Author Topic: Sierra Cascades Bicycle Route  (Read 3638 times)

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Offline MrBent

Sierra Cascades Bicycle Route
« on: December 28, 2009, 08:30:23 pm »
Looks like this is going to follow Hwy 89 in N. California.  Watch out for this route!  It has many crazy, angry logging truck drivers.  I can't recommend it.  With some careful study, you might be able to find ways around it.  I've never been quite so frightened as when we cycled that route during regular trucking days.  Sundays/holidays suffer from tourist traffic, but that seemed less dicey to us.  We've ridden sections of it on two occasions.  Beware.

Scott

Offline John Nettles

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Re: Sierra Cascades Bicycle Route
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2009, 11:21:04 pm »
Does it have a shoulder or anything that might make it a little better??  Thanks for the heads up as I am considering riding it next year.

John

Offline MrBent

Re: Sierra Cascades Bicycle Route
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2009, 12:26:28 am »
Hi, John:  From Mt. Shasta to McCloud, the shoulder is excellent.  From McCloud down to Burney Falls, things are  pretty sketchy.  The area around Quincy is not so good, either.  In general, there is no shoulder to speak of, so you have to hope for light traffic conditions.  A local told us that 89 is also the route that people up north use for the run to Reno for gambling fun.  Ugh.  If you can ride dirt, look very closely at some detailed maps, and you'll see lots of forest service roads that, in a round about way, can get you south, too.  Of course, water, supplies, etc. put the "adventure" in adventure cycling.  Be wary of the weekend traffic coming and going around the Lake Almanor area, too.  We made the mistake of trying to get out of there along with some serious Memorial Day heading home traffic.  A total nightmare.  The ride up and over Mt. Lassen is fantastic, one of the better stretches of cycling we've done. 

The country is really beautiful, but traffic took a lot of the fun out of the riding for us.  You might want to talk to local highway patrol stations to get a better fix on when the best time of day/year would be to ride it.  We did it in full on summer season, so, of course, had a tough time.  We were really shocked by the anger and general attitude of the truckers.  The log haulers drive the route back and fourth continuously and have developed a sense of ownership of the road, driving it as fast as they can, knowing every corner and hill.  They HATE having to slow down and even called the CHP on us.  The office talked to us and said he tried to calm down the truckers.  Man, it just sucked--big time.  So, if you go, watch yourself.   Sundays seem to be the best because most truckers seem to have the day off.

Ride safe!

Scott

Offline JimF

Re: Sierra Cascades Bicycle Route
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2009, 10:23:53 am »
John:
We (old TA riders) are looking at the Cascades-Sierra (we're looking at N to S) route for next summer, too. It appears the section "MrBent" warned about goes back some time. I found a copy of "The Pacific Crest Bicycle Trail" by Bil Paul (out of print), which is the inspiration for the ACA route. Published in 1990, the section under discussion also mentioned logging trucks, RVs, as hazards. Paul noted that it was the only logical paved route from Mt. Shasta to Lassen. Perhaps ACA is researching alternatives. If none, Sunday reduces the logging truck traffic. If you'd like to correspond on route research as ACA predicts March for map publication, let me know.