The Goose wants to go to NA

Discussion in 'Americas' started by catweasel67, Feb 2, 2010.

  1. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    12,936
    Location:
    Vienna, Austria
    Me and the Goose in NA

    ok, thanks to input from you guys I've got the following route as a guide.. am listing my route, and updating it, in the hope that if I've missed anything massive one of you will shout. I'd hate to fly back and have someone say "you mean you went to so and so and didn't see thingie!!"

    At time of writing (15th July) I have 8 clear days of contingency. I'm gonna trim that down to leave 5 using the other 3 to shorten days. If I've not used at least 1 of the days by the time I get to New Orleans I'll eat it up there, I'll apply similar discretionay contingency chowing at other key points.

    Route Overview (LINK to map)
    [​IMG]
    • Leg 0 - Vienna to Munich - 14th/15th August - ride up, train back.
    • Leg 1.2 - Toronto to Muskegon (26th August) (LINK to route) gonna hop a late night ferry to Milwaukee. 621km.
    • Leg 2.2 - Milwaukee Ferryport to HD Museum (LINK to route) 5.5km
    • Leg 3.3 - Milwaukee to Lake Miills (LINK to route) -starting to look for new tires now....ideally I'll have them before I get to Boise. 522km
    • Leg 4.3 - Lake Mills to Kadoka (LINK to route) 679km
    • Leg 5.4 - Kadoka to Hardin (LINK to route) 689km
    • Leg 6.2 - Hardin to Yellowstone (LINK to route) 447km
    • Leg 7.2 - Yellowstone to Twin Falls (LINK to route) scrubbing Boise..so Twin Falls (pretty much a random choice) here I come...500km
    • Leg 8.2- Twin Falls to Austin (LINK to route) 580km
    • Leg 9 - Austin to Fremont - The Pacific coast and to see if I can find my heart again (LINK to route) 765km
    • Leg 10 - Fremont to Death Valley (LINK to route) 767km - re-routed through Yosemite.
    • Leg 11 - Death Valley to Grand Canyon (LINK to route) 300km
    • Leg 12 - Grand Canyon to Monument Valley (LINK to route) 524km
    • Leg 13 - Monument Valley to Santa Fe (LINK to route) 597km/7750km
    • Leg 14 - Santa Fe to Roswell - (LINK to route) 325km/8075km
    • Leg 15 - Roswell to San Antonio (LINK to route) 892km = re-routed to via scenery route 84
    • Leg 16 - San Antonio to Baton Rouge (LINK to route) 764km/9709km
    • Leg 17 - Baton Rouge to New Orleans (LINK to route) may stay in http://www.hotelprovincial.com/ recommended from another thread 137km/
    • Leg 18 - New Orleans to Memphis (LINK to route) Gracelands...679km/
    • Leg 19 - Memphis to Nashville (LINK to route) - Gran Ol' Opry? 373km/
    • Leg 20 - Nashville to Birmingham (LINK to route) some motorbike musuem? 355km/
    • Leg 21 - Birmingham to St.Petersburg (LINK to route) a fairly random stopping point on the way to Miami 900km/
    • Leg 22 - St.Petersburg to Miami (LINK to route) 879km/ -modifed to include Key West
    • Leg 23 - Miami to Jesup (LINK to route) (754km/
    • Leg 24 - Jesup to Ashville (LINK to route) 544km/
    • Leg 25 - Ashville to Front Royale (LINK to route) 759km/
    • Leg 26 - Front Royale to New York City (LINK to route) 534km/
    • Leg 27 - New York City to Punxsutawny (LINK to route) 501km/
    • Leg 28 - Punxsutawny to Toronto (LINK to route) 476km
    • Final Leg - return flight to Vienna 1st October (bike flies on the 5th)
    • 9th/10th October - Munich Octoberfest + ride back back to Vienna :)
    Total Mileage is about 16.3k km. It's creeping up quickly from my ceiling of 13k so I may have to cut a few corners at some point.


