Next to a leisurely walk, I enjoy a spin on my tandem bicycle. It is splendid to feel the wind blowing in my face and the springy motion of my iron steed. The rapid rush through the air gives me a delicious sense of strength and buoyancy, and the exercise makes my pulse dance and my heart sing.
I have always struggled to achieve excellence. One thing that cycling has taught me is that if you can achieve something without a struggle it's not going to be satisfying.
The cyclist creates everything from almost nothing, becoming the most energy-efficient of all... animals and machines and, as such, has a [genuine] ability to challenge the entire value system of a society.... The bicycle may be too cheap, too available, too healthy, too independent and too equitable for its own good. In an age of excess, it is minimal and has the subversive potential to make people happy in an economy fuelled by consumer discontent.
As a kid I had a dream–I wanted to own my own bicycle. When I got the bike I must have been the happiest boy in Liverpool, maybe the world. I lived for that bike.
Bicycle facility planning is commonly thought of as the effort undertaken to develop a separate bikeway system composed completely of bicycle paths and lanes all interconnected and spaced closely enough to satisfy all the travel needs of bicyclists. In fact, such systems can be unnecessarily expensive and do not provide for the vast majority of bicycle travel. Existing highways, often with relatively inexpensive improvements, must serve as the base system to provide for the travel needs of bicyclists. Bicycle paths and lanes can augment this existing system in scenic corridors or places where access is limited. Thus, bicycle transportation planning is more than planning for bikeways and is an effort that should consider many alternatives to provide for safe and efficient bicycle travel.
—AASHTO, Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities, 1991
The forgotten outdoorsmen of today are those who like to walk, hike, ride horseback, or bicycle. For them we must have trails as well as highways… I am requesting therefore, that the Secretary of the Interior work with his colleagues in the federal government and with state and local leaders and recommend to me a cooperative program to encourage a national system of trails, building up the more than [one] hundred thousand miles of trails in our National Forests and Parks... In the backcountry we need to copy the great Appalachian Trail in all parts of our country.
—Lyndon Baines Johnson, 36th President of the United States