There’s something about waking up face down in a strange motel room in yesterday’s clothes that gives one pause. Or at least it should. No, I hadn’t been on a bender the night before, but after 11 hours of unconsciousness, I could no longer deny how sick I was. I had to accept that my (overly?) ambitious route for this extended Honda Gold Wing Tour ride was simply not going to happen. Still, I was determined to visit the Titan Missile Museum as part of my newly shortened trip home.

Riding the 2018 Honda Gold Wing On The Nuclear Tourist Tour
The Nuclear Tourist Tour: Day 1
The Nuclear Tourist Tour: Day 2
The Nuclear Tourist Tour: Day 3

If I’d taken the tour, I’d have seen a control room that looks something like this. Photo by Manuela Durson/Shutterstock.com

The only drug store in Wilcox, AZ, has a motorcyclist as its pharmacist, and he set me up with the right over-the-counter meds to prevent me from coughing up a lung while not getting drowsy in the process. When I arrived at the museum 90 minutes later, I felt a little better, but I was by no means a picture of health. Still, when I looked at the group of mostly retired military types waiting to take the silo tour, I knew that I couldn’t force them to spend an hour in the enclosed space of the facility with me and my flu. The tour would have to wait for another time.

The Titan Missile Museum is the only remaining Titan missile silo. All others were destroyed in a manner that could be verified by satellite from Russia. Photo by Manuela Durson/Shutterstock.com

For the long slog home, I decided that I would spend the day using CarPlay and Apple Maps. I wanted to see how well Honda had adapted Apple’s touch interface to the controls on the left grip. The short answer is: quite well. On my first couple days, I had intermittent issues with CarPlay not starting and requiring that I re-pair my Sena 30K to the Wing. After some thought, I decided to delete the pairing between my iPhone and the Sena. After that the Gold Wing’s CarPlay integration worked flawlessly. If I owned a Gold Wing, I’d use the navigation systems in the following way. For long trips that I could plan in advance, I’d use the Wing’s GPS and its ability to read routes from a USB drive. For daily trips, I’d use CarPlay and Siri’s ability to take voice commands. Since Apple’s Maps App requires a cellular connection, it isn’t ideal for long trips that might go off the grid. This is where the Honda GPS shines.

2018 Honda Gold Wing and the Nuclear Tour Day 4 - Titan Missile Museum

Proof that I did make the stop. Everything else is hidden underground.

The rest of the apps on CarPlay worked well, too. I spent my last day on the road listening to mostly Pandora and the Overcast podcast app.

The ride itself was long and uneventful. However, there was one section of highway where I encountered an approximately 20 mph cross-wind for about an hour. During that time, I felt none of the interaction between the wind and the windshield that is sometimes encountered on bikes with large fairings.

Finally, there is the issue of the Gold Wing Tour’s range. Over the course of my 1,900 miles aboard the Gold Wing Tour, I averaged 39.5 mpg (Low: 37.3 mpg, High: 42.1 mpg). This yields a mathematical range of 217 miles which is significantly less than the 255 mile range Honda has mentioned. I know this will be an issue for some riders, but for me, I’m ready to stretch my legs after 200 miles.

According to Google Maps, my final day’s ride was 604 miles. The thermometer in my bathroom says I had a 102.1° fever when I arrived home late Friday evening after approximately nine hours in the saddle. While this wasn’t exactly the conclusion of the Nuclear Tourist ride that I planned. I had a tremendous trip aboard the 2018 Honda Gold Wing Tour. Look for me to sum up my experience in the near future.

2018 Honda Gold Wing and the Nuclear Tour Day 4 Map

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  • Glad you’re home safe Evans! This is where Sean tells you the story of getting pneumonia riding in the rain and he almost died.

    • Marsha

      Goℴgle pays you $98 per-hour to complete some work on apple laptop .. Work Some just few hours and fun greater time together with your friends … You can avail this online offer…on Saturday I bought a gorgeous Audi Quattro after I been earnin $7473 this last month .it’s definitly the extraordinary approach but you wo’nt forgive yourself if you do not try it.!xw252l:➦➦➦ http://GoogleLegitimateFindPartTImeJobs/computer/jobs ♥i♥♥♥c♥♥♥l♥♥h♥f♥l♥♥♥o♥y♥♥w♥♥p♥♥v♥♥♥a♥♥b♥f♥♥♥t♥♥♥w♥y♥p♥c♥♥p♥♥p♥s♥y♥♥t♥♥p:::::!dw351a:lhu

      • Gabriel Owens

        Die bitch.

  • Old MOron

    Mrs Brasfield: Evans, how dare you ride so long and so far when you are so sick?!

    Brassnozzle (in much pain and with great effort): I did it because I couldn’t stand to be away from you any longer.

