Imagine an interstate highway system for bicycles…officially recognized and signed bike routes that crisscross our country. This network of bike routes would connect urban centers, parks, landmarks and other popular destinations, and travel through some of the best scenery that America has to offer.
This is no pipe dream. I’m talking about the US Bicycle Route System (USBRS), an ambitious project led by the Adventure Cycling Association. Two official routes are already on the ground and more are on the drawing board.
Washington Bikes is partnering with Adventure Cycling to create the routes in our state that will be part of the USBRS. Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) is working with us on this effort and we hope to have our first officially recognized US bike route in a few years.
Adventure Cycling is doing a fundraising campaign for the USBRS during the month of May. We are participating as Team Washington and we hope you will make a donation to our team. Twenty percent of the money that we raise as Team Washington will come back to support the local effort.
Use this link to our fundraising page to make a contribution to the USBRS and Team Washington today. Everyone who makes a donation to our team will be eligible for a drawing for some cool gifts, including a Share the Road jersey.
Build it. Bike it. Be a part of it.
The USBRS will include urban areas when appropriate. For routes that tend to avoid them, you may be interested in Adventure Cycling routes: http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes/network.cfm.
While this is a great idea, linking bicycle routes through states to each other, I hope they also focus on linking places that bicyclist want to go, like the National Parks, and places that bicyclists don't want to go, like through a major city, vs bypassing it.
When I rode across the country in '79 the best I could do, was focus on maps with secondary roads that paralleled major roads. And looking for towns with 1->5K people, as they were most likely to have a place to camp that you wouldn't get hassled.
MidWest America would do well to help bicyclists by identifying themselves as bicycle friendly. ie, places to camp, inns that don't mind bicycles. I have a dream that I could ride across the country via credit card, and not have to camp, ever. Sort of like the ski & hiking trails in the Alps with inns along the way. They need to be spaced about 60 to 100 miles apart, but that seems do-able.