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Old 02-22-2013, 07:21 AM   #16
markbvt
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I've done quite a bit of riding in Newfoundland and the Maritimes. I don't mean to put a damper on your plans... but the way you've got the route currently set up, you're missing all the good stuff.

With only 12 days for the trip, I would strongly recommend you leave Newfoundland for another trip when you have more time. Concentrate on Nova Scotia, Cape Breton, and maybe the Gaspé Peninsula instead.

Newfoundland really deserves four or five days on its own, and the way you currently have the route set up, along Highway 1, you'll just end up with a boring ride through the least interesting countryside that Newfoundland has to offer. There's absolutely no point in spending the $300 on ferries to get over there and back if you're just going to ride the highway.

And in your haste to do the whole thing, you're also missing the best parts of Cape Breton and Nova Scotia. And what's more, the daily mileages you've got planned are a bit unrealistic unless you want to be setting up camp in the dark every night. Most of these roads (unless you really do stick to the slab the whole trip) will have you averaging a very moderate pace, so 300-350 mile days are a lot more realistic if you want enough time to be able to stop every once in a while to take in the sights or have a good meal, and also set up camp before it gets dark out.

Check out my ride reports of the region for route suggestions (link is in my sig, below). The last ride report linked, my most recent Labrador/Newfoundland one, has lots of Newfoundland info. The other Labrador/Newfoundland ones do too, but concentrated on the western side of Newfoundland. They all have info on the Maritimes too; and you'll also want to check out my Maritimes and St Lawrence ride reports.

My suggestion would be to concentrate on New England and the Maritimes on this trip, then do a Newfoundland-focused one in the future when you have a little more time. This way you'll have the time to actually take in the areas you're riding through, and enjoy the good roads instead of the highways.

--mark

EDIT: Seems the server hosting the file containing all the RR links, and also all the images for my RRs, is down at the moment -- power outage where it's hosted -- but it should be back up soon. So if you click on the link and nothing happens, that's why. Try again in a bit.
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markbvt screwed with this post 02-22-2013 at 07:38 AM
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Old 02-22-2013, 07:26 AM   #17
568V8
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in Newfoundland ....

... you will freeze your rain soaked arse in June. Travelling that far in such a short period of time your won't have time to see anything in detail. I've ridden completely around the Gulf of St Lawrence, and spent 12 days just on the Rock in 2011 and am going back this summer for an longer period.
I'd suggest that you slow down and smell the roses and skip Newfoundland until you have more time. It's an awesome place.
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Old 02-22-2013, 07:28 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Grinnin View Post
In June you can usually find warmer riding and camping by going inland or cooler riding and camping right at the coast. Sometimes it takes 5 miles or sometimes it's 20, but inland can be noticeably warmer.

For these coastal areas September temperatures are equal to or warmer than June temperatures. September is, in fact a wonderful month for a trip like yours (or for others reading this thread and doing their own planning).
Hmm... thanks for the heads up! One of the reasons why I didn't want to ride in Sept is due to potential hurricanes (granted, they may not be as strong as in the south, but I'm trying to minimize riding in the rain). Since I cannot do July-August, I thought June might be a better option though it will be cooler (colder) than Sept which I think would be OK for riding, but probably will suck for camping. I will have to consider Sept...

Based on the schedule, the ferry for Argentia leaves at 17:00h (planning to check in at 16h) so all things equal, I would probably opt for option A in my original schedule (I planned Options A or B - Days 4-6 - to accommodate the ferry from St. John to Digby since that schedule has not yet been released). If I do option A, I would be able to ride Cabot Trail on day 6 (6A on my plan) and still catch the ferry at 16h (Google says around 5hrs around the island and I would camp near Sydney so that should give us plenty of time to deviate from the trail if needed be).

