Texas - Where to ride in Houston
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07-16-07, 09:44 AM
I'll be visiting in Houston from Tuesday till Friday this week, staying in a hotel on W Loop 610. I was wondering where I could do a 15-25 mile ride either in the mornings or after my all day meetings on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday?
Is Memorial Park a fair option? Should I bring a road bike, touring bike, mountain bike, or mountain bike with slicks? I'm driving in, so transportation is not a problem.
Just looking around, it looks like riding on the Memorial paths, and bringing a mountain bike with slicks, or at least something less than knobbies, affords me the easiest options?
Recommendations appreciated !
07-16-07, 10:33 AM
Looking for paths or streets?
Hershey park is a path that connects BW8 on the west side all the way out past HWY6 (further west).
To get to BW8 try Briar Forest (bike lane if I remember correctly, then you'd have to cut down either the sidewalk of Beltway 8 to reach the start of Hershey trail, or I'll have to look up a street that has a bike lane or would be easy enough to cut North to intersect with the hershey trail.
The trail basically runs along side the buffalo bayou, and once past HWY 6 it fallows a damn to Barker Cypress rd, and you can ride a couple hundred feet on a 2lane blacktop road to reach the rest of the trail which goes through the resorvoir.... but if it's been raining, this section WILL be underwater... brave at your own risk :D... I have seen people ride past the hubs through it.
I've ridden Richmond from Voss further west till it intersects Westheimer way out on the westside.... no real great scenery, but gets the mileage in.
A combination of the these two could make for a loop. I've never ridden any of the Memorial paths though. The Hershey, richmond, routes are fairly regular for me, and I do them on a roadbike with 700/23c... no mountain required. If you prefer mountain bike type trails, check out "the ant hills", I think anthills.com or theanthills.com, they are located along Hershey trails.
07-16-07, 11:16 AM
Hey, thanks for the adivse. Out here in W.Tx we are so used to no traffic that I guess I'd prefer the bike paths, but don't mind roads with shoulders. I don't care too much about the scenery, just want to be able to get some miles and time on the bike.
07-16-07, 02:35 PM
Second what chevy says regarding Hershey park. It also joins up with George Bush park for a pretty nice route, and there's really no need to go onto the streets at all, if you don't mind turning back and riding back the same way you came. The Memorial Park routes are quite good, too, and they're closer to where you're staying. Depending on exactly where you are, you might want to drive into the park with your bike on a rack, park and go from there. Auto traffic in the 610-Memorial area can be pretty hairy around 6:00 pm.
Given your W. Loop location, you should focus on Memorial Park. Given the everyday rain showers the mountain bike trails may be too wet in the Park. But, about 1/2 mile east of the West Loop on Memorial Drive you will find the picnic loop on the south side of Memorial Drive. The loop is 1.1 miles and is very popular with road bike riders. Of course you can also use your mountain bike.
The picnic loop is closed to traffic in the evening and it is about as wide as a normal street.
I just rode 20 miles there this evening and there were probably 50 riders or so on the loop. As an added advantage the loop is partially shaded by trees.
07-21-07, 06:42 PM
.... but if it's been raining, this section WILL be underwater... brave at your own risk :D... I have seen people ride past the hubs through it.
Hey, thanks for all the advise. I changed tires on the mountain bike to 1.95 Specialized Hemispheres before I left home, and actually wished for the 1.5 slicks. On Wednesday I went to Hershey Park and did 15 miles from the parking area back to the east and then looped back. On Thursday I headed west but turned back on Barker Cypress at the H7 ranch area as the road went under water. Even saw one small gator, maybe 2 foot long, on the pavement near the water. I turned back, then looped back to the Beltway and then to the parking area. All in all, 27 miles on day 2, so it was a good ride. Very cool and better riding weather than what I have had up in North Texas.
My only complaint would be the Lance wannabe's that ride two abreast on road bikes like they are on a highway. I can sort of see that type of riding out around the reservoir, but on the twisting and turning trail with pedestrians they are an accident waiting to happen. Some of them were rude jerks and seem to care less about walkers and other riders. I watched one of them hit a lady who was approaching them. Those guys need to learn to ride on the road if they think they are such hot roadies and get off the hike-bike paths.
I had no problem with the walkers. I mounted my bell on the back and would ring it on approaching a pedestrians. I didn't hear another bell on any other bikes and wondered why. All the walkers recognized it.
07-21-07, 07:33 PM
Yeah, there are some inconsiderate people on that path. I ride 2 abreast alot, but generally switch up to single upon sight of anyone or the blind curves. I like that path for cruising, but use the street when riding a serious pace. Yeah, I believe the gator part... that's a large park with lots of free room, and lots of water... pretty much a swamp in parts of it. I ride the section between hwy 6 and barker cypress on my way home from work at night and see plenty of hogs and deer.
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