Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 12 Old May 26th, 2011, 9:33 pm Thread Starter
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Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Summer vacation this year will take us on the LT to several states we haven't been to on a motorcycle before: PA, NY, MD, DE, NJ, CT, RI, MA, NH, VT, and ME. We've been to all those states by car at one time or another, but are looking for route suggestions that keep us off the interstates, show us the local flavor, points of interest, etc. I'd appreciate any route and must-see suggestions.

I recognize riding through that many states in 8-9 days and trying to see "everything" may be biting off more than we can chew. We tend to stop and see anything out of the ordinary, or of historic interest (local/national), and those things take time. We aren't in a hurry, so maybe we won't see all of these states this time.

One thing you don't need to suggest is the road up Mt. Washington. Tried it once in a car. On a nice day. No way.

Thanks.

Howard Schisler
2015 BMW K1600GTL
2009 BMW K1200LT - 60k miles
2012 BMW F650GS (sold)
2005 BMW K1200LT - "Gray Ghost", traded at 120k miles
2005 Honda Shadow 650 (sold)
AMA, IBA, BMW MOA. CCRs: Braselton 2006, Osage Beach 2007, Duluth 2012


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post #2 of 12 Old May 27th, 2011, 3:59 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Howard:
This ride was posted in Ride Tales a week or so ago by rbloch. IMHO it is one of the best rides in VT. You can also just get on Route 100 anywhere and ride north or south and be in heaven:

Nothing too dramatic here but yesterday in Vermont was just about perfect - clear skies, low 70s. At about 2:30 PM, I was just about to take a break at work and do a little more planning of my June western ride, when I got a text from a neighbor, Peter Moses, advising me that he was firing up the Streetfighter at 3:00 and heading out for a ride with two other neighbors.

In about a nanosecond I was out of the office and on the RT.

We met at 3:00 and proceeded on back roads down to Bristol, VT for the start of a nice run over the Appalachian Gap one of the area's best twistie runs - dramatic mountain curves although still showing the effects of the winter's frost heaves . It's still "early Spring" in northern VT so the forests were that wonderful soft light green and the streams and waterfalls are all gushing. We blasted up over the Gap, down into Waitsfield, then headed south on Route 100 through Granville Gulf to Rochester, then over Brandon Gap, with its fabulous high speed sweepers on smooth nearly new pavement (which is a big deal in VT). We stopped for a cold drink in Brandon in the sun on the patio of Cafe Provence. Then the perfect run for home - Route 73 east, through more fantastic sweepers, a few hairpins -- a spirited run along Otter Creek then up and over the hills. At Route 30 we headed north to the nice surprise that the repaving had been done all the way to Middlebury, A fairly straight run but with dramatic views in every direction - late afternoon sun with the Green Mts to the east - Adirondacks to the west -

A final exclamation point to the afternoon was a few more miles of "best around" sweepers on little used Rt 23 - Weybridge - through some of the most beautiful land in the world.

7:30 - we say good-bye at the foot of my driveway and home for dinner - wife smiling almost as much as I was - all in all a very nice afternoon.
__________

Ray Rau
Brewster, NY
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post #3 of 12 Old May 27th, 2011, 8:12 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

If you are in CT and want historical, I suggest Mystic Seaport and just up the road is Submarine Force Library & Museum.

Jack D. (Southern Connecticut)
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post #4 of 12 Old May 28th, 2011, 9:56 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Howard,
You gotta get to Cape Cod but do it mid-week. The traffic on weekends is just nasty.
If you get all the way out to Provincetown don't be surprised it now a haven for an alternate lifestyle. Last summer I saw two great looking blondes in a red convertible but soon realized they wouldn’t be interested in me!

I used to spend summers in Wellfleet which hasn't changed much in decades.

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post #5 of 12 Old May 30th, 2011, 4:06 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

DE and NJ with summer heat seem a little South of the route to New England! I've ridden US 20 in place of the NY thruway and US 6 across mid PA. Have you been to Falling Waters in PA? Niagara Falls is always fun if you are in the area.

