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Old 08-07-07, 01:45 AM   #1
cyclezealot
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your expereinces with best/worst states to be a cyclist.

Not so much your impressions but your actual expereinces. COnsiderations are things like traffic, shoulders, hostile motorists. I can't imagine riding in cities such as Newark, Detroit, Cleveland, Louisville. Narrow shoulders , fast paced traffic. Oregon , I think I vote to be number one.
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Old 08-07-07, 02:25 AM   #2
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Victoria and Tasmania are both great. Northern Territory was pretty hot when I did day trips there, plenty to see but not sure I'd do a bike tour in the centre.
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Old 08-07-07, 05:06 AM   #3
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I would vote for Tennessee as a worse place, especially eastern Tennessee. Often there are not many through streets due to natural geographical barriers, like ridges. So, there are few alternative parallel routes. The streets that do exist are often narrow with no shoulder and a sharp drop-off into a deep ditch. The drivers almost always exceed the speed limit.

I have cycled in parts of Cleveland and it was not bad.
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Old 08-07-07, 05:44 AM   #4
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Funny, I was going to say Tennessee as the best (where I currently live). I live in East Tn. Lots of back roads and drivers always waving. Very strange when coming from Alabama were I would get lots of honks and "GET ON THE SIDEWALK!!".
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Old 08-07-07, 05:56 AM   #5
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I'd have to say that New Jersey is a mixed bag. Northeastern NJ is a nightmare for biking with the likes of Jersey City, Elizabeth, Newark, etc. But, the rest of the state is actually pretty nice. Northwest NJ will wear you out with hills, but the scenery is nice and the traffic is far less. Southern NJ is a flatlanders dream with miles of wide roads through the Pine Barrens, although scenery can get boring.
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Old 08-07-07, 06:08 AM   #6
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Maybe a state can offer a mixuture of cycling environments. My home state of Michigan. I consider Detroit very cycing unfriendly; yet, Northern and Western Michigan offers some great cycing locations.
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Old 08-07-07, 06:29 AM   #7
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Greater Chicago area: great!
Columbus OH area: okay in parts
Charlotte, NC area: crappy
Raleigh, NC: some decent parts
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Old 08-07-07, 07:16 AM   #8
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Nevada is terrible. The roads burst into flames all summer and cars like to hit cyclists more than eachother. Poorly maintained hick backroads but the main ones (super-danger-turkey) are good. Up in Reno/Tahoe area they get more respectful though...
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Old 08-07-07, 08:09 AM   #9
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I live in NC, but have ridden cycle tours in Ohio, Indiana, Wisconsin and Georgia (and lived there as well). I've also ridden in the Chicago area (western suburbs around Geneva). It seems like most states have nice roads to ride on if you get away from the traffic. The pavement definitely tends to be smoother in the South, apparently because of the milder winters and perhaps better road maintenance. I like the Midwest because the roads are relatively flat and it's hard to get lost with the grid network. Wisconsin is also a very bike-friendly state, in general, without much traffic outside the cities. I've ridden 3-4 bike tours in Wisconsin for that reason, but southern Indiana was comparable in many respects. It is also much cooler in the Midwest during summer than down South, which makes for more comfortable riding and camping, but I wouldn't like the long winters.

North Carolina generally is a nice place to ride, with good roads as long as you get away from the traffic in large metro areas. It is much hillier in general than the Midwest, which can be good and bad depending how you feel on a given day. I often wish I had just ONE simple route I could ride that was relatively flat. Sometimes you just want to take it easy and rest your legs, but it's hard to do that when there's always another hill to climb.

Of all the areas I've ridden in, I probably most enjoyed a cycle tour I rode with my brother in SW Wisconsin around Sparta. The terrain was very varied, with lots of hills comparable to parts of North Carolina. But traffic was very light, with little development and scenery very nice. There also are some extensive rails-to-trails bike paths in the area. Sparta calls itself the Cycling Capital of the US or something like that, and is very friendly to cyclists for that reason.
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Old 08-07-07, 08:21 AM   #10
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Best state - Vermont
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Old 08-07-07, 08:32 AM   #11
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Large poll done at Crazyguy -

