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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 04-13-08, 05:53 PM   #1
cradduck
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Morning Commute...MUP or Bike Lane

In the morning I ride toward the rising sun and I sometime wonder if cars can even see me despite the flashing lights and various reflectors. The same equation could be applied to my ride home.

Bike Lane:
-Speed limits of 60mph in areas mean cars are going past you rather fast (can be unnerving).
-Visibility may be an issue with drivers.
-Most direct route (generally takes 10-15 minutes less time).
-Least number of obstacles.

MUP:
-No cars to contend with.
-Takes longer due to being less direct.
-Takes longer due to contending with joggers, walkers, and slower cyclists (beach cruisers mainly).
-More relaxing ride overall.

Would you take a bike lane all the way to work or an MUP? I am torn on which route to take...most my commutes have been at night till recently so morning commutes are throwing me for a loop.
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Old 04-13-08, 06:02 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by cradduck View Post
In the morning I ride toward the rising sun and I sometime wonder if cars can even see me despite the flashing lights and various reflectors. The same equation could be applied to my ride home.

Bike Lane:
-Speed limits of 60mph in areas mean cars are going past you rather fast (can be unnerving).
-Visibility may be an issue with drivers.
-Most direct route (generally takes 10-15 minutes less time).
-Least number of obstacles.

MUP:
-No cars to contend with.
-Takes longer due to being less direct.
-Takes longer due to contending with joggers, walkers, and slower cyclists (beach cruisers mainly).
-More relaxing ride overall.

Would you take a bike lane all the way to work or an MUP? I am torn on which route to take...most my commutes have been at night till recently so morning commutes are throwing me for a loop.
I think you answered your own question...
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Old 04-13-08, 06:14 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cradduck View Post
In the morning I ride toward the rising sun and I sometime wonder if cars can even see me despite the flashing lights and various reflectors. The same equation could be applied to my ride home.

Bike Lane:
-Speed limits of 60mph in areas mean cars are going past you rather fast (can be unnerving).
-Visibility may be an issue with drivers.
-Most direct route (generally takes 10-15 minutes less time).
-Least number of obstacles.

MUP:
-No cars to contend with.
-Takes longer due to being less direct.
-Takes longer due to contending with joggers, walkers, and slower cyclists (beach cruisers mainly).
-More relaxing ride overall.

Would you take a bike lane all the way to work or an MUP? I am torn on which route to take...most my commutes have been at night till recently so morning commutes are throwing me for a loop.
Why are you even asking this?
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Old 04-13-08, 07:29 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by cradduck View Post
Bike Lane:
-Speed limits of 60mph in areas mean cars are going past you rather fast (can be unnerving).
A bike lane on a 60 mph highway? That is a surefire winner for Slate's Stupidest Bike Lane contest.
Take the MUP.

Duppie
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Old 04-13-08, 07:58 PM   #5
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stress drop

I know on my own tour of Florida, my stress level dropped when I found a bike lane to ride on. 55 mph going past the mirror without an extra inch to the right of the white line was leaving me a bit up-tight.
Bill
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Old 04-13-08, 08:56 PM   #6
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Does the whole bicycle route include that 60mph traffic? Or are there parts that do, parts that don't?

Can you post the cross streets near your starting and ending points? I'm wondering if there is an alternative street route just because I don't know the particulars..
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Old 04-13-08, 09:33 PM   #7
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I was faced with the same issue. I had to ride starting on residential, to a residential main road, frontage road- and if the MUP wasn't plowed, the shoulder of a divided 4-lane 50mph county rd. That made me consider time versus safety and enjoyment. I went with the latter. My commute now takes me through mostly residential, a 1/8 mile of frontage road, then to a senic MUP. Bunny dodging is much less stressful than worring if a Bruegger's truck is going to be my demise.

Take the MUP. Biking is supposed to improve your health, and the anxiety of taking the dangerous, shorter route will increase you chances of getting hit, or at a minimum give you anxiety driven chest pain!
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Old 04-13-08, 09:41 PM   #8
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I have a similar situation, but only add an extra mile to my commute: 12.1 miles on the road versus 13.2 if I ride half of it on the MUP (one way). It's a no brainer for me. I'd rather be safe and a little slower. Although, it does frustrate me that people out for some leisure time shut their brains off when on the MUP... but still worth it.
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Old 04-13-08, 09:53 PM   #9
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For me it would depend on a ton of things:

How wide and clean is the BL? Is it even a BL at all or a shoulder? (Actually, this one doesn't matter so much, but I know some people tend to call shoulders bike lanes for some reason, and if it's just a shoulder, it certainly doesn't conform to any particular standards and questions of how wide it is become especially important... not that there aren't ridiculous bike lanes). How many crossings on the road route? How many crossings on an MUP? How many clots of peds/dog-walkers/5-mph families on bikes on MUP? Are there any crime issues with the MUP (some are isolated)? Are there dangerous blind curves and such on MUP?
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Old 04-13-08, 10:28 PM   #10
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How long are the routes? I'd take the MUP. If lighting is an issue, you may have to spend a bit for better headlights.
I am fortunate that the MUP I take is actually more direct than the routes I'm allowed to take, Deerfoot trail , the main N-S arterial road in town, is illegal for bicycles, only a masochist with a death wish would ride it anyway.
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Old 04-13-08, 11:07 PM   #11
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Bunny dodging is much less stressful than worrying if a Bruegger's truck is going to be my demise.
A Bruegger's truck? How ignominious.
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Old 04-13-08, 11:19 PM   #12
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A Bruegger's truck? How ignominious.
The few times I've had to hit the shoulder of a four lane divided county road because the MUP was covered in wet concrete-like plow wash snow, I was buzzed twice by a Bruegger's truck on its way to the bagel shop very near my route. I got pissed enough one time I chased the guy down (okay, his stop was only a 1/4 mile away), and chewed him out. I'm sooo happy its nice enough out now that my MUP that goes through a serene wooded area with a pond isn't buried in snow and ice! Look out bunnies.... here I come!
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Old 04-14-08, 12:54 AM   #13
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Does the whole bicycle route include that 60mph traffic? Or are there parts that do, parts that don't?

Can you post the cross streets near your starting and ending points? I'm wondering if there is an alternative street route just because I don't know the particulars..
The route ranges from 45mph to 60mph. I think there is one short section that is marked 35mph, but most people don't slow down for it.
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Old 04-14-08, 01:03 AM   #14
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For me it would depend on a ton of things:

How wide and clean is the BL? Is it even a BL at all or a shoulder? (Actually, this one doesn't matter so much, but I know some people tend to call shoulders bike lanes for some reason, and if it's just a shoulder, it certainly doesn't conform to any particular standards and questions of how wide it is become especially important... not that there aren't ridiculous bike lanes). How many crossings on the road route? How many crossings on an MUP? How many clots of peds/dog-walkers/5-mph families on bikes on MUP? Are there any crime issues with the MUP (some are isolated)? Are there dangerous blind curves and such on MUP?
Bike lane is usually fairly clean aside from the occasional pockets of sand and I think are on average about 3...maybe 3 and half feet wide.

I am not sure what you mean by crossings. By cars, none. By pedestrians going from their car to the beach or from the beach to their car....potentially hundreds. The only serious clot is around the pier/downtown area....1/4 mile south and 1/4 mile north of the pier can be fairly conjested with people.
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Old 04-14-08, 02:14 AM   #15
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I would probably use both routes. Sometimes one, sometimes the other. Depending on conditions and what I wanted to do.

For instance; if the weather is overcast, the rising sun won't be a consideration.

Last edited by CommuterRun; 04-14-08 at 02:46 AM.
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