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Where WON'T You Ride?

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Where WON'T You Ride?

Old 10-22-07, 06:50 PM
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Mobiker50
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Where WON'T You Ride?

A slightly unusual question, but I'm just getting back into road riding after a long (15 years at least) layoff, and wondered if you could describe anywhere you won't ride? I live in Missouri, with lots of rural roads (most sans shoulder), but lots of 'letter' highways and blacktop without so much as edge markings. Of course there are also some areas with divided highways (paved shoulders but not Interstate).

When I used to ride, most of it was in Europe or Asia. I wouldn't be afraid to ride much of anywhere in Europe and in Korea or Taiwan you just take your chances. As I regain experience with being on the road, I'm looking for new territories to conquer, but am a little hesitant to ride in places where things are done at a high speed limit (which everyone ignores anyway).
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Old 10-22-07, 06:53 PM
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I'll ride most anywhere, but having said that it's a complex calculous involving a host of conditions and my knowledge of the area and it's people. The more unknowns, the more conservative I am.
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Old 10-22-07, 06:56 PM
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I'll ride anywhere it is legal to ride (i.e. everywhere but freeways where bicycles are not allowed), and I'll even use them on the odd occasion if I can't figure out how else to get where I'm going.

Oh, and the road should be paved. Occasionally you can talk me onto a gravel road, but that's rare ... I hate gravel.

And preferably no bicycle paths. I also hate most bicycle paths.

Other than that ... pretty much anywhere.
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Old 10-22-07, 07:49 PM
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I don't ride in the main intersection of small towns anymore. I have been hit twice this year, in the main intersection in small towns. I avoid them now. I mostly ride country roads, and country highways, although I was on decently heavy traffic areas today. It seems to me main intersections in small towns are just asking for impending doom.
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Old 10-22-07, 07:50 PM
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I prob won't ever ride on the moon....but It'd sure be one hell of a ride.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:00 PM
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I won't ride on a road if it covered edge-to-edge with ice.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:01 PM
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I won't ride in Manistique Michigan, because the one who shall not be named would drop me.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:03 PM
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I wouldn't ride through the south end of Toronto's downtown core. I also wouldn't ride on bike paths.

The latter is probably a more relevant consideration for you than is the former. Good luck.

Last edited by dcon; 10-22-07 at 08:04 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 10-22-07, 08:20 PM
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I definitely would not ride underwater. That might destroy my fragile carbon fiber (i.e. "plastic") frame. Also it would be hard to breathe.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:29 PM
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I prefer to avoid the UC Davis campus except for nights and weekends.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:40 PM
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I try to plan my routes carefully to avoid busy high speed roads with no shoulder or other major arteries. I prefer riding in the countryside. I probably wouldn't ride through most of the south and west sides of Chicago.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:40 PM
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Try getting in touch with a local club or bike shop, and asking for route recommendations. Go to the shop with your own map and highlighters/pen, and ask for what roads are good and what should be avoided, and mark them.

It's very local-condition dependent. Generally, heavy traffic + no shoulder = death. One or the other might be OK, might not. Some roads that seem perfect in their rural-ness are plagued by an evil dog or a bar that everyone drives home drunk from. Some roads are fine at one time of day/direction combo, but not another time: rush hour, lunch hour, beer-thirty, bar-closing, sun-in-eyes-of-drivers.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:50 PM
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I won't ride on fresh asphalt.
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Old 10-22-07, 09:01 PM
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- Major transport arteries without shoulders and full of trucks (there are a few such here in east Tokyo).
- Moderately to heavily trafficked MUPs.
- Tracks and gravel roads after rain (I hate knowing I'll *have* to clean the bike when I get home )
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Old 10-22-07, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by valygrl View Post
Try getting in touch with a local club or bike shop, and asking for route recommendations. Go to the shop with your own map and highlighters/pen, and ask for what roads are good and what should be avoided, and mark them.

