I am looking for route suggestions for a ride from Toledo Ohio to Raleigh North Carolina. I have had many people tell me that it is to hilly for bikes and there are no shoulders on the mountainous roads (dangerous). These comments have all come from non bikers so any input I can get from you all is appreciated.
I don't have specific route advice, but... In general it should be possible to find a nice route. Try to use either lightly traveled roads or ones with a decent shoulder. Using Google maps directions and checking the "avoid highways" check box is a starting point. You can drag the route away from roads you want to avoid to more desirable ones.
With regard to what you were told by non-cyclists...
With appropriate gearing no roads are too hilly and I have found the drivers on the narrow rural roads of the Appalachians to be cautious and courteous in general.
Last week I rode in the Appalachian mountains of NC and found those rides to be both doable (with lots of work and frequent rest stops) and enjoyable (cool, pleasant weather -- 68 to 75 degrees vs 94 to 101 back home). Back roads can be very hilly (several 12 to 15% grades every now and then); larger roads tend to level some of the hills but are still challenging (e.g. 5 miles of 7 to 8% grade).
Originally Posted by CJO
For routes there are many options. Adventure Cycling maps can offer some ideas, but none are direct for you:
If I were riding from Toledo to Raleigh, I would take scenic routes (if time permitted). I would probably find the best route I could to the Pittsburgh area, then I would follow the Allegheny Passage and C&O Canal to Harper's Ferry. From there I would ride south about 25 miles to Front Royal and then ride on the Skyline Drive to the Blue Ridge Parkway. I'd probably stay on the Blue Ridge Parkway until somewhere near Lynchburg, VA and then ride south to Raleigh (maybe route 501 and back roads where possible).
Some Ohio routes may be located here:
The Wheel is Turning
Bingo! My thoughts Exactly!!!
Originally Posted by bwgride