    My objectives are;
    • Ride USA coast to coast on my 'Goose
    • Check out some musical (rock, country, jazz and blues), historical and natural monuments (in that order of priority)
    • Have a vacation where I can understand the language and read the menu
    • Meet people, drink beer, eat food
    Direct Costs Incurred to date (10th February)
    • €50 for NA maps for Zumo 660 and..gr..another bloody €50 for NA mapsource maps cos I cocked up and Garmin weren't super stars.
    • €10 for 2x large wall maps of NA (so far only used the one but it's come in very handy as a quick reference point)
    • $3700 for bike shipping
    • €1k for flights
    • $750 for 2 months insurance (am going for a month and a week but they only insure in monthly units)
    Packing List (for 6 weeks)

    Bike & Luggage
    • Moto Guzzi Breva 1101
    • Hepco & Becker 30l hard cases
    • MG tank bag
    • 60l North Face "seat bag"
    • Garmin (with loaded routes)
    Camping Gear
    • Tent (Seedhouse SL2)
    • Sleeping Bag
    • Sleeping bag liner
    • Guitar + amp + spare battery
    • Headlamp
    Documents/Currency
    • Passport
    • Bike Insurance
    • Personal Travel Insurance
    • 2 credit cards + ATM card
    • Canadian $200?
    • American $1000?
    • Bike registration document
    Clothes
    • Bike Boots x 1
    • Socks (inc casual socks) x 5
    • Sandals and casual shoes
    • Crash helmet + Leather Jacket/Jeans/gloves/crash helmet liner
    • Keks x 5
    • T-shirts x 5
    • Board Shorts x 1 (doubling as swimming trunks)
    • Cargo pants x 1
    • Cargo shorts x 1
    Health/Hygeine
    • travel towels x 3 (the real tiny ones)
    • Contact lenses x 2
    • Contact lense solution x 1 (hope to buy more on route - the all in one stuff)
    • Glasses x 1
    • Small shower gel (more to be purchased on route)
    • 1 x deoderant (as above)
    • Chapstick
    • Suntan lotion
    • First Aid Kit
    • Sun Glasses
    • Hard case for glasses
    • iPhone
    • ipod
    • Shure earphones
    • Pondering iPad vs netpad..sorely tempted...need storage for pictures + basic edit functions, e-books, websurfing + funk appeal.
    • Post e-copies of passport, insurance, route to my secure cloud
    #1
  2. mark883

    mark883 and the mysterians

    Joined:
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    Your euro ATM card may work, depending what 'network' it cooperates with. Various bank ATMs may support different networks. Example: My STAR card works on PLUS networks. Worked fine in Mexico, works all across the USA at any STAR ATM or other ATM with a PLUS logo. Check the back of your card.

    Credit cards are widely accepted everywhere, except possibly smaller 'mom & pop' operations. But most any national chain will take plastic, even McDonalds if you 'need' a Royale mit Kasse.

    Oh, and based on what I experienced in Germany, a 'continental breakfast' at a hotel here in the USA will grossly disappoint you.

    What bike are you bringing over?
    #2
  3. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
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    my Breva 11, and thanks for the info on cards :) sounds like carrying a couple hundred bucks + plastic should see me through.
    #3
  4. thetourist

    thetourist Just passing thru

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Moscow, Idaho
    Come on over. We even have card pumps and ATM's in Idaho. :lol3 Visa and Mastercard covers most everything.

    Not many responses so I'll offer a couple. Sept is great in the West. Late Sept should be very good for fall colors in the New England States. You are basically starting at the wrong end if the country, and it is a long way across.

    Maybe head west, do the Great Lakes, Chicago, Mt Rushmore, etc. 5-6 days.

    Hit some of the big calling card parks. Glacier, Yellowstone, Yosemite, Death Valley. These are big parks and take a day to visit plus a long day of travel, or more, in between. 10 days.

    Vegas. ? days. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.

    Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, 3 days.

    Now you are in the middle of the country and have a week and a half to get to Toronto.

    A long way to the Alamo, and Colorado is still out there.

    Hit New Orleans then head north thru Dragon country to New England for the fall colors and festivals.

    Hit the Maine coast if possible.

