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Old 09-07-09, 02:45 PM   #1
northshorebiker
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Good road riding in Boulder?

Hi all,
I'm new to the area(im a sophomore at CU) and just picked up a trek 2.3. It will be here tomorow
Anyways, I'm looking for some good rides around the area, I plan on giving flagstaff a try soon. Whats a good ~20 mile beginneresque ride? I haven't ridden much before but the little biking I did I knew I loved. Can't wait to put some miles on!
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Old 09-07-09, 10:12 PM   #2
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You can easily rack up 20 miles on the bike paths through town but I'd start out heading north out of town on 36 (Broadway) to Lyons or maybe out to Longmont on the diagonal. There are lots of bike-friendly connecting roads out to the NE of Boulder. Just follow someone else since there are always lots of riders out this way. Take 9th, 13th or Folsom to the north side of town to bypass Broadway through downtown.

If you want some climbing, try heading up Lee Hill road or Lefthand Canyon. Flagstaff gets pretty steep after the turn-off to the picnic area but it is a classic ride. Have fun and be careful out there. Don't forget a pump, spare tube, water, etc.
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Old 09-07-09, 11:17 PM   #3
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You can easily rack up 20 miles on the bike paths through town but I'd start out heading north out of town on 36 (Broadway) to Lyons or maybe out to Longmont on the diagonal. There are lots of bike-friendly connecting roads out to the NE of Boulder. Just follow someone else since there are always lots of riders out this way. Take 9th, 13th or Folsom to the north side of town to bypass Broadway through downtown.

If you want some climbing, try heading up Lee Hill road or Lefthand Canyon. Flagstaff gets pretty steep after the turn-off to the picnic area but it is a classic ride. Have fun and be careful out there. Don't forget a pump, spare tube, water, etc.
Already way ahead of you. Got tubes, pump, 2 water bottles/cages, need to get a wireless computer, got pedals, shoes, etc etc.

I'll take your advice as soon as I get it, maybe one day you can show me some of your favorite rides? I'm always down to meet people

and you're going to laugh at me fr this, but I had a friend drive me to the top of flagstaff in his truck and my old road bike hit 41.1 mph on the way down, that was fun
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Old 09-08-09, 07:58 AM   #4
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Yup, laughing at you.... hee hee! And be careful of the deer on that road, they can jump out in front of you any time.

Iowegian's suggestions are good, but for something more beginner-friendly, try making squares/loops using the following good roads in the "plains":

East/West: Jay Road, Neva Road, Nelson Road, St. Vrain Road, Hygiene Road, Lookout Rd, Valmont, Baseline, Table Mesa/South Boulder Road, Hyw 66 (not yet, but after they finish the construction)

North/South: Hwy 36, 61st/63rd, 71st/75th, 79th, 95th (a little too busy, but good shoulder), East County Line Rd (not really recommended b/c too busy and no shoulder, but people ride it anyway)

Diagonal: Hwy 119 towards Longmont

There's a nice cafe & a gas station in the town of Hygiene for getting water/snacks.

Best easy one-hour, pretty low-traffic: get to baseline and cherryvale, go south on Cherryvale to the end, turn right on Marshall, cross over Hwy 93 and go out to Eldorado Springs, return the same way.

For a moderate hill climb, go to Jamestown via Lefthand Canyon.
For a bigger hill climb, add Old Stage or Lee Hill as your connector from town to Lefthand Canyon.

For a harder loop (60-ish miles, not beginner), loop 36 - Lefthand Cayon to the top (Ward, store), Peak to Peak Highway, Raymond (bad store), St. Vrain Canyon (=Hwy 7) to Lyons (lots of stores), and back either on 36 or out Hygiene Road to Hygiene to 75th. Or ride this in the other direction to avoid the very steep last mile climb up Lefthand Canyon into Ward.

Other out-and-back hill climbs
NCAR - Table Mesa Rd. west of Hwy 93
Flagstaff (moderate to the observatory, hard after that)
Sunshine Canyon (starts as Mapelton in town, changes name)
SuperJames (Jamestown as described above, keep going after you get to Jamestown until it turns to dirt)
Magnolia Road - off Boulder Cyn (=Hwy 119) - this is the steepest road in the county, you probably want to wait a few years until you are strong.

