Adventure Cycling Association Forum

Bicycle Travel => Routes => Topic started by: destination on December 28, 2009, 06:11:46 pm

 
Title: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on December 28, 2009, 06:11:46 pm
Goal is to avoid high vehicle exhaust areas.

Northern Tier-ish -Late Spring/Early Summer

Bar Harbor
Brunswick
North Haverhill
Ticonderoga
Fort Erie (I am thinking this is going to be the busiest area?)
Lake Erie Connector

Then either:
Luther to Mackinaw City to Escanaba to Ashland Wis.
or
Luther to Luddington to Ferry to Manitowoc Wis.

Once in Wis. I should be able to connect these two destinations easily.
I still have to study the "Lake Erie connector" in detail as advised by a MIBIKER  (WWW.LMB.org)

Would these be the only maps that I would need?  11, 10, Lake Erie Connector, North Lake.

I have no idea how long this will take me, nor how long I will stay before I go back the same way I came.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: MIBIKER on December 28, 2009, 10:56:42 pm
Here are the mileages you were asking for.    Fort Erie, Ontario ( Buffalo,NY) to Marine, MI about 250 miles
                                                         
                                                              Marine, MI to Luther  360 miles

                                                              Luther to Mackinaw City  150 miles

                                                               Mackinaw City to Escanaba   150 miles
    The maps you listed are the maps you will need.  As far as Wisconsin goes they have a good set of maps designed for bicycle use.Check the Wisconsin web site  for the State Bicycle Coordinator 800, 872-2753 www.dot.wisconsin.gov/modes/bicycles/htm   I got this info out of AC yellow pages.
You should have a lay over day in Mackinaw City. the town is full of history.  Go to Mackinaw island.  No cars allowed.  The only way to get around on the island is walk, bike, or by horse.  To ride your bike around the island is about 8 miles.  You can not ride your bike across the Mackinaw Bridge.  There are two ways to get to St Ignace.  Have the Bridge Authority but you and your bike in a truck and drive you across the bridge,or take the ferry to the island.  Instead of returning to Mackinaw City take the ferry to St Ignace.  There are a lot of Tourist in town once schools are out.  I have been in Mackinaw City during the Labor day Weekend.  People are everywhere.  but with patience you can get around without to much problem.   
Once you get the maps you will be able to figure out your time table.  I would figure on riding about 50 miles a day at the start of your adventure. Then as you become stronger your mileage will increase. The maps will give you a lot more information then I can give you.  Another web site to check out is  WWW.michigantrails.org this is the web site to get a map of all the rail trials in the state.  There is a rail trail just east of Luther that goes Cadillac and another trail that goes  from Gaylord to Cheboygan then in to Mackinaw city.  Most of these trails are dirt but can be ridden with a wide tire touring bike ( 700 x 35 or 26 x 1.5).  I am a bicycle mechanic and live in southwest Michigan and I provide tec support to Michigan trails and greenways  bicycle tour in July.  I have been all over Michigan and know the back roads and rail trials that are good for biking.  Good luck with your research. 

Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: MIBIKER on December 29, 2009, 09:19:57 am
The maps you listed are the maps you will need for your trip.  Here is mileage you asked about. 

250 miles          Fort Eire, Ontario to Marine MI     

360Marine to Luther       
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on December 29, 2009, 10:02:22 am
Thank you!

Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: scarcellagv on January 10, 2010, 08:19:33 pm
If you have any plans to veer off the ACA maps in Wisconsin, see the web site for some very good bicycle maps for Wisconsin.

https://www.bfw.org/store/index.php?storecategory_id=306

I used their "Northern Section" map this past summer when I took a more northerly route from Dalbo, MN to Conover, WI, to shorten my ACA Northern Tier route this past summer.

Gary.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on January 11, 2010, 01:19:22 pm
Gary, Thank you. I did indeed bookmark that resource. Again, Thanks!
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: jimbo on January 12, 2010, 10:06:22 pm
Just a note on the Luther to Luddington leg. MIchigan DOT has bicycle maps for the entire state by region. I regret I can't locate the section for Luther to Luddington, but we used that map in 2008. We left Luddington in the early AM; stopped for breakfast and still made it to Luther for lunch so it is not a long leg. BUT.. the map they had showed the roads we used as paved and one stretch was not. That would not be much of an issue, except that back road was soft sand. They were all for the most part void of traffic. Check out our blog for that day at www.fllt.org/blog/  and look up Michigan under the "categories" menu on the right side of the page. We used the Erie Connector to traverse the state except for the Luther-Luddington leg. Not all roads  on the ACA map were great choices, some w/o shoulders and less than nice drivers. Do stop in the small town of Fairview and eat at Castaore Zangalotti's Flashback Cafe and finish lunch with "Martian Nuts". Be sure to ask the chef how he arrived at the name of his cafe and the "nuts".  Brown City is another good stop...home of the first RV. Careful in Bay City...we got lost trying to follow the ACA map. The ferry ride on the Badger is a not to be missed cultural experience. Be sure to play Bingo.  We ended our trip in southern  Maine at Wells.
Great time of year to plan a summer trip.  Good luck
JK
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: jimbo on January 12, 2010, 10:19:00 pm
Dang..something happened to the text in my last reply. Anyhow....for the 2nd time.

