Best Place in the US to Live for Motorcycling [Archive] - Glock Talk


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12-15-2005, 10:28
Curious to hear people's thoughts on where is the best place to live in the US as a motorcyclist.

I was contemplating this question last night as I shoveled out my driveway, wondering why the ******* I live in Vermont. To be fair VT is a wonderful place to ride 3/4's of the year. We have scenic roads out the wazoo. Maine and New Hampshire are close enough for day trips. And in a few hours I can be in the Catskills and Finger Lakes regions of New York, which is some of the best riding I've ever done anywhere. And our rt. 100 has been written up in both MCN and American rider in this year alone. But then there's December-March where it's frickin' freezing (9 degrees currently), snowy and way too icy to even think about riding. Thinking about moving to New Mexico.

So how about it? If you were going to move somewhere in the US based solely on the quality of the riding where would you go?


12-15-2005, 12:33
It's pretty hard to beat Commiefornia for year-round motorcycling.

The weather is amenable and they have some of the best canyon roads in both SoCal and the San Fran Bay Area. Only Deal's Gap run is better, in my opinion. You can legally split lane as well. Lots of custom shop for both appearance and performance. Exotic motorcycle dealerships. Glamis is the sand runner's heaven.

If motorcycling is your life then it would be hard pressed to beat California.

New Mexico is decent, but the mountains and cold and icy in the winter, so it would be really rough to find a good place for canyon runs in the winter. But for the easy cruisers, New Mexico has lots of nice, low traffic highways as well.

12-15-2005, 13:37
Yeah, I spent the summer of '94 living in Berkeley. Did a lot of mountain biking in the hills to the east of town. I can believe that there would be a lot of good riding in there.

But your politics would drive me to apoplexy (I mean, even worse than Vermont politics does -at least guns are still legal here).


12-15-2005, 14:14
Southern Arizona gets my vote. I much prefer Tucson over Phoenix, less traffic and better scenery IMHO.

I'm still in Tucson and I'm going for a ride this afternoon. Just a 60 mile loop through some twisties with a friend. Take care and try to stay warm, I know I will. ;)

12-15-2005, 19:28
I can go in any direction here In Flagstaff and find a great ride. Sure, it gets a bit nipply in the winter, but as long as the roads are dry, I put on my long undies and hit the pavement!

I haven't done a lot of riding anywhere buy here and northern Cali. I used to love going up through the redwoods and along the coast.

12-15-2005, 19:58
If you hate corners and good weather, Indiana is THE place.


12-15-2005, 22:41
i have to agree with AZ. i live in Phoenix, and just arrived from NH recently, so i can certainly feel for you VT. here in the valley, you can go a couple hours and be anywhere, like Grand canyon, Vegas, LA, or if you get the hankerin' for cold, head a few hours north. i really cant beat over 300 days of no rain or serious cold to ride.

12-16-2005, 01:30
AZ is good.

I can't (or won't) vote for CA because the gerymandering that has occured over there makes the political environment intollerable for me. I realize that doesn't really have anything directly to do with motorcycling but it does have to do with living there.

12-16-2005, 07:18
If you do mostly Canyon rides, then its So. Cal. Now that I live in Colorado, I see why the majority of the Motorcycle Mags make their home in So. Cal. I used to love riding Upper Big Tujunga, and the roads around The Rock Store. You could ride year-round.

If you like doing track days and Racing, then its Colorado. Well it up till now. There were 6 tracks within a few hour drive of Downtown Denver. The closest being about a half hour from downtown. The tracks varied from small and tight to big and wide open to AMA venues. The absolute best place to be if you are a racer!

12-16-2005, 08:55
Let's not forget about the tracks in SoCal and the Bay Area either. You have California Speedway in Fontana (a top notch track) and the two perennial favorites of Willow Spring and Buttonwillow. Not to mention the Irwindale drag strip. In the Bay area you have Infineon and Laguna Seca as the two major tracks.

I'm not saying that Cali is the best place to live in, but the original question was where's the best place for motorcycling in the US and I think judging on that basis alone, it's hard to beat Commiefornia. It has everything to offer to both the speed nuts and the easy cruisers all year round.

12-16-2005, 16:48
Great question! It's certainly one I've considered as I'm soon going to be leaving one of the worst motorcycling states. As much as I hate the politics, Cali seems to be the place. Maybe one of the southern states. There are some good tracks out there. Barber, Road Atlanta and Summit come to mind. Sure it'd be a bit more driving than living in the track epicenter of cali, but at least you'd be able to carry and keep a bigger portion of the money you earn.

12-24-2005, 02:54
The weather is good year-round here in Florida, but the lack of twisties drives me crazy.

12-24-2005, 05:46
I live in Fl... riding weather is good.. i dont really care for twisties so thats ok, lots of near the water rides and then you have daytona if that kind of thing is for you, but i like spring break by the beaches better ( better views) and then of course is the keys... i know CA has better all around riding which was the original question but with the gun laws, i just cant beat FL.

12-24-2005, 08:02
I used to live in Orlando back in the early 90s (stationed there by the Navy). Rode a BMW k100rs back then. Have to admit the 12-month season was nice. Only place I went past a cop while doing 110, but I was younger then and pretty stupid.

But man, the heat riding a bike in the summer was brutal. Funny story, before I moved there I was shopping for a new helmet. I ran across an air-conditioned one and thought to myself that it had to be the most ridiculous waste of money I had ever seen. Then one July afternoon I specifically remember sitting at a stoplight, wearing a helmet that was getting noticeably heavier from all the sweat it was soaking up and thinking that the AC might not be so silly.

But all in all I'd take the heat over the cold. You just can't ride a bike on black ice.


