Adventure Cycling Blog

Photo by Adam Coppola

The Adventure Cycling blog covers bicycle-travel news, touring tips and gear, bicycle routes, organizational news, membership highlights, guided tours, and more. Follow us on Facebook or Twitter for daily updates.

Photo by Adam Coppola

March 25, 2014
Dirty Riding — Braving the Spring Thaw
Riding Dirty — Braving the Spring Thaw

I find myself wanting to go south — to box up my bike, drive to the airport, and just get on a plane, any plane, to any place warm and dry. Hmmm … where did I put my credit card?

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March 19, 2014
Meet the Video Contest Judges
Meet the Video Contest Judges

As announced by media director Winona Bateman in her post of January 2, 2014, to celebrate the beauty and spirit of bicycle travel, Adventure Cycling Association invites you to submit your best bicycle-touring videos to our 2014 Bicycle Travel Video Contest on Vimeo. Our panel of volunteer judges will name one winner for each of the three submission categories (Best Long Distance Tour Video, Best Short Tour Video, and Best Portrait of a Traveling Cyclist), and choose the winner of our Bike Travel Spirit Award. And who are these judges? Let me introduce them.

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March 18, 2014
Riding Dirty: C&O Canal / GAP
Riding Dirty: C&O Canal / GAP

Cycling the C&O Canal Towpath can be as much fun in the rain and mud as it is on bright sunny days. It is all about your perspective.

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March 17, 2014
Great Divide Book Signings Coming Up in Salt Lake City, Denver, Boulder
Great Divide Book Signings Coming Up in Salt Lake City, Denver, Boulder

In 2000, about two years after all of the maps for the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route had been printed, we published a guide to the route with possibly the longest book title ever: Cycling the Great Divide: From Canada to Mexico on America's Premier Long-Distance Mountain Bike Route.

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March 17, 2014
"I Never Intended to Be Brave, A Woman’s Bicycle Journey Through Southern Africa" — A Great Read!
"I Never Intended to Be Brave, A Woman’s Bicycle Journey Through Southern Africa" — A Great Read!

One of the reasons I love travel narratives is that I feel like I personally know the author by the time I finish his or her book. This time, I met Heather Andersen first as our tour leader on Adventure Cycling’s San Juan Island Inn to Inn Tour in 2013, and read her book, I Never Intended to Be Brave, A Woman’s Bicycle Journey Through Southern Africa, months later.

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March 14, 2014
Climbing the Condor
Climbing the Condor

If you enjoy long, slow, epic climbs, I'd highly recommend you conquer The Condor (Paso del Cóndor). At over 4000 meters, it is the highest paved road in Venezuela. If you begin your bike journey in Barquisimeto at the northernmost point of the Andes, you'll have plenty of time to warm up for the big climb.

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March 13, 2014
Help Us Improve Digital Map and Data Offerings
Help Us Improve Digital Map and Data Offerings

One of the items on the Routes & Mapping team's To Do list has been to improve our offerings for mobile navigation. 

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March 12, 2014
Ride with us from Grand Rapids to Chicago to support the U.S. Bicycle Route System
Ride with us from Grand Rapids to Chicago to support the U.S. Bicycle Route System

You're invited to join us on one of the Climate Rides or Climate Hike! Adventure Cycling is a beneficiary of Climate Ride, and this year's team ride will be Climate Ride Midwest, a spectacular 4-day ride from Grand Rapids, MI, to Chicago, IL, from September 6-9, 2014.

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March 12, 2014
Highlights from the 2014 National Bike Summit
Highlights from the 2014 National Bike Summit

The 2014 National Bike Summit presented a number of first-time experiences for Saara Snow, newest staff member in the Travel Initiatives department at Adventure Cycling. She shares her highlights from the Women's Forum, the Summit, Lobby Day, and exploring Washington D.C.'s streets and many attractions.

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March 11, 2014
5th Annual Photo Contest Winners
5th Annual Photo Contest Winners

The winners of our 5th Annual Photo Contest are announced!

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March 11, 2014
Riding Dirty — 2014 Mountain Bike Tours
Riding Dirty — 2014 Mountain Bike Tours

Coming off of Fat Bike February, and with the introduction of the Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route, there has been a lot of buzz about Adventure Cycling’s Dirt Tours for the 2014 season. If you’re looking to get off the roads and start riding dirty, come ride with us this year!

