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  1. #1
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Key West or Bust!

    My Summer ride is planned from Indiana to Key West.....practical advice on routes, etc will be welcome! This will be an unsupported tour, by the way!
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

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  2. #2
    Senior Member kbabin's Avatar
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    As far as Fl., it will be hot,humid and buggy during summer.For this reason, I would recommend riding down along the coast as opposed to inland.More ocean breezes as well as beachside shower and drinking water facilities, not to mention the ability to jump in the ocean if becoming overheated. The east coast along A1A(and short stretches on Rt. 1 usually to connect from one barrier island to the next)is probably more cycle friendly overall than the west coast in particular US 41 south of Tampa.Also the southwest coast,everglades and Keys areas will be much more buggy than the east coast particularly the coastal mangrove and/or inland swampy areas(note that there are alot of mangroves in the Keys).For routing from Ft. Lauderdale to the Keys(ie navagating through Miami) check out this link: http://www.floridabicycle.org/messen.../winter038.htm

  4. #4
    Sweetened with Splenda
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    The highway from Florida City to the Keys is nasty... be very very careful! (And use the causeway that LOOKS on the map like the higher-traffic of the two routes - the other one lacks shoulders altogether) It's worth it, though, for the riding in the keys tehmselves... Traffic can occasionally be high, but it's beautiful!
    Falling down is not exercising.

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    I agree that riding down the east coast of Florida would be a better option in the summer months. The Atlantic Ocean will provide at least SOME relief from the heat and humidity.

    The folks at the Adventure Cycling Association have made some changes to their Atlantic Coast route. It now runs down the east coast all the way to Key West, FL. Updated maps should be available soon...the website has yet to show the new map sections.

  6. #6
    Castiron Perineum Bockman's Avatar
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    Hey good luck with the tour. I've ridden Canada to Key West twice, and suffered some valuable lessons each time. Overall, the trips were really enjoyable as I love the beach and the friendliness of people along the shore was appreciated.

    What people said about the highway in the southern keys is true-- ride defensively and calmly.
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    Senior Member ken cummings's Avatar
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    I met a lady years ago in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. She was towing her dog behind her in a trailer. The trailer had a banner saying Key West to Fairbanks by Dog. My sister had seen her days earlier in the Red Rock Desert headed north. Your trip should be a dream (with sweat and Mosquitos). Enjoy the hurricanes.
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  8. #8
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    Hi Tom: I live in Ft. Lauderdale and my girlfriend and I are planning on riding to Key West. We hope to be on the way before summer comes but it's already hot down here. We have ordered the Atlantic coast maps from Adventure Cycling and hope to have them soon as they are brand new and not even in stock as of yet. I hope the maps keep you off of US 1 through Miami so that you can go through Coconut Grove and then take Old Cutler Road probably to Homestead. Give me a shout if you need help finding this route because it is a beautiful ride. Where in Indiana are you? I'm hoping on making it to the Final Four in a few weeks! Take care

  9. #9
    Sweetened with Splenda
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    Quote Originally Posted by frankieN
    Hi Tom: I live in Ft. Lauderdale and my girlfriend and I are planning on riding to Key West. We hope to be on the way before summer comes but it's already hot down here. We have ordered the Atlantic coast maps from Adventure Cycling and hope to have them soon as they are brand new and not even in stock as of yet. I hope the maps keep you off of US 1 through Miami so that you can go through Coconut Grove and then take Old Cutler Road probably to Homestead. Give me a shout if you need help finding this route because it is a beautiful ride. Where in Indiana are you? I'm hoping on making it to the Final Four in a few weeks! Take care

    I haven't seen the new maps - but in other areas, the Adventure Cycling route is very similar to the one in Ikenberry's terribly out-of-date east-coast guide - and Ikenberry sends you down Old Cutler Road. Getting through Miami to that point was very unpleasant, though; I hope the new maps are better!
    Falling down is not exercising.

  10. #10
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    I live in Purdue Country here in Indiana. I was trying to find a route along the Gulf coast, by the way, and then across 41 thru the evergaldes. I need to stop thru Naples along the way! Among other things, I'll be dropping into the panhandle off of Georgias western bike route through Bainbridge, Ga.
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

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    Well,the part of the west coast I have ridden on bike and can offer first hand advice is from Ft. Myers southward and across the everglades on 41.

    From Ft. Myers you can cross the bridge to Ft. Myers Bch. and follow the coast down on a nice(though buggy at dawn or dusk) route with a wide shoulder to just above Naples picking up 41 with shoulder on into Naples.41 is fine through Naples and on out to Big Cypress Nat'l Preserve where it loses its shoulder and you are likely to encounter high speed truck and auto traffic on a narrow two lane road through most of Big Cypress until ,I believe, the Dade Co. line where the shoulder resumes.We hit it at dusk and then dawn stealth camping off of loop road at Monroe Station and it wasn't too bad though we did have to bail once or twice when trucks were coming from opposite directions at the same time.

