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Best place to live (to cycle)

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

Best place to live (to cycle)

Old 11-05-12, 04:04 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
"The coldest winter I ever spent was summer in San Francisco." -Mark Twain
Yes, Mark Twain would now what a real winter is. After all, he was from Missouri.
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Old 11-05-12, 04:17 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
"The coldest winter I ever spent was summer in San Francisco." -Mark Twain
Discredited by multiple sources.

We call our summer marine layer cool temperatures "natural air conditioning."
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Old 11-05-12, 04:32 PM
  #28  
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If I could afford it, I would live in Carmel or Ojai, California. Howerver, they are not the best places to live if you need to be near a big metropolitan area for work but would be paradise for cycling.
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Old 11-05-12, 04:44 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by hhnngg1 View Post
San Francisco has a TOTALLY different microclimate than the South bay just 20 minutes south. Sounds ridiculous, but it's absolutely true. Sf proper is gray and dreary most of the year - last summer, the avg temp in the summer during the day was barely 65F - sweater season the entire summer. In contrast, where I live, just 35 mins south of SF, it's 300+ days of sun and avg winter temp of lo 60s during the afternoon.
Actually it doesn't sound ridiculous at all. San Francisco is on the coast, and the southern bay area is in the rain shadow of the coast range. I was just giving you a hard time with the Mark Twain quote.

Where do you live? I spent a year doing volunteer work in San Jose, used to take my bike up to Marin County.
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Old 11-05-12, 04:47 PM
  #30  
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Pedant post....there can only be one best.
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Old 11-05-12, 05:14 PM
  #31  
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Chattanooga.

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Old 11-05-12, 05:26 PM
  #32  
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Portland weather is not the best however, when you take that into account and prepare accordingly, the overall cycling environment in this city is pretty awesome. Here you will find true 4 season year round riding though you will need some good rain gear selections and fenders. Once you figure that out, then you will also find extremely accesible steep terrain, a very good in city bike route system, tons of bike shops, some close in mtn bike trails (not a ton) however there are free ride options at the ski resorts during the summer. If racing is your thing, we have a 9 month racing season and if you are indeed put off by rain and cold weather, id say really December and January are the worst of it. By February temps are already back to the 50's and there are alot of dryish days.
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Old 11-05-12, 05:42 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Scooper View Post
Marin and Sonoma Counties. Great weather, close to San Francisco, Mt. Tam, Marin Headlands, yada yada.
Including Santa Rosa, Healdsburg, this area is awesome!!
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Old 11-05-12, 06:10 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Actually it doesn't sound ridiculous at all. San Francisco is on the coast, and the southern bay area is in the rain shadow of the coast range. I was just giving you a hard time with the Mark Twain quote.

Where do you live? I spent a year doing volunteer work in San Jose, used to take my bike up to Marin County.
Live in Portola Valley, right near Palo Alto. Awesome hilly cycling right out my front door. Crazy good. I feel like you should be required to be a professional cyclist to live here, it's that good.
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Old 11-05-12, 06:28 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Scooper View Post
Discredited by multiple sources.

We call our summer marine layer cool temperatures "natural air conditioning."
Actually, SF has nanoclimates (nano is one order smaller than micro, right?). Compare Noe Valley to St. Francis Wood.

To answer OP's question: If I were going to recommend a NorCal location, I'd say either Winters or Auburn, depending on whether you wanted to be closer to the City or to the Lake.
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Old 11-05-12, 06:30 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by Lamabb View Post
Where is the best place to live for cycling? Taking all factors into consideration.

For me, I believe an ideal place would include these factors:

- Living near a big city but not in one. (jobs/activity)
- Good hills/mountains ( I can't stand flat)
- Good cycling community
- Good Mountain bike trails AND good-condition roads
- Low traffic in immediate area
Sounds like where I live in Escondido, CA. However, it is going to cost you. It is insanely expensive to live out here.
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Old 11-05-12, 06:32 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by sternzeit View Post
Whidbey Island in Washington.

Yuck! Used to live there. Burried in snow half the year.
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Old 11-05-12, 07:25 PM
  #38  
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<s>Tucson</s>

Nevermind no real cycling here.