Looks like it's going to be a fun weekend :)

PS - Let me know when you're going to be in OH and/or if you're passing through Cleveland... gotta check with the wife, but me casa su casa
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Old 02-22-2013, 07:57 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by markbvt View Post
Check out my ride reports of the region for route suggestions (link is in my sig, below). The last ride report linked, my most recent Labrador/Newfoundland one, has lots of Newfoundland info. The other Labrador/Newfoundland ones do too, but concentrated on the western side of Newfoundland. They all have info on the Maritimes too; and you'll also want to check out my Maritimes and St Lawrence ride reports.

My suggestion would be to concentrate on New England and the Maritimes on this trip, then do a Newfoundland-focused one in the future when you have a little more time. This way you'll have the time to actually take in the areas you're riding through, and enjoy the good roads instead of the highways.

--mark
Mark, I'm not able to open the link in your sig? Not sure if it's b/c I'm work, but I tried in IE and FireFox and no luck...

I agree that this is quite an aggressive trip, but the focus is sort of two-fold: ride to the unknown (for me) on a bike and see what it can be seen in the short amount of time. I also agree that I will probably not be able to see the best each location has to offer, but again, given the time frame I have available, I don't think I would be able to do it anyway (i.e., see all the good stuff) -- am I wrong for thinking that?

Here's my rationale: I love to travel. The best thing about traveling for me is A) I get to see the world, B) learn about different cultures, and C) learn something about myself (become a well-rounded individual with an open mind). So what has worked in the past was to spend a short time in different places (due to limited time/money) and those that make an impact on me I make a promise to myself that I will come back and visit that place again and spend more time exploring that one location.

For example, my biggest passion (even bigger than motorcycles ) is scuba divining. I was (and still am) fortunate enough where I had a chance to dive all over the world, but one place that made an impact on me was Roatan, Honduras. Nothing special about the place itself, but the people and the memories of that place left a lasting impression on me that once I got married (1.5yr ago) I took my wife to that same place for a couple of days (unfortunately she does not dive or enjoy riding, but it was a blast nonetheless). On the other hand, there are places I been to that I can say "Yes, I've been there," but IMHO I would not regret it if I never went back.

So this is something I hope to achieve through this trip as well: see and learn something new and re-visit this place again with my wife (but that time it will be in a car)...



Sorry for rambling...
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:07 AM   #20
markbvt
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Originally Posted by Cerberus83 View Post
Mark, I'm not able to open the link in your sig? Not sure if it's b/c I'm work, but I tried in IE and FireFox and no luck...
See my edit -- the hosting server is down temporarily. Try again in a bit -- seems to be a power outage where the server is located.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerberus83 View Post
I agree that this is quite an aggressive trip, but the focus is sort of two-fold: ride to the unknown (for me) on a bike and see what it can be seen in the short amount of time. I also agree that I will probably not be able to see the best each location has to offer, but again, given the time frame I have available, I don't think I would be able to do it anyway (i.e., see all the good stuff) -- am I wrong for thinking that?
Obviously it's a matter of opinion... but yes, I think that's the wrong way to look at it. What's the point of rushing through without being able to enjoy the good roads and the scenery you're riding through? Is it just to tick off boxes and be able to say you've been there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerberus83 View Post
So this is something I hope to achieve through this trip as well: see and learn something new and re-visit this place again with my wife (but that time it will be in a car)...
But if you're just rushing through on the highway, you won't be able to achieve any of those things you want to.

You can make this an amazing, unforgettable trip -- but in order to do that, you need to slow down a little and focus on a scope that's more realistic, rather than trying to cram it all into too little time. Trust me, you'll get a hell of a lot more out of it.

--mark
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Old 02-22-2013, 02:53 PM   #21
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I have never been to Ohio and if i blew through in one morning on the freeway only stopping for gas did i REALLY visit???
Newfoundland is the most unique place you will ever see geographicly and you will not see it.
It has a culture that is over 500 years in the making and a people that speak english but you will need an interpreter to understand it. But you will not hear it.
It has a total different pace of life than the US of A but you are bringing your pace with you so you will not experience it.

