Turn Texas on my Mind into Texas on my Map

August 26, 2015

Cycling in the city isn’t what it used to be, and that’s a good thing.  

Protected bike lanes and bike share programs are just two ways modern American cities are opening their arms to better two-wheeled travel. In New York and Washington DC, protected bike lanes doubled the amount of commuters since 2009. At Adventure Cycling, we focus on connecting the urban and rural. Our plans for the latest Adventure Cycling maps are no exception. Our cartographers are sharpening their proverbial pencils for a new city-to-city route to connect the Windy City to the Big Apple. Our Chicago-New York route will start where Route 66 left off and complete a coast-to-coast route connecting Los Angeles to New York via Chicago.  

 

 

 

That’s not all our cartographers have up their sleeve, they’ve got their sights set on the Southwest. You heard it here first! Pack your panniers—we’re going to Texas! Banish all thoughts of tumbleweed and flat, dusty roads. This isn’t the Texas of the cowboy movies; this is the world-famous, blue bonnet-blanketed Texas Hill Country.

 

 

Right now, Route 66 cuts across the top of Texas and the Southern Tier skirts the border, briefly touching Hill Country, but there's a whole lot of central Texas that remains unmapped by our cartographers. After hearing quotes like these from our Hill Country tour participants, we knew the next map we needed to create.

 

"The bluebonnets and other wildflowers everywhere were eye candy. I loved the massive trees and longhorn steers in the pastures watching us curiously as we rode by, the impressive ranches, and friendly motorists giving us the nod as we passed by." –Bobbie Huot

 

"There was a moment riding in the tail end of a rain storm when I capped out over a small hill. The sun streaked through the clouds and picked out patches of wildflowers to my right down a slope into a valley. Everything was coated with water drops that sparkled in the sun. It was simply breathtaking—a moment that you only get when you have cycled to the end of the rain." –Stana Martin

 

A lush landscape isn’t the only thing you’ll find with the Texas Hill Country Loops map. You’ll pedal through rural towns alive with a rich fusion of German and Spanish culture. Fill up on German beer and tamales before you head over to a historic dance hall for live music and, if you can still stand, dancing.

Hold your horses, we haven’t even made the map yet!

 

We need your help! By donating today, you can turn Texas on my Mind into Texas on my Map. Your donation enables our cartographers to research and develop the best possible route. They’ll measure road shoulders and study topography, locate great food and classic roadside attractions so you can ride a safe and scenic Texas.

Donations over $250 will be doubled thanks to a generous donor, and you’ll receive a first edition set of either Texas Hill Country Loops or Chicago to NYC maps along with a logoed Adventure Cycling map case. Donate $100 or more to receive the map case, great for keeping the map accessible while you ride.

Help us start cranking out the miles and donate today!

Got a great name for our Chicago-New York route? Leave a comment and tell us! Sorry, Mobsters-to-Lobster has already been suggested.

Top photo by Active Transportation Alliance. Bottom photo by Rob Greebon.

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The Thomas Stevens Fan Club is brought to you by the development team, Annette, April, and Michelle. They share an office with a classic Parisian Metropole bicycle. Want to know more about how you can support Adventure Cycling and all the amazing work they do? Call them at 406-532-2760 or email them at development@adventurecycling.org

 

Comments

Carla Majernik September 11, 2015, 10:54 AM

The research is in house but we haven't started working on the map yet, so no, we don't have a rough map available. Besides donating, there isn't a way to be involved.

John September 10, 2015, 7:03 PM

I live in Austin and have done a number of my own Hill Country trips. Is there a rough map of the route yet? Aside from donating, is there a way to be involved with this project?

Mike Sanders August 27, 2015, 6:45 PM

I like the Lincoln Bikeway idea for LA-Chicago-NYC, but the name Transcontinental Thruway jumps to mind. The corridor east of Chicago does parallel a major tollway route, after all. The Route 66 section could be called the Bobby Troup Trail, after the songwriter who helped to popularize the route by way of the song "Route 66."

One other thing: why can't the Minuteman Trail between Boston and Concord, MA, be named US Bike Route 1776? This could run to Albany, NY, for western connections, or North thru VT/NH to the Canadian border.

Saara Snow August 31, 2015, 1:57 PM

Hi Mike,

You can check out the National Corridor Plan to see U.S. Bicycle Route numbers that have been assigned to corridors and developed routes: www.adventurecycling.org/default/assets/file/USBRS/USBRSCorridorMap.pdf. There is already a U.S. Bicycle Route 76, which follows Adventure Cycling's TransAmerica Trail, established in 1976.

Jennifer H. Milyko August 31, 2015, 9:55 AM

Hmm, Transcontinental Thruway, that sounds interesting. Thanks for the suggestion!

Jennifer

Rick Arendt August 26, 2015, 10:10 PM

Chicago-NYC = The Lincoln Highway, if it follows the historical route in part. The old highway roads along US 30 were enjoyable from Plymouth, IN to Mansfield, OH when I rode there back in 2004. Continuing through Pittsburgh to NYC would leave a nice easy branch route to DC on the GAP+C&O.

Jennifer H. Milyko August 27, 2015, 1:28 PM

Rick,

I think we may be aiming to run the route a little further south but will take a look. Thanks!

Gordon Strickling September 9, 2015, 2:45 PM

I agree with Rick. The old Lncoln Highway is very scenic as it goes thru eastern Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Tom Howard August 26, 2015, 8:41 PM

Texas is so large and diverse, why not make the loop the center of a hub and spoke system? One spoke coming down from the Panhandle Canyon Lands, one spoke from the Piney Woods, another spoke from the Big Bend area and the last spoke from South Padre area. Over a course of years or summer vacations, one could systematically discover a series of lollipop rides.

Jennifer H. Milyko August 27, 2015, 1:26 PM

Tom,

Sounds like an interesting idea! Thank for the suggestion.

Jennifer

Craig August 26, 2015, 12:03 PM

Is the Texas Hill Country route going to be a loop route or point to point?

Jennifer H. Milyko August 26, 2015, 2:59 PM

Craig,

The Texas Hill Country Route will be a loop.

Jennifer

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