Yet another Nova Scotia trip plan (this one from NJ)

Discussion in 'Americas' started by NJ650, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. S/W

    S/W Long timer

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    Don't forget to be prepared for any kind of weather. I have camped up there in the summer when I never took my ski parka off and it never stopped raining, and then I have been there when it was quite hot.
    #21
  2. debaisley

    debaisley Long timer

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    I am taking a 10 day trip , I really hope it doesnt rain. Last year I did a 5 day trip to Acadia National Park in Maine , and it rained every day except the day that I left, made the best of it , but it could have been so much more fun.
    #22
  3. NJ650

    NJ650 Been here awhile

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    I'm hoping for great warm weather, but planning on rain and cold temps. Plan for the worse, hope for the best!

    Still not sure when I'll be heading out but if I'm up there at that time maybe we'll sync up at some point.




    #23
  4. NJ650

    NJ650 Been here awhile

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    I guess if you look on the bright side, I bet it kept the mosquitoes quite...:cry
    #24
  5. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    I did my Maritimes tour last July. We got lucky with the weather -- very little rain in the 9 days of our trip. We got heavily rained on at the end of Day 6 and encountered a few scattered showers on Day 8, but otherwise it was dry.

    Temperatures were all over the map though. The morning of Day 3 started out foggy and quite chilly, and by the afternoon I was so hot I thought I was about to pass out. The bag I had strapped to the bike was so big that I brought along a full set of armored mesh riding gear just to help fill out the bag a bit, and by Day 4 I was glad I did -- I spent a few days in the mesh because it was so hot out, but the morning of Day 8 I was back in my leather jacket and waterproof pants and had to pull my fleece vest out of my luggage when we stopped for a break because I was freezing.

    And for the record, when I was in Gaspé in late September, the situation was similar. One day it got so warm that I had to pull the liner out of my jacket, open the vents, etc, while some mornings it was so chilly I had to bundle up in multiple layers and fire up the heated grips.

    My point is, planning for the worst should include not only cold temps and rain, but also very hot temps. The weather can be highly variable up there.

    --mark
    #25
  6. NJ650

    NJ650 Been here awhile

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    Hi markbvt,

    Thanks for the input.

    Any advice as I travel from Mt. Washington to Waterbury? Anything worth going to Burlington for?
    #26
  7. kelamity

    kelamity Been here awhile

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    You can borrow mine for as long as you like :thumb . I won't be using it anytime soon. You might decide to just photocopy a few pages because it does take up a little too much space on the bike.
    #27
  8. EvilClown

    EvilClown Reality show stunt double Super Moderator

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    From the Mount Washington Auto Road a nice ride towards Vermont - particularly on a KLR - would be Pinkham B Road (Dolly Copp entrance)>Rt 2>Valley Road>Jefferson Notch Road>Mt Clinton Road (a hoot!). A neat side trip is up the Base Station Road to the Cog Railway. This is at the Jeff Notch/Mt Clinton intersection.

    Mt Clinton will dump you out at Crawford Notch on 302.

    (Depending on how you're getting to Mount Washington if Hurricane Mountain and Evan's Notch can be worked in they are worth it.)

    With a little map work on your own work your way over to Route 108 (aka Smuggler's Notch) out of Jeffersonville, VT down to Stowe. An alternative would be just ride it up and back out of Stowe.

    Why is it a 'don't miss'?

    [​IMG]

    From there, hit Ben & Jerry's. Make your way south on 100 to Rt 17 (Appalalchian Gap) to Jerusalem to Lincoln and Lincoln Gap back to 100 (only because you'll be on that end. If you do it the other direction the dirt road (32?) is better.)

    Make your way down to 125 (Middlebury Gap) then down 32 to 73 (Brandon Gap).

    Further south the dirt roads between 100 and 7 taking you to Kelly Stand are great!

    There are no wrong turns in Vermont - particularly if it's a dirt road.:thumb

    If by the time you get to Vermont time is tight, do the notch roads and just pick up a pint of Ben & Jerry's for suppah.:D

    Enjoy your ride!
    #28
  9. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    Listen to EvilClown, he speaks good advice.

