I'm not sure what the deal is with this thread, it just seems to be random series of somewhat unrelated (to each other) comments where you reply to yourself.
On the notion of a dedicated transcontinental bike path... I don't see the need. Much of the US can be crossed using rural roads and passing through small towns.
We have rail trails and MUPs similar to the Tammany Trace here and I don't think I would want to go cross country on them. They are well suited to multi-use including casual cycling, but not so much so for touring or any other less casual form of riding.
They typically don't offer camping although there are exceptions like the C&O Towpath and the KATY Trail.
I have my doubts as to whether there is much demand for a dedicated transcontinental bike path. I think it would be pretty expensive to construct and maintain. I doubt that it would see much use in remote areas. Additionally it would reinforce anti bike folks opinions that we should be on a bike path rather than on the road.
It seems really odd to me that someone who has "cycled 34,000 miles through 19 countries, and six times across the USA" and who "rough camps" most of the time would see any use for such a path.
All that said there is an effort to build the American Discovery Trail. It would be way down on my list of possible bike routes across the US, but check it out if you are interested at:http://www.treckusa.com/
All three Adventure Cycling cross country routes would be preferable to me and when I did cross the US I picked the Trans America. Next time I will probably do the Northern Tier or some variation of it.
This message was edited by staehpj1 on 10-2-08 @ 6:05 AM