Mid Atlantic Backcountry Discovery Route

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The Mid-Atlantic BDR (MABDR) is the eighth BDR route developed for dual-sport and adventure motorcycle travel.

MABDR is a scenic ride for dual-sport and adventure motorcycles that uses dirt, gravel and paved roads to wind through remote parts of Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. Starting in Damascus Virginia, and ending in Lawrenceville, Tioga County, PA, this 1,080-mile route, primarily uses forest roads and rural country lanes, to lead riders through the Appalachian mountains, majestic forests, bucolic farming landscapes, Amish country, and locations that played pivotal roles in early American history.

The route is presented by American Honda Motor Corp., Inc.  

Cross Country Cycle is the official dealership of the MABDR route.

MABDR – SECTION DESCRIPTIONS

Section 1: DAMASCUS, VA to NEWPORT – 138 Miles

Hyper awareness is your friend at the outset of this MABDR adventure: We suggest some good shut-eye followed by a double shot of your favorite type of caffeine in the morning. Get your motor running on Chestnut Mountain Road next to a waterfall, one of many that pool from nearby Valley Creek. Don’t let the lovely meandering route through Jefferson National Forest and along the flanks of Mt. Rogers dull your senses, the cinder-sized gravel has a tendency to berm up on Edinboro both the center of the road and on the shoulders (not unlike a lot of the unpaved roads in Virginia and West Virginia).

There is a scarcity of truly scenic vistas on many roads in the Mid-Atlantic States – happily you can enjoy a bathroom break at every top natural beauty spot on your journey. Make sure to hit up the overlook at Skulls Gap – the views are eye-popping! Once in Marion, check that your eyes are firmly back in their sockets lest the residents think the Zombie apocalypse has arrived on a motorcycle. Sightseeing around the old historic quarter is well worth the time, as several buildings are ancient (by US standards), more than 200 years old.

Upon leaving Marion, enjoy a fun game of hopscotch dancing back and forth from narrow paved county roads and along the edges of landowners’ homesteads, to tight-n-twisty mountain roads that swing from ridgeline to ridgeline. Wyrick Trail is an especially narrow two-track that balances atop any number of the area’s higher escarpments. Countless timber cuts along the route may have been felled to make way for power lines, but provide long and unobstructed views of the countryside.

The Appalachian Trail crisscrosses the MABDR at numerous points, including the Brushy Mountain Outpost, a small grill and market where hungry hikers and bikers can restock. Dismal Creek Campground, a few miles up the road, is the perfect little campground for another great night of sleep. Fueling stops are few and far between in the Appalachians. Keep your eyes peeled for the Marathon Gas Station in Newport, Virginia (7891 Virginia Ave). Gas up your bike – and yourself – before moving on to the next segment of your trip.

Section 2: NEWPORT TO COVINGTON, VA – 79 Miles

Sure you were “Born to Run” but consider stepping into Johnny Castle and Baby’s dancing shoes for just a moment. Soon after kissing Newport goodbye, you’ll be guided to the iconic Mountain Lake Lodge via Mountain Lake Road (VA-700) and site of the beloved cheesy movie, Dirty Dancing. As they say, it’s hip to be square – we say “Stay the night!” This high country stoned lodge simply oozes charm and offers amenities to satisfy royalty.

But freedom calls, even to the high-born: escape on your motorized steed pointing it north toward the West Virginia state line atop lush tree-lined dirt roads. White Rocks Campground is close at hand for those who don’t identify with the princess or the pea. Now that you’re securely in West Virginia, look for the Potts Valley Trail that overlays an abandoned corridor of the Norfolk and Western Branch Railroad. 

This 4.5 mile hiking and (mountain biking) route is popular with outdoor buffs and historic train enthusiasts – and a good excuse to stretch.

Tub Run Road is a highlight! It’s a slim, super snaky and slightly technical dirt trail that has enough turns to make you feel like – well – Baby, other jaunts of note are VA-311, a short paced segment, and Red Brush Road, a dirt ride. Red Brush is drier and brighter than Tub Run, but marked by ruts that required undivided attention. There are numerous camping opportunities in the area as well as lodging options in Covington.

Section 3: COVINGTON, VA TO MOOREFIELD, WV – 193 Miles

Set several early alarms on your smartphone, ‘cause you’re about to embark on the longest day of the bike tour. Head northeast from Covington and get your jollies on early, too. You won’t need to be on full alert – yet – this stretch of road is milder than yesterday afternoon’s.

And just like that, you’re smack dab in the middle of the George Washington National Forest, which, combined with Jefferson National Forest, means you’re about to savor the largest swath of public land in the Eastern U.S.! Allow this big bad beauty to wash over you while you soldier onward.

Turn west toward historical Warm Springs, VA, as soon as you reach VA-39. The crystal-clear water that bubbles up to the surface from the deep underground has been luring folks from generations, like Thomas Jefferson, who frequented these healing waters to alleviate his rheumatism. Legend has it that a Native American Indian discovered the pools after traveling far and wide – just like you. He was said to have been instantly rejuvenated – just like you?

Thank heaven you just bathed in the fountain of youth: north of Warm Springs the roads are far twistier than any previous ones you’ve confronted – you’ll be cruising up and over mountain upon mountain and ridgeline after ridgeline that seem to go on forever.

The best part of your day may just come at the end of the day; the riding ranges from narrow, hypnotically flowing one-lane blacktop, to constricted canyon-lined byways. Smoke Hole Canyon is especially thrilling given the pulsing South Branch of the Potomac River. Technically speaking, this segment ends in the town of Moorefield. We prefer to crash out at the Smoke Hole Resort, less than 20 miles south of town.

Section 4: MOOREFIELD, WV to SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV – 142 Miles

Although most of this segment is characterized by highly entertaining hours of skinny (and skinnier) modern-day paved mountain trails, you’d swear you’ve entered The Twilight Zone every time you get off of your bike to take a breather. Atypical historic points of interest dot the route, like Horn Camp Schoolhouse – the family that owns it lives to share the authentic structure and bygone experience with those who chance by.

Another sideshow, literally impossible to miss, is the Oldtown Low Water Toll Bridge, one of the last few private toll roads operating in the 50 states. You have no choice but to stop and pay the whopping fee of $.50 to get to the other side. Even better, the operator pops out a long-handled steel cup out of the tollbooth window to capture your coins. Best of all, you’ll most likely hear, “You’ve just made my day!” as a way of thanks.

Further up the road lies the Oak Barrel Café and Grocery, a quaint throw back and the place to fill up your tank and your belly and stock up on camping provisions for an overnight stay at Antietam Creek Campground on the banks of the mighty Potomac. The bloodiest single day in American military history occurred in the Civil War at Antietam National Battlefield in Maryland. Be sure to visit the on site museum, at the very least. Depending on how strongly you feel the lingering energy, you may run back to your bike instead of taking your time walking the fields where obscene numbers of Confederate and Union soldiers fell.

Section 5: SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV to MT. HOLLY SPRINGS, PA – 118 Miles

Much of the roads you’ll ride this morning are paved, a fortunate turn that allows for ample time visiting Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. A significant Union army camp, headquarters site, and logistical supply base during the Civil War, it also served as the largest surrender point of Confederate forces at that time.

