Long Distance Bike Trekking Adventures - May 2023
"What potent blood hath modest May."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
Great things happen in the month of May. For example, Cinco de Mayo which is the celebration of the Mexican Army’s May 5, 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Pueblo during the Franco-Mexican War.
Another example, the birth of the internationally renowned biking blog MILES PEDDLED (MP) in May of 2021, which soon became a tour de force in the biking world. Playlist suggestion: TOUR DE FORCE, by Dizzy Gillespie.
As all of the LOYAL SUBSCRIBERS (LS) to MP will recall, the Inaugural May 2021 Edition of MP was entitled Ebikes, Are They Cheating?. Based upon the exhaustive research from the MILES PEDDLED INSTITUTE (MPI) and other authoritative sources, Management at MP concluded that the use of an ebike was not cheating. Visit the digital version of MP at https://www.milespeddled.com to enjoy the Inaugural Edition from May of 2021.
As a result of the May 2021 edition of MP, and several spectacular follow up editions that address the efficacy of ebiking, many LS have invested in an ebike. One such LS is SANDARELLA who recently sent Management at MP a DMAIL requesting information on long treks that she could take on her ebike. As always, Management is happy to oblige. Hence, the May 2023 edition of MP is entitled Long Distance Bike Trekking Adventures.
Before we get to the subject matter at hand, an update regarding the Federal Ebike Tax Credit and incentives offered by individual States, is in order. In addition, Management has a few announcements.
First, the ebikes tax credit and incentives. Attached is the digital version of an article from Bicycling Magazine which addresses the status of the Federal E-Bike Act which will provide a Federal tax credit. The article also outlines ebike incentives offered by individual States. When reviewing the article, you will note that there has been a bill introduced in the Illinois Legislature which, if passed, beginning on July 1, 2024 will provide a rebate to purchasers of ebikes. As expected, there are eligibility requirements. Check out the bicycling article at: https://www.aol.com/lifestyle/know-e-bike-tax-credit-211000531.html.
Now to the announcements:
Recently, WONDER WOMAN (WW) and her Number 2 son (BIG AL), celebrated their joint birthday. Given the huge subscriber list to MP, Management generally does not list individual birthdays, but BIG AL expressly requested a shout out which Management will accommodate on this one occasion. Next time, a cash oblation will be necessary.
· Business Announcements:
To date, MP has not earned any commissions or revenue of any kind for the recommendations made in this award-winning blog. Since it is the stated goal of MP, see the August 2021 edition for further explanation, to earn some revenue from this endeavor, Management is always hesitant to make a business recommendation without a reciprocal cash payment.
There is, however, one exception and that is SOW PRETTY GARDENS run by the spectacular SANDERELLA. Follow her on Instagram at #sowprettygardens for the gardening tip of the week. Better yet, retain her services for your garden design. You will be DELIGHTED with the results.
Now to the trails.
Management recommends you use Adventure Cycling Association; Rails to Trails Trail Link; Google Maps; but most importantly DMAPS to plan your trip.
In this edition Management will outline 3 long distance bike trekking adventures one from the Midwest to the West; another from the East to DC; and the final one will be in the West.
A. Bike Route 66
GET YOUR KICKS ON ROUTE 66 by Nat King Cole.
For over 50 years motorists traveled the legendary Route 66. Now it is the cyclist’s turn. You will begin your trip in Chicago on the banks of Lake Michigan in Grant Park at Buckingham Fountain. You will then travel through the rolling hills of Illinois across the Mississippi into St. Louis at the Gateway Arch. After traveling through Missouri, you will enter into Kansas and Oklahoma, and then the Great Plains of Texas. After leaving Texas you will then be on the longest segment of Route 66 in New Mexico, and you will cross the Continental Divide. You will then enter Arizona and pass through several Indian Nations. After leaving Arizona you enter California and end your trip at the Santa Monica Pier. Total journey 2,518 miles.
