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Thread: Road Trippin' USA 2012

  1. #31
    Registered User helmut_head's Avatar
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    I'm with tourunigo

    Quote Originally Posted by tourunigo View Post
    riding sure. Additionally though, both Canada and the United States have people and while riding an interesting ride may be a draw card (as if his proximity to some very fine European venues were not enough), it is the people that make a nation and give the visitor a flavor of culture and social discourse. Our part of the world has much to offer which is unique in many ways but we have met so many, many fine folks throughout our travels in both the United States and Canada who have helped us understand a bit more how they see the world and their place in it. If all one sees is the road then maybe you miss an opportunity to (try to) understand a new part of the world for yourself, as a traveller. Enjoy the States and Canada eh.... you will not be disappointed! - Bob
    Skip a large porton of the East coast and head for the mountains, the hills, and the hillbillies.

  2. #32
    Certifiable User Mike_Philippens's Avatar
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    Don't worry, I'll go into towns and meet people. In between the twisties, I'll cross some towns. I won't avoid cities, but I won't go for all the big cities as I don't like them when I'm on the bike. This trip will be a good mix. I'll use some interstates to make some distance and then relax in a national park or rural area. It'll be great fun!

    Even at this point I'm overwhelmed already by the kind reactions, invitations to stay over, tips and even maps...I feel at home already. Maybe I won't return home
    -=- if you always see the road ahead of you, it's not worth the trip -=-

  3. #33
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    Mike like Helmut said[QUOTE]Skip a large porton of the East coast and head for the mountains, the hills, and the hillbillies. /QUOTE]

    That would be the Rockies for me both sides of the border, I can't say much for the US side but if you get the chance to ride to Jasper, Canada then ride south thought the Rockies in Alberta and BC then the US you not be disappointed, a must see.

    Columbia Ice fields


    On the Ferry


    These are but a few photos, see the rest at gajo.smugmug.com (motorcycle trips 2010)

    Garry
    Edmonton AB

  4. #34
    1-2-3-Kick It criminaldesign's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tourunigo View Post
    riding sure. Additionally though, both Canada and the United States have people and while riding an interesting ride may be a draw card (as if his proximity to some very fine European venues were not enough), it is the people that make a nation and give the visitor a flavor of culture and social discourse. Our part of the world has much to offer which is unique in many ways but we have met so many, many fine folks throughout our travels in both the United States and Canada who have helped us understand a bit more how they see the world and their place in it. If all one sees is the road then maybe you miss an opportunity to (try to) understand a new part of the world for yourself, as a traveller. Enjoy the States and Canada eh.... you will not be disappointed! - Bob
    Not knocking on the people/area by any means and maybe I came across a tad harsh, but going through the trouble of shipping a bike and flying across an ocean to travel this land of ours, I think it would be rude not to point out the better spots for a motorcycle trip, especially that area.

    I would recommend the same thing even if traveling by automobile.
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  5. #35
    Registered User tourunigo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by criminaldesign View Post
    Not knocking on the people/area by any means and maybe I came across a tad harsh, but going through the trouble of shipping a bike and flying across an ocean to travel this land of ours, I think it would be rude not to point out the better spots for a motorcycle trip, especially that area.

    I would recommend the same thing even if traveling by automobile.
    ya, the time and money invested in such a grand trip during our traditional tourist travel season will benefit from info regarding great places to be as well as those great but likely very congested areas which could be a waste of valuable time for this venture. It will be interesting to hear the (hopefully) subsequent travel report about the places visited and the people met. Maybe an Alex de Tocqueville on two wheels out to discover america. - Bob
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  6. #36
    Certifiable User Mike_Philippens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tourunigo View Post
    ya, the time and money invested in such a grand trip during our traditional tourist travel season will benefit from info regarding great places to be as well as those great but likely very congested areas which could be a waste of valuable time for this venture.
    That is something I worry/worried about. I usually go on holiday outside the period all the families are on vacation with kids/dogs. But since I go for a longer period, and considering the weather, I don't have much choice. If I go in May, it might be a bit chilly/rainy in the north and by the time I get to the south, it's July and very hot.
    I'm open to sugestions for alternative periods to travel, with regards to my route and holiday factors included. It's not fixed yet, so I can change the schedule.
    -=- if you always see the road ahead of you, it's not worth the trip -=-

  7. #37
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    I think riding the south fork and north fork of Long Island is worth the trip...but I would take the ferry from Orient Point, Long Island to New London CT instead of riding around NYC and up the coast. You will miss nothing by taking this short ferry ride. The ferry way nicer way to get to New England from Long Island. Just a thought and as for the Hamptons, nice shops, quaint towns and if I were from another country I would want to just see eastern LI...it is beautiful and full of vineyards and just a nice pleasant ride if you have the time.

