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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The first thing I have to do is get motivated to get serious about doing my PT exercises to increase my stamina, flexibility, and strength so I can handle a big road trip on the Road Glide.

Starting this plan will hopefully provide that motivation.

I am looking at the last week in July riding up to Athens, OH, meet up with some guys and ride the Windy9 area.

From there I am looking at routes to ride up to Ludington, MI (to avoid going anywhere near Chicago) and take the SS Badger Ferry across Lake Michigan to Manitowoc, WI.

Manitowoc to Appleton is about 45 miles.

Here is what Google recommends between Athens, OH and Luddington, MI.
Ecoregion Map World Parallel Atlas


I may stop in at the Iron Pony Superstore to check out all the new riding gear and accessories near Columbus, OH, otherwise, I try and avoid cities like Columbus, Fort Wayne, etc. when I start zooming in.
Recommendations for roads, areas to avoid are welcomed.
Recommendations for "must see", "must ride" within a few miles of the google paths are also welcomed.

Not concerned with the route home at this point. May ride with other rally goers heading south, or may just pick points on the map that hit between cities and see what kind of route I cam come up with.
 

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If you are looking at getting across the Lake a little quicker, when we went to Gettysburg, we went into WI and to the Express Ferry across into Muskegon MI. Get across the lake in about 2hr total. We thought it was a great little break during a full day of riding for us. Not sure how long it takes that old Ferry to get across.
Here is a video link of the HP kicking us across the Lake
Here
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
If you are looking at getting across the Lake a little quicker, when we went to Gettysburg, we went into WI and to the Express Ferry across into Muskegon MI. Get across the lake in about 2hr total. We thought it was a great little break during a full day of riding for us. Not sure how long it takes that old Ferry to get across.
Here is a video link of the HP kicking us across the Lake
Here
Thanks for the input. I wasn't sure I wanted to depart the ferry in Milwaukee. Is it easy to get out of the city without traffic? I didn't look to see how long the SS Badger takes. I'll have to research that some more.

OK. The SS Badger takes 4 hours. Departure times may make the difference. From the photo above I like that I might be able to ride along the coast some on the Michigan side. Once I start zooming in things will become clearer.
 

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Thanks for the input. I wasn't sure I wanted to depart the ferry in Milwaukee. Is it easy to get out of the city without traffic? I didn't look to see how long the SS Badger takes. I'll have to research that some more.

OK. The SS Badger takes 4 hours. Departure times may make the difference. From the photo above I like that I might be able to ride along the coast some on the Michigan side. Once I start zooming in things will become clearer.
Yea, so half the time to get across on the express. We came into Milwaukee around noon on a Friday and had no traffic. Got to the Dock really quickly. Maybe others from the West side of the Cheese state can let you know how Traffic is in the city. I am not sure what the price difference is in ticket price, I think it cost me and the Mrs, about $100 to cross. Well worth it not to have to go through Chicago. (No offense SE)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yea, so half the time to get across on the express. We came into Milwaukee around noon on a Friday and had no traffic. Got to the Dock really quickly. Maybe others from the West side of the Cheese state can let you know how Traffic is in the city. I am not sure what the price difference is in ticket price, I think it cost me and the Mrs, about $100 to cross. Well worth it not to have to go through Chicago. (No offense SE)
Looking like $47 for the bike, and $71 for me on the SS Badger.

For the express it is looking like $57 for the bike, $11.50 for fees, and $100 for me.

I guess it is really going to depend on the ride and route on whether the extra 2 hours is worth it. More riding on the MI side verses the WI side.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If the only reason is to avoid Chicago then the ferry is a waste of time and money. if you are doing it to go on the ferry by all means do it.
Coming up from the south cut over to Bloomington IL Then 39 north to I 90 WI to HWY 26 north at Janesville WI. Stay on 26 north to Oshkosh WI Hwy 41 north to Appleton
Thank you for the suggested route. I will probably start with that route in reverse when I am heading home. Then at Bloomington start heading south toward Nashville.

Google says the route you provided is 716 miles 11.5 hours from Athens, OH.

Google says Athens to Ludington is 492 miles 7.5 hours. Ferry 4 hours plus arrival time so 5 hours not riding. Manitowoc to Appleton 44.5 miles 1 hour.

Both routes would be two days for me. The ferry route because departure is at 0900. So, unless I get seasick I would arrive more refreshed taking the ferry route.

The ferry route would possibly allow me to explore shoreline roads if there are any, although I would have to overnight within an hour of the ferry port to ensure I make the departure.

Something to think about.
 