MI DOT has bike maps by region and we used one to do the Luddington-Luther leg in 2008.  It took about  4 hours I think. Longer than it should as one road marked "paved" was soft sand and it was slow and we got lost due to some flooding and closed roads. The Erie Connector route was generally good, though  some roads were w/o shoulders and less than nice drivers.  We did get lost in Bay City. Be sure to stop in Fairview at the Catamore Zangalotti Flashback Cafe and have "martian nuts". Brown City..home to the first RV is a good stop as well. The ferry ride on the "Badger" is fun..be sure to play Bingo for that ultimate culture experience.
Read days 50-53 at our blog at www.fllt.org/blog/ and link to Michigan under categories.  Great time of year to plan a trip. We finished our coast-coast trip in S. Maine at Wells.
Enjoy yours.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on January 16, 2010, 06:50:54 pm
Thank you. Just got my maps today. Studying trip and layout.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on January 19, 2010, 11:09:48 am
Wow, Jimbo... Just had a chance to peak at your website. There is a lot there to take in! I am a little bit overwhelmed at this point due to too many irons in the fire. I will get back to your website by and by. One problem I do have to over come is people concerned about being safe.

Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: rvklassen on February 03, 2010, 10:53:15 am
Goal is to avoid high vehicle exhaust areas.

Northern Tier-ish -Late Spring/Early Summer
Ticonderoga
Fort Erie (I am thinking this is going to be the busiest area?)
Lake Erie Connector
As far as the Fort Erie part - there are three places you can cross the Niagara river - the bridges' names are Lewiston/Queenston Heights, Rainbow, and Peace, in order from north to south.  I don't know what the ACA map suggested as I don't have one.  However, I can tell you that you are best avoiding Niagara Falls NY and Buffalo.  The route up the river on the Canadian side is quite picturesque, although quite winding.  The only serious urbanization is the city of Niagara Falls, Ontario, and if you stick to the river you will go through the nice, as opposed to nasty, tourist section (a few blocks away from the river it is all touristy stores and traffic but right by the river it is parkland with one main road).  If I had to choose a bridge to cross it would be the Rainbow bridge, but the trouble is Niagara Falls NY has been economically depressed for too many years and the roads are in very bad condition.

To really avoid exhaust you could take rural routes from Queenston Heights, and head well west of Niagara Falls, but then you'd miss the falls themselves, and they are really worth a look-see.

I live in Webster NY, which you will find a little west of Wolcott NY on your map.  If you should choose to go off route as you pass through the general vicinity of Rochester, I can help with specifics.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: jimbo on February 03, 2010, 09:40:51 pm
We were heading east but regarding the Buffalo area we used the Peace Bridge and found our way somewhat quickly thru the maze after the Bridge to the Niagara River Trail. True, though the roads in one stretch of a few miles were crappy, but it did not last long. We used ACA map and the Erie Canal map and then found the painted signs of the NY Parks Buffalo to Albany bike route to guide us when we were confused. The River Trail was fun. I don't know if there is a perfect route.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on February 08, 2010, 01:08:37 pm
Thank you Rvklassen and Jimbo Details like that are important to me.



Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on February 16, 2010, 02:23:00 pm
Thank you for all of your help! I have printed all this information out and am keeping it for when I will be able to make this trip. At this point in time I am going to take baby steps towards my goal.  Lord Willing... I will be able to climb this mountain...one step at a time.

Have not seen dr. yet. Thinking at this point: Gallbladder...

Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on March 10, 2010, 01:34:26 am
update:If I am ever to travel cross country via bike, I will have to plan to take a train for most of the first trip

Amtrak from Portland Me. to Boston

Amtrak from Boston to *Niagara Falls NY

Canadian train from Niagara Falls Canada to Sarnia Canada.

Sarnia Canada to Port Huron MI

Port Huron Mi. To Luddington MI

Ferrying across Lake Michigan to Manitowoc WI.

Cycling from Manitowoc to family. (under 100 miles)

This trip may not be possible due to connections. But, I am hoping that it will be possible.
I want to make this trip spring or fall, not counting this spring because I am not
physically ready. I hope to add longer portions of biking during each pass of the trip.
Perhaps I will never be able to "cycle" the whole thing in its entirety.

