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Close the Gaps

ctg main“Close the Gaps” is the new rallying cry among Central Florida trail supporters. Last summer theFlorida Greenways and Trails Foundation toured the middle of the state touting the potential for a 250-mile Heart of Florida Loop, with spurs connecting to the Gulf of Mexico in Pinellas County and to the Atlantic in Brevard County. Volusia, Brevard, Flagler, Putnam and St. Johns Counties are also working to complete the 300-mile River-to-Sea Loop.

Locally, cities and counties in the Orlando metro area are working to close gaps as well.  Area trail planning started by finding opportunities for useful corridors, such as the West Orange and Cady Way. Today we have 128 miles of existing trails that serve as the basis for a metro area-wide network. The MetroPlan Orlando Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Committee has adopted a regionally significant trails network to pull them all into a single coherent vision.  Another 24 miles of that network will be built over the next five years, and an additional 27 miles are lined up for when more funding becomes available.

Between now and when those future trail segments are completed, Commute Orlando is going to help you Close the Gaps on your own, by showing you good routes and strategies for making the connections along the existing road system.  This will be a series; focusing on a single connection for each installment.

River-to-Sea: It’s Your Turn

Posted by on Aug 10, 2014 in Close the Gaps, General | 1 comment

Some ideas and advice for those who might want to take advantage of both the St. Johns River-to-Sea Loop and SunRail.

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River-to-Sea Tour Epilogues

Posted by on Aug 10, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations, General | Comments Off on River-to-Sea Tour Epilogues

You’ve had eight days of me describing this ride, now I’m handing over this tour blog to my riding partners, giving them an opportunity to share their perspectives.

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Day Eight: The End, and Beginnings

Posted by on Aug 8, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations, General | Comments Off on Day Eight: The End, and Beginnings

Let’s wrap this thing up.

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Day Seven: Mad Dogs and Englishmen…

Posted by on Aug 8, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations, General | Comments Off on Day Seven: Mad Dogs and Englishmen…

I hear it’s been sort-of hot. Out on the road you just listen to what your body tells you, not the thermometer or the internet.

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Day Six: From Famous Florida to Secret Florida

Posted by on Aug 6, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations, General | Comments Off on Day Six: From Famous Florida to Secret Florida

Ten miles west of St. Augustine we turned onto another section of trail, the Palatka-to-St. Augustine Trail.

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Day Four: Old Friends and an Old Town

Posted by on Aug 5, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations | Comments Off on Day Four: Old Friends and an Old Town

As we pulled up to A1A from a side street, we saw a few people hanging out on one of the beach boardwalks across the highway. Almost immediately one of them came running at us, arms waving…

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Day Three: Going Rogue

Posted by on Aug 4, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations, General | Comments Off on Day Three: Going Rogue

In theory, when bicycle touring in hot climates, one would get an early start in order to minimize one’s time riding during the hottest hours of the day. It hasn’t exactly been working out that way.

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Day Two: No Rest for the Weary

Posted by on Aug 4, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations, General | Comments Off on Day Two: No Rest for the Weary

As we prepared for bed Friday night/Saturday morning we had to choose: ride sleep deprived and hot, or ride rested and hotter.

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Day One: Reprise

Posted by on Aug 2, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations | 2 comments

Day One: Reprise

It wasn’t until we spent some time in Titusville that I could see the potential for what the coming trail network can spur. Titusville is a natural jumping-off point for a number of other nature-based opportunities, as well as for aerospace-related tourism. Those who take the trails to Titusville will have more to do than just biking.

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Day One: A Little Bit of Everything

Posted by on Aug 1, 2014 in Close the Gaps, Featured Destinations | 2 comments

Day One: A Little Bit of Everything

We knew Day One would likely be the toughest; four out of shape riders riding over 50 miles in the midsummer Florida heat. Adding in the intermodal SunRail factor, and the celebratory send-off at DeBary Station required a 5:AM alarm setting and a 6:AM role out.

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