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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would like to pose a question to anyone interested in offering an opinion. Where is the best place to live in America for a cyclist?

Considerations would be percentage of the year that one can ride, hills, scenery, ease in and out of town into country, etc.

Your thoughts are appreciated.
 

· Le Misérable
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I liked Portland a lot, and despite the weather most cyclists agree with the Minneapolis post (I grew up there, but comparing the cycling scene in the late 80s with today isn't too useful). I lived in Boulder for a few years and that was pretty great, although drivers in the plains to the east of the Front Range were pretty hostile.

Although I've never ridden there, on a recent vacation I was impressed with the roadie possibilities in Vermont and NH.

I live in France now, and the riding is 100x better than anywhere in the US.:)
 

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I'm partial to northern Californa...Redding, on average, has 300+ sunny days per year, and some of the best variety cycling has to offer. From valley farming roads to the rolling foothills to the pine covered mountains (just to the nourth/east/west) there is a little something for everyone. I've heard parts of AZ are about the same...year-long riding with an abundance of routes from flat to climbing.
 

· Teach me how to Bucky
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Madison, WI

Except for that % of year you can ride part. :)

Bike lanes, bike paths, bike culture, cool LBSs, wicked hills to the the Southwest, hundred of miles of country highways, Trek factory half an hour away...
 

· Le Misérable
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nor_cal_rider said:
I'm partial to northern Californa...Redding, on average, has 300+ sunny days per year, and some of the best variety cycling has to offer. From valley farming roads to the rolling foothills to the pine covered mountains (just to the nourth/east/west) there is a little something for everyone. I've heard parts of AZ are about the same...year-long riding with an abundance of routes from flat to climbing.
Wow...I didn't know y'all got that kind of sun there! There must be a serious climactic change not too far north of you.
 

· Roll Out Jeremy
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I just can't pick one place

The Northwest has many places that are great but tend to be seasonal. Califonia may be best for season. I like the riding in Seattle. Portland is great too. I think the Northwest cities are progressive towards bicycle awareness, traffic laws and general cycling support. Smaller communities in the NW that are great for cycling, Hood river Ore., Redmond Wa., For a longer season I would look at California from the Bay area north...
 

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Brad the Bold said:
Madison, WI

Except for that % of year you can ride part. :)

Bike lanes, bike paths, bike culture, cool LBSs, wicked hills to the the Southwest, hundred of miles of country highways, Trek factory half an hour away...
+1.

If you can stand the winter or you like cross country skiing, Madison is an amazing place to ride.

Thanks to the Dairy industry, we've got miles of paved, mostly unused farm roads. Traffic density on some of these roads is like 5-10 cars an hour. Most drivers are really friendly, even our ******** are polite- gotta love the Scandinavian heritage.

From my door, I'm 20 minutes from downtown by bike or 20 minutes from rolling country roads. Gotta love that.
 

· turtle killer.
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nor_cal_rider said:
I've heard parts of AZ are about the same...year-long riding with an abundance of routes from flat to climbing.

We indeed do. Tucson's got a great collection of places to ride (including excellent mountain biking, if you're into that), pretty good infrastructure (from a 'shared shoulder' to proper 'bike lane' perspective, and it's growing every time they touch a street). With outstanding scenery in abundance. The worst, in general, we have to put up with is the heat (solved by an early morning start) and the usual idiotic drivers (generally only on weekdays I've noticed, also solved by riding before people head to work).

Although, I grew up in WI and I have to say.. the riding was also excellent there too. Unless you're into epic downhills at least.
 

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I recommend San Diego if the cost of living is acceptable there. You can ride in the local mountains, there is a velodrome in Balboa Park and lots of MTB trails and bicycle friendly roads to travel on. The weather is also a plus, with decent riding weather all year round, cool summers and relatively warm winters, and a short rainy season to deal with.
 

· Teach me how to Bucky
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buck-50 said:
+1.

If you can stand the winter or you like cross country skiing, Madison is an amazing place to ride.

Thanks to the Dairy industry, we've got miles of paved, mostly unused farm roads. Traffic density on some of these roads is like 5-10 cars an hour. Most drivers are really friendly, even our ******** are polite- gotta love the Scandinavian heritage.

From my door, I'm 20 minutes from downtown by bike or 20 minutes from rolling country roads. Gotta love that.
Yeah XC sking is a great alternative quiet way to get your aerobic fix during the Wisconsin winter. I snowshoe too.

I'd also like to add, great local bike clubs and casual group rides, and great local breweries (tuesday night rides at Capitol brewery, I think it is on the website) :thumbsup:
 

· old school drop out
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I've heard good things about Minneapolis and Madison as far as riding, but what hills do you guys climb? To me, it seems to flat to be considered a good place for all-around riding.

I lived in the SF Bay area for 9 years, and the road riding there is pretty amazing. The Santa Cruz Mountains have miles and miles of back country roads for riding. From the valley to the coast and back on many varied routes is hard to beat. Great weather too! The downside is that the cost of living and traffic make it an undesirable place. If you can afford to live near the hills and work from home, it's got to be one of the best.
 

· Teach me how to Bucky
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laffeaux said:
I've heard good things about Minneapolis and Madison as far as riding, but what hills do you guys climb? To me, it seems to flat to be considered a good place for all-around riding.

I lived in the SF Bay area for 9 years, and the road riding there is pretty amazing. The Santa Cruz Mountains have miles and miles of back country roads for riding. From the valley to the coast and back on many varied routes is hard to beat. Great weather too! The downside is that the cost of living and traffic make it an undesirable place. If you can afford to live near the hills and work from home, it's got to be one of the best.

No mountains, but Madison marks the edge of the glaciers during the last ice age. As such the south west corner of the state is very hilly with some country roads approaching 12% grade.

Here is the profile for the August Wisconsin Centurion.
https://www.centurioncycling.com/wp-content/themes/centurioncycling/images/WI100Profile.png

Also check out these rides in the same area:
https://www.horriblyhilly.com/home.html
https://www.vikingbikingclub.com/insane-terrain/index.htm

Fun stuff.
 
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