Friday, April 2, 2010

Grand Rapids: Bicycling Top 50

Back in October, I reported on the fact that Grand Rapids, MI was named by the League of American Bicyclists as a "Bike Friendly City."  I was shocked at the time, since few Grand Rapids roads are at all bike friendly in my opinion.  We don't have a single bike lane, and most roads don't even have a shoulder.

But then I realized that we do have a lot of bike paths in and around the city, which I have loved taking advantage of, and bike advocacy is starting to gain ground with our cycling-supportive Mayor.  Still, we have a long way to go.

So, as I was reading my May issue of Bicycling magazine, I was both surprised and delighted to see that Grand Rapids ranked #36 in the Bicycling Top 50 cities in which to ride!

I sometimes dream of living in Portland, Boulder, Moab, San Francisco or even Chicago, where cycling is a more accepted part of the culture and where motorists are much more aware of cyclists being on the roads.  But as one of the top 50 cities in the nation, maybe I actually have it pretty good right here in GR.

Another Michigan city - Ann Arbor - also made the list at #14!  I went to college in Ann Arbor (Go Blue!), but I wasn't into cycling at the time.  I only rode my bike on campus.  I kind of regret that I missed out on experiencing #14 while I lived there!

On a somewhat related note, I said, "To heck with my tri training workout today!  I'm going mountain biking!"  And I did.  The hubby and I drove up north of town to the Cannonsburg State Game Area and took advantage of 7.5 miles of great trail.  I only crashed once, while attempting a stream crossing that I've never done before.  And by crash, I mean that I took it too slowly, stalled out climbing up the far side, and gently tipped over into some mud.  That was the only time I failed to clip out of my new pedals when I wanted to.  We were both exhausted at the end, but we had so much fun!

Friday, April 2, 2010
Mountain Biking - 7.5 miles
I was supposed to do a tempo run workout today.  I think I still got a pretty great tempo workout - it was just on a bike on dirt trails instead of running down a road.


  1. Hey, that's exciting news for you and Grand Rapids.

    Sounds like a great day for you today. It sounds like you enjoyed the true essence of the bike. Well Done.


  2. I live in a similarly under developed city in Australia, where we all dream of living in Melbourne, where the cycling infrastructure is not too far behind Copenhagen's. But everywhere, cycling is better than ever, and will never be as good as it could possibly be. Even those famous European cycling cities are a long way from perfect. I took a road bike to Salzburg, and was dismayed that cycling was only catered for in and around town. Keep enjoying what you have there!

  3. Woo-hoo!! Rochester made the top 50!! (barely)

    Amazing what we take for granted. A little perspective can be so enlightening.