12-24-2005, 08:27
Central Texas Hill Country
I have 25k on my softail in just two years and never been out of the state on this bike. Today it will be about 70 degrees and I need my 4th rear tire on the bike. If you want to have year round riding weather this is the place. Ride Texas Magazine lists all the top rodes to ride on and we have room for more bikes. Come on down!

12-24-2005, 08:41
For all around riding (weather and varied road types), my vote has to go to So Cal. Weather is fine year round. You can ride long and straight or technical year round, all within 50 miles. The politics here may stink, but the riding does not.

12-24-2005, 09:56
I live in Illinois, in the central part and I have no problem putting on 58,000 a year on my Ultra:cool: :cool: :cool:
But then again, I ride mine;)

12-24-2005, 10:40
Ah, but how many of these California tracks allow you to show up, pay, and ride? In Colorado, Pueblo, Second Creek, IMI, and call ahead for Continental Divide.

Willow Springs doesn't allow you to just show up and pay a fee to ride, you must rent out the whole track. I'm not sure about Streets of Willow though.....

Laguna Seca is almost the same situation. Its a designated track day and you can't exceed a certain number of decibels. Again, you can't just show up, pay and ride.

I wasn't living there when Fontana was around. But again, I'd imagine you can't just show up, pay, and ride.

If you are including the tracks from both NorCal and Socal, which is about a 5 or 6 hour drive. Then I'll include the new track in Utah, the one in Albuquerque (sp), and Mid-America in the Nebraska area. Admittedly, these other are probably close to a 7 hour drive from Metro Denver.

Not being arguementive or trying to start a flame, just pointing out what a GREAT state Colorado is for the Track-Rider/Racer :)

Originally posted by fnfalman
Let's not forget about the tracks in SoCal and the Bay Area either. You have California Speedway in Fontana (a top notch track) and the two perennial favorites of Willow Spring and Buttonwillow. Not to mention the Irwindale drag strip. In the Bay area you have Infineon and Laguna Seca as the two major tracks.

I'm not saying that Cali is the best place to live in, but the original question was where's the best place for motorcycling in the US and I think judging on that basis alone, it's hard to beat Commiefornia. It has everything to offer to both the speed nuts and the easy cruisers all year round.

12-24-2005, 15:51
For me living in Monterey county I feel pretty lucky having some great roads and a great race track all within a few mins of the house...15min to get to the Scramp office at Laguna Seca, 25min to Big Sur Hwy 1, 30min to Hwy 25 and 198 Hollister, Carmel Valley rd is 25min away, Cannery Row for drinks 20min from the house...

Billy +p
12-24-2005, 19:29
We got miles of twisty roads; good weather most of the year of the year. You can take day a trip to Tenn. or N.C. Traffic isn’t that bad (as long as you stay away form Atlanta). We have some of the lowest average fuel cost in the country. Some of the best quality of roads any ware. (Potholes, cracks etc.) That’s quoting a trucking mag. Barber, Road Atlanta, Talladega Grand Prix, and a track in Savanna, not sure of the name. Miles of dirt trails from beginner to advanced. MX tracks Red Bud, Talking Rock Arena, Duramtown.

Georgia is a “Must issue” state. Or Governor passed a law prohibiting any city in the state from suing gun manufactures. Peaches, Peanuts, Hell even Glock lives here!!!
What more can you ask for?

Bullwinkle J Moose
12-24-2005, 22:24
SC is nice. It's within striking distance of N.Ga, NC and TN, but the weather is temperate enough to allow one to go riding enough during winter to keep the cobwebs at bay.

12-24-2005, 22:31
A little off-topic, but today it was sunny and 55 degrees in Bucks Co. PA. Had to take the Triumph for a spin. Lots of other bikes out enjoying a Christmas Eve cruise!
A block from the house, a guy and his wife/g.f., both dressed in santa outfits,went cruising by!

Merry Christmas!

12-25-2005, 00:09
great question!

my personal favorite is the college station, texas area, or maybe around austin, texas. weather is decent most of the time. lots of curvy roads to make it interesting and very pretty scenery.

12-25-2005, 14:24
Sunny east Tennessee. Deal's Gap is my Saturday ride. I moved from the New York capital district 16 months ago. I'd have killed somebody if I spent another winter up there. No sane person with options would live there. No offense, but I've ridden and driven 100 several times, and it seems like the most over-rated road I've ever encountered. There are good roads up there, but the six month winter is just unacceptable. Get sane and get options - move!!!!

12-25-2005, 14:59
Western North Carolina. The blue ridge parkway and the infamous "Tail of the Dragon" at Deals Gap. Excellent riding. I was out yesterday and last year on Dec 31st!


Jake Mountain
12-31-2005, 09:04
Being a trucker/biker I would have to vote for North Carolina & Eastern Tennessee. I live in New Hampshire and we do have great riding in New England but its definately seasonal.

Cali would be out for me due to traffic, politics & stupid gun laws.

01-02-2006, 16:11
It's pretty darned good around here. Great motorcycle roads everywhere and year-round riding weather. Despite the traffic, it is easy to find fun roads that are practically empty. I love riding San Benito County and Southern Monterey County - on some roads, on a weekday, you might see a rancher or two, but little other traffic.

Some of my favorites are Little Panoche/New Idria Roads, Carmel Valley, Highway 198, Peachtree/Indian Valley Roads, Highway 25(duh), and Highway 1 from Carmel south (okay, lots of traffic on that one).

I have the next two weeks off, and my original plans fell through, so if it is stays dry for a few days, I might pack up the bike and take off for an overnight and try some camping down around Santa Barbara or SLO County.