If you aren't in Sturgis for the annual motorcycle rally right now, there is a good chance that you are itching to get on your bike and do something a little more local. Fortunately, Oklahoma has several fantastic rides to help you get your wheels out on the road and the wind in your hair. This article will look at some of Oklahoma's most popular motorcycle rides if you couldn't make it to Sturgis in 2022.
Route 66 from Edmond to Tulsa
The iconic Route 66 includes countless travel stops, diners, and other tourist attractions that will turn your simple ride into an adventure. Countless motorcyclists travel these unique routes in Oklahoma annually to enjoy the homestyle cooking and scenic views afforded by the "Mother Road." If you are interested in this route, you will want to start in Edmond, Oklahoma!
Get Your Start in Edmond
Since you will be starting your journey in Edmond, there's a good chance that you will want to explore the city before you hit the road. The city is home to many famous landmarks, including a fiberglass hippo statue and several historical restaurants like Around the Corner, which has served all-day breakfast since 1951. If you find yourself here, try a customized omelet with waffles or the chicken fried steak. If needed, you can also stop into Iron Nation Harley Davidson to ensure you are prepared to head out.
As you head east out of Edmond, you will be greeted with an open highway just minutes outside town. If you want to make the most of your trip, consider stopping at the dam to take in the scenery or explore Arcadia Lake in Northeast Oklahoma County. The lake's nature areas have over one million visitors annually – making it a popular stop on this motorcycle ride. Whether you want to relax in the picnic area, hike the many trails or camp in comfort, you will love adding this stop to your itinerary.
Entering Chandler and Stroud
Pushing further east, you will arrive in Chandler, Oklahoma. Visitors to this city will often take time to stop at the Route 66 Interpretive Center, which allows visitors to experience a one-of-a-kind, interactive trip down memory lane through the museum's Mother Road video. If you have the time, this informative video reviews from the 1920s to the current time to give you a full view of the great history of this road.
A few miles north of Chandler, motorcyclists will find a smaller town named Stroud. Many motorcyclists stop in this town just to eat at the famous Route 66 diner named Rock Café. The diner contains several historical pieces and has been in business for generations. The building even contains the original foundation, rock walls, and grill dating back to World War II. Some popular items from the menu include Alligator Burgers, Rueben Sandwiches, and German Jager schnitzel. This diner is also famous for its interactions with Pixar in the making of the Cars movie along Route 66, including basing the Sally Carrera character on the cafe owner, Dawn Welch.
Winding Down in Sapulpa, Tulsa, and Catoosa
To finish the trip's final leg, you will continue traveling east to Sapulpa, Oklahoma. Just one block off Route 66, you will find Waite Phillips-Barnsdall Filling Station Museum, which features a restored facility that houses older automobiles from the 1920s. This historical site was built by Waite Phillips, the brother of Phillips Petroleum founder Frank Phillips.
After finishing your ride along Route 66, you will end up in Tulsa, Oklahoma. This metropolitan area provides countless opportunities for motorcyclists to enjoy, including Route 66 Harley-Davidson and Myers-Duren Harley-Davidson. As the second-largest city in the state, there is no shortage of attractions, excellent dining, and recreational opportunities to explore. If you are struggling to figure out what to do next, consider supporting a local business you find on Why Not Oklahoma.
If you wish to continue, your final destination will be a short trip to the Tulsa suburb of Catoosa. Visitors who take the short trip here will be greeted by The Blue Whale, which Hugh S. Davis and Harold Thomas built. If you need a place to lay your head for the night, consider stopping at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino to close your trip.
Motorcycle Routes in Choctaw County
If you are looking for a short and sweet ride to knock out in a single day, there are countless opportunities in Choctaw County. Many of these rides utilize Muskogee, Oklahoma, as a "trailhead." They can be completed relatively easily – making them an excellent option for new or inexperienced riders looking to hit the road for the first time.
The Sunset Tour
The Sunset Tour is a 50+ mile motorcycle ride in Oklahoma that begins on Highway 16 to Highway 51, crossing Fort Gibson Lake. Heading south on Highway 80, motorcyclists will be greeted by towering pine trees and occasional wildlife sightings as they journey through Sequoyah State Park. While in the area, many will also visit Fort Gibson to explore the historical diners, outdoor attractions, casinos, nightlife, and much more. Once you have had your fun, you simply have to take Highway 10 to get back to Muskogee.
The backroads around Muskogee were famous for being the preferred routes for bootleggers during prohibition. Stretching from Siloam Springs, Arkansas, to Muskogee, Oklahoma, motorcyclists will follow a history of young men that ran a successful distillery, and the spirit of the land still contains tons of adventure for those brave enough to explore it.
Moonshine Run is a longer ride, clocking in at around 205+ miles to complete. To get started, you must head east from Muskogee towards Tahlequah, where you will hit Highway 82 going north. On this scenic ride, you will be granted countless opportunities to stop and rest, including the peaceful Lake Hudson, Spavinaw Area at Grand Lake State Park, or the Cherokee Area of Grand Lake State Park.
This scenic route is sure to fulfill your nature-seeking rides. A short ride east on Highway 28 to the junction of Highway 59, to turn south and follow the twisting roads that turn to 59/412. You can even park your bike and hike up to a 77-foot waterfall at Natural Falls State Park. After winding down, head back south until Highway 59 meets Highway 62 to head west back to Muskogee.
Other Recommendations in Oklahoma
If these recommendations haven't scratched your itch, you will be happy to learn that there are still more great motorcycle routes to follow in Oklahoma during the summer, fall, and spring seasons. Here are a few other ideas for riding routes to base your motorcycle trips around to explore the state.