Though shrouded by sad history, Harpers Ferry is captivating today for a host of locally owned shops offering unique artisanal crafts and culinary delights. The town lies at the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers, the meeting point of Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia. After you hop back onto the bike, you’ll soon hit South Mountain Creamery, a worthwhile quick stop with wholesome and tasty food fresh from the Amish working farm located here.

The remaining part of your day will be accentuated by a backdrop that has morphed from thick groves of deciduous conifers and pine to wide open rolling fields with bucolic small farms and sprawling cattle ranches. The canopy tightens once more upon entering Michaeux State Forest, and the road regains a speedy, yet super flowy two- track. Look out for the occasional bar ditch, there are a number of them on this section. The town of Mt. Holly Springs lies at the end of this segment. This way station is chock-full of Civil War history and offers yet another great stopover if you haven’t had your fill.

Section 6: MT. HOLLY SPRINGS, PA to MCVEYTOWN, PA – 102 Miles

On to Pennsylvania, the land of ‘Liberty, Virtue and Independence!’ The lay of the land is similar to Virginia, with a whole lot of escarpments waiting for you to explore. Translation: a whole lot of elevation changes from the ridgelines to the valleys only a few thousand feet below. After all of the sightseeing the last couple of days, you’ll love zipping past tree after tree after tree. This area comprises all manner of outdoor recreation including stand out Tuscarora State Park. Here you’ll have the freedom to 6 stop-or-not — to picnic, fish or simply take in the fantastic views across the lake.

New Germantown is a particularly scenic village halfway along this segment. You’ve
got liberty and independence covered on your bike. Lacking virtue? You can absolve your sins  – at least for today – inside the simple old Fairview Church outside of town. Pennsylvania utilizes smooth-as-a-drum rollers to compact its dirt roads after grading them, a welcome change from the days of dicey, gravel-ridden corners ridden earlier in the trip.

Section 7: MCVEYTOWN, PA to HARTLETON, PA – 99 Miles

Amish country is surely akin to Luddite heaven. Lucky! You get to travel in the ‘way back machine’ to a time and place when a horse and buggy were the only method of travel and life was simpler and less urgent. Small, quaint hamlets and extraordinarily well-kept farms and homesteads dot the valleys as far as the eye can see. Please show respect by slowing down and giving both man and beast a wide berth — we are all fortunate whenever, and wherever, we can experience an easier pace for a while.

Your digital devices could use a vacation, too. Get that easygoing vibe really going at Greenwood Furnace State Park early into the itinerary. Greenwood Lake practically begs passersby to take a refreshing dip and there are bathrooms and showers. Feeling super relaxed now? The park campground is top notch. Food options are sparse but Couch’s Grocery has some provisions just up the road. The ensuing dirt section through Bald Eagle State Forest, will snap you back to attention. Ravens Knob Road is highlighted by a steep descent complete with embedded rocks, ruts and switchbacks. Poe Paddy State Park is a welcome respite at the end of the slope and offers a lovely campground and picnic area. From here to the end of the segment get ready for the fast and gravelly woodsy trails, including Flat Hollow, an expert option. If you feel flat or your nerves are shot from the drop down into Poe Paddy, opt for the fine looking main trail. Make sure to fuel up at Harvey’s Food Mart in Hartleton before continuing onto section eight.

Section 8: HARTLETON, PA to CEDAR RUN, PA – 115 Miles

Welcome to the northern end of the MABDR and the southern edge of New England, home of legendary fall scenery that lures people from parallel universes, like Japan. Honestly, an autumn trip yields groves of changing trees with almost surreal colors competing for attention, everywhere you look. Add in covered bridges and fire-engine-red barns and you’d swear you’re in a landscape puzzle. Definitely an amazing day on two-wheels that you won’t soon forget.

Expert riders will be glad to know that there is ‘driveable’ trail on this leg. Fair warning: though short, it’s a slender two-track through woods that is punctuated with deep ruts and big rocks. There is a high potential of finding mud, too!

Woolrich, one of the oldest sportswear companies in the U.S. is nearby in the town of – yep, you guessed it – Woolrich, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1830, the company’s original store and factory is still located here. Take a tour and spring for that article of clothing that may need replacing as your tour winds down.

Section 9: CEDAR RUN to NY border – 71 Miles

You’ll want to relish every single minute on your bike today, the last stage of an amazing route that will transition from reality to memory all too soon . . . the state line of New York is a scant 70 miles away. But enough of the cheese-ball sentiment, midway through this final segment you’ll reach the so-called Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania, Colton Point State Park on the west rim of Pine Creek Gorge.

Dig deep and truly live for the moments on the fleeting lookout loop that is Colton Road. Sweeping, commanding views lead eastward, into Tioga State Forest. There is a popular campground at the rim and you’ll quickly see why. If you’d like to stay here, consider booking a reservation ahead of time. The final 35 or so miles is a pleasurable trek across dirt tracks and county paved roads, and in and out of small farms and clusters of trees, reminiscent of southern Pennsylvania a long and short three days ago.

This journey ends in the border town of Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania. Congratulations, you did it – 1,093 miles and five states later, you’ve reached the end of the MABDR! Time to start planning another trip.

MABDR LODGING

The Seymore and the Big Dam Room are two rentals in Damascus, VA that are within a mile of the beginning of the MABDR. It is a 100-year-old house that has a unique history and has been modernized. It is ideal for a large group of riders looking for a spot that is walking distance to both a brewery and a distillery and a few places to eat. We have 10 beds total. Tons of great on and off-road riding right outside the door. If you need help getting things figured out give us a call, as we are adventure riders too, we’ll be glad to help. We also have MABDR guides available if needed.

Address: ​359 beaver dam Ave., Damascus, VA

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Address: ​570 Wallace Rd. Shady Valley Tn. 37688

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The South Branch Inn-Moorefield is located in Historic Moorefield West Virginia, next to the civil war Battle of Moorefield.

1500 US Hwy

Moorefield,  VA

Ph. 304-538-2033

A tent camping facility to provide motorcycle riders a convenient and comfortable location to camp and enjoy street and dual sport riding areas. We also have a five bed bunkroom, furnished with linens and towels, to offer to our motorcycle travelers.

165 Mountain View Lane (2,192.86 mi)
Elk Park, NC 28622

Ph. (828) 528-2861

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Wood's Hole

Located on the MADBR Trail at the end of Day 1 and 1/2 mile from the Appalachian Trail.
Woods Hole is an isolated 1880’s Chestnut Log Cabin offering Private Indoor Rooms, Safari Tents, and Bunkhouse.

Woods Hole Hostel and Mountain B&B
3696 Sugar Run Road
Pearisburg, Virginia 24134

Phone: (540) 921-3444

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The Damascus Old Mill Inn is a historic hotel and restaurant located in Damascus, Virginia. All of our rooms have a private bathroom, daily housekeeping services, an individually controlled HVAC system, interior corridors, and elevator service. Located on the banks of Laurel Creek, the mill overlooks the grist mill waterfall, while ducks and geese float peacefully on the mill pond. Visit one of the most charming hotels in the state, located in “the friendliest town on the Appalachian Trail.”

215 West Imboden Street
Damascus, VA 24236
Ph. (276)475-3745

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Lady Di’s B&B was founded in May 2021 because Lady Di (nobo class of 2019) fell in love with Damascus while hiking through.

