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Old 11-02-2016, 10:01 PM   #1
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Planning our trip out west

We're planning to take a leisurely month and a half to two months to get to the Tetons next summer. We'll start in mid June so most of the trip will be peak season. We'll probably take 80 to Des Moines and then north to 90 and follow that west. That means we'll be starting in New York State and going through Ohio, Indiana, illinois, Iowa, South Dakota and Wyoming.

We have reservations in the Tetons,and I know we should make reservations along the way, but I'm having trouble planning. I want to find bike trails, especially in the midwest where we can find gentle ones -- neither of us is interested in hill climbing. So does anyone have suggestions for less known places to visit along the way or any great bike paths?
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Old 11-02-2016, 10:33 PM   #2
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Stay south and visit Colorado. Nice bike trail from Aspen to Glenwood Springs and it is slightly downhill all the way. Steamboat Springs has several miles of trails in the downtown area and they follow the river so very gentle. Boulder Colorado area has over 250 miles of trails and you can drive into the mountains and ride down. Also visit Rocky Mountain National Park to see the Colorado elk which are very large but spend all of their time standing around grazing. Then when you see the elk in Wyoming, which are constantly chased by the wolf packs you'll see a much different animal.
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Old 11-03-2016, 01:35 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Ruthe View Post
We're planning to take a leisurely month and a half to two months to get to the Tetons next summer. We'll start in mid June so most of the trip will be peak season. We'll probably take 80 to Des Moines and then north to 90 and follow that west. That means we'll be starting in New York State and going through Ohio, Indiana, illinois, Iowa, South Dakota and Wyoming.

We have reservations in the Tetons,and I know we should make reservations along the way, but I'm having trouble planning. I want to find bike trails, especially in the midwest where we can find gentle ones -- neither of us is interested in hill climbing. So does anyone have suggestions for less known places to visit along the way or any great bike paths?
I would suggest a loop. My in laws live in Indiana and we live in Washington. I was born in Cheyenne and raised in Colorado so I have made variations of this trip many times.

From IN, loop around Chicago and head up through WI to visit Madison and the wonderful state capital there. Lots of good bicycling too. Then across via La Croix, WI where there is a wonderful historic district on the Mississippi. Cross into South Dakota to the Black Hills and Mt Rushmore. From there catch Devil's tower in WY, then across to the Tetons / Yellowstone. On the way back, head down to Colorado for the suggestions posted by SFdavis50. Head home by way of I-80 and Nebraska, etc. Two months should be plenty of time to do all of that in a relaxed way. Good Luck!
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Old 11-03-2016, 06:08 AM   #4
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We took the slower route, got off I-80 in Akron OH taking 2ndary roads the rest of the way to Yellowstone and some what the same route coming back from the Tetons, at least till Deb decided she wanted to get home quicker to see the grand kids.

Many small towns you could stop in and ride the quiet streets. We checked out county parks for camping as well as a number of nice out of the way state parks. Surprising to us was how much we enjoyed driving the back roads through Nebraska.

We left in late August, the only time we had problems was finding a campground on Labor Day weekend. We ended up at Walmart, which can be noisy places. As you are going in the summer you may have to call ahead as you look for places to stay, it was not an issue in late August-Oct. We spent about a week driving one way.
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Old 11-03-2016, 08:39 AM   #5
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Ruthe, We just completed the reverse of your plan, and our favorite overnight was in Iowa. A county park near Montezuma, about 7 miles south of I-80. We found it on Allstays and it is named, Diamond Lake County Park Camp Ground. It has lots of sites on the water and lots of easy biking and walking trails. I'd go back there and spend a week!
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Old 11-03-2016, 08:54 AM   #6
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Hey Steve,
That 21 looks great behind that Explorer!!!!
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Old 11-03-2016, 09:09 AM   #7
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Make sure you get the I Pass for the toll roads otherwise it's double when paying cash
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Old 11-03-2016, 09:33 AM   #8
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I've never understood exactly what "out west" meant. I'd have to drive east 3 long days to get to the west in Colorado!
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Old 11-03-2016, 10:26 AM   #9
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I've never understood exactly what "out west" meant. I'd have to drive east 3 long days to get to the west in Colorado!
If you think that's strange Greg, try "Down East".

You can't go "down" to go east, at least using the common slang for map directions, but folks in Maine call it that.
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Old 11-03-2016, 10:27 AM   #10
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"Down East "? Heard of Back East and Down South.
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