    Ft Meyer in Virginia is splendid for US Military History. Tomb of the Unknown, Pentagon, Arlington Cemetary, Custis-Lee Mansion, the Old Guard and a cavalry unit. All in a close walking distance. Beautifully maintained.

    While crossing the west Great Basin Nat Park and Canyon De Chelly are treats that many pass.

    Hwy 93 is a good route north/south from ID to Vegas. Hwy 50 is good east/west thru UT and NV. I-90 in ID and MT is a good interstate as well as I-15 in MT. 15 is horrible thru Salt Lake City. The whole Utah population lives against 15 in the SLC area. 89 or 89a across south UT. These are a few good traveling roads.

    So many choices. If you narrow it down a bit maybe some more help will come along.

    I hope that helps.
    #4
  5. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    Location:
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    thanks Thetourist, reckon it's time I bought me a big map and sat down in a pub with a few beers. You've given me some great food for thought and have painted a sweet picture for me.

    thanks again. Next step is paper planning.
    #5
  6. Steve Craun

    Steve Craun benridin17yearsmyashurts

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Coeur d'Alene, ID
    4 corners, http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=h&ll=36.994053,-109.044285&spn=0.024268,0.03695&z=15

    Arches NP http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=38.645299,-109.594116&spn=0.379692,0.591202&t=h&z=11

    Zion NP http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=&sll=37.350509,-112.826843&sspn=1.545803,2.364807&ie=UTF8&ll=37.277877,-113.043823&spn=0.193415,0.295601&t=h&z=12

    Glacier NP http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=&sll=37.350509,-112.826843&sspn=1.545803,2.364807&ie=UTF8&ll=48.733776,-113.768234&spn=0.160321,0.295601&t=h&z=12

    The North Cascade HWY http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&source=s_d&saddr=48.654686,-113.48053&daddr=US-2+W%2FUS-95+S+to:WA-20+W+to:WA-20+W+to:US-97+S%2FWA-20+E+to:WA-20+W+to:WA-20+W+to:WA-20+W+to:Mt+Vernon,+Skagit,+Washington&hl=en&geocode=%3BFUT24AIdop0N-Q%3BFUhg5gIdakj_-A%3BFeBG5QId4MTz-A%3BFegF5wId-lPh-A%3BFS834gId3Pzb-A%3BFWw14gId7Fva-A%3BFZRN5AId2hzP-A%3BFWDZ4gIdoVS1-CkZw7J2mUyFVDFF4dlgbFw-gw&mra=dme&mrcr=0&mrsp=0&sz=9&via=1,2,3,4,5,6,7&sll=48.42191,-113.455811&sspn=1.290509,2.364807&ie=UTF8&ll=48.432845,-121.396179&spn=1.290231,2.364807&t=h&z=9

    HWY 101 & HWY one http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&source=s_d&saddr=mt+vernon+wa&daddr=WA-20+W+to:WA-20+E+to:US-101+W+to:Olympic+Hwy%2FUS-101+W+to:US-101+S+to:US-101+S+to:US-101+S+to:US-101+S+to:Oregon+Coast+Hwy%2FUS-101+S+to:Oregon+Coast+Hwy%2FUS-101+S+to:Oregon+Coast+Hwy%2FUS-101+S+to:CA-1+S%2FShoreline+Hwy+to:CA-1+S%2FCoast+Hwy+to:CA-1+S%2FShoreline+Hwy+to:CA-1+S%2FCabrillo+Hwy+S+to:CA-1+S%2FCabrillo+Hwy+to:Diablo+Canyon+Rd%2FPecho+Rd+to:CA-1+S%2FSan+Julian+Rd+to:34.018518,-118.796539+to:Los+Angeles,+California&hl=en&geocode=FWDZ4gIdoVS1-CkZw7J2mUyFVDFF4dlgbFw-gw%3BFYo94AIdSI2v-A%3BFThr3AIdLJet-A%3BFUbk3AIdaE6r-A%3BFQ9o3QIdGYuY-A%3BFbUT1gId6ViW-A%3BFUr1wgIddlCb-A%3BFRpiuAIdINKc-A%3BFVi3rAIddmSb-A%3BFabbowIdCDia-A%3BFU47lwIdYHiY-A%3BFVZ4iQIdngqW-A%3BFaiPVwIdag2f-A%3BFRBVTQIdxGGl-A%3BFdQiQwIdZoiv-A%3BFfw0OQId1EC0-A%3BFTTSKQIdFHi8-A%3BFbYfGQIdqCnM-A%3BFay1DwIdSL_S-A%3B%3BFYqYBwIdm77z-CkT2ifcXcfCgDH0CEYlb98v4g&mra=dpe&mrcr=0&mrsp=19&sz=10&via=1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19&sll=34.004858,-118.869324&sspn=0.806015,1.182404&ie=UTF8&ll=35.638325,-121.077576&spn=0.790188,1.182404&t=h&z=10
    #6
  7. Commuter Boy

