Hi folks, I have lurked here many times and got some great info, leading to the purchase of a Specialized Sirrus Comp and a Chariot trailer for my kid. So, now I have a question:
I tried bike commuting for the first time last week. I'm in San Jose, CA. Live in Cambrian, work on North 1st and Montague. In the AM, rode my bike (MTB) to the Ohlone light rail station and took that to work. (to avoid getting sweaty, call me lame...). But the interesting part:
Going home, I took this route:
The path along the Guadelupe from River Oaks down to Trimble. Then detour (path construction) along Trimble, down First, over on Brokaw/Airport Pkwy, then down the path to downtown. Another small detour south of 280, then path, Curtner, Leigh. Home.
Overall it's fun. But the path is still under construction so it's got lots of annoying little detours and dead ends. I'm riding along, suddenly the path stops and I have to backtrack a bit. I took the MTB because the route north of the airport is gravel.
Took me 1:40 for 16 miles, partially due to the detours, partially due to the inefficiency of MTB, partially due to my lack of conditioning.
I'll do it again on Fridays, but probably not M-th due to the extra time. Driving is 30 minutes, bike/Light rail was 1:10, bike will get better with condition but probably won't fall less than 1hr. Leave work at 7-7:30, get home at 8-9, not so fun.
So now my question. I would like to try an all-road route. I was thinking of Zanker down to 10th st, then Taylor west to the path (paved at that point), then down to Curtner and Leigh. This seems like the best combination of directness and avoiding too-busy roads. Plus I prefer the bike lane; I am aware of the danger of right-hooks and watch for that, but I'm not quite with the plan of putting myself in the path of 45 mph 4x4s driven by cell phone users.
Any other options? San Tomas/Montague is pretty direct but the 101 overpass is ugly, and the entrance/exit ramps at intersections get pretty busy during the commute. Taking Lafeyette down through the Santa Clara University area might work too.
thanks! this is a great forum, lots of useful info.