The USA offers motorcycle trips for everyone, whether you prefer long, winding roads or straight stretches, crashing waves or rocky red deserts, historical sites or fabulous entertainment. Here are three summer trips to add to your bucket list.
No coastline is more beautiful than what you’ll find in Oregon. This scenic, winding highway runs along 363 miles of gorgeous coastland, occasionally pulling inland and giving you the chance to stop in some of Oregon’s nicest towns and state parks.
Depending on how long you have to spend, you could stop at any of dozens of scenic sites and fun locations. A few can’t be missed. The Three Capes Scenic Loop goes 37 miles off 101 and gives the best views you’ll have on the trip. While you’re on the loop, stop at the Tillamook dairy to get some fabulous cheese and homemade ice cream.
When you need a break from the outdoors, plan a stop at a site for shore eyes at the Mill Casino Hotel. This premier gaming location offers elegant dining, classy accommodations, fun games, and world-class entertainment before you head back out on the road.
No matter what time of year you visit Oregon, you should plan to get wet. Summer temperatures are also unpredictable, and you can have baking heat or chilly winds on any day. Buy and pack your motorcycle jackets and gear accordingly.
You can’t go wrong at any time of year on the Blue Ridge Parkway through Virginia and North Carolina, and this trip is on a lot of people’s bucket list for good reason. The parkway takes you through some of America’s most beautiful mountain landscapes, and if you love a curvy road, nothing can top the parkway.
As with Highway 101, the stops you take will depend on how much time you have to spend. Don’t miss the Blue Ridge Music Center at Mile 213. There are concerts all through the summer and music on the porch all day long. You’ll also learn about the history of bluegrass music in the region.
Plan a stop for dinner and a night at the Pisgah Inn at Mile 408.7. The inn is at the 5,000 foot elevation, and it will be hard to get a better view. The meals are also fantastic.
Bad weather can hit the parkway at any time, so check out the parkway’s main website to make sure there are no closures. Also be aware that North Carolina requires all motorcyclists and their passengers to wear helmets and use their headlights at all times.
The 124-mile Scenic Byway 12 goes through Utah’s most beautiful landscapes, including amazing straightaways along ancient sea beds and into alpine forests among the clouds.
We recommend traveling from west to east starting in Panguitch. Take some time to explore this town. The whole thing is on the National Register of Historic Places. As you set off, plan to camp in Kodachrome Basin State Park, and don’t you dare miss an amazing sunrise.
Another must-see is Dixie National Forest. While you’re there, take the time to see the Grand Staircase-Escalante and Capitol Reef National Park. You’ll find hiking galore, orchards where you can pick your own fresh fruit, and not as many people as you’ll find in most parks, even at the height of summer.
This drive can pretty lonely at points, so it’s smart to do this trip with a buddy. If you go it alone, always let someone know when you’ve set off and when you expect to be at the next point where you can call to check in. Stay safe and have fun!