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Old 09-10-11, 01:29 PM   #1
xizangstan
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What's your favorite most-unusual place to ride your bike?

I like taking my trusty favorite bike out on those memorable rides. You know, places that not everyone expects a bicycle to be ridden -

- At an airport, from hangars to terminals, to tarmac, even down a major taxiway or main runway. As an aircraft broker, pilot and airport tenant, there have been legal ways available. Picking a day of an airshow makes it easy as well.
- Around various state capitol buildings. The governor's and state legislators' parking and sidewalk areas are special. Best done on a Sunday.
- Railroad depots. Large and small, usually very old buildings and out along the trackside boarding areas.
- Big city and small town downtown business streets. The larger cities sometimes have pedestrian malls. Also best done on Sundays, or as legal.
- Major college and university campuses. Best done on summer days when school's out. See how many different campuses you can visit.
- Harbor, port and marina piers and docks. There are times and places that it's okay. My being in the business helped, too.
- Across frozen lakes and rivers. Obviously, caution and knowledge of the thickness of the ice are mandatory. But if the locals are ice fishing and driving their cars out on it, it's probably pretty safe - though slippery!
- Baseball and sports stadiums and race tracks. Days off provide windows of opportunity to visit and sightsee.
- Cemeteries. This may sound creepy, but I enjoy riding the tranquil streets in cemeteries. Maybe dismounting and walking some of the rows of graves and reading some of the headstones is not only fun, but gives some perspective on life.

So that's about it for unusual places I like to visit in different states. My old GT Xizang has been to them all and it's a great way of sightseeing from a bike saddle.

How about you? Where have you been on your special bikes?
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Old 09-10-11, 01:42 PM   #2
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I like riding around behind strip malls. You know, the areas where the dumpsters are and the trucks unload into the store. There's usually something interesting to see, either in the form of employees on smoke breaks who wave or yell encouragement to graffiti and things like that. They're usually pretty interconnected as well, I can ride for quite a few miles without hitting any main roads by staying behind the strip malls.
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Old 09-10-11, 09:20 PM   #3
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One of my regular rides, way back when, included cutting through a cemetery. Many of the gravestones had photos of the deceased on them. On dark dreary days it was kinda creepy. But it was quiet and no traffic, and it bypassed a nasty intersection.
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Old 09-10-11, 09:33 PM   #4
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Six level parking garage on Sundays. No cars. Twice around each level going up
and coming down is just over five miles.
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Old 09-10-11, 10:02 PM   #5
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Every-so-often I like to ride to the cemetary where my Dad rests...
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Old 09-11-11, 09:00 AM   #6
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Every-so-often I like to ride to the cemetary where my Dad rests...
My respects to your Dad. Tell him hello next time you're there. Yeah, I think it's really good for us to visit cemeteries, as it keeps us connected to the Grand Scheme of things and where we fit. Life is incredibly short... and the rest is up to God.
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Old 09-11-11, 12:04 PM   #7
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I love riding on roads that are designated #-#-#-# (BLM and USFS roads designated by grid). Some are paved, most are not. I especially like the ones that connect pioneer cemeteries. There are several loops of approximately 200 km from my house that allow me to visit some of these. Most consist of one or a few families who resided in the area from the mid-1800s until the 1950s.
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Old 09-11-11, 12:20 PM   #8
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When my kids played sports, my son lacrosse, and my daughter softball. In both places most parents played the 'my SUV is bigger\newer than yours' game. I would roll up to the game on my bike, sometimes wearing tights. I also lost the 'my belly is bigger than yours' game, too.
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Old 09-11-11, 12:51 PM   #9
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Old Croton Aqueduct Trail. The original aqueduct water supply for New York City in the late 1880's. A cut and cover from Croton, NY to NYC. Now a state park.

Just a dirt path really, but flat so ridable. It's open to bikes but most folks seem to hike it. It's a great ride as well as it's easy to make a loop with the North and South County Rail Trails.
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Old 09-11-11, 06:06 PM   #10
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I'm fortunate that I live very close to lots of back roads, covered bridges and beautiful routes and trails. One of my favorite rides takes me past a glider port that make a great spot for a break to spread out on the grass and watch.
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Old 09-12-11, 05:56 AM   #11
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A few years ago I cycled around the Formula 1 race track in Montreal. Very scenic on an island in the St. Lawrence river. No cars on it at the time.
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Old 09-12-11, 06:28 AM   #12
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Once the Clingman's Dome Road (GSMNP) closes in Dec. I like to ride up the 7 miles to the parking lot then up the steep paved trail to the tower.



I also enjoyed riding the TT on the Lowes Motor Speedway near Charlotte. I should do that again but bring a TT bike this time.

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Old 09-12-11, 07:49 AM   #13
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I can tell I'm going to have to start taking 'souvenir' photos of my bike at the more unique places, and post them here.
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Old 09-12-11, 11:54 AM   #14
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I practice crit racing turns and accelerations in a local cemetery that is out in a rural area. Very seldom is someone else there (alive) other than the occasional walker. I've invited some of my racing buddies to come out for some long interval practice and skill development. http://www.xtranormal.com/watch/6332...-invite?page=2
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Old 09-12-11, 01:36 PM   #15
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Change the title of this thread from "What's your favorite most-unusual place to ride your bike?" to "What's your favorite-most unusual place to make whoopee?" and it sounds like a question from the old Newlewed Game! I can still hear Bob Eubanks asking that question!

Anyway, enough of my sad TV viewing habits...

