Nov 04

Cave Loop Trail part of Tent Rocks National Monument in New Mexico

Tent Rock Trails

Cave Loop Trail and Canyon Trail combine to form Tent Rocks Trail

hikers on Cave Loop Trail

The Tent Rock Trails, located between Albuquerque and Santa Fe, New Mexico are actually two different trails combined to form one fantastic hiking trail. The Cave Loop Trail is 1.2 miles long and is a fairly easy trail for hikers of all abilities. The Canyon Trail is 1.5 miles and is a bit more difficult. Together, the two trails form the 2.7 mile Tent Rocks Trails.

The Cave Loop Trail allows hikers to stroll along a fairly level loop path to view a sandstone cave and some amazing pyramidal rock formations. For interesting historical and geological information, visit the Tent Rocks National Monument website on the right hand side of this page.

The Canyon Trail allows hikers to explore narrow canyons and view beautiful layered rocks as they climb up to the top of a scenic ridge. Trail users get both a macro and a micro view of the stunning canyons. As they hike up the trail, they will view the sheer rock walls on either side and pass through crevices barely wide enough for one person to pass. Once atop the ridge, the same hikers will look back over the maze of canyons and the surrounding rock outcrops.

These two trails offer a great family hiking experience with terrain and scenery guaranteed to please even the most discerning outdoor enthusiast.

Permanent link to this article: http://trailsnet.com/2012/11/04/cave-loop-trail-part-of-tent-rocks-national-monument-in-new-mexico/

Oct 24

England Trails Provide Scenery & History

Take to the Trail on Peddars Way and the Norfolk Coast Path!

Weekend Walkers and Long-Distance Hikers Will Delight in these excellent long-distance British Trails. The mild countryside makes of excellent excursions on foot. Put another way, it’s a hikers’ dream!!

 Peddars Way is the best-preserved Roman Road in Norfolk, which together with the Norfolk Coast Path forms a Pier at Cromer Norfolk in England National Trail that encompasses a 90-mile stretch of country lanes, grassy tracks, mudflats, cliff-tops, heath and marshland – a paradise for walkers, photographers and ornithologists.

Norfolk is not known for its hilly landscape – making this a moderately easy trek across beautiful open countryside; serious walking enthusiasts who can easily clock up 20 miles a day will complete the whole stretch in well under a week. For those looking for something less arduous, the journey can be broken down into several easily-accomplished sections, as equally suited to the weekend walker as the long-distance hiker.

beach on the north Norfolk coast in England Coastal Path

Possibly the best starting point to do the entire route is actually across the border in Suffolk, at Knettishall Heath Country Park. From here, what remains of the old Roman road and its subsequent coastal path takes in unique Brecks, rolling farmland, clifftop paths, sand dunes and salt marshes alive with birdlife. Although in truth they are two separate trails, the Peddars Way and Norfolk Coast Path are intrinsically linked, running through a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty that takes in a stunning mix of wildly differing scenery.

Said to be derived from the Latin ‘pedester’– which translates as ‘on foot’ – the Peddars Way is first referred to on a 16th century map which links Knettishall near Thetford with the Norfolk Coast Path at Holme-next-the-Sea. Walking enthusiasts with a love of history will be in their element on the first stage of the old Roman highway, a not-too-taxing fourteen-and-a-half miles from Knettishall Heath to Little Cressingham following in the footsteps of legionnaires who first trod the pathway 2,000 years ago.

Great Britain Historical Trail

Little Cressingham to Castle Acre takes in the church of St. Mary at Houghton on the Hill, where renovations in the 1990s revealed priceless 11th century wall paintings nearly lost forever when the building was threatened with demolition. Nearby North Pickenham is associated with the ‘Picnamwade’ of Henry VI’s pilgrimage to Walsingham in 1447, and the ‘Pickenham Wade’ of  Henry VIII’s wife Catherine of Aragon’s visit some three-quarters of a century later.

