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Would Anybody Mind A Few Threads About "Casual" Rides In Our Region?

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Would Anybody Mind A Few Threads About "Casual" Rides In Our Region?

Old 10-17-15, 11:13 AM
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Would Anybody Mind A Few Threads About "Casual" Rides In Our Region?

So I've had a website since 1996 highlighting the best bike paths, rail trails, and family rides in the New York region. It's currently parked at nyrides.freehosting.net. When I first started the site, I felt I could consider myself a connoisseur of this type of trail, as I visited most or all of the destinations on a regular basis. Almost twenty years later, I'm finding that some of my descriptions and reviews are way out of date and in need of some input from current riders.

I wouldn't want to present myself as the Master of Casual Rides or anything, but would anybody mind -- and would anybody be interested -- if I posted the descriptions of each ride in a separate thread and then left them open for comments? This way, anyone looking for good rides of this type could use Northeast Bike Forum as a resource and we can sort of guarantee that all information is up to date.

Waddya think?
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Old 10-18-15, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Papa Tom
So I've had a website since 1996 highlighting the best bike paths, rail trails, and family rides in the New York region. It's currently parked at nyrides.freehosting.net. When I first started the site, I felt I could consider myself a connoisseur of this type of trail, as I visited most or all of the destinations on a regular basis.…

I wouldn't want to present myself as the Master of Casual Rides or anything, but would anybody mind -- and would anybody be interested -- if I posted the descriptions of each ride in a separate thread and then left them open for comments? This way, anyone looking for good rides of this type could use Northeast Bike Forum as a resource and we can sort of guarantee that all information is up to date.

Waddya think?
I did something similar for Metro Boston.

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
…I live in the shadow of BU [Boston University] (and Fenway Park) in Kenmore Square, once described as the "Times Square" of Boston.

FYA, see my compendium of road cycling in Metro Boston, Cyclist's Guide to the Metroverse (Metro Boston = Hub of the Universe = ”Metroverse”)

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
Originally written for Road Cycling, it also describes the MUPS, and traveling with (fully-assembled) bikes on the subway, and Commuter Rail.
This Guide was originally a response to a newcomer to Boston, on the Northeast Regional Discussion Forum, and I refer visitors to Boston to it, when they query that Forum, e.g.

Originally Posted by datlas
We are visiting Boston the first week in August. I am an avid road cyclist, and my usual vacation strategy is to find a group ride in the morning so I can spend the rest of the day with the family…
The thing is though if a thread is not a sticky, it gradually disappears into the archives, so I have to personally refer it to visitors.
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Old 10-18-15, 01:58 PM
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So how do you create a sticky thread?
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Old 10-18-15, 10:14 PM
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Just checked out your page, and would read and comment on your posts I like the idea.
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Old 10-20-15, 04:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Papa Tom
So how do you create a sticky thread?
I really don't know. I looked at the list of Moderators, and while other regions had a Mod, I couldn't find one for the Northeast. My Cycling Guide to the Metroverse is not a sticky, and I never requested it to be one. I actually like to post to inquiries about Metro Boston, and refer to my Guide.

Regarding stickies, qcpmsame on the Fifty-Plus Forum wrote about using a sticky for a planned Fifty-Plus Annual Ride:

Originally Posted by qcpmsame
…As Jim said the post will get bumped up fairly often. Surprisingly, we have learned that a stickied post gets ignored more than read, in most cases. Seems that these 50+ Ride threads do the trick fairly well…
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Old 10-20-15, 03:03 PM
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There doesn't seem to be enough interest here to warrant taking the space I will need. As of today, this thread has 203 reads and only three responses. Perhaps people thought "casual rides" meant friendly, non-competitive group rides? i probably should have used the term "low-impact rides" or something like it. I've never been successful trying to change the title of a thread, though.
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Old 10-21-15, 05:12 PM
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How do you define "casual rides"?

