My local REI (Boston) is offering a course in bike commuting and a portion of the course will be devoted to finding a safe route to ride.
It set me to thinking. Certainly one of the first skills I developed as a bike rider was map reading and learning how to choose a bike route that got me safely to my destination. Here in Boston we now have an excellent series of bike maps made by Rubel. These easy to read maps provide cyclists with keys to preferred routes.
So to help those readers who might be new to this skill I thought it would be a worthwhile thread to offer some pointers on how to do this.
Perhaps being specific to certain categories might help:
b) Point A to B travel both local and more long distance
c) utility/messenging etc...
a) Fun rides.
b) Training routes- time trials, training loops, small group of riders training
c) Touring- day and long distance.
d) group and club rides
e) Foreign travel
What are your criteria? How do you define a safe route? And how do you choose one? What resources do you use?
Keep in mind that a safe route not only involves how we interact with automobiles but other factors like road conditions, flooding, fog areas, high wind, steep descents or climbing.