Author Topic: Child on N. Lakes Route?  (Read 6638 times)

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Offline flamama

Child on N. Lakes Route?
« on: July 03, 2004, 02:24:42 am »
Does anyone have an insights about riding the North Lakes
route with a 4 year old towed in a bike buggy?  Safety?

Offline dhphllps

Child on N. Lakes Route?
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2004, 10:09:43 pm »
What specifically are you interested in knowing about that route
would differentiate it from any other in terms of suitability for

It's very rural; most of WI is on two lane roads with no
shoulders, but
very little traffic. Services are plentiful for most of the route, and
very pleasant riding. US2 across the UP of MI has moderate
including lots of RVs, but it has wide, smooth shoulders, lots of
services and beautiful views of Lake Michigan. The terrain is
mostly flat
to gently rolling except in the northwest lower peninsula of MI,
you'll find a lot of hills between Mackinaw City and Traverse City.

I did the driving research for the route when it was first mapped
so I know it pretty well, but that was ten(?) years ago and I'm
sure some
specifics have changed.


Offline flamama

Child on N. Lakes Route?
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2004, 02:52:51 am »
I think you're the person that Karla at Advent. Cycling referred
to as having researched the route.  

I'm mainly interested in the traffic and route conditions along
that route (the section between Minneapolis and Traverse
City) and whether they're safe in terms of things like road
shoulders and amount of traffic for a bike towing a small child
in a buggy.  From what I've observed, it seems that car
drivers are sometimes "surprised" by buggies, as buggies
are more rare.  Also, buggies stick out into the roadway more.  

Are Advent. Cycling routes usually designed with the idea of
single-person bikes, or are the routes designed for family/
buggy type touring?   Does it vary depending on the route?

I'd be interested in thoughts along those lines, including from
anyone who's ridden this route -- or a similar one -- recently
with children in tow.

Offline dhphllps

Child on N. Lakes Route?
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2004, 03:36:19 am »
Yes, Carla emailed me and said you might be asking about it in
the forums.

"Are Advent. Cycling routes usually designed with the idea of
single-person bikes"

Well, when I did the research for that route, trailers were still
pretty rare, so I will admit I didn't give much thought to what
the route would be like for someone with a wide load, and since
I've never ridden with a trailer I'm afraid it's difficult to
extrapolate now. I can tell you, though, that I am very traffic-
phobic, and went out of my way to find lower traffic roads
whenever I was the least bit uncomfortable with Carla's
suggested route. As I said earlier, many of the roads are two
lanes and shoulderless, but traffic is very light. Where there is
more traffic, such as on US2 in MI, there are wide paved
shoulders. I would rather have people complain about a route
being indirect than about it having too much traffic. :)

A comparison might help. Do you ride in Florida (a guess from
your login)? I did a week long loop there once (Gainesville, Salt
Spring, Ormond Beach, St. Augustine, Palatka, Gainesville), and
have no desire to go back, because of the road conditions and
the crazy drivers. I was very uncomfortable riding there; I am
very comfortable with the riding conditions on all of the North
Lakes Route.


Offline flamama

Child on N. Lakes Route?
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2004, 10:00:34 pm »
OK, that information eases my mind a bit.  Yes, I agree that any trip that involves as little car traffic as possible is preferable to indirectness of route.  Not just the possibility of careless drivers, but also the breathing of exhaust; kids in buggies are right down there at the level of the car exhaust pipes.  Ick.

No, I'm originally from Fla., so familiar with that area you mentioned (used to live in St. Aug.).  Fla. is very heavily populated now; better areas to ride these days in Fla. might be the Panhandle, but even that is getting pretty heavily populated.  Now I live in Phoenix AZ area which is a complete house of horrors of bad drivers.  Not to mention pollution.

Offline kiarmuid

Child on N. Lakes Route?
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2004, 08:43:17 pm »
A couple weeks ago I rode from mid UP (Gulliver) to Ludington.  335 miles.  My buddy had a Burley Nomad trailer for our gear. I think it gave us an advantage visibility wise.

Like its been said before, route 2 thru the UP has an extra lane for a shoulder.  I was concerned but not after riding it. The wind from the lake can be prodigous,and your trailer may act like a parachute.  I wouldn't recommend the Cut River Rd turn off of route 2.  VERY FIERCE dog and an apathetic owner.  If the owner isn't out you will need plenty of pepper spray to pass.  

 I don't the Wisconsin route per se, but from living here I can tell you that back roads tend to be very quiet.

The back roads are very quiet in the lower pennisula.  Except the 6 miles heading towards Traverse City on M 73.  That road has a great shoulder until the uphill portions.  I was happy to get off that road.

If you want to pick my brain about any details on services, the roads, etc, let me know.