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Old 11-27-2012, 10:51 AM   #1
ggemelos OP
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Question Is it too late for a corss-country trip?

I just moved to New York City from San Jose. I was planning on leaving my motorcycle with my brother in San Jose, but after a few months without the bike, I decided I would bring it out with me and explore the riding out east. At first I was thinking of having the bike shipped, but then I started considering riding it out myself. I was wondering if a southerly route would be viable this time of year. I have ridden in bad weather, hail and snow, but would not undertake the trip if I was very likely to encounter a good amount of snow. How is the weather across the Rockies around I10? If I stay south and only turn north when I get close to the east coast, will I avoid high risk snow areas? I am trying to avoid areas where snow is likely in the winter until the very end of the trip, when I am near New York. Thanks for any help and advice.
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Old 11-27-2012, 11:22 AM   #2
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I don't think it would be that much of a problem, especially if you will have access to internet weather reports daily. With 10-day forecasts, you can get a window large enough to cross the south. From there, you may need to wait out storms or re-route. It is probably a week's worth of riding, so if you can set aside 2 weeks it should allow plenty of time to go around storms. Worst case scenario; you can rent a small u-haul to finish the trip. You may as well see some sights along the way too.

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Old 11-27-2012, 11:34 AM   #3
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it should be doable, just watch the weather along 81 on the eastcoast and of course, ny.
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Old 11-27-2012, 12:47 PM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback. I was thinking of doing the trip over the holidays, leave San Jose the 22nd and work my way to New York. I just did a trip to Alaska the past June, but I would not mind being on the road again.
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Old 11-27-2012, 01:01 PM   #5
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It's totally doable, just stick to the south and then head up the east coast. Some parts of I-10 might be cold, I'd recommend taking I-8 until you hit Tucson, and then take I-10 the rest of the way across. Heading up the east coast will be sketchy once you get close to NYC, but keep an eye on the weather forecasts and you'll be fine.

Dress warmly, though. :) Heated grips are a minimum, heated gloves recommended. A heated vest is nice too if your bike doesn't have a big fairing.
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Old 11-28-2012, 05:18 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Two Wheeled 'Tard View Post
It's totally doable, just stick to the south and then head up the east coast. Some parts of I-10 might be cold, I'd recommend taking I-8 until you hit Tucson, and then take I-10 the rest of the way across. Heading up the east coast will be sketchy once you get close to NYC, but keep an eye on the weather forecasts and you'll be fine.

Dress warmly, though. :) Heated grips are a minimum, heated gloves recommended. A heated vest is nice too if your bike doesn't have a big fairing.
This is correct, but I will add that the magic # is 6K ft! Stay below that and you should be ice free. No need to really take the interstates unless you really WANT TO or if TIME is of the essence. Personally I would try to stay away from the heavy truck traffic on I-10 and 8. If you stay S and East it is longer and uglier scenery but a lot warmer. Enjoy your trip.
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Old 11-28-2012, 05:34 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the advice. I think the trip is the best way to get my bike out east. It will also be my first cross country ride. I tend to avoid the interstates, I was using I10 more for a reference with regards to latitude. I am sure I will find some nice byways to ride. I have been down that way as far as Texas, but the rest of the way east will be new to me. Being new to riding in the east, I have to ask about the Blue Ridge Parkway. Is it worth a visit and how is the weather there during the winter?

In terms of heated gear, I have to admit I have never used any. I have a naked bike, M1100, and have ridden it in some pretty cold temperatures, hail and freezing rain included, on long trips. For the most part, I just wear my Firstgear Teton suit. I will let you know if after this trip I end up with a Gerbing heated vest
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Old 11-27-2012, 03:53 PM   #8
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Pack your Gerbings heated jacket liner for the run North up from the South. When I've done this in Winter it gets cold North of Carolina. Below about 45F I like the Gerbings to kill the chill. Warm gloves are nice too. I've done that run many times. Fun to see the look on the cage drivers. As to the route across from the West, there are bicyclists doing the Southern Tier Route all the time from California to Fla.

Enjoy.
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Old 11-28-2012, 06:14 AM   #9
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This time of year the Blue Ridge Parkway is probably closed, and it definitely will be by the time you get to it. They get some pretty heavy snows at those altitudes. Stick closer to the coastline, the temps should be mild enough that you're unlikely to run into as much ice on the road. I might also suggest not riding at night when you're going up the east coast, during the day will make it easier to spot any areas of questionable traction.

I hit a patch of ice on an onramp once, riding my DL650 from Chicago to Milwaukee in February. I would not recommend anyone repeat that. (Although as I was sliding down the highway trying to kick the bike off from on top of me, the only though in my head was "Dammit, I just bought this bike!")
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Old 11-28-2012, 06:17 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Two Wheeled 'Tard View Post
This time of year the Blue Ridge Parkway is probably closed, and it definitely will be by the time you get to it. They get some pretty heavy snows at those altitudes. Stick closer to the coastline, the temps should be mild enough that you're unlikely to run into as much ice on the road. I might also suggest not riding at night when you're going up the east coast, during the day will make it easier to spot any areas of questionable traction.

I hit a patch of ice on an onramp once, riding my DL650 from Chicago to Milwaukee in February. I would not recommend anyone repeat that. (Although as I was sliding down the highway trying to kick the bike off from on top of me, the only though in my head was "Dammit, I just bought this bike!")
I guess the Blue Ridge Parkway will have to wait for a summer trip. Thanks for the information. Any suggests for roads or sites closer to the coast?
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Old 11-28-2012, 09:52 AM   #11
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I guess the Blue Ridge Parkway will have to wait for a summer trip. Thanks for the information. Any suggests for roads or sites closer to the coast?
Unfortunately most of the fun sporty roads are up in the mountains, and therefor may be snowy or icy. I have no idea, though. Maybe the lower elevations will stay clear in the southern states. Rt 60 through Chattahoochee National Forest in northern Georgia is fun if it's clear, it's only at around 3,000 feet so you might be okay.

However, if you've never been to the Barber Motorsport Museum in Birmingham, YOU MUST GO. Plan on spending a solid half a day there at least, it's jaw-dropping.
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Old 11-28-2012, 07:38 AM   #12
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Out of New Orleans, jump on 90 and sightsee thru Bay St. Louis, Biloxi and Gulfport. Just before you get to Mobile, head south to Dauphin Island and take the ferry across the bay to Florida. Stay on 98 to Panama City, then cut NE to Brunswick, GA and follow the coast north. Lots of good stuff along the way, for sure.
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