Bikeverywhere News

Updated Mobile Twin Cities Bike Map

Posted by Doug Shidell, June 8th , 2018.

I had to remove one of my favorite roads from the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map 2018 for this update. Rich Valley Road, through Apple Valley and Rosemount, was a favorite escape route and recreational ride down to the Dakota County Technical College and the unique structures and quiet roads of UMore Park.The road rolls through farmland behind the Koch Refinery. It used to be a low traffic, scenic ride that occasionally offered some amazing natural phenomenon such as an epic battle between two Bald Eagles. We watched as the two eagles, locked in battle, fell behind a ridge, possibly to the ground. Today, a blacktop manufacturing plant and a landfill generate heavy truck traffic on this narrow road with no shoulders. It is no longer safe to ride.

I spent most of an afternoon looking for alternate routes without success. The only direct route, Akron Rd, is gravel, and two large housing developments are under construction on the south end. The road will probably be paved within a year to handle the new residents. I hope the new road will come with wide shoulders or a separate bike path, making it a good alternate to Rich Valley Rd. I’ll return to the area next spring for another evaluation.

The latest update also includes a significant number of revisions based on an intense spring of research, especially in the less explored regions of the Twin Cities. If you’ve already downloaded the 2018 Twin Cities Bike Map, go back to Avenza and download the free update. If you haven’t purchased the 2018 version, I strongly recommend getting this update. I expect to continue doing extensive research this riding season and will make significant changes and updates to the mobile map throughout the year.

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Carver Park Reserve Adds Bikes Only Campsite

Posted by Doug Shidell, May 24th , 2018.


Last year Carver Park Reserve opened a new bikes only campsite at their Lake Auburn Campground. I tested the site last year and again this year. Here is the story I published in the Star Tribune about the campsite.

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Trempealeau County Bike Rides

Posted by Doug Shidell, April 26th , 2018.

Trempealeau County, in the heart of Wisconsin’s famed Driftless Area, is a road rider’s paradise. Low traffic, paved roads weave through narrow valleys and along the wide open spaces of ridge tops. The mosaic of farm fields in the valleys give way to woodlots on the hillsides and the southern tip of the county touches the Mississippi River at Lock and Dam #6.

The Trempealeau County Mobile Bike Map offers 20 loops ranging from 15 to 60 miles in length. The loops have been designed by local riders and start from towns throughout the county for the greatest diversity of terrain and scenery. Many loops overlap, providing endless opportunities to customize a route to fit your needs.

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Gary Sjoquist 20 Years of Bicycle Advocacy

Posted by Doug Shidell, March 26th , 2018.

Gary Sjoquist has been a professional bicycle advocate for 20 years, long enough to accumulate a rich trove of stories that put him in the middle of some of the most significant advancements in recent bicycle history. Hired in 1998 by Quality Bicycle Products, Gary says he was given a “long leash” to do what he could for the promotion of bicycling in Minnesota and across the nation. His fingerprints are all over the $25 million federal grant to promote bicycling in Minneapolis, he was a founder and early executive director of Bikes Belong, now People for Bikes, he was instrumental in Safe Routes to Schools, Cayuna Lakes Mountain Bike Trails and most recently the NICA High School Mountain Bike League. He’s been inducted into the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame in the Marin Museum of Bicycling.

Gary told his story this weekend at the last of the 2018 SpokesPeople series at the Cycling Museum of Minnesota. His entertaining talk was rich in anecdotal information and creative tactics for getting everyone from powerful congressmen to local business leaders on board with bicycling programs. He makes bicycle advocacy sound like fun.

Thanks to Gary for his tireless advocacy on behalf of bicyclists and to the Cycling Museum of Minnesota for their wide ranging SpokesPeople series of talks.

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2018 Twin Cities Bike Map is Available

Posted by Doug Shidell, March 5th , 2018.

The 2018 Twin Cities Bike Map is in stock and ready to ship. The updated map reflects the last three years of research into the best and most scenic trails and bike friendly roads in Minneapolis, St. Paul and the entire Twin Cities metro. This is the twelfth edition of the Twin Cities Bike Map and it’s the most up to date and accurate map you’ll find in the Twin Cities. New roads have been added, some roads that no longer qualify as bike friendly have been removed and many trails have been added, tweaked and aligned to meet the changing bike environment of the Twin Cities. use the paper Twin Cities Bike Map to plan your next ride, then download the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map to your phone and use it to track your route, make adjustments on the fly and add your favorite points of interest directly to the map.