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March 10, 2014
Idaho Hot Springs: A Backcountry Backstory
Idaho Hot Springs: A Backcountry Backstory

It's been nearly two decades since we commenced research on the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, and we've run off-pavement tours for fat-tire enthusiasts since the 1980s. But it took the vision of Adventure Cycling cartographer Casey Greene to add a third element to create what just may be the perfect triad: backcountry, bicycle travel, and natural hot springs. 

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March 10, 2014
Announcing Winners of the Idaho Hot Springs Map Sets!
Announcing Winners of the Idaho Hot Springs Map Sets!

Last week to celebrate the release of our newest mountain-bike route, and our first-ever route featuring singletrack, we announced a giveaway for two complete Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route (IHSMBR) map sets. Randomly chosen from the hundreds of comments on last week’s blog post, the winners are ...

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March 7, 2014
Tiger Eye Mirror
Tiger Eye Mirror

Maintaining a keen awareness of your surroundings is one of the best things you can do to keep yourself safe when cycling on the road. Since bicycles don't come stock with rearview mirrors, and not everyone can turn their heads without veering out into the road, an aftermarket rearview mirror can be a huge asset.

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March 6, 2014
Labeling US Bicycle Route Systems
Labeling US Bicycle Route Systems

In the midst of our recent map reprint, we not only updated services and made minor route changes, we also altered this batch of maps to show where the Adventure Cycling Route Network coincides with the U.S. Bicycle Route System.

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March 5, 2014
2014 Annual Membership Survey
Take the 2014 Annual Membership Survey

How would you rate your experience as an Adventure Cycling member? Once each year, we put together an online survey for our members in an effort to hear about their cycling interests and preferences, and to get feedback on Adventure Cycling’s programs, publications, and resources.

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March 4, 2014
Geared Up: March Extras
Geared Up: March Extras

Must-have cycling products and gear for spring. 

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February 28, 2014
More Bicycle Travel Apps
More Bicycle Travel Apps

In the February issue of Adventure Cyclist magazine, I highlighted five smartphone apps that I've found to be useful for bicycle travel. Since writing that, I've come across three more apps I want to bring to the forefront. These new apps aren't necessarily bicycle travel specific. Instead, I would consider them to be geared more towards active lifestyle, making them great for adventures on and off the bike.

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February 28, 2014
Pedaling Across a Magical Bridge
Pedaling Across a Magical Bridge

Most bridges (new and old) carry huge volumes of traffic. Cars, buses, and trucks make a lot of noise. This kills the esthetic experience. Imagine what it would be like to travel across the Golden Gate bridge completely closed to traffic? That's what crossing U Bein bridge near Amarapura in Myanmar is like.

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February 27, 2014
New Map Features on Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route
New Map Features on Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route

While we had the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route maps to use as springboard, when we first started talking about the Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route we knew it would end up being a bit of a departure from our standard route network maps. Some of the differences are obvious and will likely only appear on these maps.  Other differences are more subtle and may be transferred to more maps in the future.

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February 26, 2014
Top Ten Anticipated USBR Designations for 2014
Top Ten Anticipated USBR Accomplishments for 2014

It’s hard to believe with negative temps and snow on the ground, but spring is just around the corner and so is AASHTO’s spring meeting where new U.S. Bicycle Routes will receive designation approval. Here’s a sneak peek at some of the anticipated U.S. Bike Route designations for 2014.

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February 25, 2014
Idaho Hot Springs, Singletrack, & Map Giveaway
Idaho Hot Springs, Singletrack, & Map Giveaway

We know you're as excited as we are to get out and ride the Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route (IHSMBR) this summer. Adventure Cycling Cartographer Casey Greene, creator of the IHSMBR, supplies a closer look at the singletrack options.

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February 25, 2014
Spring Training, Spring Touring
Spring Training, Spring Touring

For some, the words spring training arouse visions of team regalia, muddy cleats, eating peanuts, and watching America’s national sport.

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February 24, 2014
Are You Map Case Deprived?
Are You Map Case Deprived?

With all the high-tech gadgets we have on the dashboards of our rides, the map case is just too simple. It's not LED or GPS, nor can you make a phone call with it. It's not even made of carbon fiber. So on that upcoming tour of yours, is a map case really necessary?

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February 20, 2014
Reroute on the Southern Tier: Austin, Texas
Reroute on the Southern Tier: Austin, Texas

In the fall of 2013, as part of our regular reprint schedule, we updated and converted section 4 of the Southern Tier Bicycle Route map set to Geographic Information Systems (GIS).  At this time we also implemented a 160-mile reroute of section 4 of the mapset to avoid a road on which cyclists felt unsafe riding.

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