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Pittsburgh to Chicago

Old 07-01-08, 10:31 AM
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Pittsburgh to Chicago

This is in the planning/ dreaming stage, but does anyone know of a good Pittsburgh to Chicago route? This is one possibility for next summer.

One possibility is to join up with the American Discovery Trail in western Ohio.
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Old 07-01-08, 10:43 AM
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I just rode there actually! The route I took was out of Washington, PA, through Wheeling and up towards Route 6 into Indiana. Route 6 through Indiana only took two 70 mile days plus 40 miles the third day to ride through.

I would not recommend riding route 12 through Gary, Indiana into Chicago though. Not so much because the city is dangerous but more because the road is terrifying once you get to Gary.
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Old 07-01-08, 11:15 AM
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I'm on US-6 in Ohio and Indiana quite a lot, by car. I think I'd avoid it if on a bike, marginal shoulders and way too much heavy truck traffic. The Lincoln Highway (Former US30) Through Ohio has far less traffic. Most of the traffic has been re-routed onto the new US30 alignment. West of Ft Wayne I'm not as sure, but 6 in Indiana seem slightly better than 6 in Ohio because of the close proximity of 80/90 and 20 West of
Ft .Wayne.
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Old 07-01-08, 12:14 PM
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Cleveland to Pittsburgh routes will get you "up to the Adventure Cycling Northern Tier route"
The first link is a thread that started in 2005. The route around Cleveland on the Metroparks' parkways is pretty nice--The Emerald Necklace.
https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...and+pittsburgh
https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...ight=connector
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Old 07-02-08, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by neilfein
This is in the planning/ dreaming stage, but does anyone know of a good Pittsburgh to Chicago route? This is one possibility for next summer.

One possibility is to join up with the American Discovery Trail in western Ohio.
Reading this might give you ideas.

https://www.bicycletrek.com/

The author rode from Pittsburgh to Chicago, starting in NYC.
 
Old 07-03-08, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by neilfein
This is in the planning/ dreaming stage, but does anyone know of a good Pittsburgh to Chicago route? This is one possibility for next summer.

One possibility is to join up with the American Discovery Trail in western Ohio.
I suggest starting in McKeesport instead of Pittsburgh. This allows you to ride the Montour trail from McKeesport and avoid the roads in downtown Pittsburgh. The Montour goes to the west of the city. It also connects to the Panhandle Trail into West Virginia.
 
Old 07-03-08, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by The Historian
I suggest starting in McKeesport instead of Pittsburgh. This allows you to ride the Montour trail from McKeesport and avoid the roads in downtown Pittsburgh. The Montour goes to the west of the city. It also connects to the Panhandle Trail into West Virginia.
Also, there's a book called The Cleveland - Pittsburgh Connector, that provides cues for a route between the two cities and the Adventure Cycling Northern Tier route.

And since I've mentioned ACA, this map segment might be of interest to you:

https://www.adventurecycling.org/rout...?pg=detail&s=8
 
Old 07-07-08, 07:34 AM
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This Adventure Cycling Underground Railroad "Erie to Pittsburgh Spur" will get you from Pittsburgh to Beaver Falls to Mercer. West of Mercer, PA, the roads get flatter and traffic is not too bad. I drive from Mercer to Greenville to Jamestown, PA once per year. West of Jamestown, you can ride US 322 all the way west to Cleveland. Cleveland Touring Club has some rides west from Jamestown. https://www.clevelandtouringclub.org/ https://www.clevelandtouringclub.org/..._jamestown.pdf

https://www.adventurecycling.org/rout...ndrailroad.cfm
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Old 07-07-08, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by neilfein
This is in the planning/ dreaming stage, but does anyone know of a good Pittsburgh to Chicago route? This is one possibility for next summer.

One possibility is to join up with the American Discovery Trail in western Ohio.
Libby and I rode out of Ellwood City up to Meadville along PA Bike Route "A". We were headed up to Oswego, NY but things didn't pan out. The "A" Route follows US Route 19 up to Meadville -- not heavily travelled, most of the traffic was on I-79 which runs parallel. The stretch we rode would have been called "pleasant" if I hadn't had gastric problems and the heat index wasn't 105.

