Puttering Along the Northern MABDR

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by CloudSplitter, Sep 9, 2019.

  1. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Oddometer:
    1,048
    Location:
    Northern West Virginia
    OK, leaving now to complete the northern half of the MABDR (Mid Atlantic Backcountry Discovery Route). I've already done the southern half (West Virginia, and south), so this will complete this route for me..

    For now, just posting a map of the route, as I want to get off:
    MABDR North.jpg
    Starting where the Harpers Ferry bypass crosses Interstate 81, near the bottom of the map, I'll ride east on that to the main route, then north to the New York line, then return via the red and blue route to the west, to West Virginia, then back east on pavement. unless I decide to ride a little farther south on the red or green route. The green is an alternate choice, in case the red and blue route proves too challenging.
    #1
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  2. GAS GUY

    GAS GUY MILE EATER

    Joined:
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    Sounds like a wonderful plan. Looking forward to hearing about your experience. Those Pennsylvania sections of the MABDR are my favorite. Especially Bald Eagle State Forest. Enjoy !
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  3. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Oddometer:
    1,048
    Location:
    Northern West Virginia
    Now in Lewiston PA. This part of the route was pretty much as expected, nice, and easy enough for a street bike, though one stretch was steep and rough enough to give them second thoughts, but it only lasted about a hundred yards.

    A few photos.
    IMG_20190909_124013035_HDR.jpg
    Lunch spot at Michaux

    IMG_20190909_123513429_HDR.jpg
    Actual lunch spot, on the lake.

    IMG_20190909_123422411_HDR.jpg
    Nice campsite, nearby.

    IMG_20190909_150910987_HDR.jpg
    Overlook about invasive insects damaging the forest. The trees down the hill were killed by Gypsy Moth caterpillars.

    More to follow.
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    #3
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  4. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Oddometer:
    1,048
    Location:
    Northern West Virginia
    Well, spent most of the day in Bald Eagle State Forest, Never knew it was so big.

    Now in Lock Haven. If that was Loch Haven, I might be in Scotland.

    Anyway
    IMG_20190910_172646_01.jpg
    Ready to go. Wife sent this after my last post.

    IMG_20190910_094112748.jpg
    Nice picnic spot, with shelter from rain

    IMG_20190910_104019765_HDR.jpg
    Penn's View

    IMG_20190910_150856471.jpg
    The sign says"Drivable Trail". It's good here, but a bit challenging most of the way. Suggest street bikes go around.

    That's it. Should finish the MABDR in the morning. Then take a look at that return route. May decide to skip that, and go home.
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  5. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Oddometer:
    1,048
    Location:
    Northern West Virginia
    MABDR completed. Now heading south on the return route.

    IMG_20190911_082712920.jpg
    A pretty fancy picnic spot

    IMG_20190911_102553897_HDR.jpg
    This is a gorge near, but not at, the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania. Missed that, because of the detour.

    IMG_20190911_111137585.jpg
    Don't believe this sign saying road closed 2 1/2 miles. The MABDR turns off, before the closure.

    IMG_20190911_130018400_HDR.jpg
    NY at last. Lunch and gas nearby

    IMG_20190911_152332537.jpg
    On the return route, it's a short bypass around this closure (posted by ADVrich on the MABDR thread.

    I'm now in Clearfield PA, where the route crosses lnterstate 80.

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  6. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Northern West Virginia
    Home at last. The return route turned out to be a lot faster than the MABDR, plus I skipped a bit by missing a turn off a limited access highway, and following the GPS to a motel.

    IMG_20190911_152332537.jpg
    The return route had a glitch, but the bypass was short and obvious

    IMG_20190912_130056279.jpg
    Met a fellow XT250 rider, and rode a way on more difficult Garry-VI return route

    IMG_20190912_171949926.jpg
    Good news is rainbow, just as I neared home
    Bad news is I got wet.
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    #6
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  7. CloudSplitter

    CloudSplitter Putterer

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Oddometer:
    1,048
    Location:
    Northern West Virginia
    Just a little windup, with a couple pictures by Rick, the new friend I met near the end of the return route:

    Me Meeting Rick.jpg
    Me, with our two XT250s, where we met up.

    Me with Rick on Gary IV Route.jpg
    Me, with the bikes on the more difficult return trail, Garry-VI

    My return ride was primarily on the route by ADVrich, shown in blue and red on the map at the beginning of this thread, and available here:
    https://advrider.com/f/threads/next-in-the-bdr-series-mabdr.1257324/page-46#post-34541763

    He bills it as a gap filler for one of Garry's early routes, but it is different than Garry's final route VI, shown in green on the map, and available here:
    https://advrider.com/f/threads/next-in-the-bdr-series-mabdr.1257324/page-47#post-34569970

    Finally, my evaluation of these routes:

    The MABDR is generally a very good ride, doable on a street bike, but a few sections will make them wonder if they're in over their heads.

    ADVrich's return route is generally easier, and faster, but again some sections will challenge a rider on a street bike.

    Gary's VI route is the most challenging, at least the few sections I've ridden. What I just rode in northern West Virginia could be done on a street bike, but was consistently fairly rough, and the south end of it, which I rode in the spring, should only be ridden on a dual sport, in my opinion.

    Hope this ride report helps somebody thinking about these rides.

    TTFN
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    #7
  8. suzukinut

    suzukinut Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2015
    Oddometer:
    91
    Location:
    Victoria, BC Canada
    Enjoyed the pictures and ride report, thanks for posting it all.
    #8
  9. ridewv

    ridewv Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Oddometer:
    646
    Location:
    West Virginia
    Me too, I'll have to put the MABDR on my "to do" list now.
    #9