Find a Bike Route for Your Commute

Last week, Google added an interactive bicycle route mapping feature to their popular Google Maps. Still in its beta version, the feature is designed to "include as much bike trail data as possible, provide efficient routes, allow riders to customize their trip, make use of bike lanes, calculate rider-friendly routes that avoid big hills and customize the look of the map for cycling to encourage folks to hop on their bikes," according to Peter Smith.

The good news for Ann Arbor bike commuters and bike enthusiasts is that Tree Town is already part of their mapped data, so you can try out their suggested routes right away. Although I wasn't in love with the route they mapped for my commute to work, the map did highlight -- in bright green -- some paved trails that I would definitely use for commuting on two wheels. The AADL also has books on the rise of cycling, such as Pedal Power by J. Harry Wray and Bicycling Magazine's Guide to Bike Touring by Doug Donaldson.

Comments

This is really cool! I did not know this! I also like how Google asks for feedback if the routes aren't suitable for bikes, etc.



manz, you bring up a good point I forgot to include regarding using caution with these routes, and always following the rules of the road. This tool is adapting and improving constantly, but it's not perfect. Especially in big cities like New York City and Chicago, the route may sometimes use roads where bikes are prohibited, or the streets are craggy and tough for road bikes especially, so always use caution.

darla, thanks for the link! That's a great book with some scenic routes around Washtenaw county and a few thorough the city of Ann Arbor as well.