Find Your Way
January 01, 2002
The RouteFrom Virginia to Oregon. From the Atlantic to the Pacific. Ninety days across ten states and over four thousand miles. I've know for a long time that cycling from coast to coast was possible, and that hundreds of people did it each year. What I didn't know is that there is a single dominant route that most people take. The TransAmerica Bicycle Trail was developed in 1976 by the Adventure Cycling Association. Inaugurated to celebrate the nation's bicentennial, it was originally known as the Bikecentennial Trail. Since that time it has become the best known, best mapped, and best documented of all the major bicycle touring trails in the United States. Part of me said that I don't need a map to tell me where to go, that all I have to do is point my wheels west and figure it out on the road. But the wiser part of me said to take advantage of the planning that is available to me. I can't predict the traffic, I can't predict the shoulders, I can't predict the towns, but I don't have to if I use a preplanned route. So I decided to basically stick to the ACA TransAm route, with a little improvising here and there. What I didn't know was that by staying on the main route, I would come across like minded souls as they pedaled towards whatever destination they had in mind. In the end, I met a whole cycling family out there, each of us willing to share our adventures and stories with each other.