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  1. #1
    Senior Member GTALuigi's Avatar
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    Need suggestion for North - South routes in Toronto

    So commuting between downtown and Markham is fun and exiting.

    However there are some areas of the city I'd rather avoid if at all possible.

    All suggestions are welcome.

    I can think of an easy one, and kinda "safe" Yonge St.
    the only down side of it, are all the traffic lights, and well ... all its up hills and its glory.

    but on a more serious side, yeah i think I'd rather trade up hill vs. personal safety (not getting mobbed)

    Don Mills up is another good way, but the killer portion between York mills and Sheppard everyday... wow...

    Just for reference going from about Front Street downtown, all the way up town to 16th Ave.
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  2. #2
    Northern Rider nondes's Avatar
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    Beverley (from Queen), St George and Poplar Plains (there's your hill) have bike lanes then Forest Hill (but the elevated streetcar track on St Clair is a nuisance), flip over to Duplex - that will take you most of the way to the 401.

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    I've never found a good way to get under the 401. They're all terrifying streets.

    By contrast, the "bike routes" on side streets are frustratingly slow with their minefield of stop signs.

    I try and find ravines or bike paths (e.g. the beltway trail or the Sunnybrook park/Don ravines) that at least are a bit more relaxing and fast.

  4. #4
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    As much as the 401 Don Mills hill is a nuisance, I find that it's the best way to cross the highway, since there are no interchanges there. Also, you have the 3rd lane during rush hour which is nice.

    But no matter how you put it, that's a tough commute!

  5. #5
    BeaverTerror Yan's Avatar
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    Don Mills is the best road by far. It's wide, relatively traffic free during rush hour, and connects to the Don Valley trails just south of the Science Centre. North of the 401, it's as nice a ride as any parallel road, and better paved than most.

    The 401 hill is tough.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member GTALuigi's Avatar
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    yup, i've been checking many of the parallel roads, and around the area, and i've choosen it as my main venue.

    As the other either have bad roads, single or 2 lane traffic, or goes through some not quite safe areas of the town.

    Don Mills is definitely the best route due its dedicated shared Diamond lane during rush hours.

    However there are still drivers that will hop onto the Diamond lane, and push it through, as if you were not there. Obviously those don't care about getting ticketed, nor care about following any regulations.

    I'm actually happy today, there was a cop car sort of hiding, and car swiftly ran through my side, on the diamond lane, not long after several blocks down the road, the police cruiser stopped that guy.

    best day ever.... except on the trail i found a yellow stripped snake, and if memory serves me right, those things are very poisonous.
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  7. #7
    Member Windrush's Avatar
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    Toronto North South Routes

    The best Toronto north/south route is taking the Don Valley route to Edwards Gardens, continue north on Banbury about two blocks, then take the bike path east whichs winds to Bond Park. Continue north on Scarsdale to York Mills.
    Go one block east over bridge and head east.

    Off of Duncan Mills (a few steps from Don Mills) take the bike path under Hwy 401 which goes to Sheppard and Leslie. The bicycle path continues all the way to Steeles.

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    A street which crosses the 401 but has no ramps into or out of it is Birchmount.

    Many cyclists from downtown take this route on the weekends to get to the hills North/North East of the city. You can take it from St. Claire all the way to 14th in Markham. Less traffic compared to parallel streets such as Kennedy, Warden and Vic Park.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclocommuter View Post
    A street which crosses the 401 but has no ramps into or out of it is Birchmount.

    Many cyclists from downtown take this route on the weekends to get to the hills North/North East of the city. You can take it from St. Claire all the way to 14th in Markham. Less traffic compared to parallel streets such as Kennedy, Warden and Vic Park.
    Great tip - I'm going to try Birchmount next time.

  10. #10
    Senior Member GTALuigi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclocommuter View Post
    A street which crosses the 401 but has no ramps into or out of it is Birchmount.

    Many cyclists from downtown take this route on the weekends to get to the hills North/North East of the city. You can take it from St. Claire all the way to 14th in Markham. Less traffic compared to parallel streets such as Kennedy, Warden and Vic Park.
    good idea i'll try that some times.

    i was using Midland Ave. for the same reason, but south of 401 Midland is not exactly the safest route, it passes through quite a few questionable hoods.

    since then i've been riding mostly on Don Mills after exiting the Don Valley river path by the Science Center
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  11. #11
    Senior Member GTALuigi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Windrush View Post
    The best Toronto north/south route is taking the Don Valley route to Edwards Gardens, continue north on Banbury about two blocks, then take the bike path east whichs winds to Bond Park. Continue north on Scarsdale to York Mills.
    Go one block east over bridge and head east.

    Off of Duncan Mills (a few steps from Don Mills) take the bike path under Hwy 401 which goes to Sheppard and Leslie. The bicycle path continues all the way to Steeles.
    this sounds even better, i'll need to check it out on a weekend to see how it works out, and time it.

    i'm much more in favour of taking path routes, than city streets, to avoid the car & trucks exhaust fumes every day after i reach the office, and wash my face, it's all Grey! and bitter flavour, so much pollution our vehicles throws into the air.
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