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Cycling in/near Rockville, MD? Might be moving from San Diego

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Cycling in/near Rockville, MD? Might be moving from San Diego

Old 05-28-13, 09:35 PM
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Cycling in/near Rockville, MD? Might be moving from San Diego

Hi everyone,

I'm in the unfortunate situation of having to move away from possibly the best cycling in the country, San Diego. I might be taking a job in Rockville, MD and am wondering what I will find there in terms of cycling.

I'm primarily a road cyclist and just started racing this year. What kind of terrain for road riding would I find in this area? At 5'8" and 135lbs I'm mainly a climber who is trying to get better at time trials. I like hilly 60-100 mile weekend training rides and prefer road races to crits and circuit races. Am I just totally screwed or is there life after San Diego??

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Old 05-29-13, 05:05 AM
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Rockville itself is typical suburban stuff, but there's some great riding in the rest of Montgomery County (including the agricultural reserve areas) and down towards the Potomac and out towards Poolesville. A little further west towards and past Frederick you get into the Catoctin Mts with some very nice hard climbs.

I don't know much about the racing scene but I see lots and lots of club riders out and about.
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Old 05-29-13, 10:45 AM
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There is life after SD but it's kind of a different world. Lot's of rolling hill opportunities, generally not as long/high as out west but often shorter & steeper stuff. Particularly as you head west as JimF says.

Tons of local resources; a few places to start: MABRA (local regional racing org), WABA , Washington Area Bike Forum, Potomac Pedalers (group rides, many starting west of Rockville and head for hills), DC Radonneurs (distance rides), Oxon Hill Bike Club ( club in S MD, good regional event calendar). Also the unofficial PPTC email list "Pedalers" on Google Groups. The MABRA page will have info on local race clubs. I am not a racer but from friends who do race: Cat 5 fields fill fast, most local races are crits (the road races tend to be further away or sponsored by neighboring organizations, not many TT); there is a weekly training crit series Wed nights in Greenbelt MD, and plenty of hammer rides in the area. I also am in NoVA, so I don't have much 1st-hand info on biking in MD.

Overall, there is a usable regional bike infrastructure (paths, trails, lanes, particularly as you get towards DC; DC Capital BikeShare was #1 for bikeshare programs until NYC opened their program Monday), all MoCo and metro buses have racks (bike access on subway is very limited), and the western area of Montgomery County (the "Agricultural Reserve") has some great riding. But you have to be mindful of traffic, and the weather, of course, will be much more varied than what you may be used to in SD. Coming from SD, you may be one of the few folks who don't have sticker shock when you look at housing prices. Hope these links help!
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Old 05-29-13, 11:53 AM
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Also check out a new website, DCpaceline.com. Looks like they're trying to put information from a number of sources in one place.
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Old 05-29-13, 05:58 PM
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Thanks for all the resources, guys. That helps a lot. There's a lot of good info on those sites about club rides and all. I'm sure once I join a few club rides I'll quickly get a feel for the different groups and can talk people up about the local racing scene and find a team that would be a good fit for the next season.
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Old 06-11-13, 07:29 PM
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I know this thread is slightly old at this point but another question. How much of the year is rideable in this area of Maryland? Does it snow a lot and are there times of year when it's not possible to ride outside?

I don't really like riding in cold/rain but I can tolerate and deal with it. I used to live in Seattle and the only thing that stopped me from riding was black ice on the ground. I didn't enjoy it but I did it for the training. The thing is that temperatures in Seattle don't go below freezing very often so we only got snow a few times every year. Does it snow often/hard enough in Maryland to affect the cycling in the area?

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Old 06-12-13, 03:19 AM
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Once in awhile we'll get a "Snowmageddon" type event that leaves a couple of feet of snow on the ground for a week or two, but generally you can easily ride all year round. For the last two winters there wasn't a single week that I can recall that wasn't rideable.
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Old 06-12-13, 02:30 PM
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Funny, I moved from Rockville to San Diego, stayed 3 years and moved back. I much prefer living here in Maryland. Lots of riding available here. The farther away from DC and Baltimore you get the better it tends to be IMHO, but plenty of good riding close. The housing prices won't shock you but the traffic will.
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