Reviews

We Plan...You Ride.

Submitted by John Panek

As Spring FINALLY draws to a close and Summer in the Midwest returns, so does our wanderlust - that desire to get out and enjoy some great roads, amazing scenery, quaint towns, delicious food and good company.  There are many who would not attribute these assets to the upper Midwest.  They may think only of farmland and flat, straight roads.  However, there is a hidden gem in the heartland of the country called the Driftless Area.  This 24,000 square mile swath of land is a departure from the surrounding flat land of the Midwest.  The region, left untouched by glaciers, is rife with bluffs, forests, rolling farmland, and river valleys.  These geologic features have laid the path for countless curving, twisting roads with amazing elevation changes and incredible scenery.  It’s not a coincidence that the recent Driving (and Camping) the Driftless weekend, hosted by Kenton Anderson and Leonie O’Donohoe, was based in the Driftless Area.

When you are ready to explore this region, be sure to visit www.DriftlessRoadAdventures.com This free resource, created by Dale and Renee Hoke, Wisconsin Natives, makes planning your adventure effortless.  Both car and motorcycle enthusiasts will find the site invaluable.

At Driftless Road Adventures, you will find 33 pre-planned routes throughout this region.  Combined, they total over a whopping 8000 miles!!  Each map is designed to be a one day trip (between 250 and 280 miles long) that makes a loop so you can start anywhere on the route.  Dale has carefully designed the routes on paved roads only, and has chosen the “road less traveled,” utilizing small country roads whenever possible.  Therefore, traffic is light so you can spend the day meandering and taking in some of the most beautiful scenery that the Midwest has to offer.

The site provides free GPS ready downloads of all 33 routes (available as .gpx routes, .gpx tracks, and .kmzfiles) as well as pictures and descriptions of each route and selected points of interest.  On the site you can also purchase custom made routes, visit the Driftless Store, check out the calendar of events, enter challenges, and learn more about the creators.  In the store you can even purchase SD cards with pre-loaded routes...it doesn’t get easier than that.  For those who prefer to go “old school”, paper maps are now available as well.

The tagline of the site is, “We Plan...You Ride.” and that’s exactly what you can expect from the website.  Dale and Renee have done all the planning so you can simply enjoy your ride.  So, as you start to gear up for this year’s trips, don’t miss this excellent resource.  As a Miata owner, you owe it to yourself to check out the Driftless Area and if you have any doubts about the quality of the roads, just ask one of the many participants of the Driving (and Camping) the Driftless weekend to give you a first hand review of their experience driving in the Driftless Area.  You will not regret it!!

Visit www.DriftlessRoadAdventures.com and download one route or all thirty-three and start your own Driftless Road Adventure.