Author Topic: Which shops stock ACA maps?  (Read 6220 times)

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Offline brit2015

Which shops stock ACA maps?
« on: April 30, 2015, 08:21:51 am »
Hello ACA, We are two Brits who will be cycling in/across/around your fair land over the next six months. Can we buy ACA route maps as we go along? Which shops tend to stock them? We're making our trip up as we go along, so we've just bought a couple of maps for our first 1,000 miles down the Pacific Coast Route, but after that we'll need to get our hands on some more.

Offline John Nelson

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2015, 12:01:06 pm »
I've never seen them for sale in any retail establishment. Order them online here and have them sent to you c/o general delivery at an upcoming post office.

indyfabz

  • Guest
Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2015, 01:24:32 pm »
I found map or two for the Pacific Coast route in a map store in Seattle, but that was 15 years ago. Other than that, I too have never seen them in retail establishments.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2015, 01:50:40 pm »
I have seen ACA maps in a store once or twice but never on tour except once on the West coast.  So don't count on finding them along the way.

I typically buy them ahead of time and mail them home as I finish with them.

Offline adventurepdx

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  • Riding bikes in and around Portland, Oregon
Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2015, 02:26:51 pm »
Here in Portland, OR, besides the local map shop that had a pretty old Transam map the last time I checked, the REI downtown has some ACA maps. But it's only for the routes closest to Portland, and the stock isn't always great. So if you're looking for Pacific Coast Section 2, you might be in luck, but you won't find Northern Tier Section 4. I'm guessing that other REIs would have a few ACA maps of local-ish routes, but I can't say for sure.

So as others have stated, it's hard to find ACA maps from shops on the road, which makes it difficult if you are making up the trip as you go along. Best bet is to figure out your next section a few weeks in advance and have Adventure Cycling mail them to you on the road, whether General Delivery (info on that has been posted on these forums a few times) or at a place you know you'll be staying at.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2015, 02:59:38 pm »
U.S. Postal Service is your friend, if you can decide a week or so in advance.  Mail order map(s) from ACA and have them shipped to you.  Pick out a post office in a reasonably small town where you expect to be in about a week, and ask ACA to ship them to you there:

Mr. 205 Brit
General Delivery
Boonedocks, NC 23456

(Obviously, replace with your actual name, town, and zip code.)

Give it about a week in the west, and maybe 10 days in the east, for ACA to ship the maps and USPS to deliver it.  If you miss it (package not there yet, or post office closed when you come through), leave a signed, written request at the post office for them to forward the package to West of Nowhere, KY, 32109. 

Note I mentioned a reasonably small town.  If it's too small, the P.O. may only be open 2-4 hours a day, 3 days a week; if it's too large, you may get bounced between multiple post offices.  Towns with a population of 3,000-20,000 are just about right, typically open 6-10 hours 5-6 days a week.  Aim for you to arrive on Monday, so you can stay close and check in the next day if the maps haven't arrived when you get there.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2015, 03:09:01 pm »
If you miss it (package not there yet, or post office closed when you come through), leave a signed, written request at the post office for them to forward the package to West of Nowhere, KY, 32109. 

For what it is worth...  You can make these arrangements to forward them at any post office, not just the one the item was mailed to.  Personally I'd just buy the maps all up front unless your plans are likely to change.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2015, 07:01:45 pm by staehpj1 »

Offline DanE

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2015, 06:55:26 pm »
My REI store carries a couple of sections for the areas near where I am located. That is the only place I have ever seen them in stores. You certainly could not count on finding them in stores for your long distance trip.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2015, 10:07:17 pm »
If you miss it (package not there yet, or post office closed when you come through), leave a signed, written request at the post office for them to forward the package to West of Nowhere, KY, 32109. 

For what it is worth...  You can make these arrangements to forward them at any post office, not just the one the item was mailed to.  Personally I'd just buy the maps all up front unless your plans are likely to change.

True, but if you do it from a different post office you may run into a stickler who'll route it through someplace in Missouri (St. Louis, maybe?).  It can take a week to ten days before the receiving post office will get the notice and forward the package.  You can drop a sheet of paper (even without a stamp!) into the mail drop at the post office to which the package was originally addressed, and they'll forward it the next day they're open (if it was closed when you came through) or as soon as the package arrives.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2015, 05:59:13 am »
True, but if you do it from a different post office you may run into a stickler who'll route it through someplace in Missouri (St. Louis, maybe?).  It can take a week to ten days before the receiving post office will get the notice and forward the package.

I have probably only done this a dozen or so times, but I forwarded those packages that way with no issue.    Sometimes we decided that we weren't ready for a package and just bumped it down the road, sometimes more than once for the same package.  I always felt more comfortable talking to a live person face to face rather than leaving a note.  It seemed a safer bet to me at the time.  Besides, I don't get how a note would make them less likely to just forward it directly than a face to face request from another post office would.  They always seem to require seeing a picture ID so the note would have seemed less safe to me.

That said, they have always been super helpful at small to medium town post offices, so my guess is that problems are unlikely either way.

I never heard of forwarded packages being routed through Missouri is that official USPS policy?  Have you actually had that happen to your package?

Edit:  I just realized that you were saying that the request was forwarded through Missouri not the actual package.  Is that correct?
« Last Edit: May 01, 2015, 07:48:58 am by staehpj1 »

Offline brit2015

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2015, 07:07:19 am »
Thank you very much to all who have replied so quickly and in such detail. It is reassuring to know we can have them delivered to post offices en route. All the best and happy cycling to all.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2015, 09:44:14 am »
True, but if you do it from a different post office you may run into a stickler who'll route it through someplace in Missouri (St. Louis, maybe?).  It can take a week to ten days before the receiving post office will get the notice and forward the package.

I never heard of forwarded packages being routed through Missouri is that official USPS policy?  Have you actually had that happen to your package?

Edit:  I just realized that you were saying that the request was forwarded through Missouri not the actual package.  Is that correct?

Yes, the postmistress at Lolo, MT pulled that on me, and waited until the forwarding request came back through channels before she would send it on.  I missed the package, and it was returned to sender about 6 weeks later.  :(

Offline staehpj1

Re: Which shops stock ACA maps?
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2015, 03:10:26 pm »
\
Yes, the postmistress at Lolo, MT pulled that on me, and waited until the forwarding request came back through channels before she would send it on.  I missed the package, and it was returned to sender about 6 weeks later.  :(

That stinks!  I hope it isn't a common occurrence.