Harley Davidson lover Jonathan T. Tempel highlights the best road trips for bikers to enjoy in every season.
For a motorcycle loving enthusiast, the weather and changing seasons present challenges when trying to take in the scenery on a road trip. Long-time Harley Davidson enthusiast Jonathan T. Tempel has logged thousands of highway miles and is ready to share the best places to take a Harley tour in any season.
Springtime travel is a risky proposition in many areas of the country, particularly when hitting the highway earlier in the season. Temperatures can unexpectedly plummet in some areas, and riders may find pop-up precipitation a distraction from the scenic views or navigating side streets in a small town. To maximize your chances of staying comfortable, Jonathan T. Tempel recommends heading south in the spring.
To avoid spring breakers, Jonathan T. Tempel recommends staying away from main tourist destinations and select a less-populated area. His top recommendation is the Louisiana Colonial Trail, which provides 484 miles of winding road through small towns and forests. The trail primarily uses U.S. 84 and Louisiana 8 as east-west routes dissecting the state.
Jonathan T. Tempel says the biggest city one will encounter on this route is Alexandria with a population of approximately 46,000. Despite its size, the city boasts fine dining and comfortable accommodations while also offering traveler-friendly chain restaurants. On days away from the city, plenty of camping options are nestled in the longleaf pine forests of the Kisatchie National Forest.
For those who like to branch off the trail, Jonathan T. Tempel recommends diverting north to Gibsland to view the Bonnie & Clyde Ambush museum or devoting a few days at the end of the trip to a journey south to New Orleans.
Want to beat the heat in the summer? Jonathan T. Tempel suggests heading north to an often overlooked gem, the Great River Road. Hop on in the booming Mississippi River community of LaCrosse, Wisconsin and ride the road to Stockholm to enjoy the views of Lake Pepin.
The LaCrosse area also provides a great end-of-ride experience with fine dining, hiking, and biking trails as well as an active nightlife scene for all ages. Its downtown area features a stellar co-op for vegan and organic foods while nostalgic favorites like the Pearl Ice Cream parlor lend a family-ready touch.
History buffs may enjoy diverting at Stockholm to the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum as her birthplace is found in Pepin, Wisconsin while more eager riders can find traveling south from LaCrosse through Illinois and into the Dubuque, Iowa area a great way to access casinos, greyhound racing and the tourist-ready hotspot of Galena.
According to Jonathan T. Tempel, fall is a great time to enjoy some of the most famous scenery in America — the changing colors of fall foliage in Vermont. The Scenic Route 100 Byway starts in Clarksburg, Massachusetts, and continues on for 146 miles. Side trips on the highway provide easy access to some of the best palate options Vermont has to offer — from delectable cheeses and bold brews to local restaurants ready to serve up a loaded breakfast with 100% maple syrup.
In the winter months, Jonathan T. Tempel says the Pacific Coast Highway really sells itself. While it’s not prime swimsuit season, the views of the Pacific Ocean are stunning while the weather from Sunset Beach and south is usually more than accommodating.
For the Harley Davidson rider with sophisticated taste, a myriad of jumping-off points exist that boast fine dining, stellar shopping, and exclusive nightlife opportunities.