http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/forum...zzM&poll_id=26
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Old 08-07-07, 08:36 AM   #12
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I'd have to say that New Jersey is a mixed bag. Northeastern NJ is a nightmare for biking with the likes of Jersey City, Elizabeth, Newark, etc. But, the rest of the state is actually pretty nice. Northwest NJ will wear you out with hills, but the scenery is nice and the traffic is far less. Southern NJ is a flatlanders dream with miles of wide roads through the Pine Barrens, although scenery can get boring.
Delaware Bay (both sides) is like another planet, Never Never Land.
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Old 08-07-07, 08:47 AM   #13
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I can only speak to Southern Oregon, which is like a different world from Eugene-Portland. Eugene to Portland (up in the central to northern areas) are like a bikers heaven from what I hear and see (although I'm without practical experience). The Oregon Coast has an official " bike route" that covers the north-south route with signs. I've heard that Portland is one of the most biker friendly cities. But down here in the red counties I would rate it as fair at best. Most of the roads are chip sealed (bumpy), bike lanes are not prevalent and drivers get too close because they are driving while cleaning the shotguns and hunting rifles.
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Old 08-07-07, 08:51 AM   #14
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CA. is great for cycling
Texas is crap for cycling
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Old 08-07-07, 09:09 AM   #15
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I must disagree with Slowjoe about what the drivers in Southern Oregon are doing.
They are doing chainsaw "sculpture" while they are driving,
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Old 08-07-07, 09:37 AM   #16
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Funny, I was going to say Tennessee as the best (where I currently live). I live in East Tn. Lots of back roads and drivers always waving. Very strange when coming from Alabama were I would get lots of honks and "GET ON THE SIDEWALK!!".
I never rode in Alabama. I lived in East Brainerd (Chattanooga) for about a dozen years. It was difficult to feel safe riding into Brainerd or out Shallowford Road toward Ooltewah-Ringgold Road. You are right that once you get into a rural area it is quite nice. Most of my riding was more city than rural.
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Old 08-07-07, 10:01 AM   #17
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I never rode in Alabama. I lived in East Brainerd (Chattanooga) for about a dozen years. It was difficult to feel safe riding into Brainerd or out Shallowford Road toward Ooltewah-Ringgold Road. You are right that once you get into a rural area it is quite nice. Most of my riding was more city than rural.

Yeah I can imagine down in Chattanooga it would be like that. I hate driving down there. I am up north 30 miles in Cleveland. It is great up here. I'm only on the bike 5 minutes and I am out on some back road with no traffic what so ever. Plus riding up to the Ocoee is really nice.
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Old 08-07-07, 10:50 AM   #18
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Texas is crap for cycling
Where in Texas? The entire state can't be "crap" since there's so much variety across the state. Far SW Houston/Harris County is dangerous.
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Old 08-07-07, 10:52 AM   #19
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Arizona is bad

I just completed the Southern Tier from San Diego to St. Augustine Florida a couple of months ago. During our trip the drivers in Arizona were the worst with the drivers in Globe Arizona as the very worst. We were planning to stay the night in Globe but were treated so badly by the drivers that we decided to spend our money elsewhere. The roads in Arizona also were terrible with glass and debris everywhere. The rumble strips, where there were some, were located right where a bicyclist needed to ride. Who engineered these roads? Just my humble opinion...
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Old 08-07-07, 01:13 PM   #20
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CA. is great for cycling
Texas is crap for cycling
Well, I happen to be a cyclist riding in Texas and you can come down here and ride any time you like. Yes, there's idiots in duallie pickup trucks and drunks and bad drivers, etc. but they're everywhere. If cycling is so bad here, then why are there so many charity and fun rides every weekend all around the state?

We're building advocacy strength but the lunacy of self-righteous conservative capitalists earning their millions from the chemical and petroleum industries presents challenges to cyclists here. Fortunately, we're treated as relatively harmless rather than a threat. When we present the statistics that show cycle-friendly community planning is more profitable for developers, folks start to listen. Except for the governor and his cronies, of course.

My attitude as a 5th-generation Texan whose roots go back to the Republic is that it will only change as those of us committed to improving quality of life and conditions for cycling keep working and being involved.

If Texas looks like a bad place to ride or has been a poor experience for you, I'm sorry about that and you should not come here to ride...we still need a few more decades (or gasoline to go to 5 bucks a gallon) to improve conditions, I guess.
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Old 08-07-07, 01:23 PM   #21
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CA. is great for cycling
Texas is crap for cycling
Not sure if I agree with Texas being crap. I rode through the tip top into OK eventually. As soon as I entered Texas the shoulders were smooth and wider than the car lanes. Easy riding, except for winds.

Worst states IMO were Ohio and CT. Ohio destroyed my rear rim on tour and CT has some terrible shoulders in old money areas where you'd expect they took care of themselves.
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Old 08-07-07, 03:35 PM   #22
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I must disagree with Slowjoe about what the drivers in Southern Oregon are doing.
They are doing chainsaw "sculpture" while they are driving,

So true; my bad.!
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Old 08-07-07, 04:30 PM   #23
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Nevada is terrible. The roads burst into flames all summer and cars like to hit cyclists more than eachother. ..
Did the Oatbran across US 50 once. I loved it. Would be eager to do it again. Nothing out US 50 but sagebrush and rocks and little traffic. Loneliest Road in America. I'd recommend it. Might better do it with a pack of cyclinsts tho. There is nothing out there for sometimes over 100 miles. Riding up the ranges, perfect climbs. Mid September, perfect temperatures.
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Old 08-07-07, 04:48 PM   #24
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Saskatchewan + use your dog as a guide and you'll never get lost
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Old 08-07-07, 04:53 PM   #25
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Texas good. (I speak mostly of San Antonio and Tyler/Longview area)
NM bad. The only thing good to say is the decreased population and wide open spaces.
OH is also bad, and after the past two days, I say stay clear of New Albany
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