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Planning Your Bicycle Route

Plan your route accordingly - 

The best route for a car does not make the best route for a bike 

Awareness of Traffic

  • Know where you’ve gotten into trouble in the past & avoid those areas if possible

    • Multi-lane roads pose greater risk and higher speed traffic


Scenic Spots Along the Way / Destinations (lookouts, landmarks, etc.)

  • These are perfect for breaks and refueling 


If you don’t plan to carry all of your water or food, know where you can stop along your ride:

  • Gas stations

  • Cafes & Eateries

  • Bike Shops


Some mountain bike areas have directional trails. Be sure to pay attention to this when you are planning your route. Also, pay attention to the required skill level of the trails. There will be ratings of beginner, intermediate, and expert. Similar to ski trails, most mountain bike trails follow a color coding system of green (beginner), blue (intermediate), and black (expert). 


When planning for an off-road or on-road ride, look at route maps ahead of time

  • Decipher what your goal is for the ride

  • Do you want hills or not?

  • Determine which route has more or less elevation gain

  • Pay attention to the estimated time to complete & gauge if the ride fits into the time you have allowed

  • Know what you’re getting into and plan for it

    • Food

    • Water

    • Lights


Apps that can help you plan the best route based on bicycle traffic

Strava (multi-use platforms)

Gravelmap.com (gravel riding specific)

Ride with GPS (multi-use platforms)

Trail Forks (mountain bike specific) 

Garmin Connect / Garmin Computers (multi-use platforms)