Monday, March 21, 2011

Adventure Cycling

Photo: Adventure Cycling Association
With the promise of spring (and its cycling!) in the air, I joined the Adventure Cycling Asssociation after breakfast this morning.  It has been an idea that I've been toying with for some time and finally committed myself to joining.  With 42,000 miles (how many klicks is that?) of routes to follow, it is easy when you're snowbound to dream of all the wonderful experiences when the call of the road becons.

We are part of the Americas and there are routes into Canada that are mapped and ready for the rubber to hit the road.  Following the Great Divide north of the Montana border, the Canadian Great Divide route travels north to Jasper National Park.  Anyone who has ridden the Icefield Parkway between Lake Louise and Jasper knows what awe-inspiring vistas greet the lucky two-wheel voyager on that particular stretch.

I like nothing better on a cold, snowy day than to sit in my comfy chair and thumb through catalogues and newsletters.  I'm an avid reader so McNally Robinson's newsletter inspires me to read authors I have never tried.  Lehmann's non-electric catalogue encourages thoughts of living in the country off the grid.  Lee Valley's colourful, glossy pages evoke memories of working in the yard.  And the Adventure Cycling's "Cyclosource" gives promise of happy trails using any of their hundreds of gizmos, implements, gear and cycling/camping accessories.

I'm too young and independant to consider a "supported" tour, although the ACA offers those types of outings.  My self-supported cycling experiences on the Kettle Valley Railway have been successful and I look forward to this year's trip and all the things I'm going to learn about "Adventure Cycling"on that anticipated excursion. 
If I'm not mistaken, 42,000 miles is the equivalent of 67,200 kilometers.

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