Roads that might seem ok on a map but you should avoid:
Hwy 93
Boulder Canyon/Hwy 119 to Nederland
Arapaho
Pearl Parkway

(edited to put paragraphs in order)
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Old 09-08-09, 10:18 AM   #5
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I go to CU as well. Yesterday I did the ride up 36 to left hand and back. Tried to head up Lee hill but turned around, and headed further up 36 to Lefthand canyon, sucha good ride. Theres a good 20ish mile loop that I do all the time:

Get to the Foothills bike path off Foothills and Colorado
Take that to Diagonal highway (119) and make a right
Then make a right onto Jay road. (Great cruise but small shoulder)
Make a left onto 75th? I think (Just make a left when Jay Road ends)
Then make a left at the next dead end(Lookout rd?)
Take that to 63rd and go left which leads you right back to Jay Rd.
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Old 09-08-09, 11:42 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by valygrl View Post
Yup, laughing at you.... hee hee! And be careful of the deer on that road, they can jump out in front of you any time.

Iowegian's suggestions are good, but for something more beginner-friendly, try making squares/loops using the following good roads in the "plains":

East/West: Jay Road, Neva Road, Nelson Road, St. Vrain Road, Hygiene Road, Lookout Rd, Valmont, Baseline, Table Mesa/South Boulder Road, Hyw 66 (not yet, but after they finish the construction)

North/South: Hwy 36, 61st/63rd, 71st/75th, 79th, 95th (a little too busy, but good shoulder), East County Line Rd (not really recommended b/c too busy and no shoulder, but people ride it anyway)

Diagonal: Hwy 119 towards Longmont

There's a nice cafe & a gas station in the town of Hygiene for getting water/snacks.

Best easy one-hour, pretty low-traffic: get to baseline and cherryvale, go south on Cherryvale to the end, turn right on Marshall, cross over Hwy 93 and go out to Eldorado Springs, return the same way.

For a moderate hill climb, go to Jamestown via Lefthand Canyon.
For a bigger hill climb, add Old Stage or Lee Hill as your connector from town to Lefthand Canyon.

For a harder loop (60-ish miles, not beginner), loop 36 - Lefthand Cayon to the top (Ward, store), Peak to Peak Highway, Raymond (bad store), St. Vrain Canyon (=Hwy 7) to Lyons (lots of stores), and back either on 36 or out Hygiene Road to Hygiene to 75th. Or ride this in the other direction to avoid the very steep last mile climb up Lefthand Canyon into Ward.

Other out-and-back hill climbs
NCAR - Table Mesa Rd. west of Hwy 93
Flagstaff (moderate to the observatory, hard after that)
Sunshine Canyon (starts as Mapelton in town, changes name)
SuperJames (Jamestown as described above, keep going after you get to Jamestown until it turns to dirt)
Magnolia Road - off Boulder Cyn (=Hwy 119) - this is the steepest road in the county, you probably want to wait a few years until you are strong.

Roads that might seem ok on a map but you should avoid:
Hwy 93
Boulder Canyon/Hwy 119 to Nederland
Arapaho
Pearl Parkway

(edited to put paragraphs in order)
wow. thank you so much. I just printed this out and put it on my bullitin board. Can't wait to put some miles on the bike instead of talking about it on the internet!
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Old 09-09-09, 10:18 AM   #7
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peak to peak highway haunts my nightmares these days
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Old 09-09-09, 10:25 AM   #8
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shh. cycling in Boulder sucks.
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Old 09-09-09, 07:31 PM   #9
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All the good cycling is in highlands ranch.
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Old 09-10-09, 10:36 AM   #10
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Riding the Tour de Cure last month, I was envious of all the nice county roads in Boulder county. We don't have those in NW Douglas.
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Old 09-10-09, 11:30 AM   #11
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Got my bike!
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Old 09-10-09, 11:43 AM   #12
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Yay!!! Happy riding! It's really nice out right now...
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Old 09-10-09, 10:59 PM   #13
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Ride in good health!
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Old 09-11-09, 10:53 AM   #14
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The CU Bicycle classic is this sunday. Costs <90 to sign up. They have 100, 70, 50 mile options all of which head out north toward carter lake/Horsetooth.
Join us.
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Old 09-14-09, 09:48 AM   #15
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We did the 70. Great ride, great support. People all along the route cheering you on. I'll do this one again!
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Old 09-14-09, 09:59 AM   #16
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All the good cycling is in highlands ranch.
Hey!
Stop revealing our secrets on a *public* forum!
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Old 09-14-09, 10:11 AM   #17
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broomfield and boulder suck. Leave them to me.
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Old 09-14-09, 04:42 PM   #18
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Did Lee and Lefthand yesterday.

My oh my.
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Old 09-16-09, 11:30 AM   #19
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After my PT on Wednesdays I've taken to riding from IBM on 63rd out to Nelson, then west to 36.
North on 36 to Hygiene rd, then returning to the parking lot at IBM via 75th/Monarch. This is a GREAT loop which feels mostly flat or downhill, with the exception of the climb on Nelson up to 36. Easy to hammer out an 18-20 mph pace.
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