Address: ​217 Damascus Drive Damascus, VA 24236

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One and two bedroom cabins with large decks overlooking the river. All of the cabins have full bathrooms, kitchen, microwave, oven, coffee pot and Wi-fi.

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Dragonfly Inn sign Dragonfly Inn

125 E Laurel Ave, Damascus, VA 24236

Formerly known as Augusta’s Appalachian Inn.
Each room comes with a private bath, as well as cable television and WiFi.
Breakfast for two is included with each stay and complimentary secure parking.

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Family and rider-owned Inn in Damascus, Virginia with a focus on rider support. Wonderfull accommodations from traditional B&B style to full suites. An onsite shop with lift and tire equipment. Limited parts stocks to help riders complete their trip.

We also donate $10 per room night for the BDR riders who stay with us, back to the BDR.  Support the BDR by staying at Dancing Bear!

The Dancing Bear Inn
203 E Laurel Ave
Damascus, VA 24236
276.475.8778

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Crazy Larry's Bed and Breakfast

209 Douglas Dr. Damascus, Virginia

Ph. (276) 274-3637

Hostel, cottage, and private rooms complete with showers, laundry, breakfast, snacks, and WiFi.

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The Hobo Hostel provides budget oriented, sociable accommodations where guests can rent a bed in a dormitory style setting (a room containing several beds) and share a bathroom, lounge and kitchen areas.

Address: ​Middlebury Center, Pennsylvania, Detailed location provided after booking.

Phone: (276) 356-2855

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Standard three-star Hotel

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Wood’s Hole Hostel serves the Appalachian Trail community as well as couples, families, and groups. Enjoy communal meals, yoga, organic gardening and more during your stay.

Wood’s Hole Hostel is located on 100 acres of land, surrounded on three sides by the Jefferson National Forest and protected by 780 acres of privately owned land. Located in Southwest Virginia, an easy drive from both I-77 and I-81.

Address: ​3696 Sugar Run Road

Pearisburg, VA 24134

Phone: 540 921 3444

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Mountain Lake Lodge

This 3.5 star hotel features an outdoor pool, sauna, restaurant, bar/lounge, and wireless internet access.

Filming location of Dirty Dancing the Movie

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At Country Inn & Suites, our hospitality comes from a deep sense of community. When you stay with us, you’ll find shared spaces that bring people together.

940 East Main St.

Abingdon, VA

Ph. 276-676-2829

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Friendly, clean and comfortable accommodations located directly on the MABDR.  Single rooms, entire cabin rentals and campsites at affordable rates.

Address: ​273 Dismal Creek Road, Bland, VA 24315
Phone: (276) 389-6892
Email: info@dismalfalls.com

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“The Country” is a veteran owned and operated business. Our family spent 30+ years in the US Air Force, and now after moving back home we are focusing on trying to make our home one of your favorite places to visit. We hope you, your family and friends can come visit and or stay a while, and enjoy the place I love more than any in the world!

Address: ​17267 Johns Creek Rd, New Castle, VA 24127

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Evergreen Inn is a 1920’s home renovated in 2019 with all new furnishings &  situated along the Jackson River Scenic Trail, a former railroad line that ran from Covington to Hot Springs and transported milk from the Evergreen Dairy (building is still across the street) to The Homestead Resort.

Address: ​1914 Dressler Drive, Covington, Virginia 24426

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Riders are ALWAYS WELCOME at Vine Cottage Inn! We offer 10 beautiful, yet comfortable guest rooms, each with private bathroom for a hot shower after a day of riding through some of the most beautiful country along the MABDR! A full 3 course breakfast will fuel you up in the morning, getting you ready to start the next part of your ride. Kickstand pucks and wipe down towels are always available.  We’d love to talk about our own adventures on the MABDR!

Address: ​7402 Sam Snead Hwy, Hot Springs, VA 24445.
GPS coordinates: N37°59.47’ W079°49.941’

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The Inn at Gristmill Square

The Inn at Gristmill Square is Bath County’s premier boutique inn and restaurant located in the heart of the George Washington National Forest.  Our 18 rooms and suites are comfortably appointed with a mix of beautifully selected antiques and modern furnishings to create unique spaces for which guests have long enjoyed.

P.O. Box 359 / 118 Old Germantown Road
Warm Springs, Virginia 24484
Ph. 540-839-2231

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Situated on 500 acres of field, forest, mountains and streams in Virginia’s Blue Ridge, Wilderness Adventure at Eagle Landing is the perfect spot to spend the weekend, bring a group, or tie the knot. Craig’s Creek, a wide, shallow and meandering body of water flows along nearly a half mile of the property making it perfect for tube floats, canoe paddles, or afternoon rinses on hot afternoons. The opportunities for relaxation and adventure are endless. You can move at your own pace, exploring your surroundings on foot, boat, or bike OR you can let us guide your adventures over multiple days. Let us be your basecamp for adventure!

Address: 11176 Peaceful Valley Road, New Castle, VA 24127

Phone: (540) 864-6792

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Swimming lake, bathrooms, showers, grills, tent sites = $16 (large enough
for 2 tents), hiking trails.

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Ranch style house on 300 acre farm where the Cowpasture river runs through it. Nestled beside a Big Spring. Farm is bordered on the east by the George Washington National Forest. Short walking distance to the Shaw’s Ridge Trail.Short driving distance to Shenandoah mountain and the Confederate breastworks. A few miles from historical McDowell and Monterey,Highland County,Virginia. Enjoy outdoor activities such as fishing hunting hiking biking kayaking in the area.

Address: Williamsville, Virginia

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One full apartment, two rustic camping cabins with 3-4 beds in each, and unlimited camping. Also, hot showers.

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Thorn Spring Park, the county’s 4-H camp for two weeks of the year, is also open to the public with cabins for rent, full hookups for trailers and RVs, and campsites for tenters.

42 All Star Dr, Franklin, WV 26807
Phone: (304) 358-7737

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5 cozy cabins with fully equipped kitchens, outdoor hot tubs, satellite TV, and full privacy from each other.

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The Star Hotel & Restaurant is the choice place to stay & dine
in the town of Franklin, West Virginia.

Our restaurant offers casual & fine dining, with the best prime rib around! Guests love our cozy rooms with vintage character.

We have everything you need for the perfect visit.

210 S Main St, Franklin, WV 26807
Ph. (304) 358-3580

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314 Jefferson St., Clifton Forge, VA 24422

(540)797-5000

A 100 year old building, completely renovated; casual overnight accommodations; 7 bedrooms, 4.5 baths, and common areas: living room, full kitchen, glassed-in porch and media room.

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14239 Douthat State Park Rd., Millboro

(540)862-8100 or 1-800-933-PARK

Cabins, campsites, conference facilities, picnic shelters, stocked lake, boat house, sandy beach, hiking/biking trails.

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429 W. Main St., Covington, VA 24426

(540) 960-2131

Located 1.5 miles from I-64. Free breakfast, exercise facility, business center, and guest laundry facilities.

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820 E. Madison Ave. Exit 16, I-64, Covington, VA 24426

(540)962-4951

Cable TV, fridge, coffee maker

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701 Carlyle St., Covington, VA 24426

(540)962-1200

Free hot breakfast, indoor heated pool, microwave and refrigerator in every room, exercise facility, outdoor patio with fire pit; on site business center.