  8. #38
    Certifiable User Mike_Philippens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soph9 View Post
    just a nice pleasant ride if you have the time.
    Time is relative is something Einstein mentioned already
    While nothing is decided yet, planning a trip like this is an excercise in compromise. You can travel in one state for a month without seeing everything, and I want to cross the country in thee months. So I have to make decisions on where I go.
    The Hamptons and Long Island was something that I 'heard about' and just thought of it as I nice destination. I'm still not 100% sure. I have some 1.5 year to make up my mind...when I fetch my bike from the docks, I have to be sure where I want to go first.

    Having said that, the day that I spent driving down Long Island is not going to kill me I guess...
    -=- if you always see the road ahead of you, it's not worth the trip -=-

  9. #39
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike_Philippens View Post

    Having said that, the day that I spent driving down Long Island is not going to kill me I guess...
    Probably not, but it might drive you crazy.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
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  10. #40
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    Been planning very similar trip for this summer. Most folks have already hit the main things I would have mentioned, but here are a few that are either new or bear repeating

    Long Island: Last summer, the Verazano bridge was under heavy, heavy construction and it took forever to get across. Coming up from the south (or leaving south off the island) will most likely mean being in traffic that is moving 10-30 mph from 6am to 7pm. If you really want to hit the island, there is a ferry at the NE tip that will take you across the Sound to Connecticut. I really recommend that rather than dealing with bridge traffic twice in one day.

    East Coast, NYC to the Maine state line: Prepare for heavy traffic along the coastal roads in Connecticut and Rhode Island.
    Take the trip out Route 6A to the tip of Cape Cod, park the bike, and take a walk on the dunes. It's unlike anything else you'll find on the East Coast.
    The ride up towards Boston on 3A is a nice, lazy ride.
    Unless you want to actually stop in Boston and see some sights (no slight intended to Boston, there are loads of fun things to do there!) go WAY around the city as the traffic is horrible with the construction downtown (at least it was last August when I rode through).

    Yellowstone & Teton National Parks: Unless you plan on staying in/around the parks for a few days, I'd bypass it altogether. It'll run you $20 to get into the parks on a 7-day pass, and camping is another $12 (minimum) per night. Someone mentioned making reservations, but every designated campground I looked at did not accept reservations and was on a first-come first-serve basis. I really recommend looking this up on the Yellowstone site in case I am somehow talking out of my... well...you know Personally, I skipped it (was only planning on staying 1 night) and will go back when I can spend more time there (not an option for you, I know).

    Moab/Southern Utah/Grand Canyon/Grand Staircase/etc: I would actually put these higher on a priority list than Yellowstone. It would be a shame to come all the way here and not see this area of the US.

    Colorado: If you end up going through Colorado Springs, be sure to look into Garden of the Gods (although I still would bypass this for Utah and AZ).

    Blue Ridge Parkway: Someone mentioned it already. It runs atop the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains (did I remember that right?) from eastern Tennessee/western North Carolina into Virgina. The road even has it's own official website: http://www.blueridgeparkway.org/

    Awesome trip you're planning!

  11. #41
    Certifiable User Mike_Philippens's Avatar
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    Oh...why is there so much to see, and so little time/money to see it? I'm getting dizzy already.

    On the other hand, with all the tips I get here, I'm sure it will be a ride never to forget! But first I'll have to survive a trip to Dakar (Senegal) on an old Yamaha XT600 Tenere which I'll undertake coming October with a team for charity. We're gonna take a bunch of offroad bikes and 4x4's to Banjul (The Gambia, right under Dakar) and donate them to Riders for Health. That's be an epic trip too, 7500km on an XT. Epic of another order. Driving across the US will be a piece of cake compared to that...
    -=- if you always see the road ahead of you, it's not worth the trip -=-

  12. #42
    I love to lurk! tvgal2000's Avatar
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    On your way from Duluth to western South Dakota, stop in the small town of Huron, SD... there's not much to see but the best steakhouse I've ever eaten at is there... It's a small place called the Primetime Tavern, across the street from a friendly Best Western hotel. I think they have it set up so that Monday through Friday they only have bacon wrapped filets on the menu... no fish, no chicken, no other kind of steaks. You get baked potato, small salad (no choice of dressing) and a roll with butter. Fridays and Saturdays have only prime rib... the kicker is that the steaks start at 6 oz. (170 grams) and go to 24 oz. (680 gr)... for about $1 per ounce! Delicious!

