Bikeverywhere News

Nine Mile Creek Trail

Posted by Doug Shidell, July 11th , 2017.

The Nine Mile Creek Trail, part of the Three Rivers Park System, runs from 76th St. in Richfield to Valley View Rd on the west side of Highway 100. At first blush, this hardly seems like a destination trail. Riding through inner ring suburbs along residential streets doesn’t inspire a “Must See” response. Although the trail has multiple sections along residential streets, there are highlights that make it surprisingly pleasant for an easy afternoon ride.

The most surprising section of the trail is in Edina between Centennial Lakes and Southdale. The trail has an urban park setting with abundant green space, pools, flowing water, sculptures and park benches. The photos below hint at the amenities along this trail.
A stretch of trail along the east side Highway 100 alternates between a short stretch that is loud and somewhat stark to a quieter rolling wooded trail near a lake.

The trail flies over Highway 100 on a dedicated bike and pedestrian bridge then crosses woodlands, Nine Mile Creek and wet lowlands on boardwalks. One of the boardwalks is nearly a mile long.
Eventually the Nine Mile Creek Trail will hook up with other trails in the Three Rivers System, offering an escape route from Richfield and Edina to major trails throughout Hennepin County and beyond. The completed portion of the trail is on the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map.

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Bikes Only Campsite at Carver Park

Posted by Doug Shidell, June 20th , 2017.

Three Rivers Parks has just opened a bikes-only campsite in the Lake Auburn Campground at Carver Park Reserve. Tentatively called 2oaks, the site is unique in several ways. Besides being a bikes-only site, it is based on the European concept of the “Commons.” It can hold about 5 tents and two hammocks.

A fire ring, bike rack and picnic are shared by all campers. Riders share the site and register when they arrive, there are no reservations. As a camper, you may have the site to yourself or share it with others, all of them fellow bike campers. The cost is minimal at $10 per tent.

With this arrangement, Three Rivers makes it easy to take that spontaneous overnight trip or plan a small group outing without reserving multiple campsites.

Carver Park Reserve is approximately 30 miles west of Uptown Minneapolis or 15 miles west of The Depot in Hopkins on the Lake Minnetonka LRT Regional Trail. The route is car free and the distance is close enough that a leaky tent or forgotten sleeping bag can be remedied with a phone call to a friend or family member. who could drive to the campsite within the hour.

This is not a site for large group outings. Large groups will be encouraged to reserve group campsites anywhere in the Three Rivers system.

 

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Updated Mobile Twin Cities Bike Map

Posted by Doug Shidell, May 15th , 2017.

The latest update on the mobile 2017 Twin Cities Bike Map is now available on Avenza. If you’ve already downloaded the map since 2017, you can download the updated version for free and pick up numerous small road and trail changes. If you still haven’t downloaded the 2017 map, expect much bigger changes that reflect not only the newest changes, but older changes such as the extension of the Nine Mile Creek Trail across Hwy 100 and across a long, beautiful boardwalk near Bredesen Park in Edina.

2017 Mobile Twin Cities Bike Map

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The Morning Commute

Posted by Doug Shidell, May 15th , 2017.

Burl walks with his shoulders high and rolled forward. His head leads his shoulders by a couple of inches, but otherwise his posture is upright, especially for an 80-year-old man. I first noticed him several years ago on my morning bike commute. He always looked to be hunched against the wind, even on a calm summer morning.

I waved and said “Good Morning.” It startled him, but he managed a “Hi!” in a voice too low to hear. Although I could read it on his lips. We repeat the routine whenever we pass each other. That simple exchange inevitably raises my spirits.

Others notice.The dog walker in Hyland Park, for example, picks up the vibe and says “Good Morning.” In early spring and late fall he walks the trails wearing a heavy jacket with wool hat, gloves …and shorts.

The runner doesn’t notice. He runs with a heavy shuffle. The balls of his feet land with a thud and shift forward with each step. He runs with a permanent grimace, eyes mostly closed and head down. I see him frequently. We pass within inches of each other each morning, but we’ve never exchanged a greeting.

For one glorious summer, I saw a young woman gliding the trails each evening. She skated with a sweeping exuberance unlike any other inline skater I’ve seen and it showed in a radiant smile that engulfed everything ahead of her. I didn’t see her for at least one season, then she returned with a male companion. I haven’t seen her since.

There are people who I don’t expect to see again. The elderly couple, for example, with squeaky bike chains. I saw them several times per week for a couple of seasons. They disappeared for a while, then one morning the man was on the trail alone. It was the last time I saw him.

It’s been many years since I’ve seen the older woman who walked the morning trails regularly in full sun protection: a large floppy-brimmed hat, long sleeves and a loose piece of material draped over her hands.

One morning I waved to Burl as I passed, then spontaneously slowed, circled back and introduced myself. That’s when I learned his name and his age. He worked in the warehouse at Super Valu and felt a lifelong gratitude for the way they treated him. His niece, a Physical Therapist, got him to start walking, something he does daily. In winter, he walks the mall. That’s all I know about him. I don’t know if I’ve spelled his name correctly and I can’t guarantee that the details of our conversation are accurate. It doesn’t matter.

I saw him again last week, after nearly a month. I felt a sense of relief, waved and said Good Morning. He said Hi and raised a hand. A few minutes later the dog walker said Good Morning and the runner passed by without a word.

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2017 Mobile Twin Cities Bike Map now available

Posted by Doug Shidell, January 17th , 2017.