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Experience the southern hospitality and elegant charm that have made this resort a premier destination for 23 U.S. presidents. Located across more than 2,000 acres of scenic Virginia landscape, this resort provides timeless comforts and access to an array of exciting activities no matter the season. From the full-service spa featuring the same mineral waters that President Thomas Jefferson experienced in 1818, to two of the best golf courses in Virginia, you’re sure to have an experience unlike any other.

1766 Homestead Dr.

Hot Springs, VA

Ph. 540-839-1766

www.omnihotels.com

Exits 10, 14, or 16, I-64 to Lake Moomaw and Gathright Dam, St. Rt. 605, Covington, VA

(540)962-2214 (info only) 1-877-444-6777 (reservations)

Rustic campground, showers, also primitive camping; stocked lake; water sports; bath house, sandy beaches, hiking and in season hunting.

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123 Westvaco Rd., Exit 21, I-64, Low Moor, VA 24457

(540)929-0977

Adjacent to Penny’s Diner, open 24 hrs. Microwave and fridge, HBO. Near LewisGale Hospital Alleghany.

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Smoke Hole Caverns Log Cabin Resort

8290 N Fork Hwy Cabins, WV 26855‎
Ph. (304)257-4442

Tourist attraction located in the Seneca Rocks/Spruce Knob National Recreational Area. Cozy log cabins and Cavern pool tours.

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Warm Springs Inn

A landmark in Bath County since it was built in the late 1800’s, this historical inn was established in the same building as the first courthouse and jail in the county.

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Found just a 30 – 40 minute detour off the MABDR section 3, and just 15 minutes from the Blue Ridge Parkway, Skyline Drive, Rt 11 and I-81/I-64, Penmerryl Farm is an ADV motorcycle centric resort offering primitive camping, overland vehicle and trailer parking, lodge rooms and cabin rentals. Training opportunities and trails on-site, as well as a motorcycle shop available for public use.

Address: 273 Penmerryl Dr., Greenville VA 24440

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Whether you are coming from the Mid-Atlantic Back Roads Discovery Route or otherwise exploring the beautiful mountain roads in our county, MotoCamp is here to provide safe and clean accommodations in a scenic setting, either in your own tent or in our Clubhouse.

Stay for one night or longer, enjoy the pristine mountain air, and re-energize for another day of motorcycling. We will have information on places to eat and the best routes to travel. With advance notice, we can also provide a snack pack with healthy food and drink for your next day of travel or help you stock up on hygiene items, such as toothpaste and a toothbrush.

Address: ​5026 Jackson River Rd, Monterey, VA 24465

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A new VRBO rental right in the heart of section 3 in Highland County VA. Accommodations are ideal for large groups. Just miles from the MABDR and additional riding options in every direction in VA and WV. Garage to park bikes. Convenient to several restaurants and gas stations.

Address: ​Highland County, VA Detailed location provided after booking.

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110 McCormick Blvd., Clifton Forge, VA 24422

(540)865-0359 or (385)201-4106

100 year old Historic Greek Revival Home nestled on the top of the Alleghany Hills of Virginia. 7 Federal Style guest rooms, 6 private baths. Guests are spoiled and pampered with 3 to 7 Course Silver Service Candlelight breakfast, afternoon tea time, and turn down service in the evening.

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Fort Lewis Lodge & Farm is a country inn set on a 3,300-acre mountain estate in Bath County, VA. The property offers 3-miles of private river access for fishing, swimming, and boating and trails for hiking and biking. Soak in our wood-fired sauna by day or sit fireside in our pavilion by night. Family-owned for over 30 years, Fort Lewis is also a working farm, where produce is grown and the pastureland is used for grass-fed cattle. Your stay includes a seasonally-inspired breakfast and dinner. All rooms offer private bathrooms, daily housekeeping, AC, and wifi. 
 
Address: 
Fort Lewis Lodge & Farm
603 Old Plantation Way
Millboro, VA 24460

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Address: 80 Cowpasture River Road S., VA 24442 (On 614 S., 100 ft. south of 250)

Description: 4 rooms. one with a king bed 1 with queen 1with 2 full 1 with twins also 3 shared baths. Call Rick for reservation (don’t forget to mention the BDR!): 610-570-6410

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Welcome to Antietam Overlook Farm, Maryland’s most extraordinary bed and breakfast experience. From our 19th century style Country Manor Inn, enjoy the magnificent surroundings, overlook Civil War history, view rolling mountains and the land of four states, while feeling as comfortable and relaxed as you would in your own home.

Address: ​4770 Horizon Ln, Keedysville, MD 21756
Phone: 1-800-878-4241

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31307 Oldtown Orleans Rd SE
Little Orleans, MD 21766
Ph.(301)723-0213

Hot showers. 100+ acres for camping. Some electric available. One 175 year old rustic log cabin with water/electric etc..

Glamping in the Potomac Highlands of West Virginia, a short drive from both DC and Baltimore, stay at a mountain retreat and explore the beauty of the area.

Email: info@loveswayvillage.com

Phone: (304) 538-7997

Address: ​200 Loves Way, Moorefield, WV

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Nestled in the Potomac Highlands along the banks of the Lost River, the Inn at Lost River features large guest rooms, unique private cottages, and distinctive historic details.  All rooms have a private ensuite bath, include a multi-course breakfast each morning incorporating locally sourced meats and eggs, and a happy hour each evening.

The inn serves as a fantastic base for exploring the natural beauty of the Lost River Valley.  Hike to the top of Cranny Crow in nearby Lost River State Park for an expansive vista spanning five counties, ride the trails on horseback at the stables, or spend an afternoon swimming or fishing at the Trout Pond Recreation Area.  The Inn offers easy access to ride through the natural beauty of the George Washington National Forest as well as an opportunity to just relax and rejuvenate in a restored late 19th century inn with historic charm and modern amenities.

Don’t forget to visit the Lost River General Store and Café for lunch.  Located on the property, the General Store has been serving the social and retail needs of the valley for 125 years. The café offers house-smoked BBQ, craft beer and wine, locally made ice cream, a rotating menu of sandwiches and seasonal specials, as well as local art and crafts.

Address: ​7015 State Road 259, Lost River, WV 26810

Phone: 304-897-7000

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Just Plane Adventures Lodging and Campground has so much to offer West Virginia visitors. Conveniently located only 11 miles West of Moorefield, WV at the Patterson Creek Road Exit, just 2.7 miles off the 4 Lane Hwy RT 48 in Medley, WV. We have 31 RV Sites with Water, Sewer, 50/30/20 AMP Electric, and Free WIFI throughout our Campground. Lodging consists of a medley of premium Cabins providing you with a “like home” experience at a fraction of the cost of a hotel.

Heavens Landing Airstrip, a private airstrip (4WV4) is available to our fly in guests with prior permission.

Address: 59 Just Plane Adventures Ln Medley, WV 26710

Website: www.justplaneadventures.com

4236 Main Street
Rohrersville, MD 21779

Phone: (301)302-8032

Email: info@bigcorkvineyards.com

Big Cork Vineyards offers wine for tasting and purchase, the Grab-and-Go Food Market, and lodging.
The 6,600-square-foot, four-bedroom estate on the Big Cork Vineyards property sleeps up to nine people and is just a short walk from the winery. The house is available to rent for the night or for longer stays.

