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Ride / Trip Reports Short solo cruise? Long-distance solo or group tour? Tell us what it was like...

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Old 11-26-2012, 10:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Looking for Advice on CO->MI Trip

I am planning a trip from Colorado to Michigan (when it gets warmer!), and wanted some advice on the best route that avoids the interstate.

Google Maps suggests US 30 E, US 6 E, or US 136 E

Anyone have experience on these roads between CO and MI and can comment on which one might be best from a scenic perspective / low traffic?
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:52 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I lived in CO for a little bit, and rode back and forth between CO and WI a few times. All I can say is that there's not a lot to see really. Just pick a road going east and hit it. You might want to slab it across Nebraska though. You could go north to SD that's pretty scenic.
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:55 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by cjpeltz View Post
I am planning a trip from Colorado to Michigan (when it gets warmer!), and wanted some advice on the best route that avoids the interstate.

Google Maps suggests US 30 E, US 6 E, or US 136 E

Anyone have experience on these roads between CO and MI and can comment on which one might be best from a scenic perspective / low traffic?
Not sure of your time frame, preferred riding roads (highways/secondary rds. as opposed to freeways), preferred accommodations (camping or motels/hotels) and where in Mi that you're heading to... I just picked Saginaw as it was about in the center of the state...

I haven't been west of Minn. on a bike, so I can only make an educated guess... I have been up to the Minn/Wi/Mi area on the Bonnie a couple of times and combined staying with friends, motels and camping... and have thoroughly enjoyed both trips... I was thinking of heading out west from Minn. last year and did some research on routes & accommodations via the internet and each state's tourism office (great resource!). Alas, I couldn't make that trip but I do find the Black Hills as an interesting destination...and looking at google maps, it's not that far from your location.. Heck, you might have already covered that area... and from what I found out with my research, there isn't a whole lot east of the Black Hills area, to see until you get over into the north woods area of Minn.. So that's probably going to be just a blast on through portion of the trip...

I really enjoyed riding in northern Minn. and around Lake Superior. And though pretty much flat, northern Wi. and across the upper peninsula of Mi., across the Mackinaw Bridge was cool... I went down the eastern side of the Mi. mainland on US23 because I wanted to see Lake Huron and was heading to the Detroit area... It was a good ride... wet but good... But I've heard that the west coast around the Sleeping Bear Dunes area is really beautiful...

I would suggest that if you will be doing any camping along the way and you're trip is planned for the peak summer season, reservation may be needed for state park campgrounds, as they fill really quickly... Even on weekdays... I tried to get a spot at Tettegouche SP on Lake Superior on a Wed. afternoon in July and they were booked... The Whispering Pines motel at the intersection of Minn. 1 & 61 is a really cool little spot and worked out fine...

I hope this has helped out....

Here's a link that may give you some ideas for a route:

http://maps.google.com/maps?saddr=Wi...8,9,10&t=m&z=7

Last edited by SCbonneville; 11-30-2012 at 07:58 AM.
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Old 12-04-2012, 01:03 AM   #4 (permalink)
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CJ,
W/ the exception of E. CO, I've been all over NE, ND, SD, MN, and MI, some by bike and a lot by car. So much of your choice depends on time and preference. For me, about anything rural works as I enjoy cruising through the small towns, seeing the farmland, etc. If you want a bit more adventurous, I'd head N toward Rapid City, through the NE panhandle....long hills, often straight roads, but the traffic count goes way down....along with services. DON'T go clear into northern ND as they're in an oil boom...no motels, high prices, bad roads. We took a good road into Sturgis from the E a few years ago, Hwy 34. It has a big S jog so you might want to head N at Howes.
I know I'm old-fashioned, but I really love having a paper map, visualizing what I'm shooting for, what part of the state I want to see, etc... and I get a better feel for how major a road I'm going to use. If you have time and sun....it's fun to just meander in the general direction you want to go, but in SD that can burn up a lot of time and you might hit a town with no place to stay....esp. in the north.
Anyway, that would be my choice....N to the Black Hills/Badlands, edge N across SD and MN aiming, ultimately for Duluth, and, in agreement with SCBonne, ride around Superior on the N side, and on to wherever in MI you're heading.

If you're more the farmer type...follow the NE/KS border (got now idea which roads), take Hwy. 2 (the only road across the state with hills) all the way across IA (I grew up about halfway across) to the Mississippi, follow it N (might be high traffic, but there are some access roads that can be quite scenic) clear to WI, and angle NE across the state to the UP. I rode bicycle in SW WI quite a bit and there are a lot of paved county roads that meander quite nicely. Stop in Green Bay and check out Packer stadium....I hate them, but love the ambiance.

Any questions just let me know....and have fun planning.
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