    Commuter Boy Long timer

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    3,249
    Location:
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    You may have problems with your credit cards. Most NA credit card networks will classify small fill ups with gas every two - three hours as likely to belong to a stolen card and shut off it's access until the owner can be contacted, which could be hard if you're on the road. The same can occur with regular cash withdrawals every day or two.

    I've tried contacting the card issuers in advance to warn them I'm traveling and regardless eventually the pattern above always trips a lockdown on the card.

    You'll be much better off taking out a couple hundred $$ every 3-4 days or so for gas, food and lodging and save the cards for big ticket items and emergencies.
    #7
  8. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
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    ahh yes, I've had that problem a few times in Europe but it sounds like it's easier to address here, thanks for the warning.
    #8
  9. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
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    ok, thanks to input from you guys I've got the following route as a guide..
    • Toronto (start 1st Sept/finish end Sept)
    • Chigaco (for some pizza) 1000 mile marker - day 2
    • HD Museum (Milwaikee)
    • Rapid City (for Mt.Rushmore) 2000 mile marker - day 4
    • Boise (a mate) 3000 mile marker day 6
    • San Fran (the Pacific coast and to see if I can find my heart again) 3700 miles from start (very ish) day 7
    • Roswell (for some area 51 flying saucer joy) 5000 mile marker day 9
    • San Antonio (Alamo and Davy Crocket, "blind in texas") 5600 miles - day 10
    • Baton Rouge ...
    • New Orleans (for some blues) 6200 mile marker - day 11
    • Memphis (Gracelands) 6600 mile marker - day 12
    • Nashville (line dancin') 6850 mile marker - day 13
    • New York (for the Atlantic and the "coast to coast" thing) 7850 mile marker - day 15
    • Buffalo 8250 miles marker - day 17
    • Toronto 8350 miles - day 18 (18 days of riding that is...not allowing for bad shit and hangovers)
    that's about 13200 KM and I'll have 4 to 5 weeks to do it. It's a lot but it's not daunting and, apart from the exhaust (rorty), my bike's set up for distance.

    My objectives are;
    • Ride USA coast to coast on my 'Goose
    • Check out some musical (rock, country, jazz and blues), historical and natural monuments (in that order of priority)
    • Have a vacation where I can understand the language and read the menu
    • Meet people, drink beer, eat food
    Direct Costs Incurred to date (10th February)
    • €50 for NA maps for Zumo 660 and..gr..another bloody €50 for NA mapsource maps cos I cocked up and Garmin weren't super stars.
    • €10 for 2x large wall maps of NA
    • €15 for Lonely Planet US
    thoughts? any good gigs in September?
    #9
  10. mark883

    mark883 and the mysterians

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    A guzzi... fun!
    Be sure you have her all prepped and perfect, ready to go. Guzzi dealers aren't real common here, especially out west. Maybe see if what support or dealer info the US guzzi owners group may offer. You don't want to be stuck in nowhere Kansas, at a Harley dealer, with the mechanic saying "well, the first thing we need to do is turn the engine the correct way"

    You might want to hit the rock n roll hall of fame in Cleveland OH.

