I'm considering doing a tour of southwest Utah (Zion area) and I'm curious if anyone has suggestions for routes. Looking at the map it seems like you can start in Virgin and take the 9 to 89 to 14 to Cedar City. But is it reasonable to try to come back by the 15 to Virgin or St. George?!? I would like to do a loop, but I wouldn't be opposed to an out and back tour or taking another form of transportation back. Anyways I'm interested to hear what everyone thinks.
Also I've never done a tour before but I'm confident I would be ok solo (I have a touring bike + panniers and camping stuff). However, if someone might be interested in touring with sometime in September (maybe?) it could be fun...
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The run from Bryce to Zion is relatively easy, more down than up (Rt. 12, 89, 9), but makin the loop to Cedar City is reasonable. It will be importon I ant to determine if frontage roads exist on I-15 so you don't have to ride the shoulder with heavy traffic on your left side. tom
Don't know how long you have, but riding the length of route 12 is a very, very good tour. You can make it a loop by coming through Loa, Koosharem, back to 89. (sorry, don't have access to a map right now for the other road #'s) In my opinion, Capitol Reef was even nicer than Bryce or Zion. It would take about a week to 10 days, allowing time for some hiking. I can give you more details on what we did, if that sounds of interest to you.
I am planning a solo tour in theZion/Bryce area in Sept. I plan to hike and bike(trek 520 w/700x32's) starting in St. Geroge. If I start with Zion and head east, what kind of % road grades will I have on the main roads -9, 89, 12? I'm assuming they are paved. Y/N? Heading east, will they be long steep, uphill climbs or what? I'd also like to continue up to Boulder and maybe Torrey. But then I won't have a straight loop ride back to St. George. Is the extra distance to Boulder and Torrey worth it? I'm retired and have the time. I just want to make good use of it. Are the Arches, Canyonlands and Moab worth the extra pedaling time and distance?
First, you know this thread is five years old? Regardless, the question is still a good one. Last summer I cycled from Panguitch-Bryce-Escalante-Boulder-Torrey (around Fish Lake) -Koosharem-(got a rider back to Panguitch). I have toured a lot of places in U.S. and abroad, including the Rockies several times, the Cascades, the Sierras, and New Zealand. From a cyclist's perspective, Route 12 was just awesome. The climbs were challenging, but doable and amazingly beautiful. I especially loved the climb out of Boulder; at the top you can get a "wide-view" pictures of Capitol Reef. Capitol Reef National Park is the greatest littlest know nationa park in the county. And I loved the the climb from Fremont up and over to Fish Lake. And the downhill to Koosharem was a great ending to the trip.