Route A also connects to the Northern Tier at Erie, PA.

Judy
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Old 07-16-08, 01:31 PM
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What do y'all think of this?

Pittsburgh to Akron, OH - 100 miles
Akron to Toledo - 150 miles
Toledo to Battle Creek, MI - 100 miles
Battle Creek to Muskegon, 100 miles
Muskegon/ Milwaukee ferry across Lake Michigan
Milwaukee to Chicago - 100 miles (via Milwaukee?)

=550 miles

Edits in italics: I'd like to take the SS Barger from Luddington to Mantowoc instead of the Muskegon/Milwaukee ferry (it's a coal steamer converted into a ferry, sounds cool) but that adds 100 miles.
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Last edited by neilfein; 07-16-08 at 01:41 PM. Reason: Updating itinerary
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Old 07-24-08, 10:23 PM
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A blog that discusses a route from Indiana to Chicago.

https://ross-scoperta.blogspot.com/
 
Old 07-25-08, 08:25 AM
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I thinks that's way, way too many miles per day. It might be do-able if you've trained up real good (and I mean real good), we're talking basically flat terrain, and that you don't decide to take the kitchen sink like little birdies tell me that certain folks named Neil have a tendency to do.
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Old 07-25-08, 09:39 AM
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I'm thinking that this is doable - in two to three weeks. Tom S thinks it'd be a death march. So, back tot he drawing board... Kitty Hawk, NC to DC is a possibility - if I can figure out how to get my bike to Kitty Hawk from Fayetteville without renting a car. (I don't drive.)

Lessee... the tour needs to be around 300 miles, and be accesible by train on either end. Leaving from or arriving at Pittsburgh or DC would be nice; I'd like to continue where I left off (or started from) on my last tour. DC to New York City would work; that's about 310 miles or so, and I could take the Cape May - High Point trail for at least some of it. Getting across northern NJ to the George Washington Bridge is a pain, though.
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Old 07-25-08, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by neilfein
I'm thinking that this is doable - in two to three weeks. Tom S thinks it'd be a death march. So, back tot he drawing board... Kitty Hawk, NC to DC is a possibility - if I can figure out how to get my bike to Kitty Hawk from Fayetteville without renting a car. (I don't drive.)

Lessee... the tour needs to be around 300 miles, and be accesible by train on either end. Leaving from or arriving at Pittsburgh or DC would be nice; I'd like to continue where I left off (or started from) on my last tour. DC to New York City would work; that's about 310 miles or so, and I could take the Cape May - High Point trail for at least some of it. Getting across northern NJ to the George Washington Bridge is a pain, though.
How about just leaving from home (Edison, NJ right?) and riding to Washington DC, or better yet take the train to DC and ride home. It is only a bit over 200 miles, but you could easily take a less direct route to increase the mileage to whatever you want. If you need a place to stay in the Baltimore area let me know.
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Old 07-25-08, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1
How about just leaving from home (Edison, NJ right?) and riding to Washington DC, or better yet take the train to DC and ride home. It is only a bit over 200 miles, but you could easily take a less direct route to increase the mileage to whatever you want. If you need a place to stay in the Baltimore area let me know.
Thanks for the offer, I may take you up on it.

I think the DC to NJ/NYC will be my backup if I can't make a tour elsewhere work logistically.
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Old 07-25-08, 12:22 PM
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Pittsburgh to Akron, OH - 100 miles
Akron to Toledo - 150 miles
Toledo to Battle Creek, MI - 100 miles
Battle Creek to Muskegon, 100 miles
Muskegon/ Milwaukee ferry across Lake Michigan
Milwaukee to Chicago - 100 miles (via Milwaukee?)
So you're not planing on a 5 day trip with each of the above as a single day's millage. Sonds like youre just using the towns/cities as place markers for discussion purposes. You had me worried there for a momemt Neil. One day you do your first century and the next you're planning 5 back to back centuries in a row!
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Old 07-25-08, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by freemti
So you're not planing on a 5 day trip with each of the above as a single day's millage. Sonds like youre just using the towns/cities as place markers for discussion purposes. You had me worried there for a momemt Neil. One day you do your first century and the next you're planning 5 back to back centuries in a row!
I'd still like to do this, I just don't have the time right now. I could break it into two smaller tours - Pittsburgh to Toledo, Toledo to Chicago via Michigan, something like that.

