A Calgary writer and blogger’s popular bike map detailing must-see places along the city’s inner-city cycle track is once again available for summer, updated with new stops in additional neighbourhoods.
Mike Morrison created Calgary by Bike in 2015, inspired by the launch of the new Calgary bike network and his own experiences travelling to other cities and exploring them on two wheels. Feeling his city lacked a map for tourists on bicycles, Morrison decided to create his own.
“It’s selfish in a way, as it’s just my favourite stores and favourite things,” Morrison says of his map. Last year’s guide highlighted 60 spots easily accessible by bike in Calgary’s flat core, from coffee shops to public art to places for family fun.
The colourful, pocket-sized $5 map has grown larger for 2016, in order to fit in more than 100 of Morrison’s favourite spots. The new version of the map became available on June 3 and can be purchased at calgarybybike.ca.
“Last year was all about the bike tracks, and this one is more about exploring urban Calgary by bike,” Morrison says. “There are more neighbourhoods on the map, so I’ve added a panel. But it still folds up to be the same size.”
Morrison designed the map with tourists in mind, but it proved popular among locals, too. He initially hoped to sell 500 copies; by Christmastime, he’d sold 3,500 (Morrison says the guides were popular stocking stuffers).
While selling the last year’s map at various summer markets, Morrison spoke to many novice cyclists adopting two wheels because they felt safe using Calgary’s new bicycle infrastructure. “Calgary is a very bike-friendly city now,” he says. “And I think cycling in this city will just keep getting bigger and better.”
BEST CALGARY BY BIKE BETS
Mike Morrison shares his top five local picks from the Calgary by Bike map’s 2016 edition.
Alforno Bakery & Cafe, 222 7 Street SW
They have a beautiful patio and bike pumps and it’s right on the cycle track.
Home & Away, 1331 17 Avenue SW
They’re adding a bike repair area, so you can have a drink while your bike is fixed, or you can adjust it yourself. I just love what they’re doing.
Shelf Life Books, 1302 4 Street SW, and Central Memorial Park
I don’t think that area gets its due. It’s a beautiful park with great views, and Shelf Life Books is nearby. They’re such a supportive local book store.
St. Patrick’s Island
I take a lot of photos at that park. It offers great city views and is very beautiful.
The Livery Shop, 1130 10 Avenue SE
This shop carries products from lots of different local artists, all in one building, and they’re adding bicycle rentals this year.
WE’VE GOT YOU COVERED
With AMA Bike Assist you can use any of your annual service calls to get help if your bicycle breaks down while you’re riding. We’ll deliver air for flats, adjust chains and tighten loose handlebars. If we can’t fix it on the spot, we’ll transport your bike back home or to a repair shop.