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Old 08-05-08, 07:08 PM   #1
EvanWCbus
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How are the bike trails in YOUR city?

Hey all, I'm new. I bike mostly on paved trails and on city streets. I believe that my city (Columbus, Ohio) has a great path system. I can go from the north side to the south side without ever having to get on a city street, or ride on a dirt path. Plus they all follow the olentangy/scioto rivers and have wonderful views of the city, as well as various parts of the Ohio State campus.

How about yours?
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Old 08-05-08, 07:29 PM   #2
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There are none, even in the nearest metro area (Birmingham, Alabama) there aren't any.

Oak Mtn state park has bike lanes along MOST of it's roadway (around 20 miles). That's it.
It sucks and I want to move, just because I've gotten into bicycling.
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Old 08-05-08, 07:32 PM   #3
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I wish mine was like that. Over here in South Florida, only the main highway road has a bike path, and it's about 2 inches wide and cars don't care about you since you're on a bike, and I really don't feel safe at all. I find myself riding on the sidewalk more than anything.

Although there is this nice exercise track that's about five miles long in a big loop by my house, and you don't have to stop on there. It's more for riding, not really getting anywhere. It's nice though.
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Old 08-05-08, 07:55 PM   #4
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My town has the Rivergreenway, that connects several city parks, and runs from the north side to the south thru town. About 10 miles straight-drive distance is about 16 or so on the greenway; it follows the rivers in town. There's also an extension that goes to the next town, and more in the works to connect most of the 'metro' area.

It crosses some streets, passes under some others, and doubles as sidewalk in some spots. All paved.

Dirt trails in town are in the major city parks; there are three that have a trail network of any worth at all.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:45 AM   #5
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I don't count bike lanes. There's one MUP in Houston that I know of. There's absolutely nothing in far SW Harris County.
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Old 08-06-08, 07:51 AM   #6
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Thank God there are none in my city, we worked hard to put a stop to them.

There is a God-forsaken system of bike lanes nearby- 18" wide, filled with glass, gravel, and in between lanes and turn only lanes.
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Old 08-06-08, 08:08 AM   #7
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Omaha has some nice trails - although not many connect with each other. Most of them go North/South with very few going east/west - which makes it tough to get around except for getting into the streets - which I'm getting better at but choose the slower times with cars to do that, otherwise it's sidewalks and move off for the Peds.
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Old 08-06-08, 08:10 AM   #8
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I used to jog along the path next to the olentangy and scioto rivers back in my schoolin' days

the paths around NOVA are up for more exploration I think..... in my short time I've only been able to ride on paths I already know exist, one next to the fairfax county parkway, and one next to west ox rd...... neither are very scenic, but they are good for a workout with moderate hills and whatnot. I know reston has a long intertwining system of paths but they are not geared towards riding very fast. I need to get myself on the W&OD trail, which is very long and goes into washington DC I believe...... ends up right by the potomac I hear, which would be cool
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Old 08-06-08, 08:28 AM   #9
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Full of retractable dog leashes and double wide strollers. Ride on the road.
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Old 08-06-08, 10:38 AM   #10
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550-ish km (about 340 miles) of off-street MUP of varying quality and usefullness outside of recreation. I like our system, it's about the only scenic way to see the city, and parts of it used heavily for commuting, but I spend most of my time on the road.
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Old 08-06-08, 11:02 AM   #11
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We have a nice trail that circles the city. It has quite a few trail heads as well. No intersections with roads - the path either goes over or under the bridge. On my way into work I usually only see 3-5 people so crowding is not a problem and I can pretty much goes as fast as I want. The path is generally in good shape as well.

We also have bike lanes and getting more of them. What is sweet is that the city sweeps them on a regular basis. The one that I use has been swept 3 times since I started using it a couple of months ago.
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Old 08-06-08, 11:59 AM   #12
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I love our trails. We have a few that go nowhere and are filled with ambling peds. This is offset by trails that actually help me get from one place to the other.
Plus, if I did not have trails riding with my son would be quite limited. I have no desire to let my 5 year old ride on busy streets.
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Old 08-06-08, 12:05 PM   #13
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Plano has over 30 miles of trails that are in good condition. You can go from one residential neighborhood
to many others while completely bypassing any of those pesky retail areas that may tempt people to
shop by bike. There are lots of cute little kids who will jump in front of you, as will their parents. There
are a lot of dogs who take their owners on walks too. I dont know how they do it but they get their
owners to walk on the opposite side of the trail so their leashes make a tripline across the trail thats
great for making cyclists crash.

In the dead of winter the trail is awesome since its practically deserted.
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Old 08-06-08, 12:13 PM   #14
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Poor.
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Old 08-06-08, 12:20 PM   #15
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Thank God there are none in my city, we worked hard to put a stop to them.

There is a God-forsaken system of bike lanes nearby- 18" wide, filled with glass, gravel, and in between lanes and turn only lanes.

