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  1. #1
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    Planning out a Bike Route

    Hey everyone-

    So I'm planning my first bike tour from Massachusetts to Nova Scotia. After doing some serious research and talking to some experts, I just bought most of what I think I need and am hoping to leave next week. I'm looking to leave Mass and travel up the Atlantic Coast through NH/ME (stopping in Old Orchard Beach with some family), hook onto the Trans-Canada trail in Saint John, and go to Antigonish where I will stay with more family. Then, I can continue on the trail across Nova Scotia to Yarmouth, and take the ferry back to Portland. So I have a general idea of where I want to go, but does anyone have any advice on planning out a route or know where I can find some maps? I'll be camping many nights along the way--any tips on that? This is my first time doing anything like this, but I'm trying to do everything I can to get prepared, and most importantly, I'm mentally ready to just go for it and expect an adventure. Oh yeah and I'm going alone. Any input would be appreciated.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Just stick to back roads as much as you can. If you're on a road you don't like, find another one -- in New England, there are usually many options to get from A to B. You could also get Section 1 of the Atlantic Coast route from adventurecycling.org and follow that route as much as you can. A big bonus with the ACA maps is that they tell you where campgrounds are. If I can't find a campground I just ask the locals where to camp. Usually there is a campground or some other public space nearby off the beaten path that you never would have known about otherwise.

    Also, do a search for "stealth camping" and you will find many tips on how and where to camp.

  3. #3
    family on bikes nancy sv's Avatar
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    Many, many years ago we did that trip - from Guilford to Nova Scotia. We had planned to get up to Newfoundland, but the rear wheel of our tandem blew up and we had to wait 3 weeks in Nova Scotia for its replacement - so we just turned around and headed back to my in-law's house in Guilford. Anyway, I don't remember the exact route we took, but we just stayed on secondary roads (of which there are TONS!) and it was fine. Have fun!
    WE DID IT! Our little family of four cycled 17,300 miles from Alaska to Argentina! The trip of a lifetime for sure. www.familyonbikes.org

  4. #4
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    Maybe invest in a GPS that can plan bike routes specifically.
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  5. #5
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    Do you know if I can buy the adventurecycling.org map in a store somewhere? I might be cutting it close with the shipping if it takes like a week.

  6. #6
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Google maps. Pick secondary roads. Zoom in using satellite view to see the road shoulder. Print the sections that you need. Print on two two sides of paper to save weight. Be sure to protect these in a ziplock, they will run if wet.

    Your route = Your adventure

  7. #7
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    CAA or AAA, depending on which country you're in, have maps. So do Tourist Information centres.

  8. #8
    Senior Member wickedcold's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigAura View Post
    Google maps. Pick secondary roads. Zoom in using satellite view to see the road shoulder. Print the sections that you need. Print on two two sides of paper to save weight. Be sure to protect these in a ziplock, they will run if wet.

    Your route = Your adventure
    That is such a terrific idea. I never would have thought of that. Thanks! And with Google Streetview, you can really get a feel for some of the roads/intersections.

  9. #9
    Senior Member drafters65's Avatar
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    perhaps google maps and pick the walking directions. i figure if its safe to walk its safe to ride.
    NYC MS Tour 2008 - First Century
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    Originality is the art of concealing your sources - Benjamin Franklin

  10. #10
    Rawwrrrrrrrrr! wolfpack's Avatar
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    i've tried the google maps thingy & walking directions. once it loads the route, you can go in and move points around....
    wolfpackcycles
    skiffrun: Enjoy the ride. Ride for the enjoyment.

  11. #11
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    Thanks everyone for your help - I'm a lot more prepared for what's ahead!

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