Hi Sydcyclers!

Yes, a few years between drinks, but it's another installment of that fun game for all the family, "Tell Mike O where to go", in which you advise me on cycle touring routes, and I get to bamboozle you with subsequent WITWIMB challenges.

The focus this time is on North America. I have a wedding to attend in Chicago (my little niece is all growed up!) in the last week of May.

I'll be there for a week and will have the Surly to hand but I don't sense that Illinois and environs is a great bike touring destination save perhaps some lovely rolls along the lakeside(s).

So plan is to fly back to Sydnerney via Vancouver. From there I can head down into Washington State - the coastline and hinterland - and/or north into Cannuckland. Maybe a bus up to the Rockies and roll around there, I dunno. I will be travelling solo, all tented and panniered up (thinks, might need a warmer kipsack).

UPDATE: I will have SEVERAL WEEKS at my disposal on the west coast. 

Yes, there is a Paranoid Planet (Dangers and Annoyances!!) guide to US West Coast cycling that has input from one of our number ...

Anyone been in those parts? Any advice? All suggestions gladly welcomed, although tips like "no no go to Newfoundland/Hudson Bay/Tijuana" will probably not be acted upon :-)


Mike O'

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We did this trip by car a few years ago, but saw lots of cyclists along the way. You might also become a "bear takeaway" but those riding didn't seem to mind. Banff > Lake Louise > Jasper > Athabasca Glacier > Tete Jaune Cache > Clearwater > 70 mile House > Lillooet > Whistler > Vancouver. Magnificent country!

Another by car from Las Vegas > canyon country as much as you can, visiting the MTB mecca of Moab and then getting to Durango (another MTB place) to take the day trip on tourist train to Silverton (great puffing through the ravines over high bridges), then swing south west towards Las Vegas visiting as many of the canyons as time permits. Took us 17 days by car, but you'd mix and match as time permits. Strongly recommend the above train trip and the one to the Grand Canyon from Williams (?) Arizona.

I know both are more than a week, but you could pick the eyes out of them and do whatever time permits, or do it by car with bike rides in the areas.

We did Canadian trip in June, and snow wasn't an issue when we were there.

what were temperature lows?

It was more than 10 years ago, so that info is lost in the grey matter. However, we stayed in hotels/motels, so the overnights weren't a problem for us. During the day, AIR, at most we would have had a shirt, polartec jacket and jeans, perhaps with the occasional beanie, for warmth. We only did really warm stuff when we went up onto the Athabasca Glacier and onto the top of Blackcomb Mountain at Whistler - they were still skiing at Whistler.

We did Vancouver in June/July 2017 and it was a great cycling city, particularly around the park on its western end, and the roads in the city have decent bike lanes with a few of them being separated from the cars.

I'm not sure I should bother then...

But yeah, there is lots of potential from Vancouver.

The supposedly Paranoid Planet guide has a route into Washington state (and as far as you want to go all the way south to Mexico). The coast of Oregon is especially nice, though perhaps a bit further than you could ride in a week. I have a spare copy of the book I'd be prepared to give you, if you can lower yourself to accept charity. ;-)

You can island hop onto/from Vancouver Island into the US. Ride up into the Cascade Mountains of northern Washington.

You could get the Rocky Mountaineer train from Vancouver to Jasper or Banff (can't remember which one, or maybe both, it goes to off top of head) and ride south on the Icefields Parkway. See the glaciers before they melt away.

Possibilities endless. Suggest you take more than a week...

"Suggest you take more than a week..."

Take several!

I have several. The whole trip is four or five weeks, including (at least) a week in Chicago for the wedding.

And thanks for the charitable offer but I already have said LP guide and have studied the Washington options. I obtained the book as a "you never know" grab from a charity pile at work :-)

Meant to post this pic of the coast road in Oregon. 

Banff area is solid. 

And your timing is good - before peak Winnebago season...

Hey MO'R !

A mere 46,846 miles of cycling routes throughout North America to choose from here:


Ta! I'll get going!


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