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. Interested in becoming a guest blogger for Adventure Cycling? Share your story with us.
Photo by Colt Fetters
If you've used our route maps you know they are chock full of useful information. We attempt to include camping, lodging, and food source information in a 10 mile wide corridor (5 miles each side of the route) along with library and bike shop locations. These services are compiled and listed in the Service Directory. Most of these listings are tangible. However, there is one category that is less so, that is, until you need it: law enforcement.
Chester, Illinois is not only the home of the legendary Popeye the Sailor, it is also houses a first class Cyclists Only Camping location run by the Fraternal Order of Eagles.
There are some basic services cyclists expect to see on our bicycle-travel oriented maps. These generally run the gamut from various lodging options, grocery stores, restaurants, and bike shops. In the early 2000s, we reviewed the possibility of adding a new service that might offer internet connectivity and landed on libraries.
In an age where high tech seems to rule the day, I advocate for the use of the low tech, namely paper maps. I know GPS is all the rage among a certain circle of cyclists. There is also a world of online mapping options, which can be very useful, especially when making your plans in the comfort of your home. However, I believe Adventure Cycling's paper maps have the edge on the road and technology, such as a GPS unit, should be considered supplemental.
Many words have been said and written about June Curry, the Cookie Lady of Afton, Virginia, and the namesake of our Trail Angel Award. Since Bikecentennial in 1976, she has been greeting and feeding TransAmerica Trail cyclists at what has become known as the "Bike House". It is chock full of memorabilia including endless Polaroid shots of cyclists and the post cards that they have sent her from the road.
In addition to traditional campground facilities, Adventure Cycling route maps also list what we call Cyclists Only Lodging. These are places along the way only available to the traveling cyclist and are generally only known because of our map listings or word of mouth. The options run the gamut from church sanctuaries to ranches to cycling specific camping areas. All aim to help the traveling cyclist and have their unique take on how best to accomplish their goal.