**Have not looked into renting a bike in Manitowoc as of yet.

*Not sure on details yet.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: jcostanz on March 10, 2010, 02:05:55 pm
For amtrack to niagara falls, ny.  There is no checked baggage service in NF.  only in Buffalo.

You might want to check out biketrain.ca  They have announced the schedule for their Toronto - Windsor trains for the summer and have yet to announce their Ontario east train.

I live and work in Niagara Falls, NY. and for bicycling across the border, I perfer the Lewiston Queenston bridge or the Rainbow bridge over the peacebridge in buffalo.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: destination on March 11, 2010, 09:12:30 am
Jcostanz:  Thank you for the information about Niagara Falls not having checked baggage service.
It will be a while before I get all of the "possible" connecting trains and depots straight.

It would be nice to be able to de-train from Amtrak and get onto a Canadian rail within short distance of each other. But the most important thing would be to avoid perfume/fragrances and exhaust. Which, usually means smaller depots.

PS. I have seen biketrain.ca before. Wonderful concept. It would be great if other train companies followed suit ie: using one whole car for bike storage.

Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: rvklassen on March 11, 2010, 03:26:39 pm
I live and work in Niagara Falls, NY. and for bicycling across the border, I prefer the Lewiston Queenston bridge or the Rainbow bridge over the peace bridge in buffalo.
The Rainbow is much nicer than the Peace bridge (way less wind, much, much shorter).  Do you have a route with decent roads from someplace east of Niagara Falls?  I can route on relatively nice roads until I come to the outskirts of Niagara Falls.  But last time I tried to get to Niagara Falls Ontario (from Rochester), the NF NY roads I wound up taking were terrible.  (Came in on Lockport to Packard to Niagara St.).  I'd been planning on Queenston/Lewiston bridge from here on, but I'd prefer the Rainbow bridge for being shorter and more sheltered.  Not to mention more scenic.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: jcostanz on March 15, 2010, 04:30:18 pm
The route from east of Niagara falls would be to stay north of Niagara Falls, Upper mountain road or Rt 31 (just don't take 31 past Hyde Park rd).  then take Lewiston Rd South.  Near the intersection of Lewiston Rd and Hyde Park Rd there is an entrance ramp to the Robert Moses Parkway.  The old Southbound lanes of the parkway has been turned into a multi use path with a pedestrian bridge crossing over the car lanes.  The path will take you right down to 2 blocks from the rainbow bridge.  Much better than any road in the City of Niagara falls.  I can find better directions if you need.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: rvklassen on March 16, 2010, 01:20:42 pm
The old Southbound lanes of the parkway has been turned into a multi use path with a pedestrian bridge crossing over the car lanes.  The path will take you right down to 2 blocks from the rainbow bridge.  Much better than any road in the City of Niagara falls.
This is the part I was missing.  I had noticed construction on Robert Moses, but never knew that's what they were doing with it. 
Thanks.
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: jcostanz on March 16, 2010, 04:17:01 pm
It appears that every winter the bridge over the whirlpool bridge is closed to pump something over it.  If they keep it closed, the only other way that I would take to the falls would be  Hyde Park to Walnut or Ferry. 

I forgot another route along the upper Niagara River.  There is a path on the south side of buffalo ave at the 190 bridges that takes you along the the river right into the state park.  There just doesn't seem to be a nice way of getting there from the east as even tho buffalo ave is low traffic, the conditions of the road was horrible the last time I rode down it.

Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: rvklassen on March 16, 2010, 04:45:46 pm
I forgot another route along the upper Niagara River.  There is a path on the south side of buffalo ave at the 190 bridges that takes you along the the river right into the state park.  There just doesn't seem to be a nice way of getting there from the east as even tho buffalo ave is low traffic, the conditions of the road was horrible the last time I rode down it.
That route I had found, and while it is better than surface routes all the way through NF, I agree with your conclusion about roads to get to that path from the east.  As I understand it there really isn't a whole lot of money for maintaining roads in those parts, and they deteriorate just as fast as anywhere else that sees frost.

Interestingly, Google Maps (bicycling) has a very approximate idea of where the path running along the former southbound lanes of Robert Moses is, and isn't all that good at routing one on to it - despite being overly aggressive about routing on unpaved paths in other places...
Title: Re: Northern Tier-ish
Post by: jcostanz on March 18, 2010, 11:19:37 am
That path could be a good route if one is coming from the South and uses the Grand Island bridges (190).  I tried this and my trike was too wide at the top of the Southern Bridge.  I had to back down the sidewalk from the top, took about 45 minutes:(.  It connects with a very nice called river walk which start around the Peace bridge and goes thru Niawanda park.