Rantings and tirades of a frustrated economist.
What kind of bike are you riding these days?
I'll be travelling back and forth to St. Cloud during the next few months. I'll keep you posted; it would be great to meet you, and pay no mind if I giggle like a star struck schoolgirl!;)
Suzanne,Well if you're heading out to St. Cloud don't you have to come trhough Minneapolis?Cpt.
Jaericho,Well I'm renting a bike for that trip. My crotch rocket would make it, but I wouldn't on a rocket.Cpt.
If you are rolling through Calgary you have got to time it so you hit the Stampede, July 5-14. One massive party.
If you are renting a Dual-sport or something comfortable on gravel roads I can forward some GPX files of lovely backroads through SD, Wyoming, Montana. I also recommend Glacier National Park if it works out.
The Calgary to Montana stretch will kill you. It is nowheresville. (I live there). Do Edmonton to Winnipeg instead, you'll see more interesting country.If you end up near Kindersley Saskatchewan look me up.
Is the southern BC leg through the kootenays or the okanagan? Might be around. Depends on timing.
I'm 45 minutes north of you on I-94. It would be great to meet you, but anytime's good :-P.
I have to agree with Mike, here. If you haven't been to Glacier National Part yet, doing it on a bike is the way to go.Going To The Sun Highway (from St. Mary to West Glacier) is probably one of the most beautiful rides you can ever do in your life. We've ridden through there a dozen times, and never tire of it.
If you're heading to St. Cloud and want to avoid traffic and construction, Highway 10 might be the better way to go. (Depends on how the road conditions are at the time you plan on leaving.) La Casita, Fuji Steakhouse and Star of India are probably the three best restaurants in town, if you plan on eating there.
Don't turn around at Prince George, BC. Go 4 more hours West and North along the Yellowhead Highway to a little town called Smithers. Don't let the drab scenery along the route for the first 3 of those hours fool you. You won't regret the visit. Smithers is set in some of the most gorgeous scenery a little town can have and it's full of great people. I have a few relatives there who can show you amazing, true back-country scenic hiking and motor-biking/ATV/4X4 trails. Smithers people know what the Great Outdoors is: fishing,hunting, you name it. The town is also where Liam Neeson's movie "The Grey" was filmed, by the way. I live in Minnesota now but I was born and raised in Smithers and I always have to go back every few years. I will miss those mountains and lakes 'til I die.
I live in/around Minneapolis I wouldnt mind grabbing a few beers with you before you venture off on your trip
You are missing the top rated motorcycle roads in BC. Check out the riding around Kootenay Lake. Check out http://www.destinationhighways.com/Ride from Creston to Kootenay Lake ferry is amazing (#1 in BC for twisties). Then the world's longest free ferry ride. Ride north to Kaslo and have a blast riding to New Denver, then Nakusp, then to Revelstoke. Stay off the main drag highway slabs with no turns.I live outside Nelson BC and the riding is fantastic.
If you make it into Calgary for Stampede, be honoured to take the Cap'n out for a brew or two.
I live in Calgary and I hate to say it, but it's a pretty dull place.Excellent biking in the prairies and badlands to the south and east and the foothills and mountains to the west.But really, if you're coming to Alberta, why wouldn't you head north to Fort Mac and see the eeeevil tar sands and some damn big machinery? The largest engineering and construction project in the history of the human race?Just think, you can tell the lefties you've been to the land of ecological Mordor, communed with Sauron, bought him a beer, and quite liked it.If you're so minded, do a post, I've got an engineer son who has engineer cronies, bikers all, trucky piston-heads too, and I'm sure they can show you a lot, prolly ride up there with you, maybe I'll come too, we'll have a convoy.Big, big, big American presence up there too. The company my kid works for is an American contractor of the ginormous huge variety. We, and you, should be inordinately proud of what we're getting done, and you should see it. Or have you already? I'm a fairly new reader.PS: Ignore the weasel farmer dude from Saskatchewan, he's just jealous, but the Mike guy is dead bang right about glacier, Google "Going to the Sun Road".
Hey Cap. Your Canada route sucks. Not sure why in hell you would want to go to Prince George! Seriously even people that live there wouldn't say that was a good idea. Go as far as Jasper and start heading south again. For your return trip push a bit eastward again for the sights. Stick closer to the divide for the big mountains. Head east to Revelstoke and south via the interior lakes to Nelson. Cross back into the US in Idaho at the Yahk crossing. Sandpoint in the summer is pretty neat. Journey east again to the "Going to the Sun" road. (An American sight you gotta see) Head south to Missoula and down to Challis. If you want a really neat trip keep heading west to Bella Coola. Ferry out and check out the ghost town of Ocean Falls. Good luck, you will be in my stomping grounds.
