Congress Passes Legislation to Create Public Map for Outside Recreation Entry – Biking West


By Charles Pekow — In a few years you will be able to see exactly where in the state you can have fun with a bike. Congress passed the Modernizing Access to our Public Land (MAPLand) Act, requiring federal agencies to create a public digital map for access to outdoor recreational activities. The law applies to land overseen by the Bureau of Reclamation, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, and Army Corps of Engineers.

However, it may take a while to put it together; The law gives agencies 2.5 years to create a joint plan and four years to publish the map.

The database needs to include which paths and roads are open to motorized and non-motorized bicycles and other modes of transport so you can see who else you might encounter. It will also note the status of trails that are seasonally closed.


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Charles Pekow is an award-winning Washington correspondent who has written about cycling for years in publications such as the Washington Post, Bicycle Times, Dirt Rag, SPOKES, etc., and Cycling West/Cycling Utah. He also writes regularly about environmental issues and beer, among other things. Weather permitting, you can find him astride a bicycle in a park most weekends and some summer evenings. He is also a founding member of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.