The Best Places to Ride Near America’s Largest Cities
New York , NY
When people think of New York- they tend to think of Times Square and busy cities, but not too far away from that bustling area is a plethora of beautiful scenic roads just waiting to be ridden. The top 3 in New York are:
1. Tracy Road (an Adirondack MUST)
A beautiful 7 mile stretch of road that is surrounded by the Adirondack forrest. Large boulders line your tight hairpin turns, but this intense stretch of road is one that will leaving you with nothing but a smile on your face!
2. Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway
This route starts out alongside the Beautiful Mohawk River to where it flows into the Hudson. At the beginning of the route, you start out among many different historical buildings, and then once you reach the outskirts of town the route turns from historical to a lush green scene that eventually leads you up to Cohoes Falls for a sight and memory that you will never forget!
3. Catskill Preserve
This circular route has incredible scenery and opportunities to take breaks and enjoy your views, or even go hiking. Surrounded by the Catskill Mt. Range, you will carve your way through the passes surrounded with views of crystal clear reservoirs and rivers, the flats of local working farm fields and cow pastures, and then into the steep, swishing mountain passes. Even though, you have to be careful to watch for pedestrians and mind the speed limits, this short ride is worth every minute!
Los Angeles, CA
Yes, its true that L.A. is famous for its scenery, and also the traffic on the 405, but it doesn’t take much effort to find a stunning view on a backroad that doesn’t give you such a “Los Angeles” feel. With July being “Womens Motorcycle Month”, be sure to expect tons of lady riders on these suggested routes because they hold sights that are NOT to be missed!
1. Angeles Crest Highway to Newcomb’s Ranch Restaurant
This road is famous for motorcycle aficionado magazines running test bikes up and down this road, which says many things about the intensity and quality of its build. This road twists and turns through numerous hills and heads straight through the Angeles National forest. Fear not, you will definitely catch your stunning L.A. views and even views of Catalina Island. This route is not one to pass by carelessly. Enjoy your views and your break from the heavy L.A. traffic.
2. Mulholland Highway to the Rock Store
The world-famous Mulholland highway has been featured in films and music for decades It has incredible views and windy, curvy roads. The fame is what attracts most riders to this location but it is a prize to say you have conquered this celebrity highway.
3. Little Tujunga Road to Route 66 Bar and Grill
This 18 mile stretch takes you to and through the Angeles National forest and in through the San Gabriel Mountains. With the required amount of thrilling turns and sights- this ride is nothing short of exhilarating. The ride ends once you hit the famous Route 66 grill. You can cool off and enjoy a burger, drink and live entertainment at the infamous route’s tribute grill.
Riding in these terrains holds a dear place in my heart, as I was personally raised on these roads and know the sights and attractions well. While it takes a good amount of time to get far enough out of the city limits, its well worth the drive up Ga-400 to get to these mountains. The foothills of Appalachia- the Blue Ridge Mountains, known for their distinct blue colouring in the panoramic view, is where the Sunday morning riders head to for a little peace, and a lot of curve. With many options, the roads in between Georgia and North Carolina offer a little piece of magic that just cant be found anywhere else.
1. The Tail of the Dragon
The Tail of the Dragon, also known as Deals Gap, isn’t technically situated in Georgia- but it’s the most sought after two wheeled ride in the south. While the Blue Ridge parkway takes you straight up to the head of the gap- it has its own sights and thrills to behold, but the true beauty lies at the beginning of those smoky mountains. Holding a whopping 318 turns in an 11 mile stretch, riders don’t attempt the Tail for the views. This is a challenging and dangerous stretch- and many who aren’t prepared for it, suffer the consequences greatly. Not for the faint of heart, or the rider who is even remotely unsure of his or her skillset- its best to drive this pavement on four wheels and check it out before you tackle it, unaware of what may lay ahead.
2. US-129 route
Starting in Dahlonega (which has incredible sights to see and fun curves on any road you take), US-129 heads up through the mountains into North Carolina. With views that will simply leave you breathless, and turns and curves that will do the same, this route is definitely a winner. With two lanes going up the mountain so that you don’t get stuck behind cars that are playing it safe, and some knee-dragging , “hold your breath” switchbacks, this road is a sport-bike’s dream.
3. North Georgia 8 Loop
The roads of North Georgia are unforgiving, and this loop is no different. Stretching through the towns of Dahlonega, Suches, and Helen, there are many different curves to be tackled and sights to be seen, and plenty of vistas to stop and take a break when needed. Starting on GA-60, you get a nice warm up that takes you to US-129 which is known as “The Mountain Racetrack”, and instead of going straight into North Carolina, take Richard Russel 348 for a nice tame ride with elevation changes and sights. After Richard Russel and a Refuel at the local fruit stand, turn on 180 West for an adrenaline rush of tight turns and challenging chambers that lead you back to GA-60 to let you cool down. This loop is a local favorite and never leaves you wishing for more, because it has all you ever wanted in a great mountain ride!
Written By: Amanda Wright