    I tell most riders I meet about this place just because it's great, it's a great deal, and it's a welcome stop in a section of SD that doesn't have a lot excitement (sorry if I'm offending eastern South Dakotans!)

    (I LOVE to ride to eat, obviously!)

    Have a great time!
    Sarah B
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  13. #43
    Certifiable User Mike_Philippens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvgal2000 View Post
    the kicker is that the steaks start at 6 oz. (170 grams) and go to 24 oz. (680 gr)... for about $1 per ounce! Delicious!
    OMG! I just stowed away a steak that was a bit under 6 oz and I can hardly move... Ah well I'll see how I manage
    -=- if you always see the road ahead of you, it's not worth the trip -=-

  14. #44
    Registered User helmut_head's Avatar
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    May will be fine for crowds

    Kids are out of school mostly June-September.....I'd say do May. Start by heading toward the south east and move north and west during the June-July months for probably the best weather you can have.

    Just stay away from Disney all times of the year. If you happen to go there or any other big time tourist place, try to be there right when they open in morning or not long before closing. Walk fast! That'll keep you away from extreme crowds. Ask some of us if you are questioning which places are normally very crowded.

    Otherwise you'll be fine. Keep in mind that Dad's and Mom's also need vacation from work for the family to vacation. We are all relatively impoverished over here in the "poor US" and travel has tapered off in the past few years, but is starting to come back. July 4 weekend will be messy, but if you play it right, you'll see some cool fireworks.
    Last edited by Helmut_Head; 02-28-2011 at 02:47 AM. Reason: Type error

  15. #45
    A wandering Bird Vagabird's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robbflynn View Post
    Yellowstone & Teton National Parks: Unless you plan on staying in/around the parks for a few days, I'd bypass it altogether. It'll run you $20 to get into the parks on a 7-day pass, and camping is another $12 (minimum) per night. Someone mentioned making reservations, but every designated campground I looked at did not accept reservations and was on a first-come first-serve basis. I really recommend looking this up on the Yellowstone site in case I am somehow talking out of my... well...you know Personally, I skipped it (was only planning on staying 1 night) and will go back when I can spend more time there (not an option for you, I know).
    I have very mixed feelings about Yellowstone. It is an amazing place but during peak travel season it is VERY crowded. If the campgrounds are not accepting reservations, they will be full by noon. On a recent trip through I saw bison, mountain goats, grizzly with cub, elk, and LOTS of frazzled tourists. It's almost like Mother Nature's Disneyland, complete with traffic and human crowds.

    I, too, would vote for starting in early May and reversing the path - south first, before it gets too miserable, and then west and north. The Blue Ridge Parkway is most beautiful in the spring, too, and likely to be fairly empty during the week.

    If you are looking for Americana, ride the two-lanes as much as possible. One of my best trips was 3 months on mostly two-lanes. I spent most of the time in the Appalachians and the Rockies but didn’t see many of The Sights. (I did see The Sights in Memphis on that trip, but that was only because I was there to see my daughter.) Are there places you’ve heard of that you want to see? Someone might be really interested in the Indianapolis Speedway, while that might be a waste of time to most people. Are you interested to see an ante-bellum southern mansion, or something from the Civil War, the Revolutionary War, the Indian Wars?

    I can send you a good route from the Black Hills through Yellowstone to Denver and southwest from there. East of Cody, Wyoming, is Heart Mountain – an internment camp where west-coast American citizens of Japanese descent were sent during World War II. There isn’t a lot there to see, but that may be interesting. East of that, on US 14A just before it drops off the side of the mountain is Medicine Wheel, an ancient arrangement of rocks where American Indians still go to pray. It is down a 2?¢ km gravel road with another 2?¢ km hike to the wheel. It just depends on what interests you and how much stopping to look around you want to do.

    Thanks for throwing this out there, Mike. I suspect a lot of us are dreaming of this trip along with you.

    - Kate
    Last edited by Vagabird; 02-28-2011 at 03:52 PM.
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