There are helpful websites and smartphone apps that provide fantastic resources for planning a bike ride on Iowa’s bike trails. But, sometimes a book is the best companion. Here are two of my favorites which I’ve turned to countless times over the years:
Iowa’s Bicycle Trails by Ray Hoven
Published by American Bike Trails, this book is proves to be an handy encyclopedia of Iowa’s trails and a useful jumping off point for finding a bike trail you haven’t yet explored.
With over 120 trails featured there are lots of bike rides to choose from! Trails are listed in alphabetical order and include details such as:
- Brief trail overview
- Effort level
- Map of the area
- Nearby attractions
Towards the back of the book you’ll find 4 bike rides on Iowa county roads. A map of the route is provided along with a mileage chart and locations for services along the ride.
This book is a good tool for deciding where to go in Iowa for a bike riding adventure.
Biking Iowa by Bob Morgan
I’d like to meet Bob and hear first hand, his stories about cycling around Iowa. Thankfully he has shared his experiences via his website Bicycling Beyond Boundaries and his book Biking Iowa.
With wonderful descriptions of 50 bike rides this valuable resource contains maps and and interesting facts of Iowa history. I especially enjoyed reading about his tailwind ride and borrowed his strategy this year on one of Iowa’s windy days.
I keep my copy close-by and grab it often for inspiration on where to ride. I also find myself taking it from the shelf on days when I'm unable to hit the trail and need a biking fix.
If you’re serious about exploring Iowa’s trails, these books need to be on your bookshelf.