    I would recommend heading south from Mt Washington to Conway and picking up the Kancamagus Highway (Rt 112) west. Fun road. Stay on 112 to Rt 116; make a left onto 116 and follow it to Haverhill. make a right onto Rt 10 and follow this to Woodsville, then cross the bridge to Wells River, VT, and get onto Rt 302 west. The P&H Truck Stop (just past the I-91 interchange) is a great place to stop for breakfast or lunch.

    From there head west on Rt 302 to Groton and make a right onto Minard Hill Rd; follow this to Danville and make a left onto Rt 2, then turn right onto Rt 15 in West Danville.

    Alternatively -- you can pick up the Bayley-Hazen Military Road in Wells River (do a search for ride reports -- there are lots of them). If you want to do this, do not turn onto Rt 302 in Wells River and instead head just a bit north on Rt 5 (the road through the middle of town) and make a left onto Bible Hill Rd. This will turn into S and then N Bayley Hazen Rd. Eventually you'll come to a fork in the road; go left onto Schoolhouse Rd. This will put you back onto pavement through Peacham; on the other side of town, look for where Bayley Hazen Rd forks off to the left. Follow this to Rt 2. Make a left onto Rt 2, then just past the pond make a right into W Shore Rd, then a left onto Cabot Plains Rd, then a right at the T intersection to continue on Cabot Plains Rd, then another right at the next T intersection, then keep going straight and you'll find yourself on the next segment of Bayley Hazen Rd. When it ends on Rt 215, make a right, then make a left onto Rt 15.

    So whichever of these routes you choose, you'll end up heading west on Rt 15. Follow it to Jeffersonville and make a left onto Rt 108. Follow 108 through Smuggler's Notch (careful when you get to the top of the Notch -- the road gets really narrow and winds between boulders and around blind corners, and car drivers can get pretty stupid there). Heading down the south side of the Notch, you'll find yourself in Stowe. If you're hungry, stop off at The Shed (you'll find it where the collection of restaurants and hotels and whatnot suddenly gets a lot denser). They have really good burgers, and if you're sticking around for a while, their microbrew beer is excellent too.

    From here, keep following 108 into downtown Stowe and make a right onto Rt 100. Follow 100 till you get to the Ben & Jerry's factory in Waterbury (you can't miss it).

    From this point, it all depends on what you want to do next and how quickly you want to get home. Not really much point in visiting Burlington either way unless you want to see Lake Champlain. My advice would be to spend the night somewhere in Vermont before heading back to NJ, otherwise you're going to have a REALLY long day. Assuming you can swing this, here's what I'd recommend. From Ben & Jerry's, take Rt 100 south (watch the signs heading through downtown Waterbury -- it makes a few turns). Just past Waitsfield, make a right onto Rt 17 and follow it west over the Appalachian Gap. This is an extremely twisty section with some spectacular views. Continue on 17 until you get to Rt 116; make a left. After maybe two miles or so, make another left onto Lincoln Rd and follow this over the Lincoln Gap. More spectacular views. When you get to the end of this, make a right onto Rt 100. If you feel like riding some more twisties, make a right onto Rt 125 in Hancock and follow it through the Middlebury Gap till you get to Rt 7. Turn left onto 7 and follow it till you get to Brandon, then turn left onto Rt 73 and follow this over the Brandon Gap till you get back to Rt 100 (if you don't feel like doing this loop, just continue south on 100 in Hancock). At this point, follow 100 all the way south to Rt 9 in Wilmington.

    Just pick any of the towns you pass through on Rt 100 to sleep for the night, then continue in the morning. When you get to Rt 9, make a right and follow it to Bennington, then make a left onto Rt 7 and take this south into Massachusetts. Just past Williamstown, make a right onto Rt 2 through Taconic Trail State Park (more twisties). Then turn south onto Rt 22 to Rt 295 and pick up the Taconic State Parkway to head homewards.

    Enjoy!