The Adirondacks, the winter Olympics site and Lake George area as you pass into VT. Lenox Mass area with Tanglewood, summer home of the Boston Symphony , and the Norman Rockwell museum close by if you run a little on I 90 and the Mass Tnpk coming from NY.

In CT not to far from Mystic is Abbots Lobster http://www.abbotts-lobster.com/

Do some overall planning on how you feel you would loop through New England states and more of us will chime in to suggest our favorite rides. A section of interstate to get through congestion to the more scenic areas should be considered.

Newport RI with large mansions and lots of neat places to eat.

Boston area is full of history, Kennedy museum etc.

With a GPS, no problem to run neat back roads and have an interesting destination.

Barnett

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post #6 of 12 Old May 30th, 2011, 7:27 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Thanks for the suggestions so far.

Some additional comments/thoughts:
  • We've been to various sites in New England over the years and probably won't be repeating those. (Boston and Springfield, MA, and Mystic Seaport come to mind) That said, the ride up the coast to Rhode Island (and the Newport area) is simply breathtaking and is a must-do, especially since we will be introducing two friends (on another bike) to this part of the country.
  • You asked about our planned route. At this point it's pretty loosey-goosey, and not likely to be firmed up very much. The overall "plan" is to spend a day in Hershey, PA then head for the coast, riding WAY around New York City, then up the coast of CT and RI and on into Maine, going as far as Kennebunkport. (We're Republicans ) The return trip will be inland, through VT, NH, and on home.
  • We'll try to stay off interstates as much as possible because this trip is about SEEING things, not GETTING THERE quickly.
  • Looking at maps today it seems unlikely we'll be able to hit all the states we are missing from our list in this part of the country. If that's the case we'll just have to go back!

Howard Schisler
2015 BMW K1600GTL
2009 BMW K1200LT - 60k miles
2012 BMW F650GS (sold)
2005 BMW K1200LT - "Gray Ghost", traded at 120k miles
2005 Honda Shadow 650 (sold)
AMA, IBA, BMW MOA. CCRs: Braselton 2006, Osage Beach 2007, Duluth 2012


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post #7 of 12 Old May 30th, 2011, 8:55 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Howard,

There is a nice paperback called Motorcycle Journeys through NEW ENGLAND, by Marty Berke. It is published by Whitehorse Press. It has a list of 25 rides throughout every state. You can find it for $20 at whitehorsepress.com . I have the third edition and a slightly older second edition. Just some updates on food and lodging stops in the third edition.

Take a look at the write up at Whitehorse Press and if you are interested PM me with an address and I'll send you the second edition.

I didn't see a trip date so drop a post if you are in the area, maybe we could meet somewhere as you go by.

John Baker

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post #8 of 12 Old May 31st, 2011, 2:15 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Howard,

I grew up in Massachusetts along the coast, lived in NH and now live in upstate NY. My suggestion would be to avoid CT, RI and MA along the coast. The traffic is just miserable. Take the time you would have spent in those states and head further north and east in Maine. The coastline there is absolutely spectacular....there is no comparison to southern New England.

Take I-81 north from Hershey and then head up through the Adirondacks, VT and NH on your way to the Maine coast. The scenery is much better and the roads and traffic are much better also. You'll spend 4-5 hours on the interstate but you'll put a lot of distance between you and the rest of the traffic in that time. You can take the back roads north from Hershey but the trip will be an all day event.

Kevin

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post #9 of 12 Old May 31st, 2011, 8:26 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnbaker15
Howard,

There is a nice paperback called Motorcycle Journeys through NEW ENGLAND, by Marty Berke. It is published by Whitehorse Press. It has a list of 25 rides throughout every state. You can find it for $20 at whitehorsepress.com . I have the third edition and a slightly older second edition. Just some updates on food and lodging stops in the third edition.

Take a look at the write up at Whitehorse Press and if you are interested PM me with an address and I'll send you the second edition.

I didn't see a trip date so drop a post if you are in the area, maybe we could meet somewhere as you go by.
You're very kind - thank you. PM sent.

We leave Friday, June 10. We have no clue what day we will be where; this is a no-itinerary trip, but I'll keep this in mind.

