Best Motorcycle Road Trips in Nevada

categories: USA Travel

One of the most famous activities that visitors to Las Vegas enjoy is not kept in a casino. Many motorcycle enthusiasts visiting the state quickly discover what many residents already know, that Nevada has some of the country’s best motorcycle roads! You can easily rent a bike in Las Vegas and enjoy hitting the roads. Long-distance motorcycle trips are a truly unique experience that everybody should experience at least once in their lifetime, whether it’s riding across continents or cruising through the backcountry of your state.

People love to take their bikes and hit the beautiful landscapes. Motorbike rides can be adventurous as well as interesting. All you need is a good bike and you can hit the road in full confidence. If you are planning to go for a bike trip, then you can rent a bike in Las Vegas or can take your own without any hassles.

Welcome to Nevada

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The best bike trips in Nevada

Let us have a look at the best bike trips in Nevada and get to enjoy the most out of them:

Red Rocks

Red Rock Canyon

All you need to do is to quickly jump on your bike and head straight out to Red Rock Canyon State Park. The park is just 15 minutes from Las Vegas and offers 13-miles of road that is populated by gorgeous vistas and overlooks where you will experience spectacular views.

Mt. Charleston

Mt. Charleston is a little further, about 35 km away from Las Vegas. The path runs through Mt. Charleston and provides an unbelievable view of the numerous mountains. You will know that you have entered the desert when you walk this path and have headed right into the mountains of Nevada.

Valley of Fire

Valley of Fire State Park

If you liked Red Rock state park then just consider that a warm-up act for Valley of Fire State Park which is less than an hour north of Las Vegas. You can get off your bike and hike or view the petroglyphs or just enjoy the view on some of the roads that wind up into the fantastically shaped rocks. In the Summer, expect temperatures above 100 °F in the heat of the day.

Hoover Dam Loop

The Hoover Dam is not only a popular tourist attraction, but one of the most popular ways to get to the dam is by motorcycle. The Hoover Dam Loop also provides excellent views of one of the greatest architectural landmarks in our world.

The Historic Railroad Trail parallels the railroad bed used in the 1930s to construct Hoover Dam by the Sixes Company. In reality, the old railroad grade also follows 3.5 miles of the River Mountains Loop Trail from Boulder City downhill to the Alan Bible Visitor Center, offering fantastic views of Lake Mead and the drainage of Henemway. For both the Historic Railroad Trail and the River Mountains Loop Trail, the trail-head is just under the Hoover Dam visitor center.

The track of the railroad is not paved but made of native material and the original railroad roadbed. It passes through five wide tunnels and offers spectacular views of our ever-changing Lake Mead, following a very gentle grade east to Hoover Dam. The trail is only a little over 4 miles one-way to the visitor parking garage at Hoover Dam.

Zion National Park

Zion National Park

Although not in Las Vegas itself, for a day trip, Zion National Park is close enough. Many motorcyclists who have come here refer to Zion National Park as “the most beautiful place to ride on earth.” The park provides nearly 230 square miles of magnificent scenery, unlike anywhere else, offering views of cliffs and sculptured canyons. You can’t ride your bike on the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive anymore, because it is accessible only by shuttle, but the drive out the eastern edge of the park has some great stretches of road that head towards Bryce Canyon National Park including some tunnels.

Ruby Tuesday Reflection, Nevada

Ruby Lake

You’ll find Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge in the northeast corner of Nevada, a key waterfowl breeding area, and a migratory bird stopover. The refuge is not only for bird nerds but also home to animals such as mule deer and pronghorn antelope. It’s a lovely place for you to stretch your legs, and practice your photography of nature. This takes some time to get to on your road trip to Nevada because the only way to get to it is by gravel roads. For at least 2 hours, I didn’t see a single other driver, so make sure you have plenty of gas, water, and food.

Laughlin

The Laughlin River Run

Located on the banks of the Colorado River, the town of Laughlin lies on the Nevada / Arizona border in the far southern part of the state. Every year without a pandemic, the Laughlin River Run show runs at the end of April and attracts about 50,000 – 70,000 bikers. It has been around since 198. It was started by a Laughlin Harley Davidson dealer who wanted to attract bikers to the area.

This festival is massive, and there’s a big-name custom bike show, Miss Vibrations competition, Tattoo Expo, and over 250 vendors aside from the obvious poker runs and scavenger hunts.

You obviously get a lot of bikers rolling over from Arizona and California because of its venue. Many of the bikers will ride along the nearby Colorado River, which is where the event name comes from. Some will cross over into Arizona and ride Route 66, while others will ride further north into Nevada.

Miller Point Sunrise

Cathedral Gorge state park

Cathedral Gorge State Park on the eastern border of Nevada, less than 30 minutes from Utah, reminded me a bit of Bryce Canyon, but without the crowds. You’ll want to spend a day walking the trails, exploring the caves, and taking it all in, with its cathedral-like spires soaring over the land (hence the name Cathedral Gorge) and canyon walls layered in various hues of red. The park’s campsites and day-use areas are shaded and come with all the facilities you need.

