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Need help - route from Raleigh to Houston

Discussion in 'Central – From Da Nort Woods to the Plane States' started by donblas, Jan 12, 2005.

  1. donblas

    donblas a la deriva

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    Oddometer:
    105
    Location:
    Colombia
    I need to ride from Raleigh (North Carolina) to Houston the first week in february. I please need suggestions as to routes and stops along the way.
    Thanks.
    Henrique
    #1
  2. Tourmeister

    Tourmeister What's that funny noise?

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,240
    Location:
    Huntsville, Tx.
    Howdy,

    How much time do you have to make the ride? And you talking Raleigh, NC?

    Adios,
    #2
  3. Stephen

    Stephen Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2002
    Oddometer:
    3,509
    Location:
    Austin, Texas, USA
    Two Words:

    Natchez Trace
    #3
  4. donblas

    donblas a la deriva

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2004
    Oddometer:
    105
    Location:
    Colombia
    I have about four days, and yes, it is Raleigh NC.
    Thanks.
    #4
  5. Zapp22

    Zapp22 ZAPP - Tejas

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2004
    Oddometer:
    13,881
    Location:
    Tejas Hill Country
    Don
    did you mean 4 days to get to houston, or 4 days down and back?
    I'm imagining you are familiar with western carolina mountains so I won't get into that. But some off-the-beaten track things come to mind:

    - Coming down from the mountains, go the back way that more or less tracks the river from Maryville to Cleveland Tennessee. Thus, hwy 411 from maryville to just past "benton" then hang a right on 64 through cleveland and pickup old Highway US 11 into NE Alabama. U.S. 11 runs very much parallel to I-59 so at any time that you need to whack some time you can jump on and off of I-59. You pass by lookout mountain in NW Georgia, then into AL, the old Highway pretty much follows the Appalachian Foothills and has a lot of interesting small towns and history and scenery along the route all the way to Birmingham where there is probably the best Motorcycle Museum in the country. The Barber collection has won acclaim coast to coast and even outside the USA. http://www.barbermuseum.org/

    - If you have 4 days to get there, a beautiful place to spend night [about the right break point] would be in the Lodge at DeSoto State Park, and tour around the Little River Canyon National Preserve: only place in America where a river runs in a fold on top of a mountain for a lotta miles [Sand Mountain]. Its a short loop, and you'll not be far from U.S. 11. Its near Fort Payne AL.

    - At B'ham hit I-20 through Tuscaloosa, across MS beltline, straight across into Louisiana. I know someone here mentioned the Natchez Trace but I beg to differ. Having lived in MS a handful of years and traveled the Trace a bit, its a lovely ROAD, but it is basically all pine forest end to end, so you are looking at the same tunnel of nice green Pine woods the whole way. Not much else to see, and the going is slow. It doesn't help you get to where you are going [not too far outta the way, but just not very helpful].

    - Vicksburg Mississippi is pretty interesting if you are a history buff. Good displays and info stuff at the preserved Civil War battleground there, plus the restored homes in Vicksburg are a telling picture of life in the "Old South".

    - I have no great suggestions in Louisiana. If you like casinos, you will want to take the I-10 route from AL through MS and LA, but you may go broke and never make it to Houston, selling your bike and taking a bus home.

    - If you do the SMART thing:D and stay with I-20, get across LA and maybe stop near Marshall Texas for the night, then take U.S. 59 South, [pick up near Marshall] all the way to Houston. Keep your radar detector up as you get near HOU.

    Zapp
    #5
  6. cyclecat

    cyclecat half post a day wonder

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2001
    Oddometer:
    1,317
    Location:
    Vadito, NM, USA!
    Do not.... I repeat, DO NOT cross Louisiana if at all possible. The roads suck and the artificially low speed limits suck even worse. If you must drive through Louisiana, do not us US 84 or anything other than interstate. Did I mention the roads suck?

    Officers Buford T. Justice and Roscoe P. Coltrane sit on the bushes at every little hamlet's city limits and allow ZERO tolerance for speeders. Don't be slowing down when you pass the sign... you better BE GOING THAT SPEED when you arrive, or its too late.

    Did I mention the roads suck?

    Stop at the Barber Cycle museum in Birmingham on the way down. It'll be the best part of your trip. :nod Allow 4 hours to view everything or you'll feel rushed. :deal
    #6
  7. budzrex

    budzrex n00b

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2004
    Oddometer:
    4
    I agree on the stop at the Barber Mueseum it is a must see and if you are there and need a place to stay 29Dreams is a motorcycle campground about 5 miles south of Barber on the outskirts of Birmingham
    #7