The section from Castle Acre to Sedgeford and Fring is a 13.9 mile stretch through often remote heathland; Sedgeford to Holme Next-the-Sea is a little over six miles, and from there the coast path takes you on a 13-mile journey through part of what is known as ‘Nelson’s Country’ at Burnham Overy Staithe, close to the birthplace of Norfolk’s most famous son. From there to Stiffkey is a little over ten miles, then onto Weybourne (11.75 miles,) before the final leg through Sheringham to Cromer, an eight-mile coastal walk with fabulous views over the north Norfolk coast.

Nicki Williams is a copy writer for Norfolk’s leading on-line, outdoor clothing and footwear company Gear-Zone , specialists in all the leading brands including Rab, Berghaus, The North Face, Scarpa and Brasher

Picture source: Compfight

Permanent link to this article: http://trailsnet.com/2012/10/24/england-trails-provide-scenery-history/

Oct 22

The Travel Process: Easier Than You Think If You Know A Few Secrets

Trail Travel Tips

Trailsnet promotes active travel or, as we call it, trail travel. If you are traveling abroad, it is good to know some basic travel rules and guidelines. Trailsnet guest blogger Eric Blair shares some of the following rules of the road/trail.

International Travel Guidelines

Traveling can be a pain. Crossing red tape is an activity despised by everyone, but it is just a huge part of preparing for international travel. Bureaucratic structures make the process into somewhat of an ordeal and can try your patience, so it’s a relief to have everything in order when you’ve completed all the necessary tasks. Doing paperwork is really the most disagreeable part of the whole thing. It’s certainly a hassle, plus the waiting makes it even more annoying, not to mention the monetary expenditures. The whole thing can be made easier, however, if you seek the services available that make it all go faster.

Obtaining a Passport

Obtaining a passport is step one and signifies the key documentation you’ll need to travel internationally. A business trip may give you reason to travel, or if you’re lucky you might be going on a vacation. Wherever you go, whether it be Mazatlán or Taipei, Bombay, Lima, Auckland, or Edinburgh, you’ll need this important official document to get you through customs. Also, whether you’ll be exploring the Australian outback or climbing the peaks of the Swiss Alps, you’ll be in need of a visa, which in layman’s terms is a piece of paper that says you’ve been authorized to enter area. It will state that you are permitted to reside in that area for a set time period and that you won’t be allowed to take up employment there.

Getting a Visa

Taking care of visa matters in advance is super important because you can be refused one which can really mess with your plans. Doing things in advance allows the country you want to enter ample time to assess your financial security and other things so they can approve you on their terms. They will also give notice that you must submit to and pass various security and health checks upon your arrival at the border of that territory.

Know What You Want

If you know what you’re looking for, you will arrive at the right company that can expedite all the paperwork process. Whatever the reason may be for your travels, getting your paperwork out of the way will be a huge relief. If you are in need of India visas, that won’t be a problem. For whatever sort of visas for whatever country, services exist to match you up with your destination. Once the unpleasant process of doing all the paperwork is over, when everything’s approved and you’ve made your reservations for flights, hotels, etc., you’ll be good to go, minus some of the headache.

Eric Blair writes about the right ways of getting travel documentation from sources like traveldocs.com and how to prepare for the trip of your lifetime.

Permanent link to this article: http://trailsnet.com/2012/10/22/the-travel-process-easier-than-you-think-if-you-know-a-few-secrets/

Oct 20

StrideRide Offers Great Cardio Workout

StrideRide outdoor elliptical bike

StrideRide by StrideCore

Outdoor Gymnasium

Imagine taking your stair-stepper or elliptical outside on the trail with you. With the StrideRide by StrideCore, you get all the benefits of a stationary elliptical machine with the beautiful sunshine, fresh air and scenery of a trail.You are no longer religated to stinky gyms, boring views or painful runs. With a StrideRide, a whole new world of cardio exercise is available in the great outdoors.

What is the StrideRide?

The StrideRide is a standup exercise vehicle that can be used outdoors or mounted on a stand to be used indoors. It is like a cross between a bicycle, an elliptical and a stair stepper. It can be ridden on the roads or, preferably, on paved paths or cement trails. It is a great alternative to trail running or biking. Or better yet, it is can be used as part of a balanced cross-training program that combines running, cycling and elliptical exercise.

