U.S. 93 outside of Whitefish. Wikimedia Commons image

Celebrating a transportation win for cyclists in Montana!

Feb 3, 2023

We’re proud to announce a win for cyclists on one of Montana’s scenic thoroughfares that links up popular Adventure Cycling routes.

The five-mile section of US 93 in Montana immediately west of Whitefish has been an area of concern to Adventure Cycling Association. The road conditions create unsafe circumstances for cyclists but there is no reroute available. Adventure Cycling’s advocacy team urged the Montana Department of Transportation to address safety issues with this road section and was assured that in the coming years, there will be investment and improvements for the road. 

This section of highway is used by two of Adventure Cycling’s routes, the Northern Tier and Great Parks North. It’s also used by cyclists on the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route to access the Whitefish Bike Retreat, a very popular destination for traveling cyclists. 

Graphic depicting overview map of U.S. 93 section slated for improvement.
Illustration by Daniel Mrgan

We’ve received numerous reports over several years from riders that they feel unsafe due to crumbling shoulders and heavy traffic moving at high speeds. 

In January 2023, we sent a formal letter of concern to MDT, requesting that the section of US 93 be prioritized for immediate improvements that would increase cyclist’s safety.

The Montana Department of Transportation promises us that this section of the road will be prioritized: "MDT has a reconstruction project in development for the area of concern, tentatively schedule for construction in 2025. The new roadway will have 8’ shoulders and a separated shared-use path. These will connect to the existing previously constructed paved shoulders and path heading east into Whitefish."

It will still take time and energy from Adventure Cycling Association to make sure that the project is completed, and that the needs of bicyclists remain a priority for the MDT. 

Adventure Cycling is the only national nonprofit advocating for cyclists' needs on rural roads and highways. 

"We are committed to holding transportation authorities accountable to providing safer infrastructure for cyclists,” says Ren Parker, Adventure Cycling Association Safety Manager. 

Shoulder improvements on another section of U.S. 93 in Montana.
Melinda Barnes

Our mission is to inspire, empower, and connect people to travel by bicycle. Our advocacy work focuses on four key aspects of bicycle travel: more miles of connected routes, bike accessible transportation, safer conditions, and bike-friendly services. Thank you to members and donors who make this possible!

Read the full letter our safety manager issued to MDT here.