Tuesday, April 22, 2008

I set this blog up to discuss touring and the places I have been, and where I will be going. However, as you can see, touring does not occupy 100% of my cycling thoughts. Actually, I ramble a lot, so a coherent plan is not what I had in mind. For instance, my next trip is in May, and three others and myself will drive up to Clinton, Missouri and take a week to ride the Katy Trail. I rode the John Wayne trail in Washington State several years ago and it was a lot of fun. Last year was the Allegheny Passage and C&O Canal from Pittsburg to Washington, DC, and it was good, but the logistics licked a little of the red off the apple. If I am lucky, I might squeeze in the Mickelson Trail in South Dakota later in the year. The Silver Comet out of Atlanta is on my later agenda. All of these are Rail-Trails, mostly converted defunct railroad right of ways, or the route with the rails removed. As such, there is no climbing unless you get off the trail. Rail-Trails are excellent beginner rides, since there is no vehicular traffic (except for detours and getting to off-trail lodging and food), and hardly any people at all. Go to http://www.railtrails.org/index.html to find a trail near you. These are best traveled with a mountain bike or hybrid, even an old balloon tire single speed with coaster brakes would not have a problem. The trails are hardpack or small gravel and even though I could use my road bike, I prefer suspension travel on these trails. If you think this sounds like something you might like, let me know if I can clarify anything for you.

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