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Biking the Stillwater Bridge

Posted by Doug Shidell, September 19th , 2017.

The new Stillwater Bridge across the St. Croix River has a wide, protected bike and pedestrian lane for crossing the river between Minnesota and Wisconsin. During our visit this weekend, we also discovered that the bridge is a popular destination for folks who want to get to the middle of the river to take in the scenery. The bike/ped lane has observation areas looking upriver toward Stillwater or the active boating scene on the water.

The crossing starts at a bike lane on Hwy 95 north of the bridge and runs two miles to County Rd E, nearly a mile inland from the Wisconsin bank of the St. Croix River. The bridge is accessible by bike from Stillwater and points south and west, but the layout of the roads and trails has changed considerably.

We spent Sunday afternoon logging the changes. Those changes have been added to the mobile Twin Cities Bike Map and the map has been updated on Avenza. The update is free if you have already purchased the 2017 version.

The biggest disappointment is that the Wisconsin side of the crossing drops cyclists off at County Highway E, a busy road with only 18 inches of striped shoulder. There’s a lightly traveled option to return to the old river crossing, and Highway 35 south may work as a gateway to the vast network of paved rural roads in this part of Wisconsin, but it will take some research.

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Bikes Only Campsite at Carver Park Reserve

Posted by Doug Shidell, September 5th , 2017.

Stopped by the bike camping site in Carver Park Reserve. The site has been expanded, adding more space for tents and at least two extra hammock options. The site also has a couple of picnic areas and the LRT trail from Hopkins has bike camping signs at The Depot and at the turn to the bike trails in Carver Park Reserve.

Darren Drummer, operations supervisor for Carver Park Reserve, has additional improvements in mind for the site, including pavers around the campfire and movable seating with backs (bicyclists rarely carry chairs on camping trips),

The site has been used over 35 nights since opening in June, which averages to about one out of every three nights. September and October are prime camping months, so the totals should go up. At $10 per tent and no reservations, this is the perfect site for a spontaneous overnight getaway.

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Biking to the Minnesota State Fair

Posted by Doug Shidell, August 29th , 2017.

Interested in riding your bike to the Minnesota State Fair this year? Parking will be easier with 100 new bike parking spots at the State Fair bike parking corrals. For more information about bike related activities at the State Fair, check out this great post from Have Fun Biking.

Larger bike corrals relieves the hassle-factor going to Minnesota State Fair


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Updated Mobile Maps

Posted by Doug Shidell, July 29th , 2017.

Updated two mobile maps today on Avenza. The updated Twin Cities Bike Map includes the Nine Mile Creek and the Spring Lake Park Trails mentioned in earlier posts plus numerous smaller changes and tweaks not mentioned in Facebook posts.

The updated Twin Cities Bike Trails map now shows all trails that have been added or tweaked since this map was last updated in January of 2016.

If you’ve purchased either of these maps in the past, you can download the updated maps for free.

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Spring Lake Trail

Posted by Doug Shidell, July 17th , 2017.

The Spring Lake Park Trail covers a lot of ground in its short, five-mile stretch along the Mississippi River near Hastings. It runs atop bluffs near the eastern trailhead, bridges a deep ravine, drops to near River level then rolls to the western trailhead off Highway 55. The trail runs through recently seeded prairie (heavy on Black-eyed Susans this time of year), some woodlots and lots of terrain.

Round trip distance is under 12 miles, but riders looking for more distance have plenty of options. From Schaar’s Bluff, the trail continues southeast through the park and along residential streets to the edge of Hastings. Watch for a somewhat obscured sign that directs you down an incline to the River where you will cross an earthen dam and ride up to Lock and Dam #2. The trail follows the Mississippi River downstream to the heart of Hastings for food and drink.

The City of Hastings has its own trail system for more mileage options. Stay on the River Trail past downtown, then follow trails and quiet residential streets to Vermillion Falls Park and an attractive trail along the Vermillion River. It’s possible to return to the main trail using residential trails and streets or you can backtrack along the original route.

The final option in the Hastings area is to cross the new Hwy 61 bridge over the Mississippi River., the bridge has a separated bike and pedestrian lane, then drop into the city marina and continue following the trail toward the city of Prescott, WI. The trail ends at a popular beach on the St. Croix River.

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