I feel I'm a casual rider, I ride a hybrid at a average speed of 10-12 (13 or 14 on the flats), but that's with the hills of the Bronx and Westchester. I like roads like the Putnam, South & North County trail ways. Average 40 miles a day but can do up to 60.

Does that fit Casual?

Really like the Hudson Greenway and want to try the Belt Greenway? I think trail link calls it Shore Parkway? Do you have an update of where to park around there?

https://www.traillink.com/trail-maps...way-trail.aspx
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Old 10-21-15, 05:28 PM
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Don't know about stickies but I'm open to pontificating to the void about my New York casual rides spots. Just did the Walden Rail Trail for the 1st time the other day. Minnewaska was packed on a Sunday. 3 parking lots all full people parked on the street. I just wanted to ride from Minnewaska to Awosting but didn't want to ride up the mountain to do it. Got on the Walden RT in New Paltz heading towards Walden. It was actually more dirt path than the Dutchess RT. Very Scenic, you could see the Gunks in the background. Went through an orchard and a cow field before i turned around. Dutchess RT is ok, all paved and not very scenic except when you get to the old rail road bridge. I've been doing Beacon from the train station to the waterfall at Tuck Tape. Short casual ride but thats what we're talking about. I also consider most of the carraige roads around Minnewaska to be casual rides. I still have to get down to the greenway one of these days before it gets too cold and I want to go to the mtn bike track in Queens and ride around the old site of the 1964 worlds fair and the unisphere has been on my agenda for sometime.
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Old 10-21-15, 07:32 PM
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>>>>>Really like the Hudson Greenway and want to try the Belt Greenway? I think trail link calls it Shore Parkway? Do you have an update of where to park around there?<<<<<<

I park (free) at the Canarsie Pier and ride west from there.

Librarian: Flushing Meadow Park (World's Fair grounds) is a neat ride on a nice spring day. When it's deserted, it can feel a little "cold."
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Old 10-22-15, 06:10 AM
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By the way only a Mod can make a thread a "Sticky"
And there's enough interest to keep this thread going.

I have a brother in Beacon NY, so the trails TheLibrarain is talking about sound interesting also. The Rail Trail are good for Casual riders.
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Old 10-22-15, 09:22 AM
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I'm pretty new here. So take what I say accordingly.

Personally, I would like to see some info on more laid back rides and trails.

Papa Tom, I am about as far away from you as you can get, and still be in New York. Kingston being over four hours south of me via the North/Thruways.

As a 56 year old, slowly returning to biking. Having been away since the early '80s. I find the sport much evolved. Maybe it's for the better. Not sure yet

As an older outsider looking in. I am fascinated at the level of specialization that exists. There is a bike built for every specific need. And the bolt-on to fine tune it.

As I wade back in. For the moment at least. I just want to ride. I will most likely start out with my normal clothing and gear. And add what I need, when necessary.

As to the sticky, As mentioned above, a moderator has to do that. Not sure what the tipping point is for that to happen.

A way I have seen it done on motorclcle sites like Adventure Rider. Is a sticky is posted that then becomes sort of an index of other threads. Example "New York Bike Trails"

One can reference the main sticky and search it for more specific topics. Say "Delaware County Trails" I think in order for it to work. It would have to be searchable in such a way. Perhaps geographical and/or level of difficulty. Such as "Dutchess County/Intermediate"

Possibly length, mileage or time to pedal. I have hiked and snowshoed most of the Catskill Peaks, many up here and some in the Whites, and just mileage can be very misleading.

Overall, I think it is a great idea. It seems it would benefit many here in this sub-forum, while not really adversely affecting those who don't visit.