    Regarding Chicago. The traffic sucks. Particulary sucky is the Illinois Toll Road, I-80 west. This is a 'stop every 5-8 miles pay toll' type toll road, if you don't have an EZpass transponder. Yes, it can be ridden, and I've done it, but... it aint' fun.

    If you run thru NW Ohio, Interstate 80 / 90, stop by. I can show you the boredom that is my corner of the world. Also, I live within 7 miles of a guzzi dealer if you need one. I hope you don't!

    Chicago would possibly be a good place to see a music show however- many venues. Try livenation.com for tickets at shows around the country. There are various outdoor venues around the country if you want to see a big show. If you're hitting New Orleans and Nashville, you'll definitely find plenty of music in those places.
    #10
  11. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    is it gonna be worth buying a transponder thingie? I'll be in the US for a month and riding a fair amount of slab, espcially headed west but I won't be doubling back on myself. Am wondering if this is something I need to plan for.

    good idea re: Guzzi group, already done :) I was a member there before here..wildguzzi ftw :p I have yet to earn my red suspenders though..maybe this trip will make me worthy
    #11
  12. mark883

    mark883 and the mysterians

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    Here's the easy link where it works, by wikipedia

    EZPass

    Basically, New York Thruway (I-90) and I-80/90 thru Ohio, Indiana and Illinois are where you'd use it. I'd say you dont really need it in Ohio and Indiana, since you only pay when you exit. Illinois is stop&pay, Stop&pay, Stop&pay. I don't remember how NY works. However, in Ohio and Indiana, you will save half on your toll. I can't really say that it would help much outside of Illinois, other than paying tolls on a bike is a PITA. The issuing states want to link them to a credit card, and they precharge you, so you may get stuck with a balance on the EZPASS they won't refund.

    There aren't may tollroads out west to worry about. I think maybe Texas and Kansas have one. I rode Kansas, not a big deal to pay. Rather sleep inducing. I'd recommend a US highway or state route instead.
    #12
  13. viajero

    viajero Too old to be a nOOb

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    Enjoy your travels. Looks like a lot to accomplish in short order, but doable.

    Were I doing it, I'd skip Graceland (imo, major tourist trap) in Memphis and go downtown to Beale St. and hear some good blues. And of course eat some bbq ribs.
    #13
  14. Uglyprimate

    Uglyprimate UglyPirate

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    NOT HARDLY.

    There is ONE toll booth around Chicago on I-80. ONE. There are no tolls on I-94 going through the city until it rejoins on the north side with I-294 and when I-90 splinters off.

    If going into the city proper, Lake Avenue is better for scenery and zero trucks (the low overpasses prevent them)

    41 north can prevent the northern toll sections of I-94.


    Plenty of alternate routes across the midwest to avoid the toll roads.

    Routes 2 and 30 across Ohio are interstate as well for a good part with the same speed limits.

    The Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Sedona are places to not miss.

    Baton Rouge? Graceland? On purpose?

    Punxatawney is a cool town with fantastic roads leading in every direction. Watch for deer.

    Niagra Falls will be basically on your way from Toronto, but it would be easier to head west first towards Detroit and save Pennsylvania for the return leg. From Toronto, you have to go around the lake first. Cross the border at Sarnia and run through central Michigan if you go that way. Avoid Detroit and the Windsor area like a plague.
    #14
  15. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    umm...Baton Rouge..well....mainly cos I like the Garth Brooks song "Baton Rouge" (I have very little shame)...it's one of the songs that got me interested in Country, I'd, thinking it's gonna be a ride through (as are most of my waypoints) more than a stop over. TBH the only time I'm gonna stop for more than half an hour (ish) is for lunch and dinner. I ride to ..ride...not to get anywhere (my GF hates me for that).

