Upcoming Trip, NC, SC, GA, and FL roads and camping tips

Discussion in 'Southeast, The Lair of the Dragon - The Blue Ridge' started by ridetwistyroads, Dec 5, 2004.

  1. HarveyMushman

    HarveyMushman Tire Squarerer

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    I understand the urge to plan. I just don't do it very well. :D Don't sweat it, you'll be fine.

    I covered some of the same ground in
    October of '03. If the weather cooperates you'll have a fun trip. :nod
    #21
  2. rboett

    rboett posser noob 205

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    Hi,

    Don't beat yourself up. If you are like me, I very much look forward to my time on my GS and need to maximize the experience since I don't get to ride as much as I would like. Keep planning. Getting a good ride in Florida depends on it. If you blindly start going down even back roads, you may end up in a major population center or tourist area, both equal many traffic lights, and traffic. Traffic this time of the year goes up in some areas by over 50%. That sucks. and the planning part really extends the experience into your "normal" life. Thats a good thing.

    I live in tampa, work in ft. Myers, and in my last job I spent a lot of time on the roads between tallahasse, gainsville, Tampa, Sarasota, west of Orlando, and down to Ft. Meyers so I can speak to these areas.

    If you don't mind not riding along the ocean (you can hit the beach in Sarasota) A basic strategy would be to try to go through the middle of Florida west of Orlando, well east of Tampa. Inland FLorida is mostly cows and, long straight two lanes. If you have a good map, pick any "three number" routes that avoid population centers is an idea. Then once past Tampa start heading west to Sarasota.

    North and east of Tampa I would check out the Ocala national forest Get on mapquest and try to connect "the green" which are lots of national and state parks. I'm often amazed at how undeveloped the interior of FL is (Orlando excepted).

    Let me know here or PM me, where you will be entering FL and we can discuss. Also here is a good camping link http://www.floridastateparks.org/
    #22
  3. jktpa

    jktpa X-Troller

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    If your coming south from the Gainsville Ga. or Cleveland Ga. area a not to bad ride is 53 south by Road Atlanta to 11 at Winder then South through Monticello Ga. then I think its 73 to Forsythe Ga. cross west of 75 go toward Thomaston Ga. pick up 19 South and come down the west coast of Fl. You will see some old Florida and if you have time check out Stiehatchie (sp) or Cedar Key DO NOT GO south of 98 on US19 or you will get into the worst stop and go road in Florida. You can take 98 to the Veterans expressway and pick up 275 at Tampa and then across the sunshine skyway bridge to 75 then Sarasota or 98 to 301 or 41 South toward Sarasota. I'm writing this away from my maps if you want me to double check the highway numbers let me know. Places to avoid I75, I95, Orlando, Clearwater,US19 South of 98 until South of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge.
    #23
  4. ridetwistyroads

    ridetwistyroads tailwind please

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    Ah yes, the "season." I grew up in Sarasota, and am quite familer with the tourists. Snow birds. Whatever you call them they're everywhere and none of them should be allowed to drive. :eek1 I was thinking of very simular concept, play a game of Avoid the Towns on back-back roads. Central areas are incredibly sparse, and would be much better riding then slabbing I75. When a friend went to school in Lakeland I used to buzz between there and Sarasota on 62 and 39, I'd never seen roads so straight. The cops always hide in the same place too....tripple digits most the way. But looking through the more northern/central area lef tme without many ideas. Was hoping for something easier then changing roads every 20 miles. I'll be coming down 441 out of GA, though if I'm making good time I might jump off before I get to Fl on 94, as Okefenee Swamp looks interesting. I could ride that down a ways and combine a couple roads (something like 94-127-through Sanderson, grab 10 to 121-125-301-though Starke to 100-315-310-19, through ocala natl forest, and run that all the way (with 33) to lakeland. I might have to deal with some crap in Lakeland, but I can do the old route form there. Whatcha think? COmplicated, huh? I'd like simpler better......back to the map!

    Thanks for the help all!
    Keep it coming.....:ear
    #24
  5. Randall

    Randall Adventurer

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    just to keep things confusing.....

    I can not remember the names of the roads between Deals Gap area and Augusta, GA but I do remember them as being some pretty good riding.

    I used to drive, on a very regular basis, from Augusta, GA to Ocala, FL and almost always took 121 out of Augusta (about 300 miles). Sometimes 121 through Starke and sometimes 301 through Callahan and then Starke. Back then I could bust as fast as I could go - not any more. But the road is still a very nice road to ride. Some small towns - not all that many I don't think - and they have not really grown all that much over the years. Because it is pretty open, there is on occasional trooper hiding out along the way but they are pretty much looking for someone really busting - like I used to.

    I usually make the trip in a day and have not camped out along this route although I think you could with no problem. I know that taking 121 on a Sunday does not offer lots in the way of stores etc. Large parts of GA still roll up the sidewalks in the evenings and on Sundays. Gas is not a problem.

    This route is only good if you should decide to head towards the eastern side of FL and then drift to the south-western side towards Naples.
    #25
  6. ridetwistyroads

    ridetwistyroads tailwind please

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    Great ride report. I am ovbiously bringing the camera with me, planning on a well illustrated, but poorly worded report in about a month or so :D.

    I am quite good at the planning thing, I even relish it. It may appear to mere mortals I am freaking out, but I'm actually enjoying re-hashing the whole thing in my head over and over. Maybe I should take this as a lesson. Get a general idea, get on, ride, and decide when I get there. Wherever 'there' is.

    As far as routes, after more thought I'm leaning central FL, with the contingency of bailing to 75 to make time if I need to. And that'd only be to keep it under two days I suppose, unless the weather's just absolutely begging me to spend another night outdoors. In which case I may. But you're right, if the weater cooperates it'll be fun. If it doesn't I'll be cold and wet. And looking for a hotel at the end of the day :lol3! Which, geez, wouldn't be the end of this or any other worlds. "The worst day riding's better then the best day at work," as it's been put......

    Ahhhh. That feels better. The haze indecisivness is setting in :nod, and it's good. Truthfully I can't wait to leave, DUH, and the route is more of a secondary thing. I just wanna go, and will be happy to ride on most any road as long as it's not I-freaking-Seventy Five all day. Anything else will do nicely!
    #26
  7. nazareth

    nazareth Urbane Gorilla

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    Take the interstate all the way. If you get tired find a cheap hotel. Spend as much time on the beach in Sarasota as possible.
    #27
  8. ridetwistyroads

    ridetwistyroads tailwind please

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    2 out of three aint bad :D

    I'll call you a few days before you come down, like the 12th or 13th and we'll hit that ride back.

    How's that K?
    #28
  9. nazareth

    nazareth Urbane Gorilla

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    Cool and Cool.
    #29
  10. ridetwistyroads

    ridetwistyroads tailwind please

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    Thank you to all for the road advice, the oddesy begins on Monday. Ride report to follow, stay tuned.... :lurk
    #30