Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Adelaide Sth. Australia
We incorporated part of what you are planning to ride in a ride last year. We have done a bit of long distance riding of up to 6 weeks duration. We use a combination of AAA map book, Googlemaps.com, paper and pen and I use the One Note computer program (standard on computers these days I think) to take screenshots of a day's planned riding on Googlemaps to copy and paste the map into a Word document. It is possible to save the map you want on Googlemaps if you prefer that but it is not how we do things as we like to have a printed copy - which for us has been quite handy on entering the country - easier to prove you are a legit tourist with all the detail I end up putting into my trip plan and have had a 'well done' at the border several times. I ensure that copy is printed off at a laser printer as it withstands getting wet better.
I find if Googlemaps starts going all over the place instead of the direction you want to go, and you know there is a road there, it maybe because the road is closed for some reason - like it is closed for the winter or as in Colorado and Arizona, at one point, roads have been closed due to landslides. If Google maps wont go where I want it to then I generally google onfo on the area to find out why.
We usually decide
1. Is the day just a ride day or do we plan to stop to see things along the way. We learned to plan for scenic stops and knowing just how long we need to see 'significant places after arriving at the Mesa Verde and discovering a couple of hours just was not enough time - a whole day would be better.
2. How long do we want to ride each day (we have a personal rule to be off the bike by sunset). This decides how many miles we will ride. we also plan for stopping for comfort stops approx every 2 hours - this is to get off the bike and walk for a few minutes, gas topup, snack/meal etc.
3. once you have decided the above you need to find out what accommodation is available where you want to overnight. I usually claim Eric's laptop open to Googlemaps and then use mine to research accommodation as it may mean I need to go back a few miles or go forward a few miles. I also check the reviews on Tripadvisor and if the reviews are overwhelmingly negative, especially about cleanliness, I move onto the next hotel. we have found there is usually one hotel mistake each trip but we try not to let that define our overall ride - but it happens.
Not sure where you are in Idaho - but we rode from Wisdom in MT to Big Hole Historic Battlefield, over Lolo Pass to Kamiah ID, in one day, from Kamiah to Ashford the next, to Quilcene the next day for 2 days to look around the area, Then around to Hoh Rainforest to Ocean shores for overnight.
I would recommend you take your time down Hwy 101 if you can as it is surprisingly slow and even we ran out of time to stop off at the scenic area for photo ops or to just enjoy the views. We went down Hwy 101 as far as the Avenue of the Giants and dropped our plans for Yosemite after some mechanical issues with the bike. We also wanted to ride Hwy 199 from Crescent City to Grants Pass (It is stunning highly recommend) also Hwy 299 from Arcata to Redding and 36 from Rio Dell to Hwy 3 and then to 299 (It was raining hard and we altered our route on the way. Flexibility is the key to a great day's riding) We plan to go back and ride this section in 2019/20 for our last big ride in the USA over three months. Hope you enjoy your planning and your ride. Anticipation is part of the journey after all. all the best V for Eric
When all else fails.......... use a hammer!