Inspired Family Travel: A Bicycle Trip Across the US

Last Updated on December 24, 2012 by Jody Halsted

I love bicycling.  My girls were strapped into a Burley bike trailer at the age of 6 months and have been trailing along behind me ever since.  The longest ride we do, as a family, is almost 20 miles, round trip.  It’s a long way for girls ages 6 & 4, but they do a great job with no whining.

I began looking at our little cycling adventures quite a bit differently after reading Twenty Miles Per Cookie: 9000 Miles of Kid-Powered Adventures by Nancy Sathre-Vogel.  Known around the internet as “Family on Bikes“, Nancy and her family- husband John and twins Daryl and Davy- are the definitive source for information about Bicycle Touring with Children.

Twenty Miles Per Cookie shares the 9300 mile, year-long bicycle adventure the Vogel’s undertook- across the US and parts of Mexico.  It’s a trip few families would ever consider and even fewer would actually undertake.  Reading Nancy’s words of the journey, from the struggles of weather and heat, bicycle breakdowns, Mexican smugglers and the kindness of ‘Road Angels’, I felt like I was along for the ride.  I cried with joy when Gatorade was left, hidden in cairns, along a hot stretch of desert road by strangers in a beat up pickup.  I felt Nancy’s frustrations when days brought her family to near-breaking points.  I was terrified for them when they crossed the border into New Mexico.

This is a family adventure story that will leave you inspired to experience more with your family- even if it takes place locally.  I think it would be a great book for a family to experience together (there is a bit of harsh language, so maybe do a bit of editing if you’re reading aloud).  Twenty Miles per Cookie will provoke conversations with your family and maybe even have you planning your own biking adventure!  I know it has me considering tandem bicycles when my girls are just a bit older!

Want to be even more in awe of this cycling family?  Visit their website and follow their 3 year journey along the PanAmerican Highway- 17,300 miles from Alaska to Argentina.

Disclosure: I received a pdf copy of this book for review. 



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