Author Topic: cycling on the interstates  (Read 3111 times)

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Offline currentresident

cycling on the interstates
« on: September 11, 2006, 03:53:12 pm »
I have just completed a tour from portland Or to indianapolis Indiana. For the most part I tried to stay off the interstates but this turned out not to be feasible. The problem is portions of older roads have been replaced by the interstates. I believe we have the rights to use these older roads regardless if there is an interstate there. The relevant law is the united states code title 43 section 22 chapter 935. Any road that existed in 1875 is defined as a public land and the public is to be granted access to it. This law was written before automobiles existed that means the public is us. Perhaps it would better to make a new law that spells this out. This would include farm equipment and horses. The amish and mnenonites have had to sue to get the right to use horses and wagons on non interstate roads. Write your represenitive and tell them about this.

This message was edited by currentresident on 9-13-06 @ 12:18 PM

Offline John Nettles

cycling on the interstates
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2006, 08:00:55 pm »
While I can certainly understand the problem with old roads becoming interstates (the old Route 66 has been converted to interstates in most areas, I personally believe cyclists should not be on interstates unless there is no reasonable (detour of 30+ miles) alternative, i.e. in Wyoming on the TransAm route.  Besides, interestates are SO boring.

I certainly agree with you about the right to use most roads but a blanket "we get access to everything" is not a wise decision IMHO.


Happy trails and may the wind be at your back!

TulsaJohn
Happy trails and may the wind be at your back!
John

Offline Sailariel

cycling on the interstates
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2006, 08:06:36 pm »
WOW! I suspect that you are right in reference the law--but I can`t envision myself riding on an interstate. I`ve been riding two years and ride one of those light performance bikes. Eaelier this summer while riding on Route 1 in Maine, I literally got blown off the road by a tanker doing well over 70. He sent me somersaulting into the sunset. I hit grass and assorted weeds and managed not to get hurt. Lesson learned--If it is bigger than you, stay clear. You could be dead right.  Spent 14 years cruising in a 38foot sailboat. In 80,000miles of ocean cruising I applied that rule. We all know that sail has the right of way over steam. I would never test that with a 450 foot container ship moving at 16knots. Best Wishes,               Alex


Offline currentresident

cycling on the interstates
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2006, 02:29:44 pm »
To give you an idea of the nonsence that is going on I traveled highway 36 through three states it became interstate 72 at the mississippi river. It would be a 56 mile detour to go around it. To make matters worse they moved highway 36 to the interstate. There is an old 36 but it is not clearly marked and you still need to get on 72 to cross the mississippi and illinois rivers.  On the Illinois map it looks like highway 40 crosses interstate 70 near the Indiana border but in fact they travel together for one mile and it is posted non motorized vehcicles and farm equipment prohibited. I talked to the local sherrif and she said the law was not enforced there. I just crossed the ohio river at paducah the bridge has a steel mesh for a surface and is not safe in the rain it would be better if cyclist were able to use interstate 72. These exceptions could be worked out on a case by case basis. If we go ahead and try to pass a law it would help those who are stopped on the interstates even before the law is passed. Oregon lost a case where a cyclist was on the interstate and it was not posted the article was in oregon cycling.

This message was edited by currentresident on 9-13-06 @ 12:19 PM

Offline John Nettles

cycling on the interstates
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2006, 03:06:36 pm »
While I agree some situations are unavoidable and should be explored for allowing cyclists, I still say a cyclist should generally not be on an interstate.  I would rather put my legal efforts toward places that apply to all cyclists not just a few.

Additionally, there is no way it can be a 56 ADDITIONAL mile detour to go from Hannibal, MO to Pittsfield, IL (assuming you were traveling thru, not just crossing the river).  Sometimes, your mode of travel dictates certain limitations. How come boats never have hills :).

I personally would not have traveled on US36 when there are better cyclists friendly roads that basically go the same direction, albiet with some extra mileage.  I'm not putting you down, but I prefer to look at the landscape not at the traffic.  

Finally, while you are an experienced cyclist, I would be worried about a novice who rides on it just because we have the right.  Right or wrong doesn't matter if your are dead.

Again, just my two cents worth.

Happy trails and may the wind be at your back!

TulsaJohn
Happy trails and may the wind be at your back!
John

Offline currentresident

cycling on the interstates
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2006, 04:17:09 pm »
Here are a few loose ends. The law above was passed because the railroads murdered people for their lands. Once they had those lands they charged tolls to go through them. Roads are where they are for a reason two reasons are they are generally the safest and shortest routes. The railroads tried to divert people away from mountain passes calm sections of rivers and known water sources. It was the intent of the law to allow people throughfare to the safest and shortest way. While as a tourist I could have chosen a different route this is not the case for commuters it is not unreasonable to allow them to use the roads they have used in the past and the problem is getting worse. Danger is a non issue the government can not prohibit you from doing something just because it is dangerous this is called inherent risk a well established legal principle. Nor do I agree that the interstates are more dangerous let people decide for them selfs. The Eisenhower interstate system was designed for the emergency landing of aircraft and the rapid mobilization of the millitary. The department of transportation is violating these laws by allowing powerlines to cross the interstates. The military has always included horses and bicycles as standard equipment. Currenty DARPA buys bicycles from the montague corporation. It is the arrogance of govenment agencies that think they can ignore the laws of this country that bothers me.

This message was edited by currentresident on 9-13-06 @ 12:21 PM

Offline reinarz

cycling on the interstates
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2006, 04:09:09 pm »
I have seen numerous bikes on I 10 in west Texas. ACA southern tier even runs on I 10. The speed limit is 80 mph. Every one drives 75 to 80 while trucks do 70. There is a very wide paved shoulder. So, the pedlers are SAFELY out side the line.

Looks safe and fun to me. I plan to do it in Jan 2007.

It must depend upon the interstate, I have not ever seen a pedler on I 35. I do not like to be in an auto on I 35 in Texas, much less my bike.



Offline TheDaltonBoys

cycling on the interstates
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2006, 11:45:36 am »
Reinarz - AMEN!! IH-35 from San Antonio to Dallas-Ft. Worth is like NASCAR running 3 wide. Western part of TX. on IH-10 much more do-able. enjoy the voyage...Mark of the Dalton boys