Author Topic: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱  (Read 3764 times)

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Offline lohiaaditya

Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« on: March 19, 2019, 01:17:28 am »
Hey 👋

My girlfriend and I and about to start our LA to NYC bike trip in a week. The highway 40 or any similar high speed highways have us a little worried in terms of fast cars and not having a bike lane or separate trail. Anyone has any experience with this? Any ideas/comments? Thanks
Aditya

Offline jamawani

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2019, 06:52:48 am »
I fear that you are not ready to start your trip if you expect to ride Interstate 40 and other interstates.
(Interstates have a paved shoulder - an emergency lane on the right - but not always on bridges.)

Although bicycles are permitted of interstates in Arizona, New Mexico, and portions of rural California,
they are banned on interstates throughout the central and eastern U.S.

There are many elements that constitute a major bike tour - route planning is one of them.
I would strongly urge you to purchase Adventure Cycling's "Bike Route 66" maps -
at least for the western portion of your trip - - Santa Monica, CA to Adrian, TX.

Also, be aware that in much of Arizona and New Mexico, the route is at higher elevation.
You should expect to encounter freezing weather with snow possible around Flagstaff.
(For example - Snow on Thurs this week; Hi-44F, Lo-26F)

Offline John Nettles

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Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2019, 07:41:23 am »
I hope you mean US-40 as Interstate 40 bans cyclists in metro areas west of the Mississippi River and bans than east of the Mississippi.  Even if you mean US-40, I would think it is way too cold to enjoy riding.

If you prefer to stay warm, since you are leaving soon, use the Southern Tier to around Las Cruces, NM, where you can then take US-70 to US-54 to Santa Rosa, TX, where you would join BR66.  However, BR66 may be OK but could be cool/cold in parts of AZ and NM, especially if you are camping.  Review WeatherSpark.com to see climate averages for almost anyplace in the world.  Pay attention to highs,  lows, and precipitation.

ACA's maps are great as they do 90% of the research  for you. You still have to decide what campground or hotel is best for you  ;) .

Whatever you do, I wish you a fun (and warm and safe) trip!

Tailwinds, John
« Last Edit: March 19, 2019, 08:09:04 am by John Nettles »

Offline geegee

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2019, 02:16:27 pm »
If you mean interstate 40, taking Route 66 instead would definitely be a better way to go. If you mean US40, there are a few parallel routes you can string together like the Katy Trail. I rode from LA to upstate NY then to Canada a few years ago, if you are interested you can find my route maps on my blog at http://abikeridecalledamerica.blogspot.com . I wanted to visit specific places so I had to create my own route. The roads were good for most of it, if you followed it to Buffalo you could continue on the Erie Canal route to Albany and then bike down the Hudson to NYC, which is probably one of the more pleasant ways to get to the Big Apple.

Offline lohiaaditya

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2019, 02:55:42 pm »
Here’s is the current picture of our route. It seems Route 66 and highway 40 are the same in large parts?...I’m a foreigner  ;D

We are considering the ACA maps but it seems they are almost the same as what google maps shows.

Thanks for all the advise. We will of course feel it out on a daily basis as to how the weather seems for the next few days before we cycle forward and deal with it accordingly

Offline John Nettles

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Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40
« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2019, 03:52:10 pm »
The thing about the maps vs Google is that the maps list services the bicyclists want/need.  It shows and provides the contact information for the campgrounds that take tents (many campgrounds in the USA only accept motorized RVs).  It shows bike shops, libraries (with free internet), hotels, etc. so you do not need to waste a bunch of your time doing research.

You can always sell your maps afterward on the ACA Forums classified, eBay, etc.  You will probably get about 1/2 back assuming they are in relatively good condition. They are printed on waterproof paper so they hold up pretty well.  Plus you can get the updates riders send in that change every year, i.e. this bike shop permanently closed, this campground opened, this road is closed due to bridge out, etc.

While I am all for "going off route", if this is your first major tour in the USA, you might consider getting the maps, especially for the eastern half of the USA where it gets a LOT more congested than the western half.

Tailwinds, John


Offline jamawani

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2019, 05:55:35 pm »
Google Maps is NOT your friend.
Especially in the West.

It puts you on roads that are unpaved, that are private, that do not even exist.
Just saying.