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Choice Hotels® offers great hotel rooms at great rates. Find & book your hotel reservation online today to get our Best Internet Rate Guarantee!

4328 William L Wilson Fwy

Harpers Ferry, WV

Ph. 844-283-1846

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historic Park
Sharpsburg, MD 21782

Just south of Sharpsburg, along Antietam Creek which feeds into the much larger and faster Potomac River directly adjacent to the campsite.

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Address: ​Little Orleans, Maryland, Detailed location provided after booking.

Perfect for all of your outdoor adventures, The Trailhouse is nestled on the edge of the Green Ridge State Forest, where Fifteen Mile Creek flows into the Potomac River. You’ll be just a few hundred yards from the historic C&O Canal Towpath trail, the Western Maryland Rail Trail, and the Mid Atlantic Backcountry Discovery Route borders the property!

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We are a small farm about 30 minutes off the trail near Chambersburg, PA. There is a nice private area by our pond for tent camping and can offer the bank barn if there is bad weather. There’s a clean portable toilet. Campers are welcome to our milk house kitchen that has a full size fridge, cookware, stove, and 3 bay sink. There is not electricity at the campsite, but there is in the barn and kitchen. Campfires are welcome unless it’s super dry. We offer eggs and some produce depending on the season. We are open spring to fall.

Phone:(223)248-5630

Address: 9377 Upper Strasburg Road Pleasant Hall, PA 17246

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Take a step back in time at Fallen Tree Farm Bed and Breakfast. In the heart of Central Pennsylvania, our historic 20 acre horse farm and unique stone and brick farm house is located just south of Carlisle, only five minutes off Interstate 81. We are an easy 10 minute commute into town but feature all the peace and quiet of the country.

Address: ​1634 Holly Pike, Carlisle, PA 17015
Phone: 717-713-5407

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We encourage our guests to disconnect and unwind while staying at our Inn. Once you check-in you’ll find that we make it very easy to relax. With no distractions such as televisions or internet access you’ll be able to truly enjoy the natural beauty of the smells, sounds, sights of rural farm life. Hear our rooster crow and watch them nest in trees at dusk. Watch the goats and sheep play in pastures. Collect free-range eggs. Cut flowers or stroll out to barn. See the occasional horse and buggy trot by. Live rather than text.

Address: ​3581 Ritner Highway, Newville, PA 17241
Phone: 717-559-FARM (3276)
Fax: 717-221-8006

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This is a newly remodeled house with a pavilion, picnic table and grill. There is a coffee pot & Keurig with ample coffee and supplies provided. Relax at this peaceful and quiet place nestled in the woods situated on 250 acres so there is plenty of space to stretch your legs. There is a garage on site to provide shelter for motorcycles if requested.

Address: ​5965 Blacklog Road, Orbisonia PA 17243

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We are motorcycle enthusiasts and welcome fellow travelers. We will gladly garage your bike during your stay with us.
At the end of the day, there are complimentary snacks, home baked goods and a refreshing drink for you to enjoy.

Address: ​521 Lerew Rd, Carlisle, PA 17015

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Wildwood RV Resort is nestled alongside the scenic Tuscarora Mountains in western Perry County, PA conveniently located 15 miles north of the PA turnpike. Riders can enjoy, hot showers, store with food and drinks, several rental options…Tent Sites, a Colorado Tent, Primitive Huts, Primitive Cabins, Deluxe Cabins and or a King Cabin. Outdoor grills at each, picnic tables, fire pits and firewood small stacks delivered to site.
Ask for Kelly our manager and mention MABDR.

Address: ​7310 Horse Valley Road, East Waterford, PA 17021
Phone: 717.743.9096

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This 48 room motel is located in Huntingdon, 15 mins from the intersection of Sections 6 and 7 near McVeytown. Behind the motel is a Wal-Mart. Owned by a motorcycle enthusiasts who would love to trade stories. There is a covered carport should you like to keep your bikes under cover. Owner has a towing business should anyone have a mechanical issue.

Address: ​6920 Motor Inn Drive, Huntingdon, PA 16652
Phone: 814-643-1133
GPS Coordinates: 40.4902385, -78.0356419

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Poe Paddy State Park is at the confluence of Big Poe Creek and Penns Creek, a trout angler’s paradise featuring the nationally recognized green drake mayfly hatch in June. Hikers enjoy the Mid State Trail. Poe Valley State Park is nearby.

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3332 Little Pine Creek Road
Waterville, Pa 17776
Ph: 570-753-8000
Fax: 570-75308030

Located in the beautiful Pine Creek Valley, Happy Acres Resort offers lodging with 60 different cabins & rooms, full kitchens and baths, jacuzzi tubs, A/C, heat, gas grills and Direct TV, along with all types of camping.
Our Restaurant and Wildlife Lounge has daily specials, Prime Rib Friday and Saturday, along with Karaoke every Friday night and live music every Saturday night.
Our Happy Store offers Perry’s hand dipped ice cream, gifts and groceries. We are open year round.

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Sunsational Family Campground sign1120 Hoffman Lane
Millmont, Pa. 17845
570-922-CAMP ( 2267 )

Family owned campground offering $15 a night to BDR riders. Includes pool access.

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Address: ​16 Pine Tree Lane, Loganton, PA 17747
Phone: 570-725-2267
email: happycamper@holidaypines.com

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Address: ​Middlebury Center, Pennsylvania, Detailed location provided after booking.

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MABDR FOOD

Local gathering place on Wilderness Road in beautiful Bland County Virginia! Convenience store and more: popular stop on the gorgeous Appalachian Trail.

Address: 900 Wilderness Rd, Bland, VA

Phone: (276) 928-1349

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A delicious homestyle breakfast diner in Marion, VA

1050 VA-16, Marion, VA 24354
Ph. (304) 358-2002

https://m.facebook.com/Sur81marion/

The Inn at Gristmill Square is Bath County’s premier boutique inn and restaurant located in the heart of the George Washington National Forest.  Our 18 rooms and suites are comfortably appointed with a mix of beautifully selected antiques and modern furnishings to create unique spaces for which guests have long enjoyed.

P.O. Box 359 / 118 Old Germantown Road
Warm Springs, Virginia 24484
Ph. 540-839-2231

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562 E. Madison Ave., Covington, VA 24426

(540)962-3964

Authentic, family-owned, Italian restaurant with a casual dining atmosphere.

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Gateway Family Restaurant is a family-owned business that prides on hospitality and comforting food.

Briery Gap Rd, Riverton, WV 26814
Ph. (304) 567-2810

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The Star Hotel & Restaurant is the choice place to stay & dine
in the town of Franklin, West Virginia.

210 S Main St, Franklin, WV 26807
Ph.(304) 358-3580

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The best little Supermarket in the Potomac Highlands. A Full service Grocer providing the best in Meats, Produce, Dairy, Frozen foods, Deli, Bakery, Wine,and Beer.

32 Pike Rd- Franklin, WV 26807
Ph. (304) 358-7662

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Korner Shop Cafe

Experience the small town flavor of the place and the attention to the customer that makes a stranger feel welcome.

