Bike trips in upstate NY/VT
April 16, 2010 7:13 AM   Subscribe

I want to go on a one day bike trip in upstate NY or VT-- less than a 2h drive from Montreal. Where should I go? Details about what I want inside.

I am looking for road biking only.
I'd like trips that are reasonably easy, because I haven't biked in months. But since this is an ongoing summer plan, I'm happy to hear about harder (longer or more hilly) routes that I can plan to improve for.
I am happy for either a bike that is all about the scenery or one that involves going between small towns. If the latter, I'd love suggestions for nice places to eat/browse/etc. If the former, a nice place to have lunch or dinner would not be unwelcome either.
I am willing to go in other directions within QC, but would really like to take advantage of the exchange rate at this point.
I intend to, at some point, also go and stay somewhere overnight (or two nights), either camping or (ideally) a not terribly expensive hotel or B&B. I would go an extra hour or 90 minutes for an overnight trip, and again a little further for two nights.
I will probably be going most of the time with a friend who is also in her early 30s, and occasionally with my father.
posted by jeather to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I can't vouch for how close to Montreal this is - but Route 9N starting in Keene Valley, New York and heading N is beautiful. It follows the (I think) Au Sable river for a long while and although I haven't gone all the way to it, my brother has taken it all the way to Lake Champlain. Some hills, but no mountains.
posted by nnk at 7:34 AM on April 16, 2010

most of my experiences in Vermont are either on dirt/fire roads and/or in hilly terrain; but the Champlain Valley sounds like it would work well. I haven't done Lake Champlain myself, but have toured around Vermont from a base in nearby Waterbury at it's certainly beautiful country around there.
posted by bl1nk at 7:53 AM on April 16, 2010

I would think that a nice short (about 40 miles) ride would be across the islands at the top of Lake Champlain (Randolph and North and South Hero, with a detour around Isle la Motte.
posted by nicwolff at 9:29 AM on April 16, 2010

North Hero is nice, but I would note that you're pretty much stuck on US 2, which would not be a fun place to ride, if my memories from driving on it are correct -- not a lot of elbow room, and heavy on trucks.
posted by zvs at 2:32 PM on April 16, 2010

Route 30 between Malone and Paul Smiths is pretty easygoing farm country, not too much traffic. If you turn onto 86 in Paul Smiths you'll head into Saranac Lake, and it can get a little hillier. But there is an amazing stretch of land on 86 where you're on plateau of farm country and the High Peaks of the Adirondacks suddenly come into view. If you continue into Saranac Lake there are a lot of little diners and restaurants. I'd recommend the Blue Moon Cafe on Main St., but there are other places that have opened since I moved that look good too. Just be warned that there's pretty much a lot of nothing between Malone and SL, there's only a handful of restaurants or general stores on that route.

I also like a stretch of rte 458 in Santa Clara. There's some nice scenic stops there. That may have a pretty long but not necessarily steep section. Not sure how bad it would be on a bike. But it's usually pretty light on car traffic. If you loop around that way, routes 11 and 11B are very straight and flat, but would have heavy car and truck traffic.

Should I put in a plug for the Steakhouse where my husband is a chef? It's in Malone. MeMail me if you're interested.
posted by saffry at 3:30 PM on April 16, 2010 [2 favorites]

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