Your loss.
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Old 02-22-2013, 06:37 PM   #22
Cerberus83 OP
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In process of modifying my trip...

Quick question on Nova Scotia - is it worth it riding along the western - southwestern coast from Digby to Halifax? If not, I may take that part out and spend more time near North Sydney / Cape Breton area instead.

As of right now, the plan is to do a straight shot from Cleveland to Portsmouth, NH (highway) in a day. Day 2 probably take 95/295 to Brunswick and ride along the cost to St. John, NB... pretty much the same plan as the original, but take day 3 out of the original plan and add it to Nova Scotia instead. Given that only one ferry goes to Argentia (on 6/21) I may still do this, but when I do arrive in NL, ride around the Avalon peninsula into St. John's (roughly 6 hours). Depending on how this plan folds out, I would ride out across 1 west, but camp near Gros Morne (if possible, haven't researched it yet). This way, I would gain an additional day, ride around GM then head south into Rose Blanche and catch 23:30 ferry back. Hopefully I will be able to add additional day to NL...

Again, still working on this

Stay tuned and thanks for all of your help!
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Old 02-22-2013, 06:39 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by damurph View Post
I have never been to Ohio and if i blew through in one morning on the freeway only stopping for gas did i REALLY visit???
Stop right there... you're not missing much

Kidding! Point taken...
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Old 02-22-2013, 07:34 PM   #24
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Lots of good advice already given about wiser ways to spend the time. I was hoping for NF on my Maritime Meander (link in sig line), but couldn't fit it in given the time I had and I have no regrets. I will get there soon enough with a generous time allotment.

One comment about your camping intentions.
Do a couple of overnights before the trip. Even if it's only a half hour ride away from home. It take's time to set up and break down your camp and several iterations to develop a routine that works and an understanding of what you need, what you'd like, and what you can do without. Much better to learn that before you hit the road for two weeks.

Cheers,
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:51 AM   #25
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Rose Blanche is an excellent choice before you board the ferry. Sport touring heaven.
As for the Avalon i will give you a tip. If the wind is off the water here it is apt to be cool and foggy. Not an issue because if the wind is blowing on the southern after you get off the boat....go do the loop to the North. Grates Cove on the northern tip will be bathed in sunshine.
Fog looks like fog wherever you ride.
On a cultural note you also need to understand that stopping and talking to complete strangers is the norm here. You can spend an hour shooting the shit on any wharf and the seniors here carry a history lesson that a book will not give you. It is perfectly ok to ride into a fellows yard and he will stop whatever he is doing to answer your queries about his little community. It will take awhile for you to understand how this works but being shy will be a detriment to your experience.
And you will be called a CFA. (Come From Away). It is not derogatory just that there are people from here and then there are those from the rest of the world.

My personal preference in Nova Scotia would be the Cape Breton ride as opposed to the south shore.
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:01 AM   #26
Canuman
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Originally Posted by damurph View Post
My personal preference in Nova Scotia would be the Cape Breton ride as opposed to the south shore.
+1 on that. The South Shore is pleasant. Cape Breton is mind-boggling.

You need to understand the Canadian philosophy on roads before embarking on a trip of this nature. The primary highways are constructed to get traffic from point A to point B as efficiently as possible. While there are scenic portions, that is not their intent. 101 and 103 in Nova Scotia can fall into the "extraordinarily dull" category.

The things you want to see are on the local and secondary roads.

Maratimers are very friendly. Canadians are sociable generally, but the island folk will stop in the middle of the street to be friendly. This can eat up a lot of time, as you get into hour-long conversations while pumping gas, as damurph correctly noted.
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Old 02-24-2013, 03:30 PM   #27
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Round 2

I did some modifications to the plan and since I kept mileage and times a bit more realistic, I had to add another day to the trip. However, I doubt this will happen if I end up riding with my buddy due to prior commitments.

