Last year I went to the Left Coast and back on my bike. I did a bit of camping along the way. Brought a tent, mat and a sleeping bag. On the nights where I rode well into the dark, I'd look for a cheap motel to crash in.
Only time I was worried a bit was when I was in NM on the Navaho Nation and stopped at a place called the Annasazi Inn. There was a bar attached that was filled with liquored up Navaho's and it was a Saturday night. The cops were there all night. In the morning there were a bunch of rooms with people shaped holes in the windows.
In Fresno, CA. we stayed at a Travel Lodge motel. That's where I met the largest Cockroach that I've ever seen. It had to be about 3 inches long and was in the shower(no shower for me that night).
Other than that, no problems at all. I didn't carry any weapons(other than myself
) so I wouldn't be hassled by the man if I was stopped for something else.
All I can say is to bring clothes for all possible temps and wx conditions if you go on a long ride because the wx changes quite a bit from state to state, even in the summer. You'll see freezing in the mountains and you'll roast in the desert. Oh yeah, instead of a lot of cash, bring travelers checks or plastic. You don't want to lose yer cash and be stuck out in the middle of Bum [email protected]
Get a good atlas for a map and make sure to keep it dry. As far as food went, I tried to find clean looking restaurants along the way. I also stocked up on beef jerky for when I felt like nibbling. I always carried a bottle of water too. As for how far to go in a day, I found myself running about 400-600 miles a day with no problem. On two days of the trip I clocked over 1000 miles each day. That was a necessary stretch though because we found ourselves in the middle of the salt in Utah as the sun went down and decided to push for Reno, NV. so we could get some good food and a good room at a casino.
The other long stretch was on the way back home from Denver and I wasn't in the mood to stop. I just wanted to get back home to my own bed.
My advice is to just go. Plan it along the way. It'll be quite the adventure, I guarantee.