1,000-mile bi­cy­cle race marks trail map de­but

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - Style - CELIA STOREY

The Ad­ven­ture Cy­cling As­so­ci­a­tion will pub­lish in May its much an­tic­i­pated Arkansas High Coun­try Moun­tain Bike Route.

To cel­e­brate the re­lease of the non­profit’s deeply re­searched route map, Chuck Camp­bell of Rus­sel­lville and (so far) 23 other cy­clists are stag­ing a 1,000-mile Arkansas High Coun­try Race, be­gin­ning June 8 in down­town Lit­tle Rock.

De­vel­oped us­ing a $100,000 grant from the Arkansas Parks and Re­cre­ation Foun­da­tion, Ad­ven­ture Cy­cling’s bike tour­ing map — with an app — will spot­light about 1,100 miles of es­tab­lished back­road/ gravel cy­cling in the state.

“They are car­tog­ra­phers,” says Camp­bell, the en­vi­ron­men­tal sciences teacher at Rus­sel­lville High School who got Ad­ven­ture Cy­cling in­ter­ested in map­ping the route.

The race will sim­ply take ad­van­tage of the new map. There’s no fee to en­ter, and no event in­sur­ance. This will be a self-sup­ported, ul­tra-bik­ing event. Ad­vice posted on the event Face­book page con­veys: “‘Self Sup­ported’ means that the rider is com­plet­ing this course solo. No sag van. No food/gear/wa­ter caches. No call­ing a buddy to bring a pizza and beer.”

Camp­bell is look­ing for spon­sors. The field is lim­ited to 50 rac­ers, who will demon­strate their progress via Track­lead­ers.com GPS units, which they will sup­ply. The race will end when­ever rac­ers get back to Lit­tle Rock. He thinks the fastest will take six to eight days.

Ad­ven­ture Cy­cling’s wa­ter­proof maps lo­cate bike shops, sources for food and wa­ter and overnight ac­com­mo­da­tions. Dig­i­tal data will be avail­able, too, as well as an app that can be up­loaded to a smart­phone or GPS de­vice. The or­ga­ni­za­tion has mapped more than 46,000 miles of cy­cling routes across North Amer­ica, with turn-by-turn di­rec­tions. See bi­cy­clead­ven­tures.com.

More in­for­ma­tion about the race is at face­book.com/ ArHCrace. The email is [email protected]

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