Maybe I should have called this thread "Neil F dithers about what to do next summer".
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Old 07-25-08, 01:33 PM
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8-9 days of riding:

Kitty Hawk to Newport News via Virginia Beach - 90 miles (maybe)
Virginia Beach to Richmond - 60 miles
Richmond to Fredricksburg - 75 miles
Fredricksburg to DC - 60 miles

According to NC DOT, there are trails and bikeable roads from Kitty Hawk up along the shore through the Outer Banks, up almost to Virginia. If the Virginia shore is similar, I can cut out a lot of miles going around Ablemarle Sound. If not, this leg could balloon up to twice the mileage easily. In that event, this becomes more of an inland tour.
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Old 07-25-08, 01:49 PM
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I thinking about what to do next late spring too. A cross country trip, while something I want to do, is not on the cards yet. Work situation too dicey to take 2 months off as a sabatical/leave of absense deal and trying to do a trans-am in just 30+ days of regular vacation days seems to be way too ambitious as well as probably not too fun.

I'm thinking about shiping bike to Pittsburgh, flying out and taking the bike PA V route back, probably a 7 day+ trip, or....

Ship bike to Portland ME, fly up, take ACA Atlantic route down to Pennsy, haven't figured the days on that, but still < 2 weeks.

Another Idea is to do a Great Lakes tour of some flavor, with or without entering Canada.

As much as I like to think I would camp, I'd probably make it a credit card tour in all cases

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Old 07-25-08, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by freemti
As much as I like to think I would camp, I'd probably make it a credit card tour in all cases
Keep in mind you can do a combination of camping and credit card nights.
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Old 07-25-08, 06:48 PM
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Originally Posted by neilfein
According to NC DOT, there are trails and bikeable roads from Kitty Hawk up along the shore through the Outer Banks, up almost to Virginia. If the Virginia shore is similar, I can cut out a lot of miles going around Ablemarle Sound. If not, this leg could balloon up to twice the mileage easily. In that event, this becomes more of an inland tour.
I may be misreading your message, but I think the roads in NC end at Corolla, so it appears impossible to ride a paved route from Kitty Hawk along the Outer Banks to VA. Instead, you may have to travel west from Kitty Hawk and ride north along the western side of the Currituck Sound.
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Old 07-25-08, 09:50 PM
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no no! I want to know how to do this!
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Old 07-25-08, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by neilfein
Keep in mind you can do a combination of camping and credit card nights.
The drawback is that you are lugging around camping gear and not using it.
 
Old 07-25-08, 11:11 PM
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Originally Posted by neilfein
Lessee... the tour needs to be around 300 miles, and be accesible by train on either end. Leaving from or arriving at Pittsburgh or DC would be nice; I'd like to continue where I left off (or started from) on my last tour. DC to New York City would work; that's about 310 miles or so, and I could take the Cape May - High Point trail for at least some of it. Getting across northern NJ to the George Washington Bridge is a pain, though.
https://www.biketouring.net/rides/bos-dc/index.html

Or go around Manhattan:

https://www.adventurecycling.org/rout...?pg=detail&s=2
 
Old 07-25-08, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by freemti
I thinks that's way, way too many miles per day. It might be do-able if you've trained up real good (and I mean real good), we're talking basically flat terrain, and that you don't decide to take the kitchen sink like little birdies tell me that certain folks named Neil have a tendency to do.
Certain folks learned a lesson carrying a travel guitar around.
 

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