    At the intersection of 997 on the outskirts of Miami I would take 997 south towards Homestead.I took that all the way to Homestead taking the main street through Homestead connecting to Florida City.However, this was early morning w/o much traffic,and at the outskirts of Homestead 997 loses its shoulder and some recommend taking backstreets through Homestead instead due to traffic.

    From Fl. City the choice is Rt 1 to Key Largo which as described in the Lally link is high speed with a shoulder but not mentioned also has frequent irritating speed bumps.The alternative is Card Sound Road which most cyclists prefer due to low traffic in spite of no shoulder.I note there is some rock truck traffic in the first few miles then pretty much nothing except mangroves and an army of mosquitos at dawn or dusk and perhaps a crocodile or two if you are lucky.From Key Largo it is either Rt1 with adequate shoulder the rest of the way except one or two manageable short sections or the bike path ,where completed ,though it imo is dangerous in crossing intersections particularly when running on the wrong side of the road.

    From Ft. Myers northward I have taken 31/17 inland through Arcadia and Wauchula and this is a nice route though very hot and humid when temps are approaching or into triple digits(you better be acclimated to the heat).A route headed south from Ga. might be 19 to 98 through Brookville picking up 17 at Bartow.If you take 19 on southward traffic really picks up in the Tampa metro area but I believe the Pinellas trail now gets you through much of that offroad.41 on south of Tampa through Bradenton/Sarasota etc. is very congested though I haven't biked it .Here is a journal of someone presently riding the west coast route and while I have only read small excerpts of it I do recall he was complaining quite a bit about the Sarasota/Venice area on 41.
    http://northamericacyclingexpedition...ome%5B1%5D.htm

  12. #12
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RWTD
    Well,the part of the west coast I have ridden on bike and can offer first hand advice is from Ft. Myers southward and across the everglades on 41.

    From Ft. Myers you can cross the bridge to Ft. Myers Bch. and follow the coast down on a nice(though buggy at dawn or dusk) route with a wide shoulder to just above Naples picking up 41 with shoulder on into Naples.41 is fine through Naples and on out to Big Cypress Nat'l Preserve where it loses its shoulder and you are likely to encounter high speed truck and auto traffic on a narrow two lane road through most of Big Cypress until ,I believe, the Dade Co. line where the shoulder resumes.We hit it at dusk and then dawn stealth camping off of loop road at Monroe Station and it wasn't too bad though we did have to bail once or twice when trucks were coming from opposite directions at the same time.

    At the intersection of 997 on the outskirts of Miami I would take 997 south towards Homestead.I took that all the way to Homestead taking the main street through Homestead connecting to Florida City.However, this was early morning w/o much traffic,and at the outskirts of Homestead 997 loses its shoulder and some recommend taking backstreets through Homestead instead due to traffic.

    From Fl. City the choice is Rt 1 to Key Largo which as described in the Lally link is high speed with a shoulder but not mentioned also has frequent irritating speed bumps.The alternative is Card Sound Road which most cyclists prefer due to low traffic in spite of no shoulder.I note there is some rock truck traffic in the first few miles then pretty much nothing except mangroves and an army of mosquitos at dawn or dusk and perhaps a crocodile or two if you are lucky.From Key Largo it is either Rt1 with adequate shoulder the rest of the way except one or two manageable short sections or the bike path ,where completed ,though it imo is dangerous in crossing intersections particularly when running on the wrong side of the road.

    From Ft. Myers northward I have taken 31/17 inland through Arcadia and Wauchula and this is a nice route though very hot and humid when temps are approaching or into triple digits(you better be acclimated to the heat).A route headed south from Ga. might be 19 to 98 through Brookville picking up 17 at Bartow.If you take 19 on southward traffic really picks up in the Tampa metro area but I believe the Pinellas trail now gets you through much of that offroad.41 on south of Tampa through Bradenton/Sarasota etc. is very congested though I haven't biked it .Here is a journal of someone presently riding the west coast route and while I have only read small excerpts of it I do recall he was complaining quite a bit about the Sarasota/Venice area on 41.
    http://northamericacyclingexpedition...ome%5B1%5D.htm
    Thanks Much! This is the kind of info I need!
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

  13. #13
    Resident Old Fart Olebiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Stormcrowe
    Among other things, I'll be dropping into the panhandle off of Georgias western bike route through Bainbridge, Ga.
    If you need information about the roads from Bainbridge through and around Tallahassee, just drop me a note. This is a great area to ride.
    Wag more, bark less

  14. #14
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    i'm from canada, and i did north dakota to talahassee last fall - my advice would be to avoid alabama at all costs! - not one positive memory from that evil state!

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    Resident Old Fart Olebiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidreger
    i'm from canada, and i did north dakota to talahassee last fall - my advice would be to avoid alabama at all costs! - not one positive memory from that evil state!
    I've never ridden there. What kind of problems did you have?
    Wag more, bark less

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