Motorcycling around Lake Barkley, Land Between the Lakes is for…

Seasoned Riders

For both the solo rider or the adventurous couple that makes this whole weekend cruise thing a ritual!


Those falling in love with cruising but want a fun, scenic ride around the lake… with some pit stops to get a bite.

Busy Enthusiasts

Riding the Blue Ridge or the Natchez is a nice thought–but carving out the time to take that adventure might be unrealistic to shoot for in the short term.

Beautiful Motorcylce riding through Dover

“It’s a beautiful ride…. Take advantage of the side roads that take you to old ferry locations and such by the lakes. Maps are available at the information areas.”

Wrong_turn_rider, Originally posted here

The Trace

SR453 SR49 The Trace Road Grand Rivers, KY – Dover, TN  |  Distance: 48 miles / 77.2 km   |   Ride Time: 2-4 hours  

The Woodlands Trace National Scenic Byway is a cruiser’s delight

Check it out:

  • Minimal traffic,
  • well-maintained roads,
  • and rolling terrain combined with perfect scenery…
  • for a stress-free ride.

Download the General Map of LBL showing The TraceDownload the Map with The Route and All the Possible Scenic Stops to Enjoy

Weekend Harley Rider with Skull Cap

Motorcycling Land Between the Lakes

Sometimes even the back roads are too busy. We look forward to our weekend rides, but hitting rural roads can often mean more stress than funcareless drivers, big trucks, rough roads.

But if you’re looking for a new route or just passing through, The Woodlands Trace National Scenic Byway (“The Trace” as most know it) offers the same limited access riding as much longer byways.

The Blue Ridge Parkway and Natchez Trace offer thousands of miles of spectacular riding.

But they require a good deal of planning… and a large chunk of time.

We definitely suggest you go experience those.  Someday.  However…

Here’s another idea:

The 49-mile Woodlands Trace Byway is perfect for a Saturday ride, or can be broken up over the weekend with backwoods camping or a cabin rental.

With Lake Barkley to the east, Kentucky Lake to the west, and numerous inlets, streams, and trailheads throughout Land Between the Lakes, your weekend ride could become the start of an even bigger adventure.

Tell All Your Friends About Riding The Trace

We recommend filling up your gas tank and packing some good grub in the saddle bags before you start. There are few gas stations or restaurants along The Trace so it makes for a peaceful ride.

Don’t fret though… bikers often take a bit of a off-the-trail trek to stop at Belew’s Dairy Bar (in Aurora) and get one of their famous burgers and a shake (bring cash).

For a multi-day trip

…you can start your ride at Civil War Fort Donelson in Dover, Tennessee, cruising through the battlefield before heading for The Trace.

About halfway through The Trace, you’ll hit Highway 68/80, with Cadiz to the east.

This is a good stopping point for the day—rent a cabin at Prizer Point or at least, make a stop by the lakeside restaurant (fried pickles are a fav).

Bed and Breakfasts abound in Cadiz, along with BBQ and catfish joints, so a little extra exploring could turn your weekend tour into the perfect getaway.

If that’s coming in low on your rougin’ it meter, then here’s another plan: bring along a tent and camp stove and camp out under the night sky. Land Between the Lakes offers many backwoods camp sites.

For the second half of your weekend ride…

…you can enjoy time at the bison and elk preserve, planetarium, or hiking at hematite lake or any of the other trails (sorry, no cruisers on this trail; feet only).

If you’re in a rush, just head up to micropolitan Grand Rivers, Kentucky (population 382), then head back south for the return trip.

An actual fuzzy antlered elk, eating and starring at the lens

Think this buck is from some National Geographic stock image collection? Guess again. This guy was out and about at Land Between the Lake’s Elk and Bison Prairie.

So for…

  • The hardcore asphalt warriors that need to hit the road just to feel complete
  • Those building confidence in their biking abilities
  • and those weekend riders that are looking to both hit the road and connect with nature

Get your motor runnin’ and hit The Trace.

For its length and proximity to so many outdoor activities, Woodlands Trace National Scenic Byway can’t be beat as a weekend motorcycle destination.

The Trace

SR453 SR49 The Trace Road Grand Rivers, KY – Dover, TN  |  Distance: 48 miles / 77.2 km   |   Ride Time: 2-4 hours