Map my ride

One of the bridges that spares cyclists from more than a few Crossings of Doom in the Duke City.

I got my chores done early this morning, hopped on the rim-brake Soma Saga, and logged two-point-five hours of saddle time in the sun today. Fat city.

Quite a bit of the ride was on segregated multipurpose path. If you’ll have a squint at the city’s bike map you can trace my route:

South on the segregated Tramway Boulevard path to the bike-ped bridge (above), which crosses Tramway and hooks up with the Paseo de la Montañas trail, which parallels a drainage canal all the way to Interstate 40.

Southwest on the P de la M trail to another bike-ped bridge, this one over I-40. After a short run through a pocket park and a residential area you find yourself on the Indian School Road bike lane, an on-street deal.

The view from underneath one of the many bridges crossing the North Diversion Channel Trail.

West on Indian School to the UNM golf course, where I picked up the North Diversion Channel Trail.

North on the NDCT to Balloon Fiesta Park (and with a fine tailwind, I might add).

From the park I headed northeast through a light industrial area and indulged in a bit of lawlessness, riding against one-way traffic on the I-25 frontage road to get to the Tramway Road bike lane. This is a popular stretch with the local road toads; it rises from 5,200 feet at I-25 to 6,120 feet at the County Line Barbecue, and there are only two stoplights, both early on. It’s a nice, steady, half-hour climb that steepens up a bit around the 5-mile marker. Well, a half-hour for me, anyway.

At this point you can get back to El Rancho Pendejo any number of ways, depending upon how the legs feel and what else needs doing once you get off the bike. I chose the least attractive but most direct route — the bike lane on Tramway Boulevard proper rather than the segregated path to the east — and added one last little climb at Manitoba that loops around just below the Embudito trailhead to Comanche Road and home, where the lawnmower was waiting.

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14 Responses to “Map my ride”

  1. khal spencer Says:

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Well, not that kind of segregated. I see mostly white people cycling the trails, but that has more to do with the activity failing to attract our brethren and sistren of color. Naturally, I blame Obama.

    • larryatcycleitalia Says:

      I’m uneasy with the entire “separate but equal” idea when it comes to cycling as transportation. Not that I mind a car-free place to ride, but too often it’s looked upon by motorists as the ONLY place one should be riding. How many times have we heard, “Get on the bike path where you belong!” yelled out as the angry, impatient motorist roars away?
      We already have paved routes that go pretty much everywhere, why can’t all the road users simply share them? We need to start pushing the idea that the “roads are for everyone” with drivers-ed, if not sooner.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      I think the separated routes are good for noobs. They provide an opportunity to learn some skills in a (relatively) fear-free environment. I learned how to cycle in the ‘burbs, in Canada, Texas and Colorado, but there were fewer cars around back then.

      Separated routes are also a nice respite from the usual pitched battle for three feet near the curb. It’s pleasant to be able to relax a bit — though you have to keep the radar turned on to avoid skaters, joggers, dog-walkers, the iPlodders, homeless folks snoozing in the shade next to loaded shopping carts, etc.

      What would be truly helpful is prosecuting the shit out of distracted/impaired drivers, who often dodge all responsibility for killing cyclists. Also, and too, throttling back on the infotainment systems being shoveled into vehicles. It’s not a living room, it’s a multiton vehicle and the operators thereof need to pay attention to it and where it’s going.

      • larryatcycleitalia Says:

        I can’t help but think of how many times in Italy we’ve seen Mom and Dad out on bikes with little kids still learning to ride in a straight line – on narrow roads with plenty of traffic. The kids seem to learn early-on that if they ride a straight line motorists will give them enough room. And yeah, I know Michele Scarponi was just killed, but this one really seems to be a case of “I never saw him” as the driver was a friend of the family. How’d ya like to be that guy – the driver who killed the local pro?
        The car and phone lobbyists will do anything to avoid any laws regarding distracted driving, though here in Iowa they just moved the use of cell phones while driving into a “primary” category so the cops can stop someone just for that – they don’t have to see you doing anything else illegal now.
        A local cop/cyclist here says he can’t wait for the law to go into effect (July 1?) so he can start handing out citations!

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        Larry, you are right as rain about car and phone lobbyists. AZ just passed a law forbidding texting and driving, but only if you are under 18. Phone lobbyists must bribe better than the private prison crew.

  2. Pat O'BRien Says:

    The bike-ped bridge looks great. The chain like fencing looks a little ominous. I can see it prevents folks from throwing shit onto the road. But, what is coming from above? No worries, I would ride across it.

  3. Joby Dynneson Says:

    I used to ride some of that when I worked at Albuquerque Schwinn back when i was a pup. I really thought that the Duke City was going to be a model for progressive living back then.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Hah. I remember Albuquerque Schwinn. San Mateo, yeah? Used to sponsor Rio Grande Racing Team, of which I was a member, briefly, when I lived in Fanta Se.

      The cycling infrastructure here is pretty good, Joby. Dwarfs what we had available in Bibleburg, which is not a whole lot smaller than Duke City. The drivers are clinically insane and often impaired, but that seems to be the case pretty much everywhere.

      I’m not sure how I’d describe the town politically. I haven’t lived here long enough to make a proper judgment. Certainly not as right-wing as Bibleburg, but it ain’t Boulder, either.

      The city and state both are hampered by economies in the toilet. Smart young folks are fleeing New Mexico like it’s on fire, which it often is.

      And a shit economy coupled with emigration is a perpetual-motion machine. “Who wants to move there? No jobs, and everyone’s leaving!” Solutions will require deep thought, a skill that’s in short supply nationwide.

      • larryatcycleitalia Says:

        “The drivers are clinically insane and often impaired, but that seems to be the case pretty much everywhere.” but some places are far worse than others. My experiences in the desert southwest USA have been the worst by far. Does too much sun cause this?

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        For my money, New Mexican drivers are the nation’s worst. Though I’ve never been to Florida, and I hear they’re pretty damn’ bad there, too.

        “Aggressively bad” is what we have here. Like “Mad Max,” only without the driving skills and a higher body count.

  4. Joby Dynneson Says:

    Aggressive is how I describe drivers in New Mexico, in Montana we strive for visibility so the distracted and impaired know to not run you over, in New Mexico I always wanted to be invisible so the drivers wouldn’t aim at you.

  5. Carl Duellman Says:

    that is some blue sky. we’ve had sky like that this spring. polarized sunglasses make it even bluer. they are my rose colored glasses.

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