200 N Main St, Franklin, WV 26807
Ph. (304) 358-2979

Website

Rite Aid Corporation is also proud to be one of the nation’s leading drugstore chains. With approximately 2,500 stores in 19 states, we have a strong presence on both the East and West Coasts, employing more than 51,000 associates.

Us 220 & 33, Franklin, WV 26807
Ph.(304) 358-7980

Website

Our small, family-owned brewery is nestled within the gorgeous Alleghany Highlands of western Virginia. We offer a small selection of delicious craft beers inspired by our surrounding history and geography. From dark and decadent to light and refreshing, we hope you’ll find a brew you’ll love!

320 W Hawthorne St, Covington , Virginia 24426
Ph. (540) 816-0409

Address: 19210 Opessa St SE, Oldtown, MD 21555-1883
Phone: 301-478-5189

4236 Main Street
Rohrersville, MD 21779

Phone: (301)302-8032

Email: info@bigcorkvineyards.com

Website: www.bigcorkvineyards.com

Big Cork Vineyards offers wine for tasting and purchase, the Grab-and-Go Food Market, and lodging. The 6,600-square-foot, four-bedroom estate on the Big Cork Vineyards property sleeps up to nine people and is just a short walk from the winery. The house is available to rent for the night or for longer stays.

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 South Mountain Creamery is a farm, creamery, home delivery service, and wholesaler that is proudly farmer operated and family owned. For more than 20 years, we’ve been bringing high-quality products to our friends and neighbors throughout the region, so they can feel good about the food they eat. When you know your farmer, you know your food.

8305 Bolivar Road, Middletown, MD 21769
Ph. 844-762-6455

Website

Cassell’s Grille is a completely smoke free establishment, with a full liquor license and multiple dining options. The tavern is equipped with booths and tables as well as a 20 seat bar. Above the bar are six flat panel t.v.’s always tuned to the games, and a sound system playing your favorite music, creating a casual, relaxed atmosphere. Equally pleasing is our dining room presenting a quieter more intimate setting. Al fresco dining is the third option. Our spacious wooden deck will provide outdoor seating, season and weather permitting. For your convenience, a private parking lot is attached to the property.

5 West Pine Street, Mount Holly Springs, PA 17065

(276) 475-5454

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We have over 20 local farmers supplying the store with goods.  We are know for being a “PA Amish Country Snacks & more”
May be offering tent camping sites in the future.

417 Smokey Hollow Road, East Waterford, PA 17021
Phone: (717)-994-5781

A family-owned, family friendly, casual dining restaurant featuring American cuisine with an Aussie twist.  Conveniently located just outside of New Cumberland, Pennsylvania on Limekiln Road.  Situated next to I83 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike, we are an easy drive from Harrisburg, York, Lancaster, or anywhere in between.  They also feature Harrisburg PA’s best standup comedy club, the Harrisburg Comedy Zone.  Plus the Harrisburg West Inn is conveniently located on the premises, negating your need to drive home.  Be sure to check out the awesome package deals!

110 Limekiln Rd. New Cumberland, PA

717-920-3627

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1415 State Rte 235
Laurelton PA 17835
Ph.5709221709

Family owned with 3 grades of gas and diesel. Also a small grocery store, made to order deli, and hand dipped ice cream.

Fabulous food in the 50’s Mood. Celebrating over 30 years of business. Currently open for both dine in and curbside service. Visit and experience it for yourself!

22 Railroad Trail, McVeytown, PA

Ph. (717) 899 – 7751

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13605 Greenwood Road

Huntingdon, PA   16652

814-667-2016

couchstore1@gmail.com

At Couch’s, we offer a wide array of services to ensure you leave with a full belly and a smile on your face. Come to us for casual dining in, or order takeout to eat as you hike the trails or go fishing in the nearby area. We also stock local produce and groceries. Or, you can opt for some delicious ice cream to enjoy while watching a beautiful sunset. Our signatures include meatloaf, Reuben Stromboli, Italian Hoagies, our own Wing recipes and Pappy John’s Sweet Tea.

Come & take time to CHILL with us! Hours are 11am-8:30 pm Tuesday through Sunday. Closed Mondays.

Website
Ph. (304) 358-2002

Family style restaurant, homemade food and friendly staff.

12 Main St, Lawrenceville, PA 16929
Ph. (570) 827-2775

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A small town Market & Deli.

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58 Main St, Lawrenceville, PA 16929

Ph. 570-827-9000

Cedar Run General Store is a memorable stop. A hub for fellow travelers. The food and ice cream are delicious and the owner is very friendly.

284 Beulah Land Rd, Cedar Run, PA 17727
Ph. (570) 353-2740

MABDR FUEL

532 North Main St, Franklin WV 26807

27 Mountaineer Dr, Franklin, WV 26807
Phone: (304) 358-222

P,O. Box 129,
Laurelton PA 17835

Location is: 1415 State Route 235
Laurelton PA 17835

Phone: (570)922-1709

1415 state route 235
Laurelton PA 17835
Ph. 570-922-1709

Family owned with 3 grades of gas and diesel. Also a small grocery store, made to order deli, and hand dipped ice cream.

MABDR MOTORCYCLE DEALERSHIPS

KISSELL MOTORSPORTS

Tyrone, PA

WEBSITE

Kissell Motorsports was founded in 2001 and offers European motorcycle enthusiasts in the Mid-Atlantic region a premium motorcycle buying experience. Whether it's for sales, service, or parts and accessories, you won't find a friendlier dealership anywhere. We are a dealer for BMW, Aprilia, Moto Guzzi, Beta and Zero motorcycles. Just minutes off of the MABDR, we're here to help you get back on the road as quickly as possible if you're in need of repair parts or service. Please give us a call or make us a destination point on your next trip!

CROSS COUNTRY CYCLE

Metuchen, NJ

WEBSITE

Cross Country is a family-owned and operated dealership, conveniently located near the areas of New Brunswick, Elizabeth, Perth Amboy, Staten Island and Old Bridge Township.

Cross Country Cycle can provide you with the latest and best in powersports products and service to make your outdoor motorcycle adventures more enjoyable.


STREET TRACK ’N TRAIL, INC.

Conneaut Lake, PA

WEBSITE

We have been chasing the wind for 54 years. That chase is an itch we love to scratch, and nothing does it more effectively than an Adventure bike. Harley-Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, Yamaha, Suzuki, Polaris, Ural, and Royal Enfield. They’re all here on historic U.S. Rt. 6. We are The Keeper of the Western Door. We’re close to the Allegheny National Forest, and just a few hours away from Pennsylvania’s portion of the BDR Mid- Atlantic route, spanning the spine of the Appalachians between New York and Maryland. You won’t find our combination of world class brands anywhere else. Stop in and see us, and remember...Great Adventures Begin Here.

BEST LINE POWERSPORTS

Centre Hall, PA

WEBSITE

Best Line Powersports is central Pennsylvania’s best full-servicing dealer for Kawasaki, Indian Motorcycle, Polaris ATVs, and Slingshot. Our certified technicians will provide you the highest quality service including routine maintenance, tune-ups, overhauls, custom design, and fabrication. We also have a full offering of aftermarket parts, accessories, and merchandise. Best Line Powersports is located conveniently off the Mid-Atlantic BDR near State College, PA – home of the Penn State University. Please visit us in beautiful Happy Valley while you are passing through the area.