Use Adventure Cycling Association interactive maps which breaks down the trip into 6 segments ranging anywhere from 325 miles to 585 miles.
B. Bike Pittsburgh to D.C.
WASHINGTON, D.C. by Gil Scott-Heron.
You will travel through the scenic countryside of Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia ending your trip in our Nations’ capital at D.C.
For the right price, which in this case is a turkey leg and a chalice of MEAD, the MAD VIKING (MV) will act as your tour guide and docent on this journey. Be forewarned, MV’s motto is “First Pillage Then Burn.”
Contact MV at: mvbikeadventurespillagethenburn.com for detailed information. For the most part, you will be riding on the Great Allegheny Passage Trail and the C & O Canal Towpath. Total distance approximately 300 miles.
C. Utah Cliffs Loop
FIRE ON THE MOUNTAIN by Grateful Dead.
Southwestern Utah is referred to as “COLOR COUNTRY.” You will be biking through the rich hues of red rock cliffs and pedaling through the cool greens of the sub-alpine forest on this journey.
You will begin your trip in St. George, Utah and you will first pass through the Snow Canyon State Park with their red sandstone cliffs. You will then travel through the Pine Valley Mountains, Hurricane Cliffs, and end on the plateau of the Dixie National Forest. Eventually you will hit Zion National Park and descend down into the park. You will then loop around and repeat this majestic journey.
Use Adventure Cycling Association’s interactive map which will detail the journey. The total loop is approximately 286 miles.
Time for the Trivia/Quiz section. As noted, one of the recommended long-distance treks is biking Route 66. Consequently, a little history and trivia regarding Route 66 is in order.
Route 66 was commissioned in 1926. It starts in Chicago at Michigan Avenue and Jackson Boulevard. Lou Mitchell’s Café at 565 West Jackson in Chicago, has been providing breakfast for those beginning the long journey since 1926.
Route 66 winds over 2,000 miles and ends in Santa Monica, California. Route 66 was de-certified by the U.S. DOT in 1985.
Below are five questions about Route 66. The answers will be in the postscript section.
1. What is the length of Route 66? 2,121 mi; 2,278 mi; 2,448 mi; or 2,552 mi.
2. Through how many States does Route 66 travel? Bonus points: Name those states.
3. What State has the longest section of Route 66; and what State has the shortest section of Route 66?
4. 2 of the following 3 are nicknames for Route 66: America’s Main Street; Nat King Cole Highway; or Mother Road.
5. Nat King Cole first recorded Get Your Kicks On Route 66 in 1946. It was covered and became a major hit for 2 of the following groups: ROLLING STONES; AVERAGE WHITE BAND; DEPECHE MODE; OR BUDDY GUY.
TEASE TIME: The June 2023 edition of MP will be anther combo, this time outlining several Midwest campgrounds with excellent bike trails nearby: MIDWEST CAMPING & BIKING. Playlist suggestion: RING OF FIRE by Johnny Cash.
Until we meet again: “May The Wind Under Your Wings Bear You Where The Sun Sails And The Moon Walks.” - J.R.R. Tolkien. Enjoy the recommended journeys and as always, remember to R, R & R!
Answers to Trivia/Quiz Section:
A bit of a trick question. The original Route 66 was 2,448 miles, but the contemporary mileage is 2,278.
If you listen to the song, you will know that Route 66 passes through 8 states: Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, and California.
3. LONGEST AND SHORTEST SECTIONS
The longest segment is 392 miles through New Mexico. The shortest segment is 13 miles through Kansas.
Cyrus Avery was part of the committee that plotted out Route 66 and he nicknamed it American’s Main Street. The moniker Mother Road was coined by John Steinbeck in his novel Grapes of Wrath in 1939.
Bobby Troupe wrote the song Get Your Kicks on Route 66 in 1946 and, as noted above, it was originally recorded by Nat King Cole and became a major hit. It was later covered by The Rolling Stones and Depeche Mode.