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Looking for some new great routes and roads around Boston

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Looking for some new great routes and roads around Boston

Old 05-29-21, 10:19 AM
  #1  
DanielC94
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Looking for some new great routes and roads around Boston

Hey Everyone!


I've been living in Boston for the better part of a decade and have done a lot of road cycling in and outside of the city. I have a few trusty destinations and there-and-back again routes that I love to ride but I am hoping, with some of your help, to learn of other great places to ride around the city! To give an idea of the places that I have frequently ridden: Walden Pond up via minuteman and rt 62 and back via rt 117 and esplanade, Great Blue Hills (via various parkways), and down to Scituate via the coast and back inland through Wompatuck.


I don't have a car so ideally any suggested routes are within a 50 mile radius of Boston, more or less, for a max round trip century ride. I would also love to learn of roads that just offer amazing cycling experiences that can be added to a route. For instance on one of my rides back from Walden pond I decided to take a small detour from my usual return route and took Trapelo Road to Lincoln Street and discovered a small but very fun windy descent!


I frequently ride solo but would also love to join any local cycling groups in the area! If you have any recommendations or are part of a group let me know!


Thanks!
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Old 05-29-21, 11:18 AM
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A fun thing to do is take the early morning ferry over to Provincetown and then ride down to Truro or Wellfleet and back to catch the afternoon or evening ferry back to Boston. The back roads on the Outer Cape are very picturesque (but stay off the busy Route 6). Another option is the Provincelands bicycle trail. It has beautiful views but you must keep your speed slow as it is windy and hilly, and sometimes there are patches of sand to avoid.
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Old 05-29-21, 04:34 PM
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DanielC94
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I've done a bit of riding down on the Cape! Growing up my family used to go there every summer and we would bike on the rail trail and always stop by Arnold's seafood shack in Eastham! More recently I've biked to P-town, one-way, and taken the ferry back to Boston. I think my favorite part of that ride is biking through Barnstable on 6A. Never thought to take the ferry over for a day trip cycling in the Cape!
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Old 06-01-21, 08:40 AM
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As you've discovered, there are a lot of great rural-ish roads in the western suburbs - which is what I'm most familiar with. Are you familiar with the Strava Heat Map? https://www.strava.com/heatmap#12.37...9/bluered/ride I think you'd be best served, if you're up for it, to look at popular places and try to string up your own routes.
If you're on the Minuteman, one great loop to do is go all the way to the end to Bedford, then hop on 225 west. Depending on how far you want to go, you can make all sorts of loops - go north to Maple St. then North Rd through Great Brook State Park to Curve St. then head south. Or you could stay on 225 west and make bigger and bigger loops the further west you go - River Rd/Monument st. first, then Concord st from Carlisle, or Bruce Freeman trail all of which will bring you to Concord. You could continue south from Concord - favorite ways to return are Baker Bridge to Trapelo or Glezen Ln. to Conant Rd.

Kind of off the top of my head the best bits of road are
- 225W from Bedford to Carlisle (except for the segment right after Concord River because the pavement is crap)
- North St through Great Brook (Curve St. is great too but the pavement has become awful in many places)
- Strawberry Hill Rd (Acton or Concord?) - very popular together with Pope Rd.
- Baker Bridge, Lincoln
- Sudbury Rd./Concord Rd. in Concord near the Nashawtuc Country Club
- Water Row in Sudbury
- Conant Rd

Some local clubs/organized rides I'm aware of - lots of these around and a lot of them post their routes
https://www.crw.org/ https://www.crw.org/route-collection-panel-page
Monsters : Home
https://www.ridestudiocafe.com/rides-and-events
https://ridewithgps.com/organization...e-club/routes?
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Old 06-02-21, 06:00 AM
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Originally Posted by autonomy View Post
As you've discovered, there are a lot of great rural-ish roads in the western suburbs - which is what I'm most familiar with. Are you familiar with the Strava Heat Map? https://www.strava.com/heatmap#12.37...9/bluered/ride I think you'd be best served, if you're up for it, to look at popular places and try to string up your own routes.
If you're on the Minuteman, one great loop to do is go all the way to the end to Bedford, then hop on 225 west. Depending on how far you want to go, you can make all sorts of loops - go north to Maple St. then North Rd through Great Brook State Park to Curve St. then head south. Or you could stay on 225 west and make bigger and bigger loops the further west you go - River Rd/Monument st. first, then Concord st from Carlisle, or Bruce Freeman trail all of which will bring you to Concord. You could continue south from Concord - favorite ways to return are Baker Bridge to Trapelo or Glezen Ln. to Conant Rd.

