Newbie sounds about right
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Route ideas Northeast PA -> Dallas TX
If you want to skip all the rambling and what not, I could use suggestions of places/things to see between the Northeast and Dallas.
I'm looking at for ideas for a good route from here near Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania to Dallas, Texas. If you don't feel like looking up exact locations, anywhere in Pennsylvania or New York would be close enough to consider the big picture sort of plans. My plan is to go as early in the spring as I feel comfortable with. I've looked at a few different possible routes and I really have no great way of comparing them myself.
I've done some multi-day trips, but don't have a ton of experience. I'm in no real hurry to get anywhere in particular. I've been off the East Coast far too little, and when I have it's always been air travel so I didn't really get a sense of things. I would greatly prefer a going generally west of the Appalachians so I could see new things. I have family in Dallas and figure it's a place where I can stop go to and figure out what else if anything I want to see when I get there. My bike is a mountain bike so rail trails and anything of that sort would be great.
My first idea was head south to Adventure Cycling's TransAm, hop off north of Dallas somewhere. Would be straight East to West which I've heard bad things about the headwinds, but it's an established route so might be easier logistically in a lot of ways.
Their Underground Railroad route looks interesting going in the right general direction most of the way. I'm not sure how going North to South on this would affect things. This would leave me well East of Dallas so would involve either ditching it early or some backtracking. On the plus side I might be able to find some friendly faces in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama. The Gulf Coast would be interesting I would think too. The could be also used Northbound for a return trip if that's what I decide on.
Direct to Nashville area for Natchez Trace seems tempting. This should give me a significant section that sounds close to ideal for touring. It doesn't quite head where I'm going, but for a good ride who really cares. I haven't really done enough research on this one to know too much about it.
I guess my biggest question is what out there should I not miss? I can come up with a route to get me from A to B myself. The journey is far more important than the destination though, and that's where I could use suggestions. Places to camp with good mountain bike trails would really tempt me. There would be some added logistics to finding knobby tires, but it would be worth the trouble to hang out a few days somewhere fun.