MABDR DISCOVERY POINTS

4236 Main Street
Rohrersville, MD 21779

Phone: (301)302-8032

Email: info@bigcorkvineyards.com

Website: www.bigcorkvineyards.com

Big Cork Vineyards offers wine for tasting and purchase, the Grab-and-Go Food Market, and lodging.
The 6,600-square-foot, four-bedroom estate on the Big Cork Vineyards property sleeps up to nine people and is just a short walk from the winery. The house is available to rent for the night or for longer stays.

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official start photo opp

photo opp

Lodging, Food, Fuel, General Francis Marion Historical Hotel, Historic Lincoln Theater.

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Hungry Mother State Park

twisty twisty mountain road

Filming location of Dirty Dancing the Movie, Four Star accommodations and restaurant, pub, vacation home rentals, small food supplies.

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Home of the Omni Homestead Resort, Public Hot springs, Lodging, food, fuel

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Navel moth balled communications center

Start of the smoke hole canyon.

Camping:

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Food, lodging, local caves, fuel within 10 miles

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Motorcycle in front of Horn Camp sign

2175 Horn Camp Rd Rio, WV 26755

Family living museum dating back to original homesteaders in the valley.

Historical civil war community, lodging, camping food, fuel museums, national parks and monuments

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Revolutionary era township. Home of Civil War Antietam Battle field and many other historical sites, lodging, fuel, food, camping

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Limited services, food and fuel

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camping and outdoor activities

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camping, lake, showers

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Camping, cabins

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Food fuel and lodging. Finish of the MABDR

MABDR PACKING LIST

This packing list serves as an example and is not intended to be a complete list for your backcountry riding needs. Feel free to customize this list to work for you.

  • Helmet
  • Boots
  • Goggles
  • Gloves (2 sets)
  • Protective gear (pressure suit, Leatt brace, knee braces)
  • Jacket
  • Pants
  • Balaclava or neck gaitor
  • Water bladder or bottle
  • Hydration pack
  • Ear plugs

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Below are answers to some of the Frequently Asked Questions about the Mid-Atlantic Backcountry Discovery Route.

The Mid-Atlantic BDR is a scenic dual-sport adventure on dirt, gravel and paved roads through remote parts of Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. Starting in Damascus, VA, and ending in Lawrenceville, Tioga County, PA, this 1,080-mile route primarily uses forest roads and rural country lanes through the Appalachian mountains, majestic forests, bucolic farming landscapes, Amish country, and locations that played pivotal roles in early American history.

Most years you should be able to ride starting mid May until the first snow fall in late fall.  The best time of year will be early June and September/October.

The MABDR route is designed to be ridden on adventure and dual-sport motorcycles, as well as driven in 4×4 vehicles. There are no single-track style trails on this route. Generally speaking, this is one of the easier BDR routes, however, there are a lot of tight corners on sleek gravel roads, and you can expect to cover sections of road with deep ruts, loose rocks, and other challenges.  Road conditions change from week to week based on the recent weather.  Depending on time of year and weather, there may be a few small deep water crossings. Flash floods are frequent during summer storms.  Don’t cross flooded washes. Wait until water subsides.

This route is perfect to ride two-up if you are skilled in riding off-road two-up.

The Mid-Atlantic region can have strong thunder storms during the summer months.  These storms can contain lightning, hail stones and heavy downpours.

The longest section without gas is 115 miles, which doesn’t seem like much, but you never know when the next gas station will be closed or out of gas.  So carrying extra gas is strongly suggested. Never pass up the opportunity to get gas.

There are campgrounds along the route. But fewer in Virginia and West Virginia. You will find more in Maryland and Pennsylvania. The Butler Motorcycle Map for the MABDR has a tent icon showing campgrounds on the route and many near the route. The MABDR Butler Map is available at www.touratech-usa.com,  www.butlermaps.com and other fine retailers. Some primitive backcountry camps can be found along the way. Please make sure you camp near the road and respect the property owners’ private lands along the route.

In most cases camp fires are allowed, but check with local Ranger Stations to determine if campfires are allowed before you build one. In most cases, campfires are only allowed in fire rings. Be sure to fully extinguish fires so they are DEAD-OUT. Use water to ensure a fire is fully extinguished and the ground is left cool and wet.

The answer is no. The MABDR has some motel opportunities on the route and if you travel off route you will fine more motels in the bigger cities. If you do decide to camp, you will fine official campgrounds on the front of the MABD map with a small tent icon and some primitive backcountry camps can be found along the way. Because of the limited beds available in the small towns along the MABDR, it is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that riders make reservations ahead of their arrival.

There are a few natural water sources along this route however, depending on time of year, some may not be running. You can find potable water in the towns along the way.  It is suggested that plenty of water is carried for personal and cooking use. Here is a video on water filtration filmed in the Oregon Backcountry: http://youtu.be/vqOFZAoZdTU

Always bring a complete set of maps for the area you plan to ride. They have good information about roads, water sources, and are an indispensable resource when the GPS doesn’t work, or is giving questionable advice. Unplanned events can occur and having paper/synthetic maps of the area can be a life saver. National Forest maps are available at http://www.fs.fed.us/recreation/map/state_list.shtml#U and local Ranger Stations. MABDR Butler Motorcycle Maps are available at www.touratech-usa.com or www.butlermaps.com.

The tracks for the route can be downloaded free of charge online at https://ridebdr.com/download-tracks/.

Any GPS unit capable of displaying 15 track logs with a minimum of 500 points each is suitable for use on the MABDR. Garmin models that work best for this application are: Zumo 665/660, Montana, GPSMap 60, 62, 76, 78 and 276. Other GPS manufacturers may have units that will work. Check the technical specs to determine suitability.

Any bike that has a license plate, can run knobby tires, is set-up to carry the gear you plan to bring, and has the fuel range to make the distance between gas stops. Most adventure or dual-sport motorcycles will be suitable for the trip.  Choose the bike that you are the most comfortable riding off-road.

DOT approved knobby tires are strongly recommended.

There is one gate if you decide to visit McLevy’s cemetery and fort. Please shut the gate when going up to the Fort and then when coming back down.

Most people average 150 miles a day on a backcountry motorcycle trip. Plan on doing this route in 7-9 days depending on how fast you want to travel and how early you want to roll out of camp. There is a lot of history to see and places to visit on the MABDR so planning a little extra time is suggested.

We do our best to post the most up-to-date information on our Route Updates Page. We depend on the BDR community to inform us about route and road conditions, so if you encounter any road closures or severe conditions that are worth reporting, please contact us with the information.

There is also a dedicated MABDR Facebook Group Page. We recommend that you join the group prior to your trip to read trip reports and comments from other riders about their experience on the route.

Don’t forget to use our Interactive Map to get route conditions in real time. Read this Article to a quick tutorial on how to use the Interactive Map.

Much of this route is remote and out of reach for cell phone towers. There will be long sections with no coverage. Your best bet is to talk or text in the towns or on top of

Yes the route can be done North to South.

