Top 5 Best Motorcycle Rides in Illinois (2021 Riding Season Year-End Review)

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We looked at a full collection of 2021 motorcycle riding season data when millions of riders visited to find the best motorcycles rides and routes in the USA, Canada, and abroad.  For over 20 years now, has been documenting the best/most-popular motorcycle roads, routes, and rides and for about a decade, we have published annual reports after diving into the website's statistics (which routes are riders researching the most, which routes are getting the most photo/video/comment uploads, etc., etc.) to determine which of the motorcycle routes have risen to the top in motorcycle rider popularity.  We look at a complex set of factors (see Note 2 below) to determine which of the motorcycle rides in each of the states and US regions are the most popular and rated to be the best by motorcycle riders just like you.  Our very popular annual "Top Motorcycle Rides per Region" guides cover the best rides for each of the four official riding regions of the USA: the Northeast, the South, the Midwest, and the West.  This year we took things a step further and decided to gone one level deeper and develop guides outlining the Top 5 Best Motorcycle Rides in for the US states and so you are seeing one of those such guides on this page.   

The land of Lincoln, Illinois, has a vast collection of scenic diversity.  River country sections are found in up Northeast where Iowa, Wisconsin, and Illinois meet, along the eastern border as the Mississippi rambles southward, and the Illinois River bisects much of the state as it stretches from the Chicago area southwest down and eventually dumps into the Mississippi.  There is also coastal motorcycle driving along Lake Michigan in the upper northeastern Illinois area and some rolling hills in the northern and southern parts of the state.  So, starting from #5 and working our way down to the #1 best motorcycle ride in Illinois.


After reviewing an entire year of activity of Illinois motorcycle riders, here are the results:

Top 5 Most Popular Motorcycle Rides in Illinois!

#5 Great River Road Measuring 36 miles, the Great River Road is an easy road that starts at Alton (Illinois). Since the roads are a bit twisted, you need to keep your speed to a minimum. If you want an easy start, it is recommended you do so from Alton.

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#4 Illinois Ultimate Scenic Rivers Route Illinois Rivers Route is an illustrious 140-mile road that stretches along the Illinois River. The road is quite smooth and the traffic volume is very low. You will love the scenic river road. You will find many small towns with food marts and fuel stations in this route.

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#3 Blackjack Road (Galena to Savanna) The Blackjack Road starts at Galena and ends at Savanna. In the middle of this 14-mile road, you will find various hot stops like recreational areas, ski slopes, luxurious inns, and an alpaca farm. However, be careful of deer jumping across the road.

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#2 The Oswego to Starved Rock Run The Oswego to Starved Rock Run is a 45-mile stretch of road that can take you to the Starved Rock State Park. Overall, the traffic congestion on the road is low and is surrounded by farms, small restaurants, and an airfield.

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#1 Rock River Run The Rock River Run is a fun 42-mile road that is full of changing landscapes. The road is nice and easy to navigate. When you travel down this road, you will mostly drive down the Rock River. It is mostly a two-lane route.

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Note 1:  All facts and figures below were gathered in Dec of 2021 and will change over time as new motorcycle roads are added to the collection.  For an update listing, you can go to at any time, search on a state of your choosing, and you'll be presented with a list of the best motorcycle roads in that state.  You can also search on the newest motorcycle routes to be registered in that state as well as sift through the routes based on other filters.  Some examples of filtered searches you can do is to filter results based on - only the routes in your state that have 5-star scenery ratings, or only routes with a 5-star driving excitement rating and at least a 3-star rating for scenery, etc. etc.

Note 2:  How were these popularity ratings calculated? 
A motorcycle road’s popularity can be based on a wide variety of factors.  Our analysis considered some obvious indicators of motorcycle road popularity such each roads’ “Rider Rating” scores (star ratings) and which motorcycle road description pages were visited the most.  But, the analysis dug deeper and looked at some less obvious yet valuable indicators of a motorcycle road’s popularity such as how often a given motorcycle road was added to riders’ “To Ride” lists, how often a given motorcycle road was added to riders’ “Rode it” lists and enthusiasm indicators such how often photos and/or videos were uploaded for a given road and which roads are attracting the most buzz among motorcycle roads indicated by those roads that are receiving the most number of new/recent comments.  For the sake of being consistent and as objective as possible we use a popularity algorithm that “crunches those number” and allows us to develop a ranking of the popularity of each of the motorcycle roads used as a basis for this guide.


As always, I hope to provide you with insightful & valuable motorcycle riding community information to help you get the most out of all of your motorcycling experiences.

I'm always looking for ways to make better and more helpful so if you have any suggestions to improve the website, just contact me through the Feedback button you'll find near the top of every page.  And as always, if you have a favorite motorcycle road of yours that is not yet registered on, please get that favorite of yours "on the map" by registering it at  Registering a motorcycle road (or event, or club, or place) is quick and easy and you'll be helping out our motorcycle riding community!!! 

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McR - Great motorcycle roads lead to great motorcycle rides!