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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    105

    Ideas for 2015 short tours

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    I've been doing a short, week long tour each summer for the last three summers. Across Ohio twice, 2012 and again in 2013 then rode the C&O and GAP in 2014. This summer I'm thinking of crossing Indiana on a ride in the spring and later in the summer riding across Missouri on the Katy Trail. I'd really like to be riding the Northern Tier for my 50th year but that isn't in the cards for this year.

    Crossing Indiana would be my first multi-day ride where I'm not traveling mostly by riding rails to trails. I actually won't be traveling much by bike trail at all since the only bike trail we will come across is in Columbus, Indiana. I've mapped it out and now have to share it with a friend who is considering joining me. The route isn't set in stone. We are roughly looking at crossing from Vincennes, Indiana to Brookville, routing ourselves through the northern part of the Hoosier National Forest.

    Any ideas or warnings about crossing Indiana are welcome!

    Thanks
    _________
    1996 Kona Kula-14
    2011 Surly LHT-46

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Posts
    2
    Quote Originally Posted by Hartmame View Post
    I've been doing a short, week long tour each summer for the last three summers. Across Ohio twice, 2012 and again in 2013 then rode the C&O and GAP in 2014. This summer I'm thinking of crossing Indiana on a ride in the spring and later in the summer riding across Missouri on the Katy Trail. I'd really like to be riding the Northern Tier for my 50th year but that isn't in the cards for this year.

    Crossing Indiana would be my first multi-day ride where I'm not traveling mostly by riding rails to trails. I actually won't be traveling much by bike trail at all since the only bike trail we will come across is in Columbus, Indiana. I've mapped it out and now have to share it with a friend who is considering joining me. The route isn't set in stone. We are roughly looking at crossing from Vincennes, Indiana to Brookville, routing ourselves through the northern part of the Hoosier National Forest.

    Any ideas or warnings about crossing Indiana are welcome!

    Thanks
    No comments on Indiana specifically - having never ridden there - but it sounds like a great ride! When are you looking to go?
    ~Catherine

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    IL/FL
    Posts
    3,863
    I'm in IL and the three cautions I'll offer is beware of wind, it can be relentless; and riding in rural areas watch for dogs, they can be relentless as well; lastly watch for idiots in big pickup trucks in the rural areas... they seem to think it's fun to run us into ditches and/or "roll coal" at us.

    Electra Townie 7D

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    983
    In addition to what everyone has mentioned, I would consider the heat/humidity to be a big concern. Most folks will tell you that Indiana is flat with no hills, but depending on what parts of the state you decide to ride, there can definitely be some hills.... I lived in Indiana for many years, and love the people so enjoy whatever route you decide to ride.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    105
    Quote Originally Posted by GirlEatsBike View Post
    No comments on Indiana specifically - having never ridden there - but it sounds like a great ride! When are you looking to go?
    ~Catherine
    I'm looking mid to late May or early June.
    _________
    1996 Kona Kula-14
    2011 Surly LHT-46

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
    Posts
    5,226
    I can't comment on Indiana but I tour often and can recommend for future trips the Natchez Trace, Vermont, hill country of Texas (especially in early spring when the bluebonnets are in bloom) and the Blue Ridge Parkway (must be ready for mountains, though).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    105
    Tulip-
    Would these be week long rides or longer? Or maybe I should ask the number of miles each would ride need?
    _________
    1996 Kona Kula-14
    2011 Surly LHT-46

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Columbus, IN
    Posts
    221
    I live in Columbus, Indiana. Yes, we have some decent hills in Southern Indiana. When I try to venture out beyond my house, I always get on "Ride With GPS" and do searches around where I'm riding so I can see the roads that other cyclists are riding. We have a lot of "County Roads" that you'd think would be great (long, straight, etc.) but cars will do upwards of 50 or 60 mph on these roads so I try to avoid those types of roads (I presume other riders do too) so I think looking at Ride with GPS gives me a little bit of comfort that if other cyclists are using those routes its OK.

    I've done a ride called the "Round Barn Ride" that took me through the Northern Part of the Hoosier Forest (and it had some really nice rural roads) so you might look for that one on Ride with GPS. I see a lot of bikers riding on Highway 46 (and it has nice wide shoulders in some places) but then again in other places it has narrow shoulders, and its really hilly and curvy and cars just FLY on it so I personally don't like to ride on 46. It's part of the route for Race Across America so its not undoable on a bike, I guess its just dependent upon your comfort level. There are nice roads that are more rural that can still get you across that area. The People Trail can help cut off part of that route cross 46, but not all of it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    105
    Thank you Aromig, I'll check it out.
    _________
    1996 Kona Kula-14
    2011 Surly LHT-46

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,957
    Being in Indiana, I concur with Aromig. Southern Indiana is a beautiful part of the state to ride in, but you do have to be cautious of your route for the reason she mentioned. There are some VERY hilly roads in that part of the state (a couple of counties are sometimes referred to as the "Little Smokey Mountains" for good reason) - though if you are doing tours every year I am sure you will be up for that. Also, think about dogs. I am sure this isn't a new consideration for you, but in some parts of Indiana the dogs do run free. In other parts of the state you can ride for miles on country roads without seeing a loose dog, it just depends on your location.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    105
    I've actually never had trouble with dogs yet. I'm from Ohio so I don't think the wind or humidity are that different from what I'm used to dealing with and I've been doing some extra climbing to prepare. Looks like a good part of day two will have no access to food. I'll probably end up eating pb&j on the side of the road. I'll be looking for some good food to fill up on when I get into Columbus. Catrin, aromig any suggestions?
    _________
    1996 Kona Kula-14
    2011 Surly LHT-46

 

 

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