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  1. #1
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    Highway 61 going up the Mississipi

    I am planning a road bike trip in July in which I would like to go up the Mississipi River from Winona MN to Red Wing MN. My first idea is to take Highway 61. I know the traffic is bad in July and I don't know whether the shoulder is in good condition. If somebody already experienced this road, please give me your advice? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Senior Member KLW2's Avatar
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    While I don't currently live there, as I recall State Hwy. 61 has a nice large shoulder. Traffic is never high, but even modest highway traffic can be distracting from the fantastic view. You always have the option of the less traveled Wisconsin side. It's a 2 lane road, but much less traffic.

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    ah.... sure. kayakdiver's Avatar
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    I went through those towns when using the Northern Tier route. I didn't find it all that bad in regards to traffic and also shoulders. I can't tell you how much I was actually on Hwy 61 though. You might consider purchasing the map from ACA. The information included with the map should be well worth the cost.

    I really enjoyed riding along the Mississippi.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kayakdiver View Post
    I can't tell you how much I was actually on Hwy 61 though. You might consider purchasing the map from ACA. The information included with the map should be well worth the cost.
    Sound advice. While it's been a while since I did the NT, I don't recall spending much time on 61 between Red Wing and Winonna. However, we did take a detour since we camped off route outside Red Wing and took a local recommended route to get back on the "official" route." In between we camped in the city park at Wabasha.

    I should still have my AC map. I will look at it tonight and let you know what it shows.
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    Senior Member badger_biker's Avatar
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    Its hard to go wrong on either side. I've ridden WI S to N and enjoyed it. As other's have posted MN will have more traffic and farther spaced towns, but I think it generally has a good shoulder as does WI.

    You may consider if you would like the river and views on your right or left. I think the WI side may offer more camping options and is a little more quaint.
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    Quote Originally Posted by badger_biker View Post
    Its hard to go wrong on either side. I've ridden WI S to N and enjoyed it. As other's have posted MN will have more traffic and farther spaced towns, but I think it generally has a good shoulder as does WI.

    You may consider if you would like the river and views on your right or left. I think the WI side may offer more camping options and is a little more quaint.

    I agree. Having grown up on the MN side, I was always amazed at the different "feel" the WI side has. There is much more of a river feel to it. All the towns are small, some feel like fishing villages.

    Highway 61 is as close to a freeway as you can get without being called a freeway. It's not limited access, and not high traffic, but it's meant to get you from point A to B fast. The WI side is leisurely at best.

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    Thanks

    Thanks to all of you for good advice and information. I think I'm gonna choose the WI side!
    Cheers

  9. #9
    Senior Member badger_biker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randojo View Post
    I think I'm gonna choose the WI side!
    There are nice public pools in Trempeleau and Fountain City if you encounter the typical hot humid weather of July. Also the Great River trail from Onalaska past Trempeleau is a nice break and keeps you close to the river.
    Enjoy!
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  10. #10
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