    --mark
    #29
  10. NJ650

    NJ650 Been here awhile

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    Thanks EvilClown & markbvt. You've both helped me make a big decision. After looking at all of those great routes I'm going to split off the Mt Washington/Waterbury trip and make that a separate adventure - maybe before the Nova Scotia trip. This way I can take more time to enjoy both areas.


    #30
  11. vtjeff

    vtjeff Stuck in the muck!

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    Remember your passport! June 1 starts a program where U.S. citizens need to bring a passport or other "machine readable" document. Yes, I work at the border. No, I don't like to give people a hard time but I'd hate to see a fellow biker get into a jam that could have been avoided.
    Have a great ride in N.S. We'll look for you in VT.
    #31
  12. EvilClown

    EvilClown Reality show stunt double Super Moderator

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    If that's the case definitely work in Hurricane Mountain and...

    <object width=425 height=318><param name="movie" value="https://cdn.smugmug.com/ria/ShizVidz-2008120101.swf" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" /><param name="flashVars" value="s=aT0zOTc0NDg5NDcmaz1qR1VvcyZhPTYyOTgwMjJfM1VZZzUmdT1FdmlsQ2xvd24mZT0x" /><embed src="https://cdn.smugmug.com/ria/ShizVidz-2008120101.swf" flashVars="s=aT0zOTc0NDg5NDcmaz1qR1VvcyZhPTYyOTgwMjJfM1VZZzUmdT1FdmlsQ2xvd24mZT0x" width=425 height=318 type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowFullScreen="true" allowScriptAccess="always"></embed></object>

    edit: video not plugging in too well today...:scratch
    https://EvilClown.smugmug.com/gallery/6298022_3UYg5#397448947_jGUos-A-LB

    ...Evans Notch.:deal

    If you take the Kanc watch your speed. They're looking for you.:mulie

    Fall is an excellent time for Vermont.

    Vermont could be a trip unto itself. With all the trip planning that goes on in my head, a week of just roaming Vermont is in there somewhere.:ricky

    Oh, and you're welcome. :1drink
    #32
  13. Boston12GS

    Boston12GS Banned

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    Make sure you ping me when you get the dates settled--I'm in Chelmsford, next door to Lowell, and you're welcome to crash here (if I'm in-country, 50:50 chance). Heck, if you can fix your dates early enough, I might be able to swing it to ride with you.
    #33
  14. NJ650

    NJ650 Been here awhile

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    Yea, like I said, thanks, I'm going to make Mt Washington/Waterbury a separate trip so I can do it justice. Definitely going to avoid the super-slab. That rode you captured in the video looks like just the ticket.


    #34
  15. NJ650

    NJ650 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the offer. I'll PM you once I lock down the details.
    #35
  16. NJ650

    NJ650 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the reminder. :thumb I already have that on my checklist. :deal
    #36
  17. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    That's a good plan.

    Since you'll be taking more time up here, you should definitely take EvilClown's suggestion and work in Hurricane Mountain Road (and he's right, beware of cops on the Kancamagus). And also do a day loop through the Adirondacks.

    Drop me a PM when you figure out timing. I'd be happy to show you around a bit.

    --mark
    #37
  18. debaisley

    debaisley Long timer

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    how easy is it to find campgrounds in NS ? Just asking because on all my motorcycle trips i just "wing it" and rely on my GPS to find me a campground. But I was looking at the POIs for NS in mapsource , and the campgrounds it lists are few and far between. I have the NS atlas but that only shows the provincial grounds.
    #38
  19. g®eg

    g®eg Canadian living in exile

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    we found quite a few.. but not with the GPS. we kind of road along and stopped.

    I think I went looking online and then added a pile to my GPS as waypoints so we could pull them up on the fly. I might have a file at work with all the ones I found if you'd like it.
    #39
  20. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    It's pretty easy to find campgrounds en route. But do yourself a favor and order the free Nova Scotia motorcycle vacation guide, and if you're a AAA member, order up the guidebook for the area. Useful as backup info.

    --mark
    #40