As much as we’d like to explore everything the Backcountry Discovery Routes offer, the reality is that most of us don’t have the time to pound out the miles of a typical BDR. So, seeing a need for something more manageable, BDR has another idea: BDR-X.
This new concept introduces all the fun and challenges of a BDR, but in a loop format that can take anywhere from 2-4 days. This way, you can come on or come off the route anywhere you please, and potentially do the whole thing in a weekend.
The latest BDR-X is the PA Wilds loop, totaling just over 500 miles of exploring the lush landscape Pennsylvania has to offer. To quote the BDR:
The PA Wilds BDR-X is a spur off the Mid Atlantic BDR in Pennsylvania designed by one of the original architects of the MABDR. The east side of this loop includes parts of section 8 and 9 of the MABDR but then turns west into the PA Wilds before looping back to the start in New Columbia, PA some 500-plus miles later.
Similar to the MABDR, the route runs mostly on dirt and gravel roads through Pennsylvania State Forests with short stretches of pavement at the start, in between the forests, and at the end of each section. The route is designed in 4 sections with convenient places to eat, camp or lodge overnight at the end of each section. The beauty of being a loop route is that riders can start and finish from any point along the route.
The PA Wilds BDR-X has a familiar feel to that of the beloved MABDR with a few more optional advanced sections for those looking for a bit of a challenge. Ride it in conjunction with the MABDR and extend your adventure or ride the “X” alone and get your BDR fix over a long weekend.
The four sections create a loop around Interstate 80 or Route 6, allowing quick access to either one of the loops, regardless of whether you’re running them backward or forward. I’ve ridden many of these trails in the past but never looped them all together. I’m planning to ride the PA Wilds when peak leave-changing season occurs here in Pennsylvania; stay clicked to this blog for a review!
Following is a breakdown of each section. Each can be completed with any sized adventure motorcycle with at least 80/20 tires if it’s dry, though 50/50s are preferred, especially if it’s wet!