"These are projects I was worried I wouldn't see the completion of in my lifetime," said Mark Wyatt, executive director of the Iowa Bicycle Coalition.
The Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, which begins this morning in Sergeant Bluff, is surely the centerpiece of the state's cycling calendar. For many years, RAGBRAI presented cyclists with a rare opportunity to take long rides in Iowa in a relatively controlled environment.
Choicesfor enjoying Iowa's outdoors from a bicycle seatare much moreplentiful now, while also benefiting from the safetyof trails. And significant milestones in the state's various trail systems have come into focusthis summer. Hikers, runners, walkers,and parents and children arereaping the fruit of many years of investment in these and other public spaces.
One brief aside: Thanks for the latest news should be directed to U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne, the only member of Iowa's congressional delegation to vote in favor of the American Rescue Plan Act, which sent Iowa the millions of dollars that state administrators are funneling to trail projects through the Destination Iowa program.
In central Iowa, the headline is a measly 4-mile stretch of trail in western Dallas Countythat will link the High Trestle Trail and the Raccoon River Valley Trail, creating a 118-mile loop and an 86-mile loop. The existing segments have been packed with riders for years, with trailside businesses springing up to take advantage. A $1 million grant puts the end of the work