Kansas and Nebraska Routes

Discussion in 'Central – From Da Nort Woods to the Plane States' started by Tlaloc, Nov 11, 2017.

  1. Tlaloc

    Tlaloc Un Tigre del Norte

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    I'm planning my first cross-continental trip for April 2018. I'm very familiar with the West but will cross some parts of the country where I've never ridden. I have a plan for Olympia, WA to Colorado (Denver and perhaps Cañon City). From there I will go to the Madison, WI area. I'll cross Kansas and/or Nebraska. I've never ridden in these states and am looking for interesting routes. I'll ride paved roads and avoid interstates as much as possible.

    Any route suggestions for these two states?

    Thanks.
    #1
  2. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    Ride the interstates as fast as you can so you'll have more time to spend in areas with better riding. It's almost all flat and straight with corn fields for scenery. Cool at first if you've never seen this area of the country, but it gets boring quickly, and it's just not good riding.
    #2
  3. Charleetho

    Charleetho Mr. Zoom Zoom

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    US34 across Nebraska is more interesting then I80 and doesn't add much time.
    #3
  4. sporthog93

    sporthog93 Sporthog93

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    the flint hills in Kansas are scenic, a 2 lane route across northern Nebraska isn't horrible.
    #4
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  5. NorskieRider

    NorskieRider Been here awhile

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    I second this - Hwy 12 in the east and Hwy 20 in the west are so much better than battling trucks and high speeds on I-80.
    #5
  6. Charleetho

    Charleetho Mr. Zoom Zoom

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    #6
  7. Tlaloc

    Tlaloc Un Tigre del Norte

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    Thanks to all for the great suggestions. I have ridden US 30 many times between Portland and Astoria (its terminus). East of Portland it’s combined with Interstate 84 for most of the rest of the State until Idaho. As interstates go, 84 isn’t bad. Goes through the Columbia River Gorge, Blue Mountains.
    #7
  8. Tmaximusv

    Tmaximusv Long timer

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    I'll second the US 20 across northern NE - See a lot of interesting geography and geology and get to ride natural roller coasters. Sadly, the corn around most of it is unremarkable, but good for contemplation as the number of other vehicles you will meet may leave you with digits unused for counting.
    #8
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  9. Klay

    Klay Long timer

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    Actually, I regard Kansas and Nebraska as a riding destination, rather than as an area to transit. If you ride the interstates as fast as you can, it's just flat and straight with nothing but cornfields. It's quite interesting if you stay off the interstates.
    #9
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  10. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    I've ridden both, and I just don't see the draw... But different strokes for different folks.
    #10
  11. ajayhawkfan

    ajayhawkfan Rock Chalk

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    A couple pictures from my last trip though KS:

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    That is a you problem if you can find good riding and scenery as you go through Kansas.
    #11
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  12. riggpigg

    riggpigg Known,but not famous

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    We have several motorcycle museums in Kansas, in the NW corner, St Francis Motorcycle Museum in St. Francis Ks. In Marquette Ks, there is the Marquette Motorcycle Museum, In Augusta Ks there is the Twisted Oz museum and in Topeka at Historic Harley Davidson there is an entire wing dedicated to Evel Knevel, I mean, if you're into motorcycles you'll see a lot of examples of surprising rarity as well as quality. There is a thread on the Center to Center Solstice run from Lebanon Ks, to North Dakota. The center of the US is in Lebanon Ks. not much there but it is the center. Oh, and don't forget the big ball of twine in Cawker City, Ks. !!:rofl Theres quite a bit to see here, but none of it is famous, just gotta search it out a bit. PM me, Ill give you some ideas.
    #12
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  13. riggpigg

    riggpigg Known,but not famous

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    Hey max, if this area sucks so bad for you, why are you hanging around this thread ??
    #13
  14. Renaissanceman

    Renaissanceman DON'T PANIC!

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    Grew up in Lincoln - been all over both States. Lots of trips from Colorado via NM and southern KS to the fllint hills. It'll be prime time for the prairie in April. Can't beat the wide open views of NE - love the ride along the Niobrara.

    Enjoy! Send pictures
    #14
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  15. Fescue

    Fescue Been here awhile

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    Western Nebraska around Scottsbluff is pleasant.
    #15
  16. Creekside

    Creekside Been here awhile

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    Besides ajayhawk's great pics...

    you got the Glacial Loess "Sante Fe Trail" north of Troy KS-Wathena to NE area, with alot of min maintenance roads...just make sure it's dry if you go on dirt roads (gravel is fine wet) up there. Very scenic hills with deeply dug hills.

    North Flint Hills (Alma KS, see Sky Line Rd easy gravel very scenic) you can spend days riding the high plains stuff like Highway 4/99 into Topeka (native stone route), Tallgrass Prairie NP area south of Council Grove, Manhattan area too.

    I'd come in 36 from Denver and go south to hit those places Ajayhawkfan posted and then into Alma, 4/99 to Topeka (or Skyline), up 24/92 into Leavenworth, River Rd to Atchison (or 73), Monument Rd to Athena (or 73), hit the glacial loss/ Sante Fe trails up north of that and then into NE on 7 and then cross at Rulo into the low water areas of the MO and head north to WI.

    There is alot of great riding tracks if you like a mix of pavement, gravel and dirt dual sport type stuff in these states.
    #16
  17. Tanshanomi

    Tanshanomi Your Favorite Uncle

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    I have to mention KS 177. It's a great way to see the Flint Hills, and it connects I-35 to I-70, though you should jump on KS 4 to Topeka if you're headed north and east. One of my favorite Kansas rides.

    EDIT: And thanks to riggpigg for the Smackdab love.

    EDIT #2: Added a Google Maps screen grab of the route.

    KS177-KS4.jpeg
    #17
  18. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Super Moderator

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    The Pony Express trail can be interesting to some. Maybe you'll find something useful there. Looks like there are a lot of great opportunities mentioned here.
    #18
  19. sporthog93

    sporthog93 Sporthog93

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    Kansas is on my destination list this summer. Cowley county and the stone bridges looks like a destination. More pictures please!!!
    #19
  20. ajayhawkfan

    ajayhawkfan Rock Chalk

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    There are stone bridges all over Kansas backroads.
    #20