Discovering more peaceful routes

By : Lowrah · August 13, 2011

I recently read on Let's Go Ride A Bike that Dottie was "In Search of the Most Peaceful Commute."

Every once in awhile I bike out to my doctor's office in St. Louis Park.  I pretty much use the same route every time.  Now, I don't know about you, but my commute can get a little ho-hum due to repetition.  To keep it fresh, I like to take different side streets and ask others what their favorite routes are.  I don't ride out to SLP that often so I'm used to turning off of Cedar Lake Parkway to Cedar Lake Rd.  I ride on the street (the only other option is sidewalk!) up to a four way stop, then through a tunnel to pass under Hwy 100.  Cars in the tunnel move pretty quickly, and the posted speed limit is 40.  I normally just take the lane and try to communicate with drivers, and I have not had problems.

But just because I haven't had problems, doesn't mean I wouldn't mind a safer, more peaceful route!

SLP

This is the four-way stop. You can see that if I continued straight ahead, I would pass under Hwy 100, biking in traffic. But what's that, to the left?

Cedar Lake Trail

I can't believe I never noticed the path on the left before!

Cedar Lake Trail

The most exciting part is directly to the left of the path, which I didn't really notice until these joggers popped out of the bushes...

... the Cedar Lake Trail!

Cedar Lake Trail

This is a bad photo. I'm on the path taking the photo, and the Cedar Lake Trail is on the other side of the railroad tracks.

Cedar Lake Trail

On the way home I just hopped the little barricade, carried by bike over the tracks, and bypassed that stupid section of road with potholes and fast cars. Woo!  (This photo is facing the opposite direction of the others.  I am under the highway, looking back.)

Have you had any discoveries like this on your routes?  I remember how amazed I was the first time I discovered the bike/ ped bridge that goes from Bryant Ave. to the Lyndale/ Loring Park trail, near Franklin.  Share your shortcuts and peaceful routes with us!

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I pick my bike up and walk over the tracks at that very location every day on my way to/from work. It's an extremely logical and convenient place for a railroad crossing. Everyone agrees, except BNSF, I suppose, who makes an effort about once/year to keep people from crossing there by constructing fences or erecting signs, etc. But it is all in vain. The signs last about a week before they're vandalized, and the fences just make the illegal crossers have to go a little further. So many people cross the tracks here, that it's probably more of a safety hazard than if they'd just make it an official crossing.... But from the railroad's perspective, allowing cyclists to cross provides them with no benefit whatsoever, but they assume some risk and maintenance obligations, so it's not surprising that they aren't interested.
Posted by Reuben on


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