The Chainlink

I saw some older threads discussing biking on Old Route 66 but they were pretty old so start I would start a new conversation.

I'm planning a trip from Chicago to NoLA and planning on following the ACA Old Route 66 route to St. Louis. It looks pretty boring overall and there are stretches, specifically between Joliet and Normal that are pretty barren when it comes to camping or even motels. I also read on some other forums that road conditions aren't great or driver awareness. Has anyone done this ride recently? My plan currently is to do a shorter first day ride to Joliet, that punch it to Normal on the second day (century ride). I don't particularly like the idea of doing such a long ride on my second day of tour but there don't seem to be to many other others.

Any thoughts or suggestions?

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A lot of forest near Argonne between Cass and Lemont.

Fossil Rock campground just south of Joliet.

There is a KOA north of Pontiac, and a Bayou Bluffs about 10 miles NW of Pontiac.

Comlara county park a few miles north of Normal.

There is a state park on the south side of Lincoln.

Avoid the Double J campground just south of Springfield, RVs only.  KOA on SE is expensive.  Do Riverside on the north beside the Sangamon river.

Litchfield has a equine campground near their lake about 5 miles out of town.

Horseshoe Lake State Park just west of Collinsville.

New Orleans Louisiana?

Yes, New Orleans, LA.

Thanks for the tips regarding campgrounds, I'll check those out.

It can be kind of nerve-wracking, but stealth camping can also be a lot of fun. Here is a pretty good resource that nails it pretty well: http://bicycletouringpro.com/blog/the-secrets-of-stealth-camping/

It's been my experience that unless you plan your trip down to the last mile (and that takes a lot of the fun out of it), you'll have to stealth camp or at least hit up land-owners for permission to camp at least occasionally on a tour.

It is too bad that riding to NOLA won't take you through Wisconsin. Tons of small towns in Wisconsin have municipal campsites in their city parks - many of these are not noted on maps.

EDIT: county fairgrounds generally have camp sites - if there is an event happening at the fairgrounds, one can sometimes just pitch a tent for the night without incurring any questions or fees. Ok I only actually did this once, and it was in Canada, but I've seen plenty of camping at fairgrounds done by others, so it might be worth looking into if the location happens to be on your route.

Good article. Thanks. I may resort to stealth camping if necessary.

Thanks for sharing, I've been following their ride. According to Walkowicz, my ride to New Orleans will take me out of the known Universe (at least based on her scale). #NewOrleansAndBeyond

Super cool event their doing. 

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