Howard Schisler
2015 BMW K1600GTL
2009 BMW K1200LT - 60k miles
2012 BMW F650GS (sold)
2005 BMW K1200LT - "Gray Ghost", traded at 120k miles
2005 Honda Shadow 650 (sold)
AMA, IBA, BMW MOA. CCRs: Braselton 2006, Osage Beach 2007, Duluth 2012


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post #10 of 12 Old May 31st, 2011, 8:31 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

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Originally Posted by kevincook
Howard,

I grew up in Massachusetts along the coast, lived in NH and now live in upstate NY. My suggestion would be to avoid CT, RI and MA along the coast. The traffic is just miserable. Take the time you would have spent in those states and head further north and east in Maine. The coastline there is absolutely spectacular....there is no comparison to southern New England.

Take I-81 north from Hershey and then head up through the Adirondacks, VT and NH on your way to the Maine coast. The scenery is much better and the roads and traffic are much better also. You'll spend 4-5 hours on the interstate but you'll put a lot of distance between you and the rest of the traffic in that time. You can take the back roads north from Hershey but the trip will be an all day event.

Kevin
This is good advice. I was stuck on the notion of riding up the coast through CT and RI because of a vague memory of a spectactular seaside road... somewhere in RI... and because I wanted to show our friends the Newport "cottages".

I'll give your idea serious consideration. It's always good to get alternative viewpoints.
Thanks.

Howard Schisler
2015 BMW K1600GTL
2009 BMW K1200LT - 60k miles
2012 BMW F650GS (sold)
2005 BMW K1200LT - "Gray Ghost", traded at 120k miles
2005 Honda Shadow 650 (sold)
AMA, IBA, BMW MOA. CCRs: Braselton 2006, Osage Beach 2007, Duluth 2012


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post #11 of 12 Old Jun 1st, 2011, 5:01 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Quote:
Originally Posted by kevincook
Howard,

I grew up in Massachusetts along the coast, lived in NH and now live in upstate NY. My suggestion would be to avoid CT, RI and MA along the coast. The traffic is just miserable. Take the time you would have spent in those states and head further north and east in Maine. The coastline there is absolutely spectacular....there is no comparison to southern New England.

Take I-81 north from Hershey and then head up through the Adirondacks, VT and NH on your way to the Maine coast. The scenery is much better and the roads and traffic are much better also. You'll spend 4-5 hours on the interstate but you'll put a lot of distance between you and the rest of the traffic in that time. You can take the back roads north from Hershey but the trip will be an all day event.

Kevin
Kevin/Howard

With all due respect, I-95 is not a road he has to use. Yes, on Friday eve, Saturday mornings, Sunday afternoons, and eve, the flow to New England is stop and go. This is mostly during July and August. From Hershey I 81 to 78 to 287 north to 87 north to 84 east to Hartford to Rt 2 to New London, would avoid all the dense traffic, around NYC. Also the Merritt Parkway via the Tappan Zee bridge (toll) would work depending on timing. I ride South Eastern CT all the time and mid week is not a problem on I-95. Rt 195 from Providence to the Cape is also OK except during weekend lodging change time. Main season is when school is out around June 20.

Last July the wife and I did a 4 day, 3 night, run to the Rangeley ME and Sugarloaf, That is basically North West Maine. We saw one moose, dozens of logging trucks, and experienced miles of beat up frost heaved roads. This was mostly North of RT 2. The Maine coast up to Bar Harbor is more fun.

Barnett

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Barney Rubble (rider); Wilma Flintstone (pillion).
2000LTC CHAMPAGNE, Most prominent color at early CCR's
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Last edited by wilbar00c; Jun 1st, 2011 at 5:33 pm.
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post #12 of 12 Old Jun 1st, 2011, 9:43 pm
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Re: Looking for Ride/Route Suggestions in New England

Barnett,

You are correct but those aren't very scenic roads. Also, Rangeley ME is definitely off the beaten path, I think those roads would be better on a GS.

I was thinking across the adirondacks, into VT and up Route 100 from Rutland for a while. Cross into NH and take the Kancamagus across NH to North Conway then head from there to the Maine coast to get some lobster.

Howard, the further north and east you go on the Maine coast the more spectacular the scenery will be.

Kevin

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