Author Topic: Jacksonville, FL to New York City, NY  (Read 1159 times)

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Offline Erick

Jacksonville, FL to New York City, NY
« on: April 01, 2012, 04:58:18 pm »
I finished the Pacific Coast Highway route in December and now I'm planning a trip from Jacksonville, FL to New York City starting on April 10th.  What are the campgrounds like on the Atlantic Coast?  Did you stick to the ACA route??
« Last Edit: April 02, 2012, 12:12:32 am by Erick »

Offline indyfabz

Re: Jacksonville, FL to New York City, NY
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2012, 02:13:29 pm »
Don't think you are going to find many/any campgrounds on route between the Conshohocken, PA area and NYC. If you have the time, consider bagging the ACA spur from Lambertville, NJ to NYC, which ultimately involves a train ride into the city. Stay on the main route to the Middletown, NY area and then head to NYC using a combination of NY Bike Routes 17 & 9. (Route 17 goes through Port Jervis, NY as does the ACA route.) The trip north up the Delaware River to Delaware Water Gap, PA and through the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is very nice. While the campground at Bull's Island north of Stockton, NJ is closed this year, there are other camping opportunities. The campground at Worthington State Forest is great. You might even see a bear up that way. Last October we just missed seeing one during a day ride up there.  (There are bear boxes available at the group sites.)

As a general rule, expect to pay a lot to stay at a campground, at least in the northeast. For example, the non-resident camping fee for NJ state parks is $25/night. Private campgrounds can be much more. Driftstone on the Delaware that is shown on the ACA map on the PA side of the river above Belvidere, NJ, will set you back between $36-$40/night, depending on the time of the year. The KOA outside of Port Jervis is almost $45. Still cheaper than a motel.

Offline litespeed

Re: Jacksonville, FL to New York City, NY
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2012, 03:08:06 pm »
Here is my route, perfected over 5 trips, from Jacksonville to New York City: US 17 to almost Savannah. You can skirt around Savannah by taking Dean Forest Road, SR307, to Port Wentworth and go over the old bridge. From Hardeeville SC continue on US17 and the old highway alongside the interstate until it ends. Then go over I95 and up through Yemassee and Hendersonville to Walterboro. From Walterboro go out 17 a few miles to Sidney's Rd. and go up it to 61. Ride 61 into Charleston then left on 17 and over the bridges. Immediately after the Arthur Ravenal Bridge turn right on 703 to Rifle Range Road and take it through Mt. Pleasant.

This all sounds a bit roundabout but the stretches of 17 and 17A south of Charleston and Summerville and 17 through Mt. Pleasant are truly bad stretches of road - high speed narrow two lane, totally shoulderless and heavily trafficked.

After Mt. Pleasant get back on 17 and follow it to North Carolina. You can avoid the worst of Wilmington by taking 211 to delightful Southport and taking the ferry. Then go up through the beaches to Oleander Drive and skirting around Wilmington to the east. At Jacksonville NC finally get off 17 and take 24 and 12 to the ferry at Cedar Island. Try to arrive for the 3:30 ferry so you don't get in Ocracoke after dark. Avoid the crummy overpriced motels in Morehead City by staying at the fine Forestry Service campground at Cedar Point.

I go up through the Outer Banks to the bridge back to the mainland after Kitty Hawk then up to the ferry at Currituck. From Knotts Island I take back roads into Virginia Beach and the Chesapeake Bridge-Tunnel. They like you to call ahead for a ride across in a maintenance truck. I stop at the Greek diner a block west of the toll plaza and call from there before eating. You pay the toll.

US13 lacks shoulders after Accomac so I get off around there and ride back roads to the east up to Snow Hill MD. Then you can either take 113 up to Millsboro and over to Lewes or 50 to Ocean City and up the coast. Take the Lewes ferry to Cape May. From Cape May just go up US9. The Bridge over the Mulica River near New Gretna might not be finished necessitating a detour on 50 to the west through Egg Harbor. Otherwise just ride the shoulder of the Garden State Parkway for the 2 1/2 miles.

At Toms River get off 9 and angle towards the coast. DON"T take 37 east. The long bridge does not allow bicycles on the roadway. You can get into New York City by riding the ferry from Atlantic Highlands or, on off hours and weekends, take the train into Manhattan from Long Branch.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2012, 04:22:52 pm by litespeed »

Offline indyfabz

Re: Jacksonville, FL to New York City, NY
« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2012, 04:16:02 pm »
From Cape May just go up US9. The Bridge over the Mulica River near New Gretna might not be finished necessitating a detour on 50 to the west through Egg Harbor. Otherwise just ride the shoulder of the Garden State Parkway for the 2 1/2 miles.

50 is way south of New Gretna. Are you thinking of the long, flat bridge over the Great Egg Inlet that used to carry U.S. 9? As of last year, I don't think it was open. Heading south, U.S. 9 combines with the GSP at Somers Point as a detour. I don't believe that section of the GSP is open to bikes.

Personally, I can't think of a more miserable road to ride in that area than U.S. 9. During the summer there is heavy traffic. Lots of businesses along the route, so people are constantly turning in front of you into parking lots yapping on their phones despite NJ's hand held cell phone ban. The GF's parents have a house in Avalon. When we ride down there we pretty much have to get on U.S. 9 for a few miles. Can't stand it. You are better off riding up "Ocean Drive" (follow the sea gull signs) through the various towns and across the various inlets. Wildwood/N. Wildwood, Stone Harbor, Avalon and Ocean City have some wide boulevards with bike lanes, and the traffic is more controlled. In the tidal areas between towns there are a lot of wading birds and ospreys. If it's early enough, you can also incorporate some beachfront boardwalks, which are interesting for one who has never seen them. (The Wildwood boardwalk is particularly campy.) Once you pop out of Ocean City using the bridge and causeway at the north end, you can make a left onto SR 152, work you way through Somers Point and get back on U.S. 9 if you so desire.

Offline litespeed

Re: Jacksonville, FL to New York City, NY
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2012, 04:47:35 pm »
I have ridden US9 a number of times and never had a bit of trouble.  In fact, I recommend it to everyone. Plenty of shoulder, lots of services and all the traffic is on the GSP. In fact 9 is virtually deserted for long stretches. I used to ride it all the way to South Amboy until they stopped the ferry there. I also used to ride the shoulder of the GSP for the 2 1/2 miles that it is also US 9 over the Mullica river until they began the new bridge construction. Now I get off on 50 at Seaville and ride 50 through Mays Landing and Egg Harbor City and continue on 563 and 542 back to New Gretna and US9.

Incidentally, I am a native New Jerseyite - Morris County. We had a few acres in the woods with goats, chickens, horses, etc. I had to be home every day at 5:00PM to milk the goats (my father milked them in the morning) and feed the chickens. I graduated from Morristown High School in '58.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2012, 05:12:21 pm by litespeed »