Offline BikeliciousBabe

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2019, 07:18:22 am »
Here’s is the current picture of our route. It seems Route 66 and highway 40 are the same in large parts?...I’m a foreigner  ;D


Why are you planning to head SE from Pittsburgh if you goal is NYC? ACA has a Chicago to NYC route that goes through Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. And are you aware that The G.W. Bridge is the only way you can ride into Manhattan from the west? Other than that, you have to resort to trains or ferries.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #8 on: March 20, 2019, 09:19:52 am »
I sense some reluctance to buy the AC maps, so let me throw in my two cents.

They're worth every penny.

You can often find a place to camp for free (or really cheap) using the maps that you won't find when it's getting dark, and rain is coming, you're desperate for shelter, and the only other option within 30 miles is a motel that charges $130 per night.  That night having the AC map could save you the cost of the entire map set.

Offline John Nettles

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Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2019, 09:53:39 am »

"Why are you planning to head SE from Pittsburgh if you goal is NYC? ACA has a Chicago to NYC route that goes through Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. "

Perhaps it is because the wonderful GAP rail trail goes SE? Not being snarky, just guessing.

Tailwinds, John

Offline John Nelson

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2019, 09:56:43 am »
Riding on interstates, where allowed, is generally quite safe because of the wide shoulders (except sometimes on bridges as already noted), and it generally gives you frequent access to food and water and hotels, but it is exceptionally annoying because of the traffic noise and will give you a lot of flats because of the exploded truck tires littering the shoulder. I hate riding on interstates.

Offline lohiaaditya

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2019, 10:13:30 am »
Haha thanks again for the awesome responses.

We have decided to buy the maps thanks to everyone here. Better safe than sorry as it’s quite an important part of the trip.

We also want to go to Washington DC since we haven’t been, however, I’m trying to convince my girlfriend to go via train or bus from New York instead as it is a detour.

I’m definitely feeling better after reading all the posts here and watching YouTube videos about getting on highways/Route 66 with trucks zooming past you.

For what it’s worth, we decided to do this trip on a whim and thought it would be fun. Mainly as we are moving to my home country, Nepal, right after for a few years. Once our bike trip is over, depending on our financial position, either do a car road trip back via Yellowstone or fly close to Yellowstone and camp around there for a few days then fly to California before going to Nepal.

Back to the bike trip, any suggestions in terms of food/water? We are vegetarians. Thanks

Offline BikeliciousBabe

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #12 on: March 20, 2019, 10:59:17 am »
We also want to go to Washington DC since we haven’t been, however, I’m trying to convince my girlfriend to go via train or bus from New York instead as it is a detour.

Assuming you are looking at the C&O trail from Cumberland to D.C., you should check the official site. The trail suffered some damage last year. Don't know what the status of repairs are. The site should provide some guidance.

Riding north from there to NYC would likely increase costs. Camping options are not as frequent and usually cost more in that part of the world. So does indoor lodging.

 BTW...Here is the link to the official C&O site:

https://www.nps.gov/choh/index.htm

Note in the alerts that attempts to build a temporary bridge at the major washout failed. It's my understanding that last year people were getting around it by trespassing on nearby railroad property.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2019, 10:11:04 am by BikeliciousBabe »

Offline aggie

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #13 on: March 21, 2019, 12:42:09 pm »
Part of the C&O trail and the GAP trail are part of the NYC to Chicago route using the option that takes you through Lancaster, PA.  You could then take the Eastern Express route to connect to Route 66 which will take you all the way to LA.

Offline jamawani

Re: Los Angeles to NYC. Riding on highway 40...😱
« Reply #14 on: March 21, 2019, 08:04:27 pm »
Aditya -

I am relieved that you are getting the Bike Route 66 maps.
Not only will they get you safely thru the West,
but you will have the skills to branch out more when you get further east.

You haven't offered much info about your plans or experience;
however, I guess you will be arriving on the east coast by early June.
Although the GAP and C&O trails are lovely - they are not paved.
In mid-summer they are dry, but the C&O can be very muddy in late spring.

Do consider visiting Grand Canyon - you will be so close.
From Williams, Arizona head north on AZ 64 - then east to US 89.
Then you could take AZ 264 from Tuba City to Window Rock -
Then reconnecting at Gallup.

AZ 264 takes you thru the center of Hopi and Navajo country.
There are spring Katsina dances in the Hopi villages (No photos!).
Superb hand-woven Navajo rugs at Hubbell Trading Post.

Have a great ride! - - J