Here is the updated plan:


Detail of ME route


DAY.........DATE...........MILES...ACTIVITY
DAY 01.....6/15/2013.....710.....Cleveland, OH to York, ME (Portsmouth)
DAY 02.....6/16/2013.....331.....York, ME to Bar Harbor, ME
DAY 03.....6/17/2013.....210.....Bar Harbor, Me to Lubec, ME
DAY 04.....6/18/2013.....170.....Lubec, ME to Kentville, NS (inlcuding 3hr ferry ride)
DAY 05.....6/19/2013.....312.....Kentville, NS to North Sydney, NS
DAY 06.....6/20/2013.....260.....North Sydney, NS to Cape Breton, NS (northern peninsula including Meat Cove)
DAY 07.....6/21/2013.....200.....North Sydney, NS to Cape Breton, NS (southern peninsula) - catch ferry to Argentia, NL at 16h
DAY 08.....6/22/2013.....235.....Argentia, NL to St. John's (via southern Avalon peninsula)
DAY 09.....6/23/2013.....235.....St. John's, NL area (Northern Bay / Grates Cove)
DAY 10.....6/24/2013.....437.....St. John's, NL to Gros Morne, NL
DAY 11.....6/25/2013.....370.....Gros Morne, NL to Daniel's Harbor then south to Rose Blanche and back to the PAB (ferry to NS at 23:30)
DAY 12.....6/26/2013.....404.....North Sydney to Fredericton, NB (camp)
DAY 13.....6/27/2013.....396.....Fredericton, NB to Oquossoc, ME (camp)
DAY 14.....6/28/2013.....526.....Oquossoc, ME to Utica, NY
DAY 15.....6/29/2013.....507.....Utica, NY to Cleveland, OH

Since I don’t think this will be possible (we have to be back by 6/28), I was thinking about the follow two options:

OPTION #1
Stick with eastern NL (St. John’s area) and ride straight to PAB. Since Rose Blanche is about 1.5hrs (round trip) from PAB, potentially ride out there at dusk and catch the ferry at 23:30.

OPTION #2
Remove day 8 or day 9 and add it to day 11 instead. In other words, only ride southern or northern peninsula upon arrival to NL (day 8 at St. John’s). The following day, ride out to Grose Morne and camp here and in the morning, ride as planned per day 11. Day 11 would turn into day 10 and I would be able make the 6/28 deadline.

So if you had to pick between option 1 and 2, which one would you go with? Any suggestions? Yes, I'm not going to see everything, but as already discussed, unfortunately I do not have 2-3 weeks to spend on each location (that would be nice, indeed).

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Old 02-24-2013, 03:39 PM   #28
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Rose Blanche is an excellent choice before you board the ferry. Sport touring heaven.
As for the Avalon i will give you a tip. If the wind is off the water here it is apt to be cool and foggy. Not an issue because if the wind is blowing on the southern after you get off the boat....go do the loop to the North. Grates Cove on the northern tip will be bathed in sunshine.
Fog looks like fog wherever you ride.
Thans damurph! Given the allocated time for this trip, I will make adjustments to my trip based on the weather (days 8-11 in the updated plan).

Also, if there are delays to Argentia, I think I may catch the ferry up to PAB and just ride that side of the coast.
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Old 02-24-2013, 03:56 PM   #29
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Great trip idea, but I would recommend listening to the advice of fellow inmates. Do ether Western or Eastern Newfoundland, or don’t do it and spend your time explore ng Nova Scotia. I am planning similar trip from Boston to Newfoundland, initially we wanted to do the whole island, but then we realized that we won’t be able to cover everything and we decided to cover just western part by riding Vikings Trail and hiking in Gros Morne. Of course this is your trip, but I would recommend not stretching your trip so much.
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Old 02-24-2013, 05:39 PM   #30
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If you do ride the west coast of the island then the Tablelands on the road to Trout River in Gros Morne Park will blow your mind. Green valley on one side of the road and the planet Mars on the other side.
Google earth pics will give you a taste but to ride through it is awesome.
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