As we approach the thick of summertime, there’s no better way to celebrate the warmer weather than with a trip to away from the cities and into the wilderness. There are fifty-nine National Parks scattered across the United States, and each one showcases the unique landscapes and ecosystems that make our country such a distinctive place. Celebrate the diversity of America’s great outdoors and treat yourself to a biking trip through these incredible places!
Redwood National Park, California
Often referred to as “Nature’s Cathedral,” Redwood National Park offers an ethereal experience to anyone who visits. The towering old-growth forests stretch into misty skies, blanketing land that sits against the Pacific. Located in the northwestern tip of California, the park is about a five hour drive from both San Francisco and Portland – and the scenic drive is half the delight of the journey. Bring your bike along and explore the trails at Lost Man Creek, Relim Ridge, or Prairie Creek. The rides are great for family or solo adventures – and offer a great sampling of this enigmatic landscape.
Acadia National Park, Maine
This island is less than a mile off the coast of Maine, but it feels like another planet. Cycle along the Pine Tree State’s iconic craggy coastlines and delve into the aromatic spruce forests. Park Loop Road leads up to the summit of Cadillac Mountain, where you can enjoy unparalleled views of the area. Afterwards, head into one of the villages that surround the park and enjoy fresh lobster for dinner.
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
Crater Lake is a place that must be seen to be believed. the crystalline waters seem to plunge down into the center of the Earth, creating a natural wonder that is best enjoyed by bicycle. Rim Drive spans the circumference of the lake – and at 33 miles in length, it poses a rewarding challenge for cyclers.
Glacier National Park, Montana
This natural gem is folded into Montana’s distinctive landscape, providing a snapshot of a place where mountain goats and grizzly bears master the glacial mountains and valleys. Going-to-the-Sun Road offers stunning views of the dramatic landscape – be sure to have your camera ready when you finally reach the summit of Logan Pass.
This “forest of stone” feels like you’re stepping foot on another planet. Spindly red rock formations cut up into the sky, creating a maze that sweeps across the desert. The park has a lot to offer – pillared hoodoos and trees mix together – and it’s a great place to explore by bicycle. A road reserved solely for cycling winds between the park entrance and Rainbow Point. At 17 miles in length, this trail climbs from 7,900 to 9,105 feet – but the challenge is well worth the views that you can enjoy throughout the journey.
Replace luxury with authenticity and end your night at the National Parks’ many campsites. These impeccably-maintained areas are often located in stunning locations (see here for a sampling) and give you the opportunity to experience the park to its fullest. You can find the full offering of National Park campgrounds here or here.
Biking Through Our National Parks was last modified: September 23rd, 2017 by