I'm not a big long-distance traveler, two wheels or four, but I have taken a few extended jaunts. I did a three-day ride with a friend to NH from RI on the VTX a few years ago. There's some absolutely awesome riding roads through and around the White Mountains, if anyone is within a few hours of there.
The longest two-wheeled adventure was with two other guys from RI to Ohio for the AMA event at Mid-Ohio back in 2003. Five days, about 1800 miles on the ST1300. I had an Aerostitch Gore Tex suit (affectionately known as the Power Ranger suit) that I wore exactly once -- on this trip. It was heavy and bulky, too hot in the sun, and in one heavy downpour it was pretty much useless, which is why it never got worn again after that. I packed a small 12-volt air pump with a lighter plug adapter that clamped directly onto the battery terminals; one of the other guys had a tire plug kit, too. Luckily none of us needed any of them; but on a trip like that, it was great just for the peace of mind. Other than that I just brought the basics -- compact shaving kit, a week's worth of underwear and socks, a couple of T's, sweatshirt, pair of sneakers for walking around. There really wasn't much else that was brought and not needed. Oh yeah, and a can of spray cleaner -- a must-have if you're going to be where there are a lot of other bikes.
But that trip did tell me a lot about what I really did and didn't want for riding and riding gear; it's amazing what a good long trip away from home will teach you about what does and doesn't work. Starting with the Power Ranger suit, which was quickly replaced with an armored mesh jacket with removable lining. I also ditched the Shoei helmet that was too heavy and had next to no ventilation, a real disappointment considering how much I paid for it (I now have a Scorpion EXO-700 that I know I'm going to cry when it becomes too worn out to wear any more). I was reminded that I don't want too much tupperware in front of me blocking all
the wind -- the big wind blast off my chest, yes; the refreshing stream of air to my head and arms, no. And I learned how much I disliked having to look through a full windshield, especially through a full face helmet in the rain. More than anything else though, I learned how much I prefer the riding position a cruiser; I spent the last four days of that trip on a steady diet of Advil to dull the pain in my lower back and shoulders. So every bike since then has been a cruiser -- with a short deflector-type windscreen.
Would I do it again? Well, I'm glad I did it once, and I wouldn't trade the experience for anything. Despite my few personal gripes, the ST was just superb; and the guys I was with were great guys and experienced, responsible riders (which doesn't mean we didn't misbehave just a bit). But I will most likely not do another one for that long or that far again. Maybe another weekend trip or two through the mountains with the wife before I hang up the spurs. Could just be the bike I have now, which just doesn't feel like something I want to spend hours and hours on. The wife has also renewed her interest in going for rides after quite a few years of not, but I don't see her spending long stretches in the saddle, either. But if this CTX1300 is everything I think it is (and there has to be a passenger backrest available for it!), that could all change kinda quick.