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Search past Bike Bits in the Bike Bits Archive.

Bike Bits Vol. 15, No. 2, January 16, 2013
This is the 302nd issue of Bike Bits, Adventure Cycling's twice-monthly
bicycle bulletin. Bike Bits is delivered to you -- and 47,212 other
readers -- because you've signed up for it at the Adventure Cycling
Association website, Bike Bits arrives
in text-only format for quick download and includes links for more
information. We want to inspire you to dream and to live your own
bicycle adventures.


"To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able
to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a
position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted." 
--Bill Bryson


We were only kidding when we datelined the previous edition of
Bike Bits "January 2, 2012." Of course it's 2013. Everyone knows that.
But we're not joking when we say that now, before the end of the
month, is the time to become an Adventure Cycling life member. That's
because the rates for life membership will go up after January 31, from
the current $1,000 for individual and $1,500 for joint membership, to
$1,500 for individual and $2,000 for joint. When you join Adventure
Cycling Association as a life member you receive a lifetime of
benefits: an endless subscription to Adventure Cyclist magazine,
discounts on our route maps, tax benefits, an embroidered life member
jacket, and much more, including the knowledge that you are helping
to secure the foundation of the organization so that we may continue
to inspire and empower future generations to travel by bicycle. And
no more annual renewal notices! Get more information at the following
link, including details on the quarterly payment option. 


"The year Jackie Loza lost her job, she bought a bicycle and went on
her first ride ever, a very long ride, 1,804 miles, to be exact. She
took Amtrak to Washington state, then pedaled south down the coast from
Ballard, Washington, to the U.S.-Mexico border." The San Diego Magazine
published a good story, underscoring the fact that even a beginner
cyclist can do a long-distance tour, and examined how she did it.
"I'd never even gone camping by myself, let alone pull a 60- to 70-pound
'BOB,' with all the equipment that I would need to be self-sufficient,"
Loza tells reporter Dave Good.


The Iowa Bike Expo, which includes the RAGBRAI 2013 Route Announcement
Party, takes place Saturday, January 26, at the Iowa Events Center in
Des Moines. On Thursday, January 24, the Iowa Bicycle Coalition will host
an Adventure Cycling gathering with Travel Initiatives Director Ginny
Sullivan. There you can learn about Adventure Cycling's latest route
projects and other activities, and meet neighbors who share your
passion for bicycle travel and adventures. The gathering takes place
from 6 to 8 p.m. at El Bait Shop, 200 SW Second Street in the capital
city. (Bike Bits received an inside scoop telling us El Bait Shop
doesn't deal in minnows or fishing tackle, but it does offer more
than 100 beers on tap.)


Julie White wrote to tell us that the Blue Ridge Bicycle Club is
encouraging people to send in their stories of cycling the parkway.
"It's fun and shows the wide use of the parkway by cyclists," Julie
said. It's all part of the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation's "Share
Your Story" initiative. 


As you will see if you take a look at the 2013 tours roster in the
catalog or on our website, we are offering adventures throughout
North America this year, from Texas to Alaska. Let's focus, for
instance, on just one geographical region, the Eastern Seaboard:
We're running trips in Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts, New York,
Pennsylvania, Virginia, District of Columbia, North Carolina, South
Carolina, and Florida, "from short to long, easy to hard," says
Tours Director Arlen Hall. "Executive Director Jim Sayer is joining
the Southern Sampler tour in May, riding from Charleston to St.
Augustine. This could be your opportunity to bend his ear about
bicycle travel!" The first tour of 2013, the Florida Keys Winter
Escape, set sail from Ft. Lauderdale on January 5 and ended Tuesday.
Here's how Arlen summarizes that trip: "Temps in the 80s and lots of
fun." The 2013 tours are definitely filling fast, so you might want
to pick your trip soon.


We were alerted by our friend Larry Brock of Cumberland, Maryland,
of the death of 88-year-old Bill Schoenadel, proprietor of Bill's
Place in Little Orleans, Maryland. "Bill's Place was an icon of the
C&O Canal Towpath," Larry said. "I'm not sure if his business will
survive, but Bill was quite the character. A lot of BS was created
and spewed from Bill's Place, enough to fuel the Annual Bass Fishing
and BS Tournament." You can read Bill's obituary at the Cumberland
newspaper's website.


Adventure Cycling staff has been working with California cyclists
to remedy a scary resurfacing of a section of Pacific Coast Highway
1 between Cambria and Ragged Point in northern San Luis Obispo
County. Recently, the state Department of Transportation (Caltrans)
re-paved this 25-plus mile stretch with aggregate, which reaches
or exceeds sizes of one-half inch and can also be jagged enough
to cause tire punctures. To see a picture of this stuff and why
it makes riding miserable, check out Executive Director Jim
Sayer's blog post by way of the link below. You can also sign
a petition to urge Caltrans to resurface the roadway, which is
part of Adventure Cycling's very popular Pacific Coast Bicycle
Route, with cycling-friendly aggregate.


In response to the previous Bike Bits piece about our next long distance
route, Bicycle Route 66, Ron Maskell of Brisbane, Queensland, wrote,
"G'day, I'm an Australian who cycled most of Route 66 in the spring
and early summer of 2012. I'm writing a journal about my trip on It's had nearly 40,000 hits." Ron's log is
long, 50 pages so far, and we haven't looked at it all. But we did
tap into a few of its pages, and the photos of the route, the
surrounding countryside, and town icons alone are worth the price
of admission.
Especially interesting is page 5, titled "Route 66? On a bicycle?
Why?" Among Ron's reasons for wanting to ride Route 66 is this:
"Coincidentally, there is, in Queensland, a Highway 66. It runs
across the centre of Queensland, just as Route 66 runs across the
centre of America. Back in 1970, when I drove it the first time, it
was a predominately unsealed single-lane track linking a series of
outback towns struggling to survive the vicissitudes of the pastoral
industry. The similarities to U.S. Route 66 in the 1930s are obvious." 
Finally, here's a video teaser from Lynette Chiang. "The 50-minute
DVD for Lon Haldeman, which I shot on the 80th Anniversary of Route
66, is still the only full-length bicycle documentary on the route,
as seen from the original alignments," Lynette said. 


Until next time … click on to learn about
the upcoming Fat Bike Summit, slated for January 25 and 26 in Island
Park, Idaho. 

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