The Mid Atlantic is a habitat to many large animals like the Black Bear, Deer even Mountain Lions. Safe food practices while camping are an absolute for your safety and the animals safety.  Here is a link to find out more http://www.centerforwildlifeinformation.org/BeBearAware/Hiking_and_Camping/hiking_and_camping.html  Rattlesnakes are also found throughout the route.  You should also take special precaution and safeguard yourself from ticks, which are numerous in the forests of the Mid-Atlantic states.  Make sure to check yourself every night after riding, especially if you’re camping.  Visit this page for more information on tick-safety.  https://www.cdc.gov/features/stopticks/index.html

We get this question all the time. Here are some key things to consider as you put together your plan.

All of the BDR routes include intermediate to advanced terrain. If a person is on a large bike twin-cylinder bike like an R1200GS Adventure or Yamaha Super Tenere, the routes can be very difficult. If a person’s skills are not advanced level, they may consider taking a smaller bike or choosing the easier options when possible. A BDR is something a person should build up to and it shouldn’t be their first overnight trip on their ADV bike.

Although, MA, ID, WA and CO are less difficult than UT and AZ, they all contain difficult sections. Lockhart Basin in UT is the hardest section of all the BDR’s. We suggest looking at the Butler Map and take the optional easier routes to avoid the difficult sections.

Even taking this approach there may be difficult stretches depending on changes in road conditions, weather, construction and the unknown. This is part of what makes it an adventure. Regardless of its description on the map or in the film, no section of a BDR should be underestimated.

Do some shorter overnight trips as practice and ride increasingly difficult terrain to build up your skills and confidence. Also remember that riding with a fully-loaded bike should be practiced prior to tackling a BDR. Lastly, always ride with a group so that you have a team to help overcome any obstacles whether it’s terrain, mechanicals, navigation, medical emergency, etc…

In summary, take baby steps and work up to doing a BDR. Don’t make it your first adventure motorcycle outing on a full-sized twin-cyclinder bike.

This advice comes from Rob Watt, BDR Director of Development, and Wilderness EMT.

We carry items for wound management, breaks, basic meds and dental.  You can buy a good first aid kit at one of the outdoor stores online or Touratech-USA.  Get one that is an Extended Day Backpacker or 3-4 person kit.

These kits usually have the basics for a motorcycle trip.

They usually don’t have a SAM splint, so pick one of those up along with a couple ace bandages.  One other thing that we do for every multi-day trip, is to gather important information about each rider: allergies, medications, medical issues, emergency contacts, etc.

Then we put that on a master sheet for each person, so if something does happen we have that information handy incase that person can’t speak.  Another good practice is to do a little research of where medical facilities are along your planned route.  Is there a “flight for life” in the area? Where are the hospitals, Medical clinics, etc?

Here is a list of some items that you should have in your medical kit:

  • Bandages: Assorted sizes for small cuts, blisters, etc.
  • 4-inch closure strips or butterfly closures: For closing large wounds. 4-inch strips are more effective than butterfly.
  • 4 inch by 4 inch sterile dressing pads (5 to 10): To apply pressure to a wound and stop bleeding
  • Non-adherent sterile dressing (2 inch by 2 inch): Use these or Second Skin to cover blisters, burns or lacerations.
  • Gauze roll: Holds dressing in place.
  • Small roll of 1-inch adhesive tape: Holds dressings in place.
  • Multi-use tool or knife: Should include knife, scissors. A scalpel and blade are also useful for first aid.
  • Forceps or tweezers: For removing splinters, ticks, and removing debris from wounds.
  • Scissors: Trauma scissors, which have a blunt end to protect the patient, can be used for cutting away clothing from injury, cutting medical tape, etc.
  • Thermometer: Digital is generally more accurate, but batteries do wear out.
  • Malleable splint: Lightweight foam-covered aluminum, such as a SAM splint.
  • Irrigation syringe (35 cc): Used to flush and clean wounds.
  • Suction syringe (65 cc): Used to clear mouth of fluids when giving CPR.
  • Safety pins: Can help remove splinters, fasten arm sling, or make a whole in a plastic bag for improvised wound irrigation.
  • Cotton-tip swabs: For removing  foreign objects from eye, or applying antibiotic ointment.
  • Resealable plastic bags: Many uses, including icing a swollen joint or creating wound irrigation device.
  • ACE, Coban, or other rubberized bandage: Can be used as outer wrap on splints, wound dressings or support for joint injuries. Be careful not to wrap too tightly.
  • Antiseptic towlettes: For cleaning small wounds.
  • Cleansing pads with lidocaine: For cleaning. Includes a topical anesthetic for abrasions, stings, etc.
  • Topical antibiotic ointment: For application to wounds. Simple Vaseline can also be used in dressing a wound.
  • Moleskin: Prevents blisters. Cut and apply a section to your foot as soon as you discover a “hot spot.” Duct tape also works for this purpose.
  • Povidone Iodine USP 10 percent, 1 oz.: For preventing infection. Bottled PVD iodine 10 percent solution should be diluted to a ratio of 1 percent or less for flushing wounds.
  • Aloe vera gel: Found in packets or small bottles for relief of minor burns.
  • Pain relievers, including aspirin and Ibuprofen: Provides relief for minor aches and pains, reduces fever, helps reduce inflammation of sprains and other injuries.
  • Antihistamines: For relief of pollen allergies, or to reduce reaction to bites and stings.
  • Immodium 2 mg capsules or tablets: For relief of diarrhea from intestinal infections.
  • Pepto Bismol or antiacid tablets: For relief from general diarrhea, abdominal upset.
  • After Bite or hydrocortisone cream USP 1 percent: Relieves skin irritation from bites, poison oak, stings, or allergic reactions.
  • Latex or nitrile gloves: Protects against blood-borne diseases and infection.
  • CPR microshield mask: A compact flexible barrier with a one-way valve for rescue breathing, which protects user from blood, vomit or saliva.
  • Oral rehydration salts: Packet of electrolyte salts and glucose for treatment of dehydration, heat exhaustion, or loss of fluids from vomiting or diarrhea.
  • Space bag/blanket: Lightweight emergency shelter. For treating hypothermia victims.
  • Paper and pencil: For recording medical data such as body temperature, pulse, time and date of symptoms, injuries, medicines administered, etc. Most repackaged kits include accident report forms.
  • Wilderness First Aid booklet: Many prepackaged first aid kits contain one. An excellent pocket guide is the Wilderness Medical Handbook

Rating the Routes by Difficulty

We often get requests to provide the difficulty ratings of the BDR. We do not officially rate roads or routes because the difficulty can change from day to day depending on weather, changes in road conditions, and road damage caused by a variety of forces including wind, storms, flooding, snow, logging, forest fires and more.

The difficulty experienced by an individual also depends on their off-road skills, level of fitness, stamina, bike size and amount of weight carried on the bike. For these reasons we can’t provide a rating system like a ski resort or OHV park.

We can help you a bit by ranking the existing Backcountry Discovery Routes from most difficult to least difficult. Here is the list: CABDR-South, NEBDR, AZBDR, ORBDR, WYBDR, UTBDR, COBDR, NVBDR, WABDR, NMBDR, IDBDR, MABDR.

So CABDR-South is the most difficult especially if you ride the expert sections and MABDR is the easiest in general terms. Although MABDR is the easiest there are still a few challenging rocky sections and the several water crossings that can get very difficult if the water is high.

Be sure to also review the FAQ’s for each route and our General FAQs prior to embarking on your trip.

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