Full Body, Low Impact Workout

Trail running can be a lot of fun and a pretty decent workout. But it is also a lot of bone-jarring impact on your body. The constant pounding of daily running can really cause damage to your feet, knees and even your back. Bicycling is less impact, but often requires riders to spend a long time hunched over handlebars and perched on an uncomfortable seat. The StrideRide, on the other hand, provides a vigorous, standup workout without all the posture and impact problems.

StrideRide Suggestions

Like any new personal transportation vehicle, the StrideRide starts out with a brief learning curve. At first, you may be a little shaky on the startup. Don’t worry; you’ll be riding free and easy in just a few moments. Let me share a couple tips for getting started. My favorite way to get started on the StrideRide is by beginning on a slight incline. In most cases, a driveway is perfect for this because they are usually sloped away from the house for drainage purposes. Another good starting technique is the “push-off.” This method involves setting one foot on the Stride Ride platform/pedal and pushing yourself forward with the other foot. Either method requires the rider to straddle the StrideRide to begin the process. Don’t worry, though. If you can balance on a bike, you can easily and quickly learn to ride a StrideRide. Within minutes, you’ll be riding like a champ.

StrideRide Videos

If you’ve never seen or ridden a StrideRide, the best way for you to understand it is to watch some of the helpful videos provided by the company. So here’s a list of links to assist you in learning more about the StrideRide:

StrideRide on Trails

As with most personal transportation vehicles, the StrideRide is best used on trails or the shoulder of roads with light traffic. Below is a summary of the best places for enjoying a StrideRide and a bonus video of the StrideRide being used on a gravel path. StrideRide is a fantastic exercise machine and provides one of the most enjoyable workouts you’ll ever experience.

Best used for: Exercise, Short excursions

Best for use on: Concrete & paved trails or roads, hard-packed gravel trails, Level to moderate trails

 

Permanent link to this article: http://trailsnet.com/2012/10/20/strideride-offers-great-cardio-workout/

Oct 17

Virgin River Trail in Utah

Virgin River paved bike Trail in Utah

Virgin River Trail

Paved Trail in Southern Utah

When I first got the idea for Trailsnet, one of the early trails I rode was the Virgin River Trail in St. George, Utah. In fact, I rode it so early, I hadn’t even gotten the website up and running nor had I started using GPS to record trail information. So I never did get the Virgin River Trail entered onto Trailsnet, despite the fact that it is an absolutely classic paved trail.

No Motor Vehicles on Virgin River Trail

So on the way back from a recent Trikke Academy in Las Vegas, I got the opportunity to ride the Virgin River Trail again. Only this time, I was on a Trikke instead of a bicycle. Halfway through the Trikke

shadow of trail rider

shadow of Trikke rider on trail

ride, I noticed a sign that said, “No Motorized Vehicles.”  Oops. I swear, I wasn’t actually using the motor on the Trikke Pon-e. (very much)

Classic Southwest Trail

The paved river trail was just like I remember it. It followed the Virgin river as it meandered through St. George, Utah. Along the way, I say jackrabbits and lots of lizards. The only think missing was the beautiful roadrunner that I saw, for the first time, on my earlier Virgin River Trail journey.

trail through golf course in Utah

covered trail on golf course

Trail Through Golf Course

I was pleased to see, on both trips down the Virgin River Trail, that they did not let a golf course stop them from building the trail. Instead of stopping short of the course or trying to go around it, they just built a mesh barrier over the trail and went right through the golf course. I love to see that kind of trail building attitude. Damn the torpedoes and get the trail built, no matter what’s in the way. This was a win/win situation for golfers and trail-users alike.

