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Roadie607 10-18-13 06:19 PM

NJ: Hudson County road rides
Howdy guys, I just moved to Hudson County across the river from Newark and so far I'm at a loss for what roadies do for their long rides here. I've been riding short 30 mile loops around the area but I've never gotten further than Lodi because the traffic just gets too dense even on the local highways. I've tried following some routes to take me up to North in the direction of High Point but crossing the Passaic seems to be a problem as most bridges are not very safe to cross via bicycle (fast moving traffic, often perpendicular to more fast moving traffic, and metal grated bridges which would surely catch a 23c tire if it was running the right way). I've also tried going East towards Fort Lee to get to the 9W but the roads get hairy there with all the New York bound traffic. Anybody riding in the area? What routes do you take for your 40+ mile rides? Coming from the Central/Jersey Shore area so I've been spoiled with the abundance of low traffic roads. Thanks!

jerseyJim 10-19-13 08:21 AM

What are you in like Harrison or Kearney? You are going to have to get used to urban riding or you are going to have to put your bike in your car or on NJ Transit.

Things open up to the northwest somewhat after you get past Hackensack. You can use the Saddle River Pathway to take you from Saddle Brook and Rochelle Park to Glen Rock and Ridgewood. From there there are some nice roads that take you north and west through Upper Saddle River and Franklin Lakes for example.

To the south and west you have nice riding in South Mountain Reservation and in the Milburn and Short Hills area and the Watchung Mountains and west into Bernardsville, Warren and Peapack.

If you can get to Penn station Newark you can hop the Path train to Jersey city and take the Hudson river paths and River road to Henry Hudson drive in Fort Lee to Alpine and head to Piermont and then up river road to Nyack and parts north and west from there. I also understand that you can bike the Lincoln Highway into Jersey City (never done this part myself) and over to Liberty State Park and again north along the river paths and river road etc from there.

The Saddle River Pathway in Rochelle Park, the TurtleBack Zoo in South Mountain Reservation, the Picnic Grounds in Watchung Reservation and Fort Lee Historical Park due south of the GWB are good places to drive to and start your rides.

Roadie607 10-20-13 10:26 AM

Yup Harrison. Still saving up for a car (college student aka poor) so I guess anything you mentioned to the South is kinda tough. I lived in NY for a bit so I guess I'll just have to nut up and take the Northern routes past Hackensack. Thanks for the help though. Hopefully the traffic up North is just concentrated around I80.

jerseyJim 10-21-13 07:09 AM

Your Welcome. Try to find a way over to South Mountain Reservation. It's only four or five miles and once you are there you have great riding through the Reservation and down into Milburn, Short Hills and west into Watchung Reservation.

Also alot of NJ Transit buses now have bike racks and you can take the NJ Transit trains with your bike out of Penn Station Newark off peak too.

If you want to head north I mapped a nice route for you from Carlstadt. I have never been any farther towards you than that on my bike but it looks like a fairly straightforward seven miles or so.

You can cut it short in a bunch of places by cutting over from West Saddle River Road to East Saddle River Road.

Here is another ride that I often do that runs close to the Saddle River Pathway in Glen Rock and Ridgewood. You can run in and out of the Pathway at the same places as the first ride I listed.

zowie 10-21-13 02:43 PM

There are a lot of good bridges over the Passaic River so that shouldn't be your issue. One or two have metal grates, but also sidewalks, and there are lots of others.

If you've made it to Lodi, then all you need to do is continue north on Rochelle Ave. and you can get to Bergen County's best riding.

Too, you can easily get to Montclair which has good riding, and group rides out of the Montclaire Bikery, and you can continue on to Garrett Mountain. I'll try to make you a map.

zowie 10-21-13 03:07 PM

Try this, roads I ride on a lot.

zowie 10-21-13 03:33 PM

Or this, which I also frequent:

Roadie607 10-22-13 08:54 PM

Jerseyjim and zowie, thanks so much for the replies, really appreciate the help. I was beginning to think that I'd be riding the same out and back loop forever. I already recon-ed the one that passes Passaic and it looks promising. I'll probably get to try it this weekend for my long day. Lemme know if you ever need a pull off my wheel out there!

noglider 10-24-13 04:48 PM

You could bring your bike on a train and start in some remoter place.

Roadie607 10-24-13 07:41 PM

Tom, I usually only will travel to ride if there is an occasion or I'm going mountain biking. Between the cost (marginal, though still more than free) and time spent traveling, it just isn't worth it for something that can be done without getting on a train, for my day to day riding at least. Plus, traveling any amount of distance on foot is a pain in clipless pedals and the general hatred of bicycles by NJ Transit.

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