N Dakota is bleak. It must be mind-numbing on a bike.I have ridden across S. Dakota on a bike. 400 mi of... corn..But yeah - the Canadian Rockies will knock your socks off!
The ride up to BC a blast. Here's a neat detour if you have the time on the way back: It looks like you'll be traveling just west of Kootenay lake - if so, take BC 3A east at Nelson and cross Kootenay Lake on the ferry at Balfour - it's free. Ainsworth hotspring resort is on the West shore of the lake, just North of Balfour and the ferry crossing. Once you've crossed the lake, it's 30 miles of lakeside twisties to Creston at the south end. Creston is a nice town to stay at. Cross the border into Idaho at Porthill, and then head south on US 95 to Sandpoint and Coeur d'Alene - both towns cater to the tourists but are nice to stay at and visit. Continue south on US 95 to Lewiston and then take US 12 East along the Clearwater river to Kooskia. Once you're past Kooskia, you have almost 100 miles of sweeping twisties up and over Lolo pass on a beautifully re-surfaced road. Kooskia, ID to Lolo, MT on US 12 runs between two wilderness areas and is one of the all-time best motorcycling routes on the continent - you're following Lewis and Clark's route, too.3 Rivers Resort, where the Lochsa and Selway rivers join to become the Clearwater, has tent/rv spots, rental cabins, and a restaurant - rustic but nice. It's about 22 miles up river from Kooskia, so you can stay there and then start out in the morning and finish the last 70 miles fresh. Lolo hot springs are a few miles on the other side of pass on the Montana side.You can head North on US 93 at Lolo and then rejoin I-90 in Missoula. If you take the route you have planned and go to Glacier NP, take some time to stop off at the Idaho/Montana border for a couple hours and ride the Route of the Hiawatha - 15 miles of most beautiful rail-to-trail there is (and it's all down hill). They rent bicycles at the top and for a few bucks will drive you back up.If you have the time, you could arrange a two day bicycle tour on the Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes - a 70 mile paved rail-to-trail from Wallace to the Southern end of lake Coeur d'Alene. If you go up to Whitefish/Kalispell, be sure to take the east side of Flathead lake - much more scenic than the west side.Whitefish, MT is a great home base, if you visit Glacier.Oh, and whenever you see signs in Montana that say "Caution: Big Horn Sheep Crossing" - they're not just whistlin' Dixie. I had a VERY close encounter with one at 70 mph just east of Thompson Falls on that trip. Ainsworth Hot Springs:http://www.hotnaturally.com/3 Rivers Resort:www.threeriversresort.com/Route of the Hiawatha:www.ridethehiawatha.com/Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes:parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/trail-coeur-d-alenesI might be able to join you - it's less than a day's ride for me to get to Coeur d'Alene.-CedarFever
Where are you crossing the Border? It looks like Portal ND. You are in oil country there. Don't try it at night. Not much for gas stations open at night. Deer everywhere, not good for riders. LOTS of truck traffic. Also, no place to spend the night. Many hotels in the area are booked a year in advance. Best to stay on the Trans-Canada from Regina to Winnipeg and then head South to Fargo on the interstate. The Canadian Rockies are awesome in the summer, but can be cool. Let me know when you are traveling through. I live in Winnipeg and I am often in NW North Dakota in the summer where my family lives. Michael
A couple hours east of Calgary is the town of Drumheller. There's some great badlands scenery out there, and also the Royal Tyrrell Museum. As a fossil hunter, you can't not go there.
The trip from Tete Jaune (past Jasper) to Prince George will be interesting for the first hour as you ride down a huge glacial valley that goes on, and on and on. By the fourth hour you'll not quite be at PG, but will be desperate for something other than the valley to see. I think it is worth seeing, but not worth seeing twice. Instead, head south from PG through the "cariboo" to "100 Mile House", then across to "Little Fort" and down Hwy 5 to Kamloops. Avoid the #1 and go south to Highway 3 and then go east. Any of the highways would do. If you like mountains, do Hwy 5 to Merritt then 5a to Princeton where you pick up 3. If you like lakes, take #1 to Salmon Arm then south through Kelowna to Osoyoos where you pick up 3.
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