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Who says you can't tour on a Harley?

Published: 08 July 2019

Updated: 07 July 2019

#Ride5000miles member, Martin Fell, has been bucking the motorcycle touring trend by covering almost 2000 miles in 10 days aboard his Harley-Davidson Breakout cruiser.

Leaving Northern Ireland on Wednesday, May 29, the 50-year-old quantity surveyor was part of an eight-strong riding convoy on five bikes, all members of the Belfast Harley-Davidson Owners’ Group.

Starting in Belfast, the convoy snaked across northern England to Newcastle, before catching a ferry to Amsterdam. From there, they headed to Vianden, Luxembourg, and then onto Baden-Baden, Germany, and the iconic B500.

Next up came Triberg, in Germany, and then Spiez, Switzerland, before snaking back to Amsterdam for the ferry home, via Colmar, France and Bastogne, Belgium.

R5K members reach the alpine snow line on Harleys

Despite being gone for so long, the troop experienced almost perfect weather, enjoying near 30 degree temperatures in the Swiss valleys. This changed at the top of the mountain passes though, where the dams were still frozen.

"The Harleys never missed a beat," Fell explained. "They were absolutely brilliant and handled everything fine. On the mountain passes, you just have to ride to the bikes’ capabilities, but you can still take most of the hairpins in second gear.

"We were doing between 200 and 250 miles a day, so we could get to the hotels each night refreshed. They were perfect for that."

Long-distance trips are nothing new for the group and alongside Martin’s Breakout were two Road Kings, one Road King Special and one Fat Boy. To mark the ride, the group also had special t-shirts made, which mark the route on a map of Europe.

Touring on a Harley-Davidson

"I use my Harley for commuting on, too," he added. "We also do several weekend rides all year and we go to events like Thunder in the Glens, in Scotland.

"They are used all year round and I would say WD 40 and ACF-50 work wonders, but they are not just used for leisure rides."

Martin purchased his Harley brand new last June and has since completed his #ride5000miles total, using the machine for tours, commuting and weekend rides. Alongside this, he has also added around 2500 miles on his Triumph Tiger 800 in that time, too.

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