Maybe you wonder whether it is possible to take a bike across America from one end to the other, covering thousands of miles. Or perhaps you are asking yourself how long it would take you to complete the journey. You are in the right place. Here we will discuss the possible routes to take and how long each of them would take you.
Since the 1970s, cross-country biking routes have become popular as the road bikes have improved in quality, and most people are eager to take a different path from the busy highway system.
Which Is The Most Popular Route?
Among the most popular cycling routes is the TransAmerica Bike Route which was established in 1973, and since then, thousands of avid cyclists have used the trail each year. Most courses across America take months to complete. Planning for the journey and the logistics may even take longer. The average time taken to cycle each route will be calculated assuming that the person will cycle for 5 hours each day at an average of 13 miles per hour. Here are some of the popular bikes touring cross-country routes.
TransAmerica Bike Route
The TransAmerica Bike Route is the most popular and classic biking tour route across America. The course covers 4,626 miles and starts from Astoria, Oregon, to Yorktown in Virginia. If this is the first time you ride, you will ride to the Sierras for days after the Pacific Ocean.
Along the journey, you will pass Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park Walls with a fantastic view. You will then find your way to the Mississippi River until you get to the Appalachian Mountains. You will finalize your journey by a ride through the tidewater area of Virginia located on the Atlantic shores.
If you cycle at 13 miles per hour for five hours a day, it will take you an average of 71.1 days to cover the whole journey.
The Southern Tier
The Southern Tier route covers 3050 miles and is the shortest connection along the ocean. If you plan to take the route, you will start your journey at St. Augustine, Florida, and bike along the gulf coast through Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and New Orleans.
Those who want to leave the sea behind take the Texas route stopping at Austin then across the west Texas plains. This route is quite interesting as the biker also touches the El Paso Mexican border to New Mexico desert vistas and Arizona. The Southern Tier trail ends at the Pacific Ocean in California.
This route takes over 50 riding days, depending on the number of days you plan on resting or riding. Therefore, cycling at 13 miles per hour for 5 hours a day will take an average of 46.9 days.
East Coast Greenway
The East Coast Greenway is a 3000-mile route that connects across fifteen states along the eastern seaboard. The course is lovely and has many quiet paved roads that riders can choose from, even with the trail system being in progress. Taking this route will expose you to daily coastal views and numerous historical and cultural landmarks.
Many riders are worried about challenging climbs, but the good thing about this route is that it has minimal elevation gain since you will travel mainly along the coastal plains. The route ride starts from the south to the north or vice versa, and whichever way you choose to do it, you can be sure to enjoy the fall colors or the spring up the coast.
Traveling the East Coast Greenway will take you between two and four months, and the time will depend on the miles per day you want to ride. If you ride at a speed of 13 miles per hour for five hours a day, you will get to your destination after 46.1 days.
Northern Tier Route
This route will take you along the Great Lakes, Wisconsin and Minnesota, Idaho, and Montana. The route stretch is about 4244 miles long, connecting Anacortes, Washington, with Maine. If you plan on taking this route, remember to carry a passport for a brief crossing to the Canadian border in Alberta. Here you will enjoy riding on the lakeside to Ohio and New York.
Early summer is the best time to take this beautiful route, although you should be well prepared for bugs, gnats, and mosquitoes. The weather may also change significantly in the Iowa and Illinois plains. This beautiful route mainly bypasses the Chicago and Des Moines major metropolis areas, and you will be able to take quieter roads through the regions. The way will take you around 65.2 cycling days if you cycle at a speed of 13 miles per hour for five hours a day.
Pacific Coast Bike Route
You will never get tired of the Pacific Ocean views using the Pacific Coast Bike Route. The route covers 1853 miles and is a bit shorter than other bike routes. Due to the short distance, most cyclists take an average of 28 days to travel the entire way from Vancouver, Canada, to imperial beach, California. The route can be challenging because of the heavy vehicle use of the roads, and riders are advised to be defensive while cycling along the route.
You will enjoy the incredible coastlines, marine wildlife and get a chance to ride through the Olympic National Park. The route is quite popular, and you can start your journey during fall as there is a high likelihood of sustained dry weather while riding across the route’s Pacific Northwest section.
Great Divide Trail
The Great Divide Trail is the most strenuous and challenging route and is suitable for those interested in pushing themselves to the maximum. Taking this route will make you experience high-altitude climbs, and you can be sure to suffer enough during the journey. This route has nearly 200,000 feet of elevation gain taking cyclists from Antelope Wells in New Mexico to Jasper, Canada.
Unlike other routes, the Great Divide Trail does not connect significant water bodies. However, the punishing altitude makes it worth mentioning. Being the longest off-road bike route worldwide with over 3000 miles, cyclists need robust and advanced bikes to make it across. Cycling at an average speed of 13 miles per hour for five hours a day will take you 46 days to get to your destination.
Cycling across the United States will expose you to a diverse and complicated experience with numerous challenges and glory. Most people ask the question, “how long does it take to bike across America?” now you have the answer. The time depends on the route and the miles you will be covering. Although other factors such as weather and rest may also play a massive role in the number of days you will take, the route determines the time.