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Touring

This Great Roads section focuses on local and international motorcycle rides, roads and travel experiences from the editors of Rider magazine and our contributors. The articles have been broken down by region to help you find stories about a particular area more easily.

Just click on a portion of the map below to find articles about that specific region. The regions can then be broken down further by state if so desired.

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Riding to the Grand Canyon During National Park Week

Standing on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, trying to take it all in.

In Northern Arizona, mid-April spells the beginning of the thaw of the snowpack in mountains, and the corresponding bloom of the hardiest of wild flowers below. It is also the time when early-season motorcyclists begin taking to the open road. This year, my first extended ride of the season is a spectacular roll along the South Rim of the Grand ...

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Wonderful West Texas

Big bikes enjoying the winding River Road in Big Bend. (Photo: Brewster County Tourism)

The Lone Star State is huge, and this land of cattle, oil fields and tall pickups seems even bigger from the saddle of a motorcycle. Near the end of a recent and long tour of Texas, I found a hidden treasure. Nestled between the Rio Grande and New Mexico rests an area that features some of the best riding Texas ...

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Ecuador Freedom’s Andes, Amazon and Pacific Coast Tour

Ecuador Freedom co-owner Court Rand (left) and the author get a refreshing shower along the Waterfall Route near Baños.

From the hot, humid Amazon rainforest, where we floated down the muddy Rio Arajuno in a motorized canoe and fed sugarcane to monkeys in Puerto Misahuallí, we began ascending the eastern slopes of the Andes. Soon conditions started to deteriorate. First came pelting rain, then came bone-chilling fog and finally our convoy of motorcycles got split in half by a ...

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Magical Riding in Northern New Mexico

Every bend in the road in northern New Mexico seems to reveal another geological intrigue.

en · chant (verb): To place under a spell as if by magic. Yep. That’s exactly what the mountains of northern New Mexico have done to me. There is something magical about this state, and I believe it stems from its wide-ranging diversity. The cultural, architectural and environmental palate from which this region is painted is as multi-hued and vibrant as you ...

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The Best of the Canadian Rockies on the Icefields Parkway

One can easily see why this is named the Valley of Ten Peaks; of course you need a clear day to find all of them.

You’ve heard of the legendary pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Well, the Icefields Parkway, aka Highway 93 north in Alberta, Canada, is it. The scenery is so awesome between Lake Louise and Jasper you will do a double take at every turn. Riding my Moto Guzzi Breva with my friend, Andy, on his Yamaha Super Ténéré, ...

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Québec Adventure: Striking Gold in Abitibi-Témiscamingue

The T.E. Draper operated from 1929-1979 and is the last surviving boat used for log drives.

Unpainted asphalt with the texture of a Parmesan cheese grater twists and undulates through the mist-shrouded spruce forest. This is prime moose country, and we’d seen only one sign of human habitation since turning off the Trans-Canada Highway in Mattawa, Ontario, Canada onto Route 533. Our destination is the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region of Québec, a vast territory owned by the Hudson ...

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Chasing Dinosaurs in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming

U.S. Route 40 west of Dinosaur, Colorado.

When the dinosaurs roamed the earth, they were tiny and titanic, terrifying and titillating, fleet footed and even flabby. Sounds like me at various ages. My map says the Dinosaur National Monument is way, way up in northeastern Colorado. Next to the town of Dinosaur! And next to nothing else, on a road to nowhere. Excellent, let’s go chase some ...

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The Santa Fe Trail: Hunting Geocaches on a Historic Kansas Route

Ruins located at the Pecos National Historical Park just south of Santa Fe date back to the 15th century. Once a major pueblo village with more than 1,100 rooms and the remains of two Spanish missions.

Crossing Kansas can be an enlightening or boring trip depending upon your perspective. For me it was a chance to ride and geocache the Santa Fe Trail from central Missouri to Santa Fe, New Mexico. For those unfamiliar with geocaching, it’s a “hide and seek” game using GPS coordinates to find hidden caches of varying size all over the world. ...

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Historic and Scenic Routes in Western Nebraska

Riding up the Summit Road with three friends that I met at Scotts Bluff National Monument.

The first transcontinental railroad, first transcontinental automobile highway (the Lincoln Highway), the Oregon Trail, the California and Mormon Trails and the Pony Express riders all made their way through Western Nebraska. Why? The routes originally followed the North Platte River through the prairies, sand hills and grasslands of Nebraska en route to the new lands to the West, skirting the ...

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