from my very first IB.. I have since not taken their pictures!)
I have had mixed reactions to this request - something about putting ones name, address, and work phone number, along with the word WITNESS (while wearing full leather gear, including helmet) sometimes freaks people out. But not enough to prevent them from signing. No one has ever said no. Some are just a little slower to do it than others. And I am sure attendants have hit the 'record' button so get our faces and plates in case the 'witness form' is for some other sketchy unknown reason that winds up on the 10pm news. Lucky for me, I am LONG gone by 10pm... lol
Anyways, the attendant signed his life away (THANK YOU!!!!) and we both proceeded to the gas pumps at the exact same time. And this is when the official clock starts ticking - when the time stamp on the gas receipt comes out of the printer. So first off, always make sure that info is accurate!!!! The hardest part of an IB ride for me is remembering to say YES to the "Do you want a receipt?" question. Habit is no. But for an IB ride, it is a MUST. Here is what I do for the start of my IB ride:
And I have a plate on each of my bikes!!
Ohhhhhh, how the miles fly by!!!!!
6/21/15 19,569 miles