Cemetaries, (for bike riding people, not whoopee!)We have alot of them around my area. It seems that the area of Queens NY that I live in was at one time farmland, if you can believe it, so from the 1800's into the early 1900's, this is where all the Manhattianites that died came to rest. The cemetaries are very big and there are alot of famous, very rich people buried in them. Great for cycling and there are some extremely interesting graves and mausoleums here. It's really like a tour....
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Old 09-12-11, 01:48 PM   #16
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The PLACE wasn't unusual, but the use of the bike was. We took a float trip in our kayaks yesterday to do some fishing and just goofing around. I took the mountain bike and put it near our takeout point and rode it back to the truck to come back and get the kayaks. Maybe a 3-mile ride. Worked out perfectly. Sometimes I take the dirt bike to do the same but only when I know I can hide it or have it at some place I can have someone watch it. A mountain bike I can just put in the woods or deep brush or deep weeds and not worry about it but the ride back can be a pain and too time-consuming.
Kayaks on a trailer with another mode of transportation= fun time.

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Old 09-12-11, 02:33 PM   #17
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This is a pic of the South Downs that are our local hills. Top of the pic and you can see how the Downs suddenly drops down into the valley. Not a ridable track- in fact it is open fields all the way down. I have always had a hankering to do that down hill. And about 5 years ago we found a path that got us to the top of that ridge- We were on the Tandem that is extremely stable at speed and it has wheels that are indestructable and brakes that will stop it on a sixpence.

So there we were- already to go on a bike that would do it and we started. Got about 5 yards and we chickened out. Running right the way across the face of the ridge and about every 10 yards was a 2ft wide sheep track. It would have been like riding down an escalator with a drop off every time we hit the sheep tracks. The Tandem does not do drop offs due to the long bottom bar .
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Old 09-12-11, 04:12 PM   #18
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I was able to sneak into Boston's "big dig" tunnel while it was under construction.
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Old 09-13-11, 06:27 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by BikeWNC View Post
Once the Clingman's Dome Road (GSMNP) closes in Dec. I like to ride up the 7 miles to the parking lot then up the steep paved trail to the tower.



I also enjoyed riding the TT on the Lowes Motor Speedway near Charlotte. I should do that again but bring a TT bike this time.


Man, you are forever my role model. I was at Clingman's last week and that trail to the overlook is way, way steep. I noticed that half of the tourists that started that walk were still sitting on benches at the halfway point as I was on my way down. What are you using for a low gear to get up there?

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Old 09-13-11, 07:09 AM   #20
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Last winter the rains were enough that the swamps around one of my favorite bike paths flooded the path, and for a short while I was literally riding between the fish. When I was a student at UCSB, it was fun to take my 10 speed out on the beach and ride along the hard packed sand.
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Old 09-13-11, 07:30 AM   #21
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I haven't done it, but some of my friends have been riding the drainage tunnels under the city. It's been so dry there is little risk of a sudden rush of water. Urban spelunking, on bicycles.

For me, I'm just content to explore new neighborhoods and try to find the "wormholes" through the city. By wormholes, I mean where a bike can go that a car can't. One of my primary routes cuts through a park; to try to reproduce the route in a car would be a mile or two longer (the park joins two totally separate neighborhoods). There are also several tunnels under train tracks that are too narrow for a car but allow bikes and pedestrians to go through. Very handy when my normal spot to cross the tracks is blocked by an actual train.

Also interesting to me is seeing how the area is put together, geographically. Fort Worth is pretty flat, but there are some ridges that run across the city, roughly parallel to the river... and then there's the river itself. And even though the train tracks are man-made, they have also assume an aspect of geography.

One thing that's surprised me is that neighborhoods that I thought were just badass are really not that bad. I know there are some bad sections of Fort Worth, but a lot of areas that I considered "dangerous" when I simply drove by the edges of them in my car, are simply immigrant/working class neighborhoods where most of the people are actually pretty friendly.
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Old 09-13-11, 09:14 AM   #22
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I live too far from the city to ride in many of the neat places there. I really enjoy riding my wilderness part MUP. I usually go after work when there's probably no more than 5 people on it. It's like riding on an endless country road, except there are no cars to run you over. The wildlife is really neat and sometimes they stay by the road as you pass by them rather than run away from you.
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Old 09-13-11, 11:11 AM   #23
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I don't get to do it often, but one of my favorite places to tear around on a bike for the sheer fun of it is on a big sandy ocean beach. My old rigid Stumpy is perfect for that. Bunnyhopping logs, splashing along at the surf's edge or even into it, spray going everywhere, it's a delight. I only do it on uncrowded beaches, and where it's legal. Hose the bike down afterward, apply fresh lube, and look forward to the next time.
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Old 09-13-11, 11:18 AM   #24
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Denali Park. Just added a thread about my ride yesterday. Caribou, Grizzly, Sheep, and amazing colors. 35mi of climbing and it just doesn't get any better than that for me.
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Old 09-13-11, 11:30 AM   #25
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Six level parking garage on Sundays. No cars. Twice around each level going up
and coming down is just over five miles.
+1

I used to do this when I lived in Dallas and wanted to train on "hills" (there aren't many in Dallas). Added benefit -- it was shady and cool inside. I would ride downtown, and hit 3 or 4 different garages in a row. It took me a while to get comfortable with the fact that I wasn't going to hit my head on the ceiling or the "height limit" signs. I always went very slow until I checked out each garage's layout.
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