As to the amount of traffic and the interests of the responses. I have found that this place is vast. With many corridors and labyrinths to navigate. Taken in aggregate this place is huge. But finding what you want in a Sub-forum takes some time. Today is the first time I have clicked on the Northeast Forum

As some rich guy once said in a movie, "Build it and they will come"

Good Luck with it,
DR,

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Old 10-23-15, 04:16 PM
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Rode the Dutchess Rail Trail today from The Parking at the trail head in Walden Lake to the Walkway over the Hudson and back. Easy trail nice fall day and the Walkway was scenic. 25 miles round trip 2.5 hrs with a short break at the bridge
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Old 10-23-15, 06:24 PM
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OK, now I'm feeling like I want to give this idea shot. I would start posting basic descriptions of trails and bikeways immediately, but I'm suddenly in the thick of a pretty big family emergency. This should be resolved within a week or two, but I don't know if I can do the proper editing of my web pages before that.

Be back soon!
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Old 10-24-15, 07:04 AM
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Family first.
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Old 10-30-15, 08:21 AM
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I am interested in the ideas that people come up with.
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Old 10-30-15, 12:03 PM
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Really wanted to check that Brooklyn ride but didn't want to chance Friday traffic so I did a ride from home.

Headed up the South County trailway. Could cut through Van Cortlandt Park but to pick up the trail but it rained the other day and didn't feel like getting muddy, local streets to Broadway-Mclean Ave-Tibbits Rd and on to the trail which I took to the end in Elmsford. After reading Tom's page a light went off to use Rt 119 W to Rt 9 S. Saw the entrance to the Old Croton Aqueduct, but don't know where it lets out so I followed 9 down till it hits Warburton, which gives you nice views of the Hudson and runs me into Riverdale and home. A pleasant 31 mile loop.

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Old 11-03-15, 07:01 PM
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Toured around the Bronx and Manhattan today crossing back and forth over its many bridges . I wanted to cross the newly reopened Highbridge. I had to cross the 225th St Bridge from the Bronx to Manhattan. Then I headed down the Harlem River Greenway which drops you at 155th St, doubled back on Edgecombe and you enter the approach path at 165th St. The bridge was nice brick walkway and benches to sit on. Used 170th St. to get up to the Grand Concourse and headed south, across 138th and across the Willis Ave bridge. You can get on the East River greenway at 120th, at 102nd I took the pedestrian over to Randall Island not as nice as Highbirdge. Following the path over there you cross the little hells gate bridge to Ward's Island where the path takes you to the walkway of the RFK bridge and back into the Bronx where I used138th to get back to the Grand Concourse ran the whole GC to the top and picked up the Mosholu Greenway home. 25 miles




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Old 11-04-15, 04:36 PM
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I promise to get back to this thread in a week or so, once I've resolved some issues around getting my Mom into a nursing home.
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Old 11-04-15, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Papa Tom
So I've had a website since 1996 highlighting the best bike paths, rail trails, and family rides in the New York region. It's currently parked at nyrides.freehosting.net. When I first started the site, I felt I could consider myself a connoisseur of this type of trail, as I visited most or all of the destinations on a regular basis. Almost twenty years later, I'm finding that some of my descriptions and reviews are way out of date and in need of some input from current riders.

I wouldn't want to present myself as the Master of Casual Rides or anything, but would anybody mind -- and would anybody be interested -- if I posted the descriptions of each ride in a separate thread and then left them open for comments? This way, anyone looking for good rides of this type could use Northeast Bike Forum as a resource and we can sort of guarantee that all information is up to date.

Waddya think?
Would each ride be in a separate thread? It's an interesting problem to decide how to title each thread so that interested riders can find it. I see BF links to charity rides, for instance, that aren't obvious where the ride is located. And what's the best way for a new rider to browse the rides and find ones they might like to try? I don't have any good answers.

You could keep editing a master thread post, adding a sentence or two, and a link to each ride thread, like this:
Ride Thread: Cincinnati east side Armleder Park to downtown This follows bike paths through the park and along dedicated bike lanes to the new downtown Smale Park.

A link to a google map page with all the ride start locations flagged would be a really nice feature.