It's very local-condition dependent. Generally, heavy traffic + no shoulder = death. One or the other might be OK, might not. Some roads that seem perfect in their rural-ness are plagued by an evil dog or a bar that everyone drives home drunk from. Some roads are fine at one time of day/direction combo, but not another time: rush hour, lunch hour, beer-thirty, bar-closing, sun-in-eyes-of-drivers.
Sounds like good advice, Valygrl. Although I do think the post about riding underwater is valuable as well. I've particuarly been thinking about the local club (pretty limited from what I've heard), but I've been pretty lone-wolf for a long time. Maybe time to change some spots.

Thanks.
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Old 10-22-07, 09:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Hendley View Post
- Major transport arteries without shoulders and full of trucks (there are a few such here in east Tokyo).
- Moderately to heavily trafficked MUPs.
- Tracks and gravel roads after rain (I hate knowing I'll *have* to clean the bike when I get home )
The only balancing act I have here is that some roads (although not major) have fairly light traffic, but a 60 mph limit (not a huge problem in and of itself), but few have paved shoulders (major problem in and of itself). But at least I don't have the prototypical dump truck drivers I used to dodge in Korea and Taiwan
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Old 10-22-07, 09:19 PM
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Although I will ride in/around Jax, Florida I do so with the knowledge that drivers there may very well be aiming for me. I've never felt less safe on a bike than I do when I'm down there riding.

Beyond that I try to avoid certain areas around certain times of the day. It makes my commute to work and back home from work a little longer, but I know what intersections not to be caught in when everyone is rushing to get to work or back home after a long day at work. I simply go out of my not to be near those.
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Old 10-22-07, 11:44 PM
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Just curious, but where in MO are you? I'm in Columbia, and I have a few roads w/wide shoulders I feel safe on, but I don't feel very safe at all on a the ones without. Including the lettered highways.
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Old 10-23-07, 04:55 AM
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Chinatown during the fullmoon. No, really. Weird sh1t happens down there during this time. On a less superstitious note, any roadway with a posted speed limit over 45.
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Old 10-23-07, 05:22 AM
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Originally Posted by CruJonesIsRad View Post
Just curious, but where in MO are you? I'm in Columbia, and I have a few roads w/wide shoulders I feel safe on, but I don't feel very safe at all on a the ones without. Including the lettered highways.
I'm in Jefferson City. Hwy 94 (across the river) is impressively long, straight and flat, but has no shoulders. All the letter highways have either no shoulder or gravel. And you can ride on 63 or 54, but with a lot of traffic going very fast (although they have nicely paved shoulders with a rumble strip). I've ridden on all of the above but must admit to some discomfort on any of the above. And of course, riding streets in Jefferson City itself (although I do it fairly often) is fraught with its own hazards.
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Old 10-23-07, 05:57 AM
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I wouldn't ride except through lack of choice in the countryside in parts of south Somerset and north Dorset, England. Beautifully scenary and interesting, occasioning quite challanging rolling hills. But alot of the lanes are barely wide enough for 1 wide vehicle such as a tractor. These are common due to the rural setting. Whats more the hedges are often 8 feet high or more.

All these factor together to in my opinion, make for some very dangerous riding conditions. I used to live there until I was twelve. Locals and visiters alike all too frequently drive far too fast around those windy little lanes with blind corners and hill tops. Driving threw yesterday whilst visiting some old friends and my lawyer in a near by town, I imagined cycling around there and quickly decided I wouldn't like to do it.
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Old 10-23-07, 06:42 AM
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I won't ride in Canada...just because.

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Old 10-23-07, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Namenda View Post
I won't ride in Canada...just because.

You don't meet are standards?
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Old 10-23-07, 07:14 AM
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Indoors, stationary. Yuck.
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Old 10-23-07, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by clausen View Post
You don't meet are standards?
Tempting...very tempting.

Toronto? Eh, maybe. I guess I could check out the Hockey HOF. Damn sure not in the winter, though.
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