I'm riding solo to Michigan City tomorrow. This is my first time past Hammond and I'm following the cue sheet I found on the Le Tour de Shore website (http://www.letourdeshore.com/).
Any tips on things to check out, places to eat, things to avoid?
I'll be staying overnight in Pines, IN and then I'll see where the day takes me on Saturday; maybe a brief trip to New Buffalo and then back home.
Thanks and have a great Fourth!
Jeff, I'll be riding to Kalamazoo (Through New Buffalo) at the end of the month. Would love to know your thoughts once you get back.
stop50 wood-fired pizzeria is pretty great. It seems odd perhaps to get pizza outside of NYC, New Haven or Chicago (or of course Italy), but Stop 50 is pretty great pie - and the staff is really nice and best of all, their prices do not seem to suffer from that annoying resort town inflation that often plague places further up into Michigan.
Just rode through there two weeks ago on my way to the US Social Forum. I didn't take the Tour de Shore route, though past New Buffalo I ended up riding with a group of TdS'ers for a while.
Personally I'd recommend riding through Whiting and Gary, check out Marktown, boo and hiss at the BP refinery, and stop at Whiting Pierogi & Tamale for snacks for the road (which I never have, and I have no idea why). If you ride through Gary you can always stop in Miller Beach for a snack, lunch, or a beer (or all three), there are a few cafes/bakeries/restaurants, or at Dustie's Buffet on 5th Avenue downtown if you need an offensively enormous amount of soul food.
And when in Michigan City you may want to stop by the Shoreline Brewery, if you are someone who enjoys drinking beer. Lots of good riding fuel in beer.
I took a route into Whiting that bypasses having to ride on Indianapolis Blvd right by the Horseshoe Casino (which I find terrifying), and it turned out to be difficult to explain, but very, very easy to find and follow. If anyone needs it, give a shout, and I can try to explain it.
And avoid the unpaved bike path that follows the train tracks through Beverly Shores, if there has been any rain recently, unless you enjoy riding through a foot of mysterious dirty water.
Jeff let me know when you have more firm plans for the five day trip would love to join in.