Out of Gas

A Ghost Town Walk Around

Before you hit the autopilot on your snooze-glide, keep an eye out for a left turn to Nelson’s 165 headings. This area was at the heart of gold fever back in the day and you can wander around the old cars in the ghost town or take a tour of the Techatticup Gold Mine.

Back on the 95, around 30 miles later, look out for a left turn on the 164 for another ghost town, Searchlight. Nope, it’s not Groundhog Day, it’s yet another fun spot to break-up the otherwise boring trip.

In addition, aside from some big gold strikes (and 300 claims) here, the half-ghost city (50 percent of it is now populated by the city) has several cool claims to fame. Bigger than Vegas at one time, and thanks to the Hoover Dam workers, Searchlight was home to one of the most famous brothels, and guess what? They had searchlights leading the establishment’s punters, who’d thunk it!

Valley of Fire State Park

Valley of Fire State Park

How to plan a bike trip

Will you like to go somewhere interesting and new? There is no better place to see a new place than from a motorcycle’s saddle. You may want to reconnect or see your old friends. Anything that causes you to take a couple of days (or more) to go and ride will make the trip more enjoyable.

There is some planning involved before you purchase your plane tickets and arrange shipping to a faraway destination, or randomly hop on your bike and cruise. Here are tips for planning a motorbike ride.

Plan Point A and Point B

This is an obvious one, but you need to choose somewhere to go first. We fully believe that it’s not the destination but the journey that matters, but it’s easier to schedule the specifics that we’ll touch on below with a fixed destination. This will help you to understand things such as the overall mileage for the journey, give you a sense of the terrain you are going to cover, make it easier to decide how many days you need for the overall journey, and inform your packing decisions. This part of the process may be self-evident to point out, but it’s the keystone to anything else you’ll need to plan.

Map your route

So you know where you’re going, but you need to know how to get there right now. This is a far more involved method because you are more likely to want to take the quickest option possible than planning a road trip in a vehicle. When you are on a bike, it’s not the way we suggest, because hours on a smooth, straight interstate can be mind-numbing. Instead, try to schedule your motorcycle ride to get to the finish line by linking smaller highways and backroads, as there is likely to be less traffic, more curves, and better scenery on the route. Take note of the time of year and the possible weather conditions for the areas in which you are going to travel. Check local ride forums or groups for insight into what to expect or pick up the phone and call the nearest dealer and see what locals have to suggest if you’ve never been on a specific road before.

Look for the gas stops

If you haven’t calculated the mileage of your bike already, do it before you go. Most modern bikes have readings that give MPG and miles to zero, but the analog way also does not hurt to do a few rounds just to check the readouts are correct. Fill the tank, ride at the speed you imagine for a few gallons while on the trip, then fill up again. Remember the miles traveled and the gallons it took to get back to full, then divide the gallons used by the miles traveled and you’re going to have an idea of what to expect. Get your MPG worked out, then multiply it by your fuel tank’s size and you’ll have a comparison point between fill-ups where you’re at.

Pack for your trip wisely

When you ride by motorcycle, thoughtful packaging has an immense effect. With all the comforts of home, you do not need to overload your bike. Determine what you absolutely need, instead, and leave the rest. You would be able to do without three wardrobe changes or your favorite bathrobe. Let your route plan also decide what’s key. There are more elements to consider if you’re camping along the way than if you’re booked up at hotels every night.

Discuss with your mates

Consider welcoming a riding buddy on your route in the same safety vein as that of the tip above. Two heads are better than one, and on the lane, you’ll be able to look out for each other. Plus, whether you have intercoms or breaks, you have someone to chat to on the road if you don’t, and they can help catch those all-important Instagram images you’ll need to make people jealous back home.

Go for bike tuning

You want to ensure that all the technical parts on your bike are in top order when planning a motorcycle ride. Make sure that your tire tread is at safe levels for the whole ride, keep an eye on the strength of the tire, make sure that your oil has been changed, and that your brake fluid is up to snuff. It can be a good way to get psyched for the coming trip if you’re comfortable doing all this yourself, and if you’re not, take it to a shop and enjoy the peace of mind that a top-shaped computer offers. If you feel that the bike is not going to work then you can also rent a bike in Las Vegas.

If you’re riding around the state, both you and your passenger will have to wear a lid, as well as protective glasses, face shield, or goggles.

Drive Defensively

Even on one of these beautiful Nevada motorcycle rides, be careful. As motorcycle riders ourselves, we also know how important it is for motorcyclists to practice defensive driving habits. For bikes, other car drivers need to look out better.

Conclusion

There are several roads in the city that can help you enjoy the best of both worlds. All you need is to jump on your bike and hit the roads in a carefree manner. Just keep in mind to carry all the essentials so that you do not suffer from any hindrances. Also if you feel that your bike is not going to work then you can plan out to rent a motorcycle in Las Vegas and make the most out of your trip.

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by Ryan Jackson

Ryan writes for twistedroad.com. "We connect motorcycle riders with motorcycles so that they can rent a bike and ride anywhere they want. So if you have a bike sitting idle in the garage, you can list it on our site. Then, if someone is traveling to your area and wants to experience the area on two wheels, they can rent your iron horse through our platform."

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