Last edited by beatlebee; 11-05-12 at 08:45 PM.
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Old 11-05-12, 07:27 PM
  #39  
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Raleigh, NC. Excellent cycling community, both road and mountain. Hilly (I too hate flats). Close to real climbing-2 hours to the edge of the Smokey's. Great food. Micro brews. Four real seasons, none more than three months long. Great people. Business is diverse. Politics is diverse. Been here three years and will miss it when I leave after the first of the new year and return to SoCal.
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Old 11-05-12, 07:32 PM
  #40  
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Philadelphia because: Bike paths are everywhere and still being added constantly; There are lots of parks with paved/dirt roads; Everything is accesible via bicycle; Drivers are fairly considerate of cyclists.
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Old 11-05-12, 07:51 PM
  #41  
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Old 11-05-12, 07:55 PM
  #42  
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Having ridden my bike across the US, there are only 2 places I've found (but I haven't been to CA yet)

Asheville, NC - Amazing road biking and mountain biking. For road riding, you can ride right from town, or if you go north 20 minutes you can do 80 mile rides in the mountains and see less than 20 cars on flawless blacktop roads.

Traverse City, MI - No mountains, however there are tons of hills and tons of incredible views of the lakes. Biggest downside is winter
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Old 11-05-12, 09:01 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by Lamabb View Post
Where is the best place to live for cycling? Taking all factors into consideration.

For me, I believe an ideal place would include these factors:

- Living near a big city but not in one. (jobs/activity)
- Good hills/mountains ( I can't stand flat)
- Good cycling community
- Good Mountain bike trails AND good-condition roads
- Low traffic in immediate area

Victoria, Australia ... just north of Melbourne.

or

Lower Mainland BC

Last edited by Machka; 11-05-12 at 09:07 PM.
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Old 11-05-12, 11:04 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by robabeatle View Post
<s>Tucson</s>

Nevermind no real cycling here.
Yeah, when I've visited it seemed like it would be OK, but car culture seems pretty entrenched.

Bend, Oregon seemed pretty nice, but you'd have to deal with the winters.
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Old 11-05-12, 11:15 PM
  #45  
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I may live in one of the best areas for cycling that meets most of your criteria. Prescott, AZ!
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Old 11-05-12, 11:27 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by VA_Esquire View Post
Californina. NEXT!
yep
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Old 11-05-12, 11:43 PM
  #47  
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Las Vegas has many cyclist. Downside is that its always 110* outside during summer and 30* during winter
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Old 11-05-12, 11:52 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by PeregrineA1 View Post
Raleigh, NC. Excellent cycling community, both road and mountain. Hilly (I too hate flats). Close to real climbing-2 hours to the edge of the Smokey's. Great food. Micro brews. Four real seasons, none more than three months long. Great people. Business is diverse. Politics is diverse. Been here three years and will miss it when I leave after the first of the new year and return to SoCal.
2 hours to the edge of the Smokies may be optimistic. I am from Greensboro, and we are a good 3 hours from the Smokies, and we are an hour west of Raleigh at a minimum.
granted, mostly I agree with you. My wife and I are sick and tired of California and now I'm job hunting in NC. Lots of stuff to love about California, but my wife and I make a combined total of $230,000 a year and still cannot afford a single family home with any expectation of having any spare money, with only one kid.
The SF Bay rocks in many respects, but it is so insanely expensive that you really have to wonder at the logic of living here...but here is where the jobs are.
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Old 11-05-12, 11:52 PM
  #49  
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Grenoble, France. About 45 minutes to Alpe d'Huez, Col du Galibier, and col de la Croix, etc.
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Old 11-05-12, 11:57 PM
  #50  
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I currently live 15 mins east of Boulder, and it's pretty ideal. There's some snow in the winter, but also plenty of sunny days in the 60s, and I like getting the chance to change it up and xc ski for a few months. Denver is a huge metro area close by. The riding is amazing, bike culture is completely pervasive. The climbing is out of this world awesome. Can't say enough about it. If you live in Denver or Boulder, there are plenty of people who don't even own cars. Boulder itself is pricey, but 15 minutes out of it is much more affordable. Denver's pretty reasonable depending which neighorhood you pick, schools, etc. I find it's a lot easier to ride from my house here in Lafayette than when we lived in Denver. There, I usually ended up driving a little bit to ride.

Moved here from Tucson, where the riding was awesome, and true year-round riding was the case, so long as you didn't mind getting up early in the summer. Seriously, tho, there is no riding season. It just goes and goes and goes. The roads outside the city limits are mostly all new, and they all have great big bike lanes. It is *not* a city that you can get by in without a car, tho. Tucson is extremely affordable to rent or buy, tho it can be harder to find a job that pays well.

Before that, I lived in the the South Bay and a little ways up the peninsula in Menlo Park. I still go back there for work once a month. Also great year-round riding. It never gets too hot to ride, and is rarely too wet or cold in the winter. It is super super expensive. Unless you can do something that's valuable to the tech industry, it can be really hard to make ends meet here.
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