Kind of off the top of my head the best bits of road are
- 225W from Bedford to Carlisle (except for the segment right after Concord River because the pavement is crap)
- North St through Great Brook (Curve St. is great too but the pavement has become awful in many places)
- Strawberry Hill Rd (Acton or Concord?) - very popular together with Pope Rd.
- Baker Bridge, Lincoln
- Sudbury Rd./Concord Rd. in Concord near the Nashawtuc Country Club
- Water Row in Sudbury
- Conant Rd

Some local clubs/organized rides I'm aware of - lots of these around and a lot of them post their routes
https://www.crw.org/ https://www.crw.org/route-collection-panel-page
Monsters : Home
https://www.ridestudiocafe.com/rides-and-events
https://ridewithgps.com/organization...e-club/routes?
I'm fairly new to using strava (only started using it last year). The heat map looks like a useful tool to find routes! The way I've usually done it is by finding a destination and then google/street viewing my way there hah!

I've biked once out to Carlisle, taking 225, after taking the minuteman up to Bedford, and then down to Concord via Concord street. From what I remember I much preferred concord street due to the wider shoulder. But I'll have to check out those side roads off 225 you mentioned the next time I bike out there! In fact I'll have to check out all those routes and do more exploring up there!! I think I also heard of a farm/creamery that sells pretty good icecream out by Carlisle so that could be a nice pit stop!

I live in Jamaica Plain so I typically go south to the Blue Hills Reservation, but I love biking North on the minuteman during the fall and stopping in Bedford for a quick bite before continuing on the nice suburban roads.
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Old 06-03-21, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by DanielC94 View Post
I'm fairly new to using strava (only started using it last year). The heat map looks like a useful tool to find routes! The way I've usually done it is by finding a destination and then google/street viewing my way there hah!

I've biked once out to Carlisle, taking 225, after taking the minuteman up to Bedford, and then down to Concord via Concord street. From what I remember I much preferred concord street due to the wider shoulder. But I'll have to check out those side roads off 225 you mentioned the next time I bike out there! In fact I'll have to check out all those routes and do more exploring up there!! I think I also heard of a farm/creamery that sells pretty good icecream out by Carlisle so that could be a nice pit stop!

I live in Jamaica Plain so I typically go south to the Blue Hills Reservation, but I love biking North on the minuteman during the fall and stopping in Bedford for a quick bite before continuing on the nice suburban roads.
Strava used to have free route planning but they made it subscriber-only. You can still use RideWithGPS to route-plan based on destinations. What it will do is use road popularity, it just won't show the heat map to you if you're not a paid subscriber. It's not perfect but usually works well. Street view to verify!

Can't talk much about areas south of JP but next time you're out on the Minuteman and beyond, keep these popular spots in the back of your head:
- Revolution Hall in Lexington right on the Minuteman, it's good for food and beer/wine, can recommend it
- Short Stop Cafe at the end of Minuteman in Depot Park - looks new, haven't been, exciting to have something there
- Bedford Farms Ice Cream - past the end of the Minuteman, across from the VW dealership if you're heading on 225W
- Kimball Farm Ice Cream on 225
- The ever-popular Great Brook Farm Creamery
- Ferns in Carlisle
- Haute Coffee in Concord
- Maine Streets Market & Cafe in Concord
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Old 06-05-21, 04:55 PM
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Locally, this is one of the most popular strava segments, and it is a decent ride, a five mile loop with minimal traffic lights and mostly wide shoulders, other than a few sections of route 3. It's also easily accessible from the Minuteman in Arlington, which means you can throw it onto any ride where you feel like you need more distance: https://www.strava.com/segments/961927

I really liked riding on the North Shore when I lived up there a few years ago. Actually getting there without using the commuter rail or a car from Boston is tricky right now but once the bridge and paving work is done on the Northern Strand trail it will be much simpler, and the network of bike lanes they're installing on the Lynnway after the trail is over connects to some nice riding.

Nahant is fun and quick, some minor hills and some nice views. The bike path on Lynn Shore Drive is more of a glorified sidewalk but it's pretty wide so you can generally get by (it does flood sometimes at high tide). From there you can continue into Swampscott on Rt 129, which can connect you to the Marblehead Rail Trail (okay-ish dirt, I would not attempt on a road bike) or you can just stay on 129. Once you're up in Marblehead there's a ton of options, including the Chandler Hovey lighthouse on Marblehead Neck and loops around the town itself, most of which were quiet a few years ago. Salem has some nice spots too like the dash out to Winter Island.

One of my favorite rides when I lived in Salem was starting at my place and riding up to Rockport, over the 1A bridge into Beverly and then following 127 into Gloucester and then 127A from there to Rockport. A very pretty ride, and generally pretty safe even though it's all on road. From there it's pretty doable to pick up a commuter rail train home.
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