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Thank you for the suggested route. I will probably start with that route in reverse when I am heading home. Then at Bloomington start heading south toward Nashville.

Google says the route you provided is 716 miles 11.5 hours from Athens, OH.

Google says Athens to Ludington is 492 miles 7.5 hours. Ferry 4 hours plus arrival time so 5 hours not riding. Manitowoc to Appleton 44.5 miles 1 hour.

Both routes would be two days for me. The ferry route because departure is at 0900. So, unless I get seasick I would arrive more refreshed taking the ferry route.

The ferry route would possibly allow me to explore shoreline roads if there are any, although I would have to overnight within an hour of the ferry port to ensure I make the departure.

Something to think about.
In this great country route planning just has to many options. Nashville to Bloomington IL to Appleton WI 718 miles 11 hours 30 minutes. We have run that route many times in a day easy from home. We are only 70 miles south of Appleton
I personally don't see Chicago as that big a deal depending in time of day run 294 around keep moving.
The Nasville TN to Chicago to Appleton route is more like 670 mile and 9 1/2 to 10 hours But it runs you thought Racine , Kenosha , Milwaukee on the way up Not the worst but not much fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
In this great country route planning just has to many options. Nashville to Bloomington IL to Appleton WI 718 miles 11 hours 30 minutes. We have run that route many times in a day easy from home. We are only 70 miles south of Appleton
I personally don't see Chicago as that big a deal depending in time of day run 294 around keep moving
Those of you who are used to traffic always say that! LOL!
I’m used to seeing another vehicle once in a while.
Running with traffic always wears me out. I feel like I need to be in the fast lane to minimize where I have to focus my attention. Running 80 with inattentive drivers all around me is not the way I like to roll. Done it too many times, survived, and just don’t want to deal with it unless there is no other way.
I wish I could still run 800 miles in a day like I could 10 years ago, but those days are behind me.
I’m more about stopping every 90 minutes and walking around, or getting off the bike for a couple minutes to take a photo.
This is the main reason I am not looking to ride with others on the way there.
Going home may be a little different because I can rest when I get there.
 

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Those of you who are used to traffic always say that! LOL!
I’m used to seeing another vehicle once in a while.
Running with traffic always wears me out. I feel like I need to be in the fast lane to minimize where I have to focus my attention. Running 80 with inattentive drivers all around me is not the way I like to roll. Done it too many times, survived, and just don’t want to deal with it unless there is no other way.
I wish I could still run 800 miles in a day like I could 10 years ago, but those days are behind me.
I’m more about stopping every 90 minutes and walking around, or getting off the bike for a couple minutes to take a photo.
This is the main reason I am not looking to ride with others on the way there.
Going home may be a little different because I can rest when I get there.
What ever route you decide let us know if you come this way we can maybe met up and finish the trip with you. Also keep our contact information handy in case you have problems.
I was thinking about riding to Chicago and coming up the other side around the top and down just to make the trip worth starting the bike.
 

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I want to go check out windy9 this year. I think my big bike trip is going to be Erie PA to Hurricane Mills Tennessee for https://motorcyclesandmusic.com/ I just have to try to convince my boss to let me go seeing how its roughly 1 week after we go back to work for the season!

I avoid Chicago like the plague.... My crazy ex wife wants me to come visit her out there! I keep making excuses like well I cant tolerate that damb traffic out there.

If time allows run 94 over to the BlueStar Highway and up the coast of lake Michigan. Its an excellent ride up and there's a place called sand castles of Lake Michigan The Sand Castles of Lake Michigan Beach awesome place but you have to book way ahead for the cottages.

Good luck with the trip planning!!!!
 

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Still got construction on 294, from 55 south to 95th st. Would definitely avoid Chicago and all the idiots, [no offense to SE]. You have options. Could go all the way to the Mississippi River and come up , not sure how much time you have either.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Still got construction on 294, from 55 south to 95th st. Would definitely avoid Chicago and all the idiots, [no offense to SE]. You have options. Could go all the way to the Mississippi River and come up , not sure how much time you have either.
Thanks for the information and suggestion. I have done the Great River Road to the source of the Mississippi River. It is a fun ride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Now if you just want to put your bike on a ferry. We have a short one not far from Appleton that is free. it runs back and forth so no time slot to hit. lined up to get on.
Merrimac may not show on you map. it is near Lodi WI

View attachment 435723
I always enjoy ferry crossings. Especially when I am on my Van Van to avoid the 65 mph bridges. LOL!
Wheel Tire Sky Cloud Vehicle


Will definitely check out that ferry whether or not I take the ferry across Lake Michigan.
 
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