If the route is somewhere out of my local known area, I find it really slow going to follow the list of street names or towns to try to figure out where the route goes.

I'd much rather have a link to the route map, like this: Armleder Park to downtown Cincinnati. I can see the distance, zoom out to see where it's located, and see the hills. And it makes a cue sheet automatically (which often needs some editing to be practical.) Then the ride posting can report on the route's highlights.

Last edited by rm -rf; 11-04-15 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 11-04-15, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Papa Tom
So I've had a website since 1996 highlighting the best bike paths, rail trails, and family rides in the New York region…Almost twenty years later, I'm finding that some of my descriptions and reviews are way out of date and in need of some input from current riders.

I wouldn't want to present myself as the Master of Casual Rides or anything, but would anybody mind -- and would anybody be interested -- if I posted the descriptions of each ride in a separate thread and then left them open for comments? This way, anyone looking for good rides of this type could use Northeast Bike Forum as a resource and we can sort of guarantee that all information is up to date.

Waddya think?

Originally Posted by rm -rf
Would each ride be in a separate thread? It's an interesting problem to decide how to title each thread so that interested riders can find it…And what's the best way for a new rider to browse the rides and find ones they might like to try? I don't have any good answers.

You could keep editing a master thread post, adding a sentence or two, and a link to each ride thread, like this: Ride Thread: Cincinnati east side Armleder Park to downtown This follows bike paths through the park and along dedicated bike lanes to the new downtown Smale Park.

A link to a google map page with all the ride start locations flagged would be a really nice feature.

If the route is somewhere out of my local known area, I find it really slow going to follow the list of street names or towns to try to figure out where the route goes.

I'd much rather have a link to the route map, like this: Armleder Park to downtown Cincinnati. I can see the distance, zoom out to see where it's located, and see the hills. And it makes a cue sheet automatically (which often needs some editing to be practical.) Then the ride posting can report on the route's highlights.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
I did something similar for Metro Boston.

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
… FYA, see my compendium of road cycling in Metro Boston, Cyclist's Guide to the Metroverse (Metro Boston = Hub of the Universe = ”Metroverse”)

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
Originally written for Road Cycling, it also describes the MUPS, and traveling with (fully-assembled) bikes on the subway, and Commuter Rail.
This Guide was originally a response to a newcomer to Boston, on the Northeast Regional Discussion Forum, and I refer visitors to Boston to it when they query that Forum…
Just this week I was asked,

Originally Posted by Machka
Do you have that all online somewhere ... with maps maybe?

I don't know if we'll make it out to Boston again, but anything's possible and something like that would be really useful.

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
I just have a link to the post, as listed above, but in the post are links for the MUPS, and for bringing bikes on mass transit. The write-ups of the various sectors of the Metro area for road cycling are general descriptions of the environment e.g, coastal, forested, historic, for the visitor who doesn't know Boston.

Roads here are very confusing but scenic and interesting. Various bike clubs and guide books can provide detailed routes once you decide where to ride
May I suggest, as I explained in my Metro Boston Cycling Guide, that you describe the general cycling environment of various regions in your area, then provide links to various resources that provide routes, especially Bike Clubs. For example, just today I was admiring a beautiful Ride with GPS route proposed by the Ashland Bike Club for this morning.

I had described that sector as:

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
Southwest: Needham, Wellesley, Dover, Medfield, Walpole, Westwood, etc: probably more popular than the western burbs; wealthy exurban to rural, moderately hilly country roads, horse farms, mansions.
The Ashland Bike Club described their route as:

Originally Posted by Ashland Bike Club
On this week’s ride, we’ll be meandering along the mighty Massachusetts River. Never heard of it? Here’s the history:

Captain John Smith explored and mapped the coast of New England, naming many features, originally naming the Charles River the Massachusetts River, which was derived from the tribe living in the region. When Smith presented his map to Charles I he suggested that the king should feel free to change any of the "barbarous names" for "English" ones. The king made many such changes, but only four survive today, one of which is the Charles River which Charles named for himself.

