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Thread: 2015 Cross Country Ride - Round Trip?

  1. #1
    Adventurist nakwakto00's Avatar
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    Question 2015 Cross Country Ride - Round Trip?

    I am thinking about visiting a fellow rider in Connecticut this summer. So I'm thinking about and starting to plan a round trip cross country adventure that would start in Washington State and end in Washington State. This would be an epic trip across this great country and back.

    Here are my trip planning thoughts and considerations: (1) Avoid Interstates as much as possible, drive federal highways, state highways, and county roads (not gravel); (2) Avoid big cities, prefer to go around riding rural roads; (3) Ride between 250-350 (maybe an occasional 400 mile day) miles per day with an occasional off day or short day - it's not a marathon or iron butt ride; (4) Travel leisurely, avoid strict itineraries of "gotta be here on this day" and the need for speed (I know boring); (5) Preferring camping to lodging (unless the forecast is for stormy weather). What about crossing the US from west to east and then for the return crossing Canada? That would make for two epic trips.

    My ride would be an '06 R1200RT. I know I'd probably need new rubber about halfway through the trip. My current tires have about 3K on them, but are in great shape. Bike has 24K on the clock and was just recently dealership serviced.

    I'm 58 years old, in good physical condition, and retired so the time is flexible. I'm an early to bed and early riser, and not a party guy. I've traveled a lot in the NW (Wa, Or, & Id) and to Montana, Utah, South Dakota (Black Hills), and Wyoming on a motorcycle. Probability of doing this is about 60-70%. Can start after mid-May and sometime before September. Thinking 4-6 weeks total.

    I would appreciate your route suggestions, "must visit" sites, recommendations, avoidance's, timing, trip "must haves" and any other tips. If there's a chance to share a portion of the ride then let me know. Right now I'm going solo.
    -don
    #161988
    "If you don't treat yourself right, no one else will."
    '06 R1200RT, '13 F800GS, and '16 R1200GSA (wife's)

  2. #2
    Hangered... but aimed out flyhi2cfar's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Consider the opportunity...

    ....to achieve the IBA's qualifications for the National Parks Tour Award. You may include Canada in the "numbers" count required. You will ride some back roads & see the sights.
    Most importantly, most folks can't accomplish this wonderful task in one single, out n' back round trip... you have the chance... and you won't need a year to do it! By virtue of location for you coastal state residents, this Award is somewhat difficult... yet; any rider is going to tour a lot of territory. Have a look at the IBA site and do a "count".... it may interest you.

    "travel'n" john
    IBA NPT/SS & BB, HOG Lewis & Clark/Eastern & Western Lower 48 Campaign, multi-yr Maritime Salty Fog Riders Tour, MOA/RA Peaks of America & Heritage Tour, 4 corners US & Baja/Cabo, 10yr consecutive MOA Rally rat... everywhere on street tires, but some places I shouldn't uh been!

  3. #3
    172526
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    Trade ya ideas? My wife and i are planning a trip this summer that uses most of the same roads you describe and i am looking for recommendations on a route that would take me from the Yellowstone area to Mt. St Helen.

    As for my ideas

    - Stay clear of Hwy 2 across the top of the Dakotas, especially the Williston area. Oil country, Lots of heavy truck traffic and no rooms or even camping for miles
    - Theodore Roosevelt Park (south portion) has a nice loop ride to see some bison up close.
    - Hwy 212 across the Dakotas is nice.
    - A stop at Aerostich factory/sales in Duluth,
    - The south shore of Superior is outstanding, the Keweenaw Peninsula up to copper harbor is a bit out of your way but worth the ride,
    - then of course crossing the Big MAC bridge and then the west shore of Huron.

    PM if you want a nice route/GPS track through that area from Duluth - Port Huron MI. Rode it last year, nice quiet highways and nice scenery.

    Once in NY the central portion then up through Lake placid is nice, with a ferry across Lake Champlain to Burlington. All highways in the east get pretty busy in the summer so be prepared for that.

    If you do a loop back through Canada, North of Superior is not to be missed
    Last edited by garthw; 01-04-2015 at 01:51 PM.

  4. #4
    Adventurist nakwakto00's Avatar
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    YNP to St Helens

    Thank you very much for your ideas. They're great!

    As for my ideas:
    - Into YNP there's no better route than the NE entrance via Beartooth Pass. Simply spectacular.
    - Leaving YNP my favorite route is by way of the S entrance and ibto Grand Teton National Park. Although not as spectacular as the Beartooth, it is still very beautiful. Yellowstone Lake and Lewis River canyon are beautiful. When it Grand Teton Park, make sure to leave US89 and take the side road. You'll ride right up to the base of the Tetons.
    - The ride down US89 to Montpelier is pretty. Bear Lake and Logan Canyon are pretty too. Then take US93 up from Logan, UT to Blackfoot, ID. Craters of the Moon National Monument is interesting.
    - From Arco, ID to Challis is pretty too. A must stop is Challis Hot Springs. Beautiful camping or bed-n-breakfast. The hot spring soak is absolutely delicious!
    - SR 75 & 21 are beautiful! Riding through the Sawtooths and along the Salmon River. Then when you come to Lowman, take the county road to Banks, ID. Then go north on ID 55 and US95all the way to Lewiston, ID. Make sure to stop in McCall, ID - beautiful.
    - An alternate route is after McCall stay on US95 to ID71 towards Halfway, OR. Then take the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway to Enterprise, OR. Incredibly beautiful. Then go to Clarkston/Lewiston. A truly magnificent ride, bucket list worthy.
    - From Lewiston take US12 and US 730 to Umatilla, OR cross the Columbia River and follow WA14 to Carson, WA and take USFS roads (paved) to Randle. You will see east side of St. Helens - very beautiful. Then take US 12, WA 505 and WA 504 to St. Helens visitors center.
    - US 12 from Lolo, MT to Lewiston, ID is a worthy bucket list ride too. But you miss the Sawtooth Mts.
    - St. Joe River Road from St. Regis, MT to St. Maries, ID is a great ride too. Unfortunately you'll have to ride 7 miles of gravel - good gravel road. It is very scenic and twisty. I lije it more than Lolo Pass.

    Hopefully these help. PM me if you have other questions. I've ridden these routes and know them well.

    - I90 is scenic from Livingston, MT to Spokane, but it's still the superslab.
    -don
    #161988
    "If you don't treat yourself right, no one else will."
    '06 R1200RT, '13 F800GS, and '16 R1200GSA (wife's)

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