    Mrs Brasfield: Well, you’d better go to bed. Uh, would you like some hot herbal tea to help you sleep?

    • John B.

      How did you do bold font? Don’t hold out on us!

      • Old MOron

        I use the standard HTML tags.
        Precede the text you want in bold type with and follow it with .

        • John B.

          Thank you!

  • John B.

    Check this out Millennials: Dude rode 604 miles in one day with a 102+ degree fever and 1900 total miles with the flu, wrote four (4) articles in six (6) days, and didn’t miss a day of work. Remember this next time you take a day off to hit the beach because your doctor told you to get more vitamin D. When you need something done come hell or high water, give it to someone over 40. Way to represent Evans! But what a terrible trip.

    • Old MOron

      Even in his miserable state, poor Brassbottom had to stay on the clock?
      Man, the Duke is tough.

      Hold on a sec. We’ve seen that before: http://disq.us/p/srq409

      • Mary

        Gℴogle gives the people $99/hr to complete few task on a home computer .. Do job for only few hours in a whole day & live happy more time together with your own family … Any person can also do this easy work…on Wednesday I bought a latest Car after I been getting $9932 last six weeks .it sounds high-quality process but you will no longer forgive yourself if you don’t test it.!iw983o:> http://GoogleInternetYouWorkFromHome/more/cash ♥♥y♥♥♥i♥♥t♥♥z♥i♥♥♥e♥v♥y♥♥n♥i♥♥♥t♥♥♥x♥♥♥r♥♥w♥♥♥w♥♥j♥p♥♥b♥f♥u♥x♥y♥♥e♥o♥♥♥t:::::!sw04h:lhuhuh

    • Alaskan18724

      “In terms of misery, that trip was very fine.”
      –Patrick F. McManus, “A Fine and Pleasant Misery”

  • Alaskan18724

    No fun when you find yourself in extremis without the luxury of sick leave. Sometimes you have to muscle through. Why is it that misery makes such a fine story?

  • SteveSweetz

    Too bad you missed the cure flu button. It was next to the one that puts it in manual shift mode. The Goldwing truly has everything 😉

  • Gruf Rude

    Looks like Honda’s next engineering feat will be to subtly expand fuel tank and luggage size, making this year’s model a sleeper classic in that all the bodywork will be unique to the 2018s . . .

  • Alaskan18724

    Gotta say it: Setting aside thoughts and feelings about luggage space and fuel capacity, Honda still uses the pretties red paint in captivity. That includes Ducati.

  • QuestionMark666

    Motorcycling, properly done, need not be a masochist endeavor

    • DickRuble

      Told them 4 days was a bad idea..

      • Evans Brasfield

        But do we ever listen…

  • Dave Brumley

    Thanks for the fine work. It sounds like you and the Honda got along pretty well. I appreciate the comments on the software side of things, too. This is becoming more and more important, especially when issues such as going off grid can affect systems that you rely on. It’s good to have a backup! I cannot imagine doing the miles you have done feeling the way you did. That is above and beyond the call of duty. Now take a good long rest, and I can anticipate your summation.

  • kenneth_moore

    There’s nothing worse than having to take a long m/c ride when you’re sick. And “sick” includes having a 3 day binge-drinking hangover from Bike Week, enhanced by drinking what turned out to be spoiled orange juice on the morning you’re heading home. Blowing chunks in a full-face helmet is NOT fun.

  • Jon Jones

    “Finally, there is the issue of the Gold Wing Tour’s range.”

    Deal-breaker for many. Bad move, Honda. There are huge expanses between gas stations in the west.

    • John B.

      The longest distance between gas stations I have come across is 108 miles somewhere in Utah. A 218 mile range would be plenty for me. My back needs a stretch more often than that on most days.

      • Alaskan18724

        Three words: Wyoming. Or is that two words? It’s not so much the distance between gas stations; it’s whether the attendant figured there wasn’t really anything going on and wandered off to tend to the milking.

        • John B.

          Ha! I’ve been to the interesting parts of Wyoming (Western), and never had a problem finding gas when I needed it. Eastern Wyoming looks pretty vast, but I don’t want to ride in that part. A 218 mile range would work for me especially if I tote an extra gallon in a container. We’re allowed to do that right?

          • Alaskan18724

            It’s also a question of which hundred miles you’re talking about–the hundred miles in the top half of the tank, or the bottom. I spend most of my Wyoming time in the western half of the state, every inch of which is worth looking at. From time to time, one has to pass through the eastern half of the state to get to the western half. Truth is, my fuel problems in Wyoming have been in winter time, when I’m driving instead of riding, and exit after exit has been populated by closed gas stations. Discomfiting when you’re on “E” at 0100 hours in a rented GL450 and it’s -5 Fahrenheit….

          • Alaskan18724

            Even an extra quart in a SIGG bottle is a great comfort.

