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Old 03-03-2011, 11:06 AM   #1
alexk243 OP
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Midwest week long Trip

Hey guy, I know this wont be as intense of a trip as most people plan on here, but its spring, still a little bit cold, and I am trying to plan a week long trip in about 3 weeks with 2 of my buddies (novice riders with older bikes).

I am starting in Chicago and figured I would have to head south to warmer weather. Thinking east coast or something. I have relatives in Pinehurst, NC but its not necessary to go there.

This is really open and I am not heart set on anywhere. I just want a good ride with good campsites and cool stuff to see along the way.

My buddies are a little shy of doing a long trip as they are new to motorcycles and their bikes and are not confident in their ability to stay running, but I say if your 200 miles or 1000 miles from home your still s.o.l. if your bike quits on you and minor repairs wont do it. Either way, I am thinking not going to far for their comfort.

Any ideas would really help me out. I am sitting on my mapping software not sure where to put the next way point.
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Old 03-03-2011, 12:49 PM   #2
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Wait till you are ready to leave and check the weather forcast.

Ride where it's best.

Going south, could be a disaster with spring storms popping up. Still real easy to be stuck out with freezing rain in the northern areas.

You do realize it snows regularly till past Easter around here?
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Old 03-03-2011, 01:08 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uglyprimate View Post
Wait till you are ready to leave and check the weather forcast.

Ride where it's best.

Going south, could be a disaster with spring storms popping up. Still real easy to be stuck out with freezing rain in the northern areas.

You do realize it snows regularly till past Easter around here?
Completely agree with the weather forecast thing. Our summer vacation is like this if its raining in that direction we go another direction BEFORE we leave home. Who wants to ride in the rain for a week or freeze? Just my 2cents...
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:04 PM   #4
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Weather forecast - Yes - but the decider is the location of the jet stream. Will be wet underneath as lows crawl along it. Cooler north of it, warmer south. Ride with he Highs. Start watching it now to develop a feel for its location.
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:36 PM   #5
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Being weather ready is what matter the most! Decent rain gear doesn't have to be expensive. Same for luggage. I use Army waterproof bags when bike camping @ $1 each(my cousin sells surplus).Use a trash bag if you have too. I rather have dry stuff than wet using those -I'll say it"-Pony Express bags with metal bling & dangly fringe, that the cruiser crowd goes after. Have good tires. If your'e doing it for fun then make sure the bikes are ready so it doesn't become something other than just that. Even older bikes can be dependable if all is OK.
Anywhere you head southward is likely to have rain in the spring and storms blowing through BUT!!!, it is also one of the best seasons for the whole SE US. You say east coast-why? I suggest BR Pkwy headed south and come back up the Natchez Trace to Nashville TN and head home from there. The east coast is not where the scenery and riding is located-its in the appalachian mtns. Once you cross the Mason-Dixon line , generally speaking the weather will be more likely to be warm. Fact is , once the ice issue is gone anywhere south of you is good weather most of the time.Enjoy!
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Old 03-03-2011, 05:26 PM   #6
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ok, well I like all the advice on weather. It seems a bit safer and warmer the farther south I go and I have definatley been watching it and will continue to before I leave. I guess I am more looking for locations along the same southern line as TN for cool places to visit. I want a fun ride with no real destinations so I was looking for advice on cool way points for a trip.
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Old 03-03-2011, 06:33 PM   #7
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Check out the smoky mountains, blue ridgr pkwy, deals gap, some cool nat forests and parks, Daniel Boone among others.
Army Corp of Engineer Campgrounds are great I suggest looking into finding some in the general vicinity and then creating a route.
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Old 03-03-2011, 10:51 PM   #8
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You're in Chicago.

Follow the rivers.

Lots of hidden gems right along them. Scenery, history, a part of Americana lost on the interstates. Find why Chicago became such an industrial and shipping powerhouse.
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Old 03-04-2011, 07:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uglyprimate View Post
You're in Chicago.

Follow the rivers.

Lots of hidden gems right along them. Scenery, history, a part of Americana lost on the interstates. Find why Chicago became such an industrial and shipping powerhouse.
I like that plan alot!!! :-) I think I am going to look into that route and whats along the way. Any river in particular that I should look at?
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Old 03-04-2011, 11:26 AM   #10
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Ohio & Mississippi come to mind
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:27 PM   #11
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Fox, Chicago or is it called Illinois? They have to connect somewhere to either the Ohio or Miss.

I've hauled freight down near Peoria along the river bank. Really old industrial neighborhoods when stuff was all made from bricks. Out of the flattest land on earth, there are canyons with rivers hidden on the bottom.
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Old 03-05-2011, 05:30 PM   #12
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Mamoth Cave Kentucky

I taken a ride there from Illinois(Geneva/ St charles area) and its very nice from late may to the end of summer. Nice camping and could make it a 2 day trip to get there if they dont want to ride the 450 miles or so there.
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:26 PM   #13
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Find your way to the southernmost part of Illinois. There are several state parks clustered near the Ohio River. I stayed at Garden of the Gods and it's very cool. Then go to the river at Cave in Rock , small river town and another state park. Then catch the FREE ferry over to Kentucky. Turn east and enjoy the rest of your trip.
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:45 PM   #14
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This is what I have so far (PDF with plotted map):

http://www.mediafire.com/?q8lp1oheaqhr25o


I am going to start filling in stops along the way with stuff that has been suggested. I am also looking for more stops along my path so far as I don't really have any.
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Old 03-09-2011, 04:47 PM   #15
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Looks like we are going to shoot for a 40 hour drive along the blue ridge parkway and back.
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