The weather for Wednesday promises temperatures around 66 degrees under sunny skies. It’s starting to look like spring is just around the corner. This is perfect riding weather. This week’s ride might just be the most scenic ride we offer. It’s also one of the longest coming in at 31 miles and it’s a fairly hilly ride as well. The good news is that there are more than a dozen roads with truly spectacular scenery.

There are many places along this route where you’ll feel like you’re riding through the back country of Vermont. In addition to lots of farms, historic properties and the Natick Dam, we’ll be treated to numerous views of the “Massachusetts River”. Our first rest stop will be overlooking the dam followed by a lunch stop in Dover Center at the Dover Café for some sidewalk dining (not bad for November!!). Then it’s back out on the hilly roads of Dover and Sherborn to burn off those calories on our way home.
I haven’t specifically posted links to local Bike Clubs in my Guide, but I did name a couple Clubs in the region, along with some of the best bike shops as a resource. This way, all the detail work has already been done by those who know the routes best.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 11-04-15 at 07:43 PM.
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Old 11-04-15, 08:57 PM
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Just a note from the OP: These threads would describe bike PATHS and TRAILS, rather than routes.
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Old 11-05-15, 04:57 AM
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Would Anybody Mind A Few Threads About "Casual" Rides In Our Region?

Originally Posted by Papa Tom
So I've had a website since 1996 highlighting the best bike paths, rail trails, and family rides in the New York region...

Originally Posted by rm -rf
…If the route is somewhere out of my local known area, I find it really slow going to follow the list of street names or towns to try to figure out where the route goes.

I'd much rather have a link to the route map… I can see the distance, zoom out to see where it's located, and see the hills. And it makes a cue sheet automatically (which often needs some editing to be practical.) Then the ride posting can report on the route's highlights.

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
May I suggest, as I explained in my Metro Boston Cycling Guide, that you describe the general cycling environment of various regions in your area, then provide links to various resources that provide ROUTES, especially Bike Clubs….

This way, all the detail work has already been done by those who know the ROUTES best.
Originally Posted by Papa Tom
Just a note from the OP: These threads would describe bike PATHS and TRAILS, rather than routes.
Never mind.”



PS: FYA, see this recent discussion of "casual cycling":

Originally Posted by cooker
The definition may generally be the same but regional usage may vary. I never hear the term "casual cyclist" here, and if I did, it would imply (to me) someone whose cycling was too brief or infrequent to need an extensive guidebook, so I wonder if it is a more commonly used term for recreational/pleasure cycling over there [Australia].

Originally Posted by Machka
I've used it (while living in Canada) in the sense of ... "I'm going for a casual ride today", meaning that my ride will not be intervals or hill repeats or a 200K randonnee, it will just be a nice relaxed recreational ride of a moderate length ... perhaps even a ride where I take in touristy things, have a lunch in the middle, etc …
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Old 11-05-15, 06:34 AM
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Yeah...the big mistake I made was to use the word "casual" when I really meant "low impact." I use the latter all the time tio describe these rides. I wish I could go back and change the title, but the forum won't let me.
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Old 11-05-15, 06:57 AM
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Trails or routes I would be interested either one. I'm very surprised there not already a NY metro good ride thread, there is so many riders in the city and surrounding areas
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Old 11-05-15, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Jarrettsin
Trails or routes I would be interested either one. I'm very surprised there not already a NY metro good ride thread, there is so many riders in the city and surrounding areas
I don't want to be a buttinsky on this Noo Yawk tread, especially being from Bahstan, but IMO the important distinctions for a bicycle guide are not so much trails or routes, but paved vs mixed surface, FWIW.
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Eastern Canada
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05-27-12 09:53 PM
DnvrFox
Recreational & Family
1
09-22-10 09:22 AM

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