Permanent link to this article: http://trailsnet.com/2012/10/17/virgin-river-trail-in-utah/

Oct 09

iZip Zuma Electric Bike Review

Currie Technologies

Zuma electric bike

Currie Technologies makes a wide range of electric bikes from affordable models with lead-acid batteries starting just below $1,000 to higher end electric bikes with Lithium-ion batteries that sell for around $4,000. Currie Technologies sells two lines of electric bikes: the iZip electric bike (reviewed here) and the eFlow electric bicycle. Currie also carries a line of more funky electric personal transportation vehicles such as scooters and the e-Zip TriRide on their eZip Electric Powered Vehicles page. From what I’ve seen, no matter which lineup of Currie electrics that you choose, you’ll be getting a quality electric powered vehicle with great backup service.

iZip Hybrid Electric Bicycles

Currie announces their bold vision of being “the U.S. E-Bike Industry Leader” not only in their brochure but also in their style of doing business. Electric personal transportation vehicles are in an exciting time but also a tumultuous time. Although there are many excellent ebike companies out there, it is likely that some of them won’t be around for the long-haul. As soon as the Currie Technologies rep pulled up to my house in the big iZip van, I had a hunch that this was a company that was in it for the long-haul. It was clear that iZip planned to be a big dog in the electric bike kennel.

iZip Style

The first iZip feature that grabbed my eye (after the monster van) was the style of the iZip bikes. It seems like the engineers took the best features of the leading comfort bikes, then tweaked each of those features for practicality and performance. The handlebars were the first modification I noticed. Instead of swooping out into the classic cruiser bullhorn style, the iZip’s handlebars swooped back toward the rider rather than sticking straight out to the sides. The iZip rep explained that this was so the bikes took up less real estate on the trail. It made perfect sense. If you put two of the bullhorn style handlebars side-by-side, they hog the entire path. Not so with the iZip handlebars.

iZip hybrid electric vehicles van

Next I noticed the placement of the battery. Rather than sitting on top of the behind-the-seat rack, the battery nestled inside the rack where it looked like an integral part of the bike frame. In addition to looking good, the battery locked securely into the rack structure for security and safety. The particular model that I got to test-drive was the E3 Zuma. Currie even made the tires look classic with an eye-popping red wheel rim.

Currie Electro-Drive

The folks at Currie are especially proud of their Electro-Drive system. The Electro-Drive allows riders to effortlessly switch between human-powered and electric power without missing a stroke. With the flick of a toggle button, riders can alternate between Pedal Assist (PAS) and Twist-and-Go (TAG) modes. This is especially good for first-time electric bike owners who aren’t used to the subtle but powerful boost provided by the Pedal Assisted power. Since most people have ridden some type of throttle controlled vehicle, they can easily catch on to the Twist and Go system, then gradually convert to the Pedal Assisted mode. Pedal Assisted mode allows the bike to be powered by a combination of human-power and electric power. And since the iZip has 5 boost levels, the harder you pedal, the more power you get from the electric motor. So you control your speed and thrust with your own pedal-power.

iZip Zuma Specs

iZip electric bicyle

The electronic wonks love this stuff, but if you’re more of an “I just want to ride the damned thing” type of a person, your eyes may glaze over at this point. Either way, here are some important facts & figures from the iZip files:

  • Top Speed: 20 mph/ 32 km/h
  • Range: 20 – 30 miles / 32 – 48 km with normal pedaling
  • Battery: Lithium ion 36Vll.4Ah 410Wh, rechargeable cells, Advanced BMS (whatever that means)
  • Price Range: The Zuma model ranges from $2099 to $2199.

Best for use on: Concrete & paved trails or roads, Gravel trails, Level to moderate trails

Best used for: Commuting, Recreation, Exercise, Short excursions, Daily chores

Final Zuma iBike Notes

If you want to use the iZip for commuting or daily chores, they make an iZip Commuter Case that would look and function great on a Zuma.

And for the folks at Currie Technologies, here’s your warning: You’ve got me hooked. I want to try your eZip Scooter, your Tri-Ride, your iZip Ultra, or Metro, or Path, or Trailz or…

Trailsnet readers have a right to know about your awesome lineup of electronic personal transportation vehicles. You guys rock!!

 

Permanent link to this article: http://trailsnet.com/2012/10/09/izip-zuma-electric-bike-review/

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