12-day Xmas break. FJR from Orlando to Tucson & back. Ideas?

Discussion in 'Americas' started by superkram, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. superkram

    superkram Church parking lot rider

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    170
    Location:
    Central FL
    UPDATE 11/30/12:
    Wow! I now have 15 days off from December 21st to January 6th. Will be able to spend a bit more time exploring the roads between Tucson & Austin.

    Hell, I might even make a 3-day run into Los Angeles and back to see an old friend before starting the eastern route home.


    <original post below>
    Hello all,

    Will have 12 consecutive days off work from December 21 to January 1st, I'd like to ride from Orlando, FL to spend Xmas in Tucson, AZ with a close friend & his family. Are there any route suggestions or tips others can offer here?

    My bike is a 2006 FJR I've had since summer. I've done two 10-day 4K trips between Florida to St. Louis & back (one on the FJR) using different routes through Tennessee, Arkansas, OK, Texas, and Louisiana. I've ridden in 35F to 110F weather (on different trips) and was stupid enough to ride through part of a Gulf tropical storm into New Orleans like a drowned rat on my previous Wee-Strom.

    I'm thinking of making the trip west in 4 days and using the remaining 8 days for a slower return trip with flexibility for weather, sights, and the inevitable unexpected. This would mean I-10 for most of the westbound trip, with overnight stops with friends in Baton Rouge and Austin, a motel someplace in far western Texas, and arriving in Tucson at the end of the 4th day or mid-way through the 5th day on Xmas. I-10 can be boring (FL panhandle gahhh) but seems to be the safest route weather-wise during then.

    On the way back, I'd like to try some curvier roads through AZ, NM, and TX. I would like to spend New Year's Eve among friends in Austin, and use the same I-10 route to high-tail it back to FL on the slab. Ideas? Suggestions? I might be able to stretch this to 14 days by taking Dec 20th and January 2nd off from work.

    Thanks!
    #1
  2. swimmer

    swimmer armchair asshole

    Joined:
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    Location:
    tucson, AZ, It's a dry hate.
    I would only offer the advice to not underestimate how cold it might get through NM and into AZ if there happens to be a cold front come through. Be prepared for riding in temps as low as the upper 20's F.
    #2
  3. superkram

    superkram Church parking lot rider

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Central FL
    For the return trip to FL, does anyone have good west-to-east suggestions for Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas?
    #3
  4. buls4evr

    buls4evr No Marks....

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    Yup. Out of AZ take 191 from Safford to Guthrie. In Guthrie take AZ/NM 78 to US180 in NM. Go into Silver City on 180 ,then take NM152 East to Caballo LK. Follow the I-25 access rd (187/185)South through Arrey then in Las Cruces take US70 East to Alamogordo. In Alamogordo go to the East and South (Cloudcroft, Artesia, Carlsbad line if weather allows), then out to Texas. Shoot for the Austin area in TX. This will give you a lot of twisties and still keep you basically ice free unless you get some freak weather. Watch shadowed areas in the canyons this time of year as they could be a little icy. You should get 50-60 degree weather during the day. Suggest you not ride near dark or early AM due to ice. Enjoy your trip.Layer up on clothing............
    #4
  5. No False Enthusiasm

    No False Enthusiasm a quiet adventurer

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    If you have the time, here's a route that hits three favorite paved moto roads in Texas: http://goo.gl/maps/Mrr03

    1. Texas 118 from IH-10 at Kent to Fort Davis.

    2. River Road (FM 170) from Presidio to Big Bend Nation Park

    3. Ranch Road 337 from Camp Wood to Medina.

    It keeps you out of some of the San Antonio congestion...

    Short cuts would be to delete #2 by riding direct from Fort Davis to Marathon or deleting #3 by riding Hwy 90 straight east from Uvalde through Castroville and on through San Antonio to link with IH-10.

    NFE
    #5
  6. superkram

    superkram Church parking lot rider

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    170
    Location:
    Central FL
    Many many thanks to NFE and Buls4evr! This is exactly the kind of riding I'm looking for my return trip between Tucson & Austin.

    Have always wanted to visit Carlsbad Caverns and Big Bend Park. :D
    #6
  7. buls4evr

    buls4evr No Marks....

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    You do realize how big Texas is right? To go to Big Bend from the line I was suggesting would be at least a couple extra days! Do not underestimate the size of TX.... It is huge.Have fun supercram.
    #7
  8. No False Enthusiasm

    No False Enthusiasm a quiet adventurer

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    buls4ever makes a good point:

    My suggested route is 21 hours, 22 minutes to cover 1,157 miles. Avg: 54 MPH.

    The fasted route is 13 hours, 12 minutes to cover 753 miles. Avg: 57 MPH.

    The scenic route from Carlsbad to Orange adds about 8 hours, but its worth it to ride these roads (IMO).

    NFE
    #8
  9. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    +1

    #9