          • Douglas

            But, but….with the new reduced luggage capacity, you wooden have room 4 a gas can.

      • Steve Clark

        My 96 Honda VT11002C ACE Shadow will run out at between 100 to 130 miles depending on terrain.I can carry two gallons extra in the saddle bags for an extra sixty miles.

        • Alaskan18724

          Envy.

      • Goose

        I read this all the time. Ever ask yourself: Would I rather take a break in a noise, smelly gas station or some place like in my picture? No bad smells and the loudest noise was the wind, followed by a hawk’s cries. Up to you but I know where I’d rather be. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/537de1f61ab9bc67afacce1b89693dbb96c23b6b6cce2b00690734acb2bd7403.jpg

        • Alaskan18724

          Love your bike, kemo sabe. Right color, too.

          • DickRuble

            Has a bigger sprocket too, giving it more pick-up at low revs. The cooling system and especially the electric are significantly beefed up. This would be my choice for a crisscross country trip, not the barcawing.

          • Alaskan18724

            What are your mods? I’m very interested.

          • DickRuble

            I was talking about the beemer in the picture. My bikes mods are minimal, a flat slide carburetor and an aftermarket exhaust to go with it. The bike had everything else from the factory, stainless steel brakes, swappable rearsets, centerstand..

          • Alaskan18724

            Ah. My mistake. I do like that puppy in the window….

          • DickRuble

            No, my mistake. I thought the bike in the picture was an R1200RT-P, the police model. I was wrong.

          • Goose

            Same color (Alpine White) as my all time favorite bike, my 1988 R100GS. Also, the only color that the R1200RT and the K1600GTL top box come in. Walked into BMW Motorcycles of Murrieta and couldn’t stop staring at it so I put a deposit down and picked it up two weeks ago.

          • Alaskan18724

            Alpine White is The Color. Saw an RT with red and blue Motorrad accents. Woof. Bad want.

        • Alaskan18724

          I’ve never owned a dresser or a bagger. The bug has bitten, however, and my time has come. The first motorcycle I fell in love with was a 1973 Moto Guzzi Eldorado. If Guzzi did the Eldorado 1400 with hard bags, I’d be all over it. California Touring is cool, but not the same. K1600B is a player, as is the new GW, but the second bike I ever loved was a 1976 BMW R90/S in Daytona Orange, and I never got over boxers. So I’m thinking the R1200RT in Alpine White, optioned up. I’ll do a good deal of traveling two-up, and I’m a tall linebacker, so I’ll have to ruminate, cogitate, and masticate over saddles. Might just use the tall stocker for a while and see if it adapts to me, or I to it.

          • Goose

            A couple of things, First, you can add the bags to Eldorado 1400, if you like the bike don’t let that stop you. Only owned one Guzzi but I loved that bike, Guzzis are very charismatic. Second, it sounds like we are similar, in football shape I have about 250 pounds spread over a 6″ 4′ body. Too small for the NFL these days but too big for more other sports. These days I’m closer to 220 pounds since I don’t “lift heavy” anymore. Comments in the RT from a fellow tall guy: Get the tall seat, besides more leg room it is a better place to sit. I run it in the low position but will move to high if I’m doing lots of highway miles. Second, you probably will not be happy with the stock windshield. If I pull my head down with the shield up all the way I get a nice, quiet ride. Sitting up straight it is way too noisy for a touring bike, OK for an hour with ear plugs but not for 8 to 12 hours. Still looking for the best solution for that.

          • JMDGT

            I have a 2015 RT. It is not nearly as heavy as some other touring machines. Super nimble and plenty of power. Last year on a trip to Colorado it dawned on me I am no longer a long distance riding kind of guy. I like three maybe four hundred mile round trip excursions best. It is a perfect bike for those distances and more if I feel the need. Long days in the saddle do not appeal to me anymore. Four or five days at the most seems to be right for me. Averaging two to three hundred miles a day on good roads. I’ve done a few six hundred mile days on the RT. It is the most comfortable bike I have ever ridden at those distances. Rent one if you can. I think you will like it. It is a great two up machine.

    • Douglas

      Really? What’s the longest (that you know of)?

      • Gabriel Owens

        Nevada…..all of it.

      • Goose

        There is a stretch of about 160 miles on Nevada 6, longest I know off south of the great, white north.

      • Jon Jones

        The stretch between Ely, NV and Tonopah, NV is 169 miles.

        I’m spoiled by the fuel range of my ST1100.

  • Gabriel Owens

    Evans, get well. The flu is widespread in Texas right now. I remain curious about the reverse gear. Is it really useful or unnecessary?

    • DickRuble

      Necessary? Only if you have the flu.

  • Dario Iglesias

    Pity you did not talk too much about the motorcycle, most of it about tourism….