That's selfish and ignorant (working to stop trails). You might belong in the Darwin Award thread.

Trails can be a great alternative to the roads. You still have the roads but folks become afraid that they will be "forced" onto the trails.

We have a great trail system in our area. I can ride 60 miles without traffic on a wide, smooth surface and it's lightly used.
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Old 08-06-08, 12:49 PM   #16
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I think Toronto's trails are largely scenic. There are wild ravines and parks in the middle of the city with trails through them. They're multi-use, and when I go on them I see (depending on how wild the trails are and in what part of town) joggers, bikers, dog walkers, families, and sometimes evidence of horses. Some of the trails are too rough to be convenient for commuting, because riding on them is just too slow. But they're marked on the city bike map as green dotted lines, and I tend to stay away from those in favour of the solid green (paved/packed MUPs), blue/gold (low-traffic streets) and red (marked bike lanes on streets).
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Old 08-06-08, 01:40 PM   #17
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That's selfish and ignorant (working to stop trails). You might belong in the Darwin Award thread.

. You still have the roads but folks become afraid that they will be "forced" onto the trails.

.
The pot calling the kettle black, I think it is selfish to expect your own little road just for you to use, when there are perfectly good roads already in use.

"afraid that they will be "forced" onto the trails."

No fear, our town already has a must use law on the books, so if we had the trail they were planning then to get across town I'd have to use it. A winding, narrow, little goat path instead of a nice big smooth well maintained 20mph speed limit road. Forget it. Maybe you will live with segregation, but not me.
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Old 08-06-08, 03:59 PM   #18
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Austin has some decent hike and bike trails that can lead you up and down a good way. However they end abruptly if you are going north/south, so you go from dodging retractable leashes and peds, right into two lanes and no shoulder, dodging cars.
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Old 08-06-08, 04:38 PM   #19
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lots here in the washington,dc/no.virginia/maryland area....share them with joggers and dog walkers but i don't find them too bad in the weekday mornings...weekends are impossible, though.
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Old 08-06-08, 04:44 PM   #20
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there are no bike paths. there are no bike lanes. the sewer grates run parallel with the road, too.

if you are interested in going off road, there's 10km or so of single track in the area. it's nothing official, though. it's poorly maintained, too. the only people i know of who put any effort into it are me and my friend ... the two unrecognized trail builders in Markham.
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Old 08-06-08, 05:03 PM   #21
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Thank God there are none in my city, we worked hard to put a stop to them.
That's a real 'dog in the manger' attitude. They are a tool. No worse or better than roads. Some work very well and some don't. DataJunkie's commute would be a nightmare...and probably impossible... without a very good bikeway system. He'd be looking at close to 200 traffic control devices and several detours or very marginal roads for his 30 or so miles. I use them when they fit where I'm going or the road when they don't. If I can ride for miles and miles without having to deal with stop lights, stop signs, yields, etc. I'll most certainly use them.

Use them or don't but who are you to say "I don't like them so no one else is going to use them, by damn!"
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Old 08-06-08, 05:04 PM   #22
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I live 40 miles straight west of Chicago. We are blessed with a beautiful bike trail system in the far western suburbs of Chicago. Miles and miles, and miles, up and down the Fox River, then east to Chicago, and west to beyond Sycamore. Almost all paved, 8 -12' wide. They are clean of litter, but I sure wish they would blow or brush them off regularly to get rid of the flat tires that seem to find my tires. Usually tiny pieces of glass or rock, with an occasional thorn...
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Old 08-06-08, 05:43 PM   #23
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Use them or don't but who are you to say "I don't like them so no one else is going to use them, by damn!"
It's not that easy. Here we have a must use ordinance.
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Old 08-06-08, 06:04 PM   #24
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The trails are fine, there's just not many of them, so you really can't go anywhere to speak of on them.
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Old 08-06-08, 06:06 PM   #25
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Omaha has some nice trails - although not many connect with each other. Most of them go North/South with very few going east/west - which makes it tough to get around except for getting into the streets - which I'm getting better at but choose the slower times with cars to do that, otherwise it's sidewalks and move off for the Peds.
It was easy for me to get around Omaha when I was a kid, because it was still "okay" for me to use sidewalks, vacant lots, the occasional not-so-busy streets & parks (Elmwood Park comes to mind), etc.

Here in DC and NoVA, there are quite a few bike routes, whether they're MUPs, marked bike lanes, or regular streets. Many times, especially during the day, the traffic is congested enough that a slug like me can keep pace reasonably well. The main bridges across the Anacostia and Potomac rivers have sidewalks on them (although the 11th St Bridge's sidewalk is hardly wide enough for two pedestrians to pass each other, and only an old guardrail separates people from traffic).

It seems like newly resurfaced streets, at least in some areas, are getting bike lanes painted onto them. I understand the risks that they present, but it's nice to see the acknowledgement of the city's increasing cycling population. It doesn't hurt that Mayor Fenty is a cyclist himself, either.
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