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Choosing a route

Old 08-26-14, 11:07 AM
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Choosing a route

How do you guys/girls choose a route? I've been dreaming about doing a tour from my house to Wellsley Island which is in the Thousand Islands. The hardest part looks to be from my house to Scranton Pa where I would pick up Rt 11 which would take me most of the way to my destination. I've never done anything like this before and am slightly nervous regarding route options/avoiding civilization etc. Ideally, I'd like to camp enroute but I guess a motel would work as well. My biggest hurdle is that I'm diabetic and worry about running about food so that's a small hurdle.

Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!
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Old 08-26-14, 11:29 AM
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I used to get to a foreign airport and in the 1st towns Book shop I buy a Map.. 91 I took a ferry from CPH to Poland ..

a passenger on the boat with me gave me their Map ..

you are staying in the US .. you can always stop and ask Directions ..



plan to bring snacks for when your blood Sugar drops too low & energy lapses ..

reads like your trip is in the fairly densely settled part of the US.

Last edited by fietsbob; 08-26-14 at 11:34 AM.
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Old 08-26-14, 01:56 PM
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Have you looked at the signed PA bike routes? Not the best in some places, but not bad in others. U.S. 11 in the Scranton area would be miserable riding, IMO. Look at Google Maps Street View. Probably in some other places, too.

As for finding campgrounds, you can search Google Maps for "Campgrounds near [insert name of town]". Zoom out if you get no results in the immediate vicinity of the town you chose.
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Old 08-26-14, 05:29 PM
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Use www.ridewithgps.com you can sign up for free. Point and click on the start and the finish point and let it draw the route for you. You can see the profile(where the climbs and descents are and how much vertical). From there you can click and drag the route around and watch the profile change so both the mileage and the climbing for the day/s match what you are looking for. Make sure to click Avoid Highways and then it won't try to route you down interstates. If you click on Cycling it will try to keep you as much of any highways as it can. You can click on Bike Paths(upper right part of the screen) and it will highlight the bike paths that are out there. A dotted/dashed green means the path follows a road while a solid green line means the trail is standalone/separate from the road. When you zoom in close enough you can the name of the trail and the doing a search on the trail on startpage.com will fill in the details as to whether it is paved or gravel.

Mapping out a route is easy, sticking to route can be another issue. I'm almost home from a my trip, over 5100 miles right now, and I can't tell you how many times I've changed my plans along the way for one reason or another.

Remember civilization isn't bad. I've spent pretty much every night camped out very close to town/in town. I don't try to camp out in big towns. I did camp out in Quincy, IL and Annapolis, MD, but nothing any bigger than that this year. Civilization is where you meet the people that can actually make the trip what it is. I've been amazed at the difference between the past two years and this year as to how the people have changed. I couldn't get anyone to say anything to me the past two years, this year...they couldn't shut up I'm not sure what the difference has been. I haven't did anything different other than wearing a cycling jersey versus a tshirt the past two years. Ignore the media, people aren't to be feared...the media is to be turned off and ignored. The only bad thing about civilization is you have to plan for more time to accommodate the stoplights and slow moving traffic.
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Old 08-26-14, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by RobE30
How do you guys/girls choose a route? I've been dreaming about doing a tour from my house to Wellsley Island which is in the Thousand Islands. The hardest part looks to be from my house to Scranton Pa where I would pick up Rt 11 which would take me most of the way to my destination.
If you're riding from home, you can familiarise yourself with possible routes right now.

Look at a paper map, look at Google maps, pick a route to a point 20 or 30 or 50 km out ... and cycle it as an out-and-back this coming Saturday.

Bring the paper map with you.

If you get part-way out there and discover that you really don't like the road you're riding on ... check your paper map for a Plan B, and try that. If it isn't too good ... check your paper map for a Plan C, and try that. You might even want to take several rides over a few weekends, and explore all your options to a point about 50 km out. That will get you started without the commitment of a whole tour. And you can use the infomation you've figured out about road types, etc. for the rest of your tour.

Pay attention to what's around you when you ride ... look for campgrounds, motels, etc. Look for convenience stores for food and water, look for parks with water fountains, look for bakeries, restaurants, grocery stores.

At some point, you might even try an overnight tour.


And regarding food, these test rides will give you an idea of what you need to eat each day. Bring lots of food in your handlebar bag when you go, and keep nibbling throughout the day.
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Old 08-26-14, 08:51 PM
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Thanks for the ideas! Obviously, this is new to me. I've planned quite a few routes via mapmyride but the que sheets that I can print w that, are terrible. I have plenty of time to figure out a route as I'm planning to do this next September.

Regarding rt11 near Scranton, I think I'll either follow the Delaware river as best I can or follow the Susquehanna up as far as I can. I enjoy planning via a map and look forward to my adventure.

Once I pick a route, I just need to pick a bike, Volpe equipped w original Blackburn racks, 84 Trek 715 w original Blackburn racks or my 2014 Specialized AWOL that I haven't gotten racks for yet.

This is will be fun!
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Old 08-27-14, 05:25 AM
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Originally Posted by RobE30
....to Wellsley Island which is in the Thousand Islands. ...
parallel wanderings: The Thousand Islands.:

Holy Crap This Country is Just Too Wide: Day 58: Past the Thousand Islands: Adolphustown to Ivy Lea

From wedding to wedding, 2008: Day 50: Rain delay?: Northampton to Brookline

crazyguyonabike.com: Bicycle Touring: Grantville PA or thereabouts to Thousand Islands, NY, by Terry Parsell

Boston to San Francisco - 2012: Day 6 - Scranton, PA: Steamtown National Historic Site
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Old 08-27-14, 05:41 AM
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If you get over to Easton, cross into Phillipsburg, NJ and ride up river to Belvedere. Beautiful stretch with very little traffic. Then cross into PA and ride up that side to Delaware Water Gap, PA. Another beautiful stretch. Only catch is that there are basically no services between Belvedere and DWG except for a small c-store/gas station in Portland. There is a season campground (Driftstone on the Delaware), but it's expensive. There is another campground in Portland or Turkey Ridge Road, but it sounds like a dump from the reviews. Another option with fewer hills is to get over to U.S. 46 from Belvedere, take that to Columbia, NJ and then cross the pedestrian/bike bridge to Portland. U.S. 46 can be busy at times, but it's not that bad. There is a shoulder, but it was rough in places when I rode it a few years ago. There are a few more services on that side as well as another expensive campground.

If you want to continue up the river, the ride through the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is great. There is a walkway along I-80 from DWG to the NJ side of the river, and then you start on Old Mine Rd. Nice state forest campground about 3 miles up Old Mine--Worthington State Forest. The riding all the way to Port Jervis, NY is nice.

All this is really out of the way, though.

BTW...Is that old 7-UP sign with the radiant sun still hanging in Topton? I believe it was for a News Agency.
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Old 09-07-14, 09:54 AM
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I finally went through and read those links, I'm hooked. I'm really hoping I can make this happen next September
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