Biking in Vail

This article was submitted by Eric Post, Esq.

Eastern Pima County is rated as a Gold level Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists. It has the highest rating of any region in the United States. In fact, it is the only regional rating that LAB has given.

LAB has been around since the 1800’s. Back then, it was LAW or League of American Wheelmen. In the Good Roads Movement of the 1890’s, LAW petitioned various cities to pave their roads so that bicyclists could commute without getting muddy and dusty. The petition gained wide support and acceptance. So we have paved roads today because of bicyclists!

One of the more enjoyable roads is Old Spanish Trail. Every day cyclists ride uphill (southeast) towards Colossal Cave and then a little workout on Pistol Hill into Vail. Mary Ann Cleveland is the preferred route to Houghton Road. Once on Houghton, riders head back to Tucson.

A stop at the Saguaro National Park to visit with more cyclists at the ramada is always fun. Of course, the 8-mile loop at the park has its enjoyable winding downhill where riders pay for the experience with a one mile climb that has grades as steep as 8 and 9 percent.

It is my sincerest wish that everyone shares the road. They are public right-of-ways for all kinds of conveyances including horse and buggy, joggers, motorists, bicyclists and commercial trucks just to name a few. Be careful when driving. Slow for the turns, stay out of the bicycle lanes, and treat every roadway user as if they have a right to be there – because they do. Here’s to safe and happy traveling.

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Lucretia Free