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  1. #1
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    Across NY State... route?

    Hi all,

    As the subject line says.

    I'll be traveling from Erie, PA to VT.

    My thought is that it's best to follow Lake Erie to up near Buffalo, then move east to VT.

    Has anyone ridden across NY State? Or does anyone have any specific suggestions on routes to get over to Lake Champlain?

    I'll be self-supporting, so camping and cooking out are possibilities on any route I take.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Go Yankees MI_rider's Avatar
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    Merriwether,

    Are you from Erie or is this just your starting point? I have never
    ridden accross NY but I grew up in Jamestown, NY which is very
    close to Erie.

    I would probably pick a route that went more diagonally from the
    south west corner of NY to up around Rochester or Syracuse. That would be shorter and take you through the Finger Lakes. The Finger lakes area is really beautiful and would be a great ride. Then if you still want to you can pick up Lake Ontario up
    by Rochester and ride down it to Syracuse.

    Just my opinion from having lived there.

    Steve

  3. #3
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    NY DOT produced a nice map of the Route 17 bike route across NY. It's free!

    http://www.dot.state.ny.us/pubtrans/bikemap.html


    The route parallels Rt 17 through southern NY and the part I've been on is excellent.

    If I were do the trip you are taking, I would take the bike route 17 to Horseheads and then take Rt 13 north to Rt 5 and then east to Oneida. There I would pick up Rt 365. I would take 365 to Rt 8 through the Adirondacks.


    Jeff

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    Route 17 is now mostly interstate 86, and no bikes are allowed there. Any diagonal route will take you across serious hills (such as the ones near Dansville). However, there are many good US and state routes, such as US20, SR 31, etc, as well as the New York state barge canal path.
    Je vais à vélo, donc je suis!

  5. #5
    Go Yankees MI_rider's Avatar
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    Originally posted by D*Alex
    Route 17 is now mostly interstate 86, and no bikes are allowed there.
    You could never ride on route 17. My point was that the Finger Lakes are really pretty. The route that visionrider stated would be really nice. I have ridden many miles on the route 17 bike route. It is really a misnomer because non of it is on the old route 17. It is a pretty nice ride.

    Steve

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    Well, the finger lakes are pretty, and easy enought to ride, too, but......they all run north/south, and this guy is going east/west. Any diagonal cut from one lake to the next means a looooong, grinding hill, and only a few miles saved, anyhow.
    OTOH, if he's trying to make time, the east-west routes further north will offer much faster travel, on well maintained roads. And the NY state barge canal path: from Lockport (north of Buffalo) to Palmyra (east of Rochester), there is a dedicated path the entire distance, with no cars. It varies from paved to packed dirt and gravel, but it is maintained. Then, just south of Syracuse all the way to Utica, there is another dedicated path along the old (now abandoned) Erie canal right-of-way.
    Je vais à vélo, donc je suis!

  7. #7
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    As you can see from the above posts you have plenty of choices. A ride across NYS is beautiful with choices in terrain. I can be more specific with ride suggestions but first you need to decide if you want HILLS or more level and if you want paved road or not. Years ago the primary bike route across the state was NY Route 20, but there are some great climbs. In general riding near the southern part of the Finger Lakes... beautiful, but very hill.... Old 17 does avoid some hills, but Watkins Glen and the other southern Finger Lake towns have big climbs. Rt. 20 goes north of the Finger Lakes and also has major climbs. From I-90 northward to Lake Ontario there are few climbs, but if you take a route along there you would still be saying "this is the flat route"!
    Further east the southern Adirondacks are not too hilly. Where in VT are you headed?

    Wells

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    Thanks for the helpful replies. Those maps from NYDOT are very helpful.

    I'm not from Erie, MI_Rider, but I've family there.

    I'm eventually heading up to Montreal, via Burlington and thereabouts, but once I'm in the neighborhood of Lake Champlain I know my way around. I'd like to get a ferry across to Vermont somewhere in the southern part of the lake and then head up north on the VT side of the border.

    I am leaning toward Rt. 20 east-west, then route 22 north to the ferry. Some climbs might be hard, but I'll start craving the pain during the tour.

    Thanks again.

  9. #9
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    The ferry crosses much further up lake Champlain, and as far as I know, there is only the one.
    Je vais à vélo, donc je suis!

  10. #10
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    If you do decide to ride Rt 20, you can stay at my home if you like, if we are going to be around. Let me know if you are interested and when you would be in this area. I live 2 miles from Rt 20, 4 miles SE of Cazenovia. The hardest hills on Rt 20 are between Skaneateles and Cazenovia, so you will need a good rest.

    Jeff Palmer
    japalmer@twcny.rr.com

  11. #11
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    There are 3 Lake Champlain ferry crossings. See this link for details: http://www.ferries.com/
    Both the New York side and the Vermont side are great rides.

    Regarding Rt. 20: There is some traffic, but almost all of Rt 20 has a very wide clean shoulder. An Jeff is right about the part leading up to Caz. Some big hills, but there are plenty of others both east and west of where he lives.

    Wells

  12. #12
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    But then, if you take the old erie canal, you have zero hills....
    Je vais à vélo, donc je suis!

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