The 2017 mobile Twin Cities Bike Map is available at the Avenza Map Store with some interesting updates. See the screenshot below for the recently opened extension of the Three Rivers Park system’s Nine Mile Creek Trail. The trail now spans Highway 100 on a new bridge. To the west, the trail includes an extended boardwalk across marshland and to the east it runs on its own path through Edina and Richfield to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport.

Avenza Maps has also introduced new technology that makes Explore More by Bikeverywhere more user friendly. For starters, you can link directly from the Avenza Map Store to the Explore More Dropbox site. You’ll see the link in the map description.

The downloaded placemarks also support hyperlinks. For users that means the description for Baker Park Reserve, for example, will be a direct link to the Park’s official web page. Wherever possible, I’ve updated placemarks throughout the Twin Cities Bike Map with hyperlinks.

I’ve also made the downloads easier. You can now import all of the placemarks in one step rather than download each category separately. Avenza has also updated and simplified the interface for importing placemarks.

2017 promises to be an exciting year for Bikeverywhere’s mobile maps. More announcements to come.

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Allegheny Mountains Bike Tour

Posted by Doug Shidell, December 27th , 2016.

Bicycle touring in the Allegheny Mountains isn’t for the faint of heart. The climbs, and descents, are steep, the mountains are high and there aren’t a lot of flat stretches to catch your breath and recover. But for those who are up for the challenge, the rewards more than match the challenges. Bikeverywhere’s newest mobile map, Allegheny Mountains Bike Tour, lays out a route from Buffalo, New York to Yorktown, Virginia that follows the spine of the Allegheny Mountains through upstate New York, western Pennsylvania, Western Maryland, West Virginia and Virginia. The route follows mountain streams, climbs peaks, explores valleys and passes through dozens of small towns. Check out Allegheny Mountains Bike Tour Narrative, a first person account of riding this route in the fall of 2016.

For more information, Allegheny Mountains Bike Tour.

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Niagara Falls Bike Tour

Posted by Doug Shidell, December 27th , 2016.

Niagara Falls is one of the natural wonders of the world. Bicyclists can access both the American and Canadian Falls quickly by bike, but they don’t have to limit themselves to viewing just the falls. Bike paths along both the Canadian and American sides of the Niagara River allow bicyclists to follow the entire 30 plus miles of the river between Lake Ontario and Lake Huron. Another bike trail connects the two lakes by following the Welland Canals where riders can get intimate views of giant Lake Freighters as they pass through the locks and canals that bypass Niagara Falls. There are also road loops through vineyards, smaller trails and urban areas such as Buffalo, NY to explore. Bikeverywhere now offers the mobile Niagara Falls Bike Trails  for riders who want to see Niagara Falls and all of the scenic trails and byways that the Niagara Falls Area offers.

More information about the mobile Niagara Falls Bike Trails.

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Sheridan Veteran’s Memorial added to Explore More

Posted by Doug Shidell, July 12th , 2016.

Just added the Veteran’s Memorial to Explore More Twin Cities at Sheridan Park along the Mississippi River in Northeast Minneapolis. Dedicated to the veterans of American wars from the Spanish American War to the present, the memorial uses the arm shield as it’s symbol for warriors through the ages.

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Surrounding the main sculpture are a series of face images depicting the men who fought in each of the wars. This one represents the Civil War, the bloodiest conflict in the nation’s history.

Sheridan Memorial Park

To find this and other sculptures, download the free Explore More Twin Cities supplement to the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map

 

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“Convergence” Sculpture added to Explore More Twin Cities

Posted by Doug Shidell, July 12th , 2016.

Just added Convergence to Explore More the free supplement to the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map.

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Convergence, created by Richfield Artist James Brenner in 2015 is located just east of the Mall of America in a roundabout at 28th Ave and Lindau Lane. The sculpture is 35 feet tall and surrounded by native plantings. It represents the people who interact and move through the South Loop District in Bloomington. Daylight flows through the ring in daylight and in the evening LEDs light the hoop. If you position yourself in the right spot, jets appear to pass through the sculpture.

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To find this and other sculptures, download the free Explore More Twin Cities supplement to the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map

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Explore More

Posted by Doug Shidell, May 31st , 2016.

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Wall murals and graffiti art, elegant public sculptures and whimsical chainsaw art, iconic bridges, unique water towers, Nice Ride bike stations, the Twin Cities has it all. Explore More Twin Cities, a free supplement to the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map, introduces you to the High Brow and Low Brow of the Twin Cities. Turn your next bike ride into an exploration of the things that make the Twin Cities unique.

Start with the basics by downloading the free “Amenities” file: Bathrooms, drinking fountains, DIY bike service stations, parking, scenic views. Exploring is a lot easier when basic services are listed right on your map.

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Then pick and choose from your areas of interest: Historic sites, public art, Nice Ride Stations, Parks and Trails, or download all of the KML files. They’re free, and once you have them on your phone or tablet, you can toggle them on or off to make them visible, or hide them to give you a cleaner looking map.

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This is a work in progress, we’ll keep adding more features as we find them. And we’re looking for help. If you discover something unique about the Twin Cities, locate it on your mobile Twin Cities Bike Map and send it to Bikeverywhere by using our contact form. Check out Working with Map Features for more information about how to mark your favorite spots on the map, and share them.

Download the free KMZ files into your mobile Twin Cities Bike Map and start exploring. (How do I do that?)

Get more from your PDF Mobile App: Working with Map Features

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