    As for Gracelands...Elvis...am I missing something? Has it moved or do you just not like the King? I'm not a massive fan but I can't ride all the way and not see Gracelands eh?
    #15
  16. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    bumping a tad to solicit a sanity check against the planned route, mainly the order and, once again, if you guys spot something I've missed, a great bar or another Grand Canyon/Monument Valley/Bike Fest, please let me know
    #16
  17. Sjoerd Bakker

    Sjoerd Bakker Long timer

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    Having done many similar loops of Canada and the USA from a startpoint an hour west of Toronto I can concede that you could do it in 18 days - BUT--- you will not have very much time for visiting at any length in all the locations and with the friends you mention. Your estimate of 500mile days on many days is really going to wear on you.(Best stay off the booze at all times if you want to keep that pace.) Your distance estimate is close but seems a little short, I usually have wound up with something more than 14000km each trip, but then I did wander around. The fastest I ever managed from the Toronto area to the California border at Reno NV was 4 days of hard riding on mostly interstates and that was just to see how it was to travel that quickly and to visit the Motorcycle Grand Prix at LAguna Seca back in the '80s.
    Are you sure you can't get an extra week or two so you can do it at enjoyable pace?
    Another point to ponder is your start date. September can be a real mixed up bag of weather from nice warm sunny late summer -like to miserable cold rain on the high plains and the high passes of the Rockies.Luck of the draw there. If you could move the trip forward a month it might be better all over for riding.
    #17
  18. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    I'm using all of September. My estimage of 18 days is max balls out riding every day so I have the extra time built in. Point taken about the weather but i'm commited to September.

    Agreed also by my milage estimate, it's been a while since I updated that but have now fixed it (current route..which will change is 12,800km).

    What I'm really looking for at this time is suggestions and ideas of things that I might otherwise miss on my jouney around. From reading another RR I've added Monument Valley for example. In another a museum in Birmingham (still trying to work out the best route for that). So it's things like that.

    Keep the feedback coming, it's all welcome and it's all helpful :)
    #18
  19. thetourist

    thetourist Just passing thru

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Going by the map, your route from SLC to Boise to Reno is "oh, so boring". I mean really unscenic straight line freeway riding. Everything will be dry with little color.

    Ideally I would advise (from SLC) going to Bear Lake, then up to Salmon and back to Boise. Your schedule doesn't allow much deviation.

    So, Maybe head straight north on I-15 to Blackfoot.

    NW on 26 to Arco. This is a nice ride in the evening. Sagebrush desert past Atomic City. Site of Nuke #1. Who knows what kind of giant ants and spiders are lurking out there. Eat at Pickles and stay at KD's in Arco.

    If you have time take hwy 93 to Challis then west on 75 and 21 to Boise. This is one of the best rides in the Northwest.

    If time is short, head west, on 93, from Arco, past Crater of the Moon, to hwy 20 to Boise.

    If all that is too much, from SLC head west on 50 and north on 93. When 93 divides bear left. That will get you closer to Boise.

    After your meet up...From Boise, east on I-84 (you are actually going south quite a bit) to Mt Home, then south on 51 to Elko on I-80.

    west a couple miles to Carlin NV and south on 278 to Hwy 50. Now head west to Reno. Eureka has a nice motel. Austin is interesting.

    These two lane roads are fast, mostly empty and sagebrush high desert cattle land. 50 is labeled the "Loneliest Road in America", and it is one of the busier roads out here. It follows the Pony Express and Stagecoach routes. Watch your gas out here.

    Another option would be...from SLC, west on 50 and north at Eureka to Boise. Then west on I-84 to Baker City, OR and south to John Day then south on 395 to Reno. A very nice ride. Dense forests, cattle lands, and a section of serious desert. Stop at Seneca and visit the bobcat.
    #19
  20. catweasel67

    catweasel67 RD04

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    Location:
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    thanks Thetourise...I'll check out those suggestions and see how they impact the milage. I reckon I have loads of slack at present but my current plan is to spend as much spare time as I have down south...Alabama, Louisiana, Mississsississippiphiippy etc. That said, Atomic City sounds like a must go place :) and is practically on my route..well..it is now :)

    I've changed the route now to the 20 (highway?) from Atomic City to Mountain Home and then up the i84 to Boise. At some point I'm gonna have to re-estimate my days :) but for now, if I said 6 days from Toronto to Boise what your reaction be?

    I'm not a stop and see places type of guy btw, unless it's the evening. I'd much rather ride than walk :) with a few exceptions.
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