Motorcycling Across Michigan, Motorcycling Across Indiana, Motorcycling Across Ohio

Mar 01, 2009 View Comments by

When people think of great motorcycling, the Midwest doesn’t often come to mind. And dispelling that misperception is precisely why Bill Murphy wrote three books about riding in Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio. Calling upon the 35 years of experience he’s gleaned while roaming these regions, Murphy meticulously highlights numerous tours that feature maps and mileage figures along with a generous helping of local history and lore, and there’s even a restaurant recommendation or two. Each ride described focuses primarily on the most interesting back roads and the local flavor and unique sights they offer. References to highways and large metropolitan areas are kept to the absolute minimum required. Each of the three volumes include detailed prefaces providing overviews of the area covered, what it has to offer the motorcyclist, and the criteria Murphy used for choosing the routes. Each also features a comprehensive appendix listing informative websites, repair shops and each state’s motorcycle regulations.

All of these books are fun and informative reads, but the absence of color photography is unfortunate. The photos and maps that were chosen for inclusion are topnotch in content; however, when compared to Murphy’s descriptive writing, they tend to fall flat on the page, and that’s a shame.

Not every part of the United States can be exalted as a “Rider’s Destination,” and there’s not a thing wrong with that. Nonetheless, at RoadRUNNER, we, like Bill Murphy, believe there are great roads almost everywhere, which is why we enjoy this series so much. The “Motorcycling Across” series was created to encourage potential explorers living in the “flat” Midwest to go out and discover some of the many fine adventures that await them close to home. And if Bill Murphy can’t inspire them enough to rise from the couch and start riding, we aren’t sure who can.

Motorcycling Across Michigan
Motorcycling Across Indiana
Motorcycling Across Ohio

by William Murphy, Arbutus Press
$17.95 per book
www.arbutuspress.com

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