Thread: 2018 Randonnees
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Old 01-06-18, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Happy Feet View Post
Hey, I have a question.

When I look at my local rando schedule I see so many very complicated routes that require a pretty extensive cue sheet or gps to navigate. They also seem to run through metro areas in a way that I would never actually want to bike for any sort of pleasure, given that we also have some of the best natural cycling routes around in the Fraser Valley that they seem to ignore. It's a bit of a turn off as I prefer clean aesthetic lines from A to B that follow straightforward routes. As a result I have been looking at my own routes outside the rando scene or, for next season, looking at brevets in the next province over.

Is it a rando "thing" to select complicated routes with an excess of directional changes or is it just a byproduct of my local rando routes being in urban areas?
Why don't you ask them why they design the routes the way they do?

Often routes are designed because someone in the area loves cycling that particular road, so they find a way to include it on a route. Sometimes it is historical ... in the past you couldn't get from A to B, you had to go by way of C, D, and E. Now you can go directly A to B, but the route hasn't been updated. Sometimes it is done to get the extra km needed to be a full 200 km or something. Sometimes there's a theme going on ... the route is taking you to this place and that place, all part of a theme. Sometimes it depends on controls. Sometimes it is done to keep the riders from being bored.

I like fairly straightforward routes too, but I've had to do some wonky things here and there with mine in order to accomplish something ... usually having to do with distance and controls and hill avoidance. Yes, hill avoidance. We've got a series of routes in Southern Tasmania which tend to be quite hilly. So I've got a series of routes in Northern Tasmania which are not. Gives riders a choice ... they can do both or the ones they prefer.

But in order for me to avoid hills, I sometimes have to make the routes go around them which can result in some creative routes. Also, since all our Northern routes start and finish in the same location, and there are a decent number of roads to choose from, I try not to overuse the same roads for each route. So some might be relatively straightforward, while others might wander a bit.
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