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

November 20, 2014
Bicycle Route 66 Concerns
Bicycle Route 66 Concerns

From the moment in November 2012 when we first announced the timeline for our next big route, Bicycle Route 66, we have been working to create a world-class bicycle route following the legendary Route 66 travel corridor. Over the course of doing route research, a trouble spot was uncovered in California where we had hoped to use the National Trails Highway (NTH).

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October 30, 2014
2014 NACIS in Pittsburgh
2014 NACIS in Pittsburgh

While Travel Initiatives staff Ginny Sullivan and Saara Snow had five two-wheeled reasons to visit Pittsburgh this September, Routes & Mapping staff had a cartographic one in October.

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October 9, 2014
Routes & Mapping Update
Routes & Mapping Update

It's that time of year when things are winding down for the cycling season and getting even busier in the Routes & Mapping department. We've got four bigs things on our plates right now.

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September 18, 2014
Route Planning: Do You Spend Time or Money?
Route Planning: Do You Spend Time or Money?

Having worked at Adventure Cycling for a couple of years now, I have heard a few complaints about Adventure Cycling route maps being expensive, and how you could just create your own route in Google Maps — and find services there, too. I’ve gotta say, I used to totally agree with these thoughts.

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September 11, 2014
Routes & Maps FAQs
Routes & Maps FAQs

As you might imagine, we get a fairly steady stream of map and route related questions. Usually they are variations on the same themes.

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August 28, 2014
Cyclists Only Camping: Barn Bicycle Camping
Cyclists Only Camping: Barn Bicycle Camping

The Barn Bicycle Camping area in the Methow Valley in Washington State is located on three of our mapped routes: the Northern Tier, Sierra Cascades and Washington Parks. The services they offer fall into our unique service category of Cyclists Only Camping.

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August 21, 2014
Oh Ovando! A Bicycle Travel Success Story
Oh Ovando! A Bicycle Travel Success Story

Small towns dot our route network from sea to sea and border to border. With a population of 50 people, the tightly knit community of Ovando sits on Montana Highway 200 in the midst of ranch country at the intersection of two of our routes, the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route (GDMBR) and the Lewis & Clark Bicycle Trail. Ovando embraces the cyclists who trickle through their town every summer with great enthusiasm. In 2012 the number exceeded 400 cyclists.

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July 24, 2014
Crossed One Off the Bucket List
Crossed One Off the Bucket List

Going to the Sun Road and Logan Pass are jewels found on two Adventure Cycling routes — the Northern Tier and Great Parks North. I have long encouraged cyclists to be sure to time their trips on those routes to include this climb. Most years the pass is only fully open from about mid-June until mid-September so the window is pretty wide but does require some planning.

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July 3, 2014
Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route GPS Data Release
Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route GPS Data Release

GPS data for our newest route, the Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route (IHSMBR) is now available. This release continues the trend the paper map started. Where the paper map is a peek at what a redesigned Great Divide Mountain Bike Route map might look like, the GPS data is an iteration of what future GPS data might look like.

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May 22, 2014
Where Adventure Cycling Maps are Printed
Where Adventure Cycling Maps are Printed

The entire Routes & Mapping staff took to the road to visit our map printer in Great Falls, Montana, and learn what the printing process was all about.

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April 17, 2014
Can I Use this Old Map?

We regularly get a variation of the question, "can I use my old [insert name of route] map on tour this year?" The answer: it depends. There are many factors that go into making this decision.

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March 27, 2014
Bicycle Travel in Oregon Just Gets Better
Bicycle Travel in Oregon Just Gets Better

In December 2013, I had the opportunity to talk to Alex Phillips, Bicycle Recreation Specialist at Oregon Parks & Recreation Department. She told me about the 2012 Travel Oregon survey distributed to users of hiker/biker campsites in the state.

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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 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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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 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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January 9, 2014
Planning for a 2014 Tour Divide Ride
Planning for a 2014 Tour Divide Ride

With the turning of the new year, inspiration to ride Tour Divide 2014, which follows the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route (GDMBR), is reaching new heights and raising a few questions.

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December 12, 2013
Interactive Route Network Map
Interactive Route Network Map

Planning and plotting your next bicycle travel trip? Might you want to use a mixture of the Adventure Cycling route network maps to get you from point A to point B on this journey? I can honestly say with the new interactive route map our IT deparment put together, it has never been easier than it is today to make this happen.

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November 21, 2013
Southern Hospitality Cartography Style
Southern Hospitality Cartography Style

October 2013 was a very busy month including map reprint deadlines and travel across the country (with all the preparation that entails). My travel destination of Greenville, South Carolina, was determined by my planned attendance of my 10th North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS) meeting.

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November 14, 2013
Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route Q&A
Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route Q&A

Jenn recently sat down with Adventure Cycling Cartographer Casey Greene to chat with him about the project that has been occupying his time for much of the last year, the exciting new Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route.

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October 24, 2013
Clever new product: MAP
Clever new product: MAP

Upon my return from a fantastic North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS) meeting, I found a link to a product video in my inbox for something called MAP. Feeling a little overwhelmed by all that I took in while at that meeting in Greenville, South Carolina, I hesitated to click on it. Boy, am I glad I did!

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October 10, 2013
Update from the North American Cartographic Information Society
Update from the North American Cartographic Information Society

I'm checking in from Greenville, South Carolina, at the 2013 North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS) annual meeting. I've already learned so much from my colleagues on the first day. I can only image what knowledge and new inspiration I'll bring back to the office next week.

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September 12, 2013
When to Ride: Southern Tier
When to Ride: Southern Tier

The Southern Tier is one of those routes that has a distinct "season" for riding due to the effect extreme weather conditions can have on a cyclist's experience. We believe it is generally best ridden early fall or spring for optimum conditions. There are three factors contributing to this advice: deserts, mountain passes, and hurricane season.

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August 29, 2013
Bicycle Travel Etiquette: Warmshowers or Couchsurfing?
Bicycle Travel Etiquette: Warmshowers or Couchsurfing?

In our Bicycle Travel Etiquette series, we focused on the Warmshowers.org community as well as the many spontaneous meetings randomly formed on the road over the Couchsurfing group to create our How To Guides for hosting cyclists and being hosted. There is a reason why.

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August 15, 2013
Vicarious Bicycle Travel
Vicarious Bicycle Travel

One of my favorite parts of my job in the summer is reading the blogs and tweets of cyclists on the road. It keeps me in touch with the issues folks might be having on the routes for various reasons and it fills my coffee and lunch breaks with a bit of vicarious thrill!

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