2019 Riding Conditions Report
I agree Paul. Just finished a Bike the Burgh Tour with cyclists visiting from Holland and Poland. It was a fine morning for riding and experiencing the slow temperature drop of more than 10 degrees. Winds of 27mph were only a problem when we parked our bike as they blew over a few times.
I rode this morning, beautiful riding weather for February, 55 degrees, blue skies, sunshine….. but the key to a successful ride in windy conditions is doing your pre-flight homework before heading out. When I woke this morning the first thing I did was check the WX maps before breakfast. It showed the rain was ending around 8:30am, sky clearing at 9:00am with SW winds around 10mph, then at 11:00am the winds would be up to 20mph with clouds rolling in, and buy noon the winds would be between 25mph and 50mph. So while the best time to ride was 9:00am to 11:00am, but most importantly was to map your route so you are heading into the 10mph headwind on your way out and having the 20mph tailwind on your way back. Its pretty cool to have 20-25mph tailwinds push you home, there were times I was actually coasting because the gusts were like winds in my sails. Anytime after 1:00pm the 25mph to 50mph gusts can be dangerous to ride for a variety of reasons.
Windmageddon taking its toll. Swinburn st.closed bc of landslide.
North Shore trail from Penitentiary to Heinz field was full of small debris but easily rideable. I rode over some and tried to kick what I could but didn’t have time to stop and foot sweet the debris.
Roofing shingles from Morgan apartments all over north shore trail from the windstorm. I emailed the management company yesterday. Haven’t heard back. They’d best be getting their roof checked.
careful of broken glass near the bus stop, on the sidewalk, greenfield ave to second ave. Did my best to remove it…
Thanks about the broken glass, @mfriday.
Snow was pretty light this morning, but on Hot Metal Bridge there was a fair bit of accumulation, especially on the lower (shaded) portion of the southern ramp.
Rode the n shore trail end to end. Mainly clear. I was surprised. What snow there is is more liquid than solid. Easy ride.
Downtown roads are clear. Saw a light coating of snow on the Point State Park walkways, as well as some more significant buildup on the Ft Pitt bridge and West Carson sidewalks, the latter which already had bike tracks.
Jail trail has a thin layer of snow with ice underneath. It’s ridable with good tires. Pocussett is similar. Hot Metal Bridge is a bit worse, with thicker snow and more bumpiness due to footprints.
The streets are clear except for Pocussett between Hobart and the trail.
Someone took the trouble to roll down his window and yell “four feet!” at me heading the other way, on Wightman, getting the law wrong. Then someone else passed me fully on the other side of the street at a stop sign on Greenfield, also getting the law wrong.
Eagle Lake is no joke. Rode through it today. Maybe 3″ deep in some places. It has its own ecosystem now — there’s algae growing in.
Just so disappointed that this hasn’t been fixed. It seems that unless a local government gets involved, nothing will happen. And as it rains more and more with climate change it’s not a matter of if the lake will be there, but how deep.
rode the EFT for a first time in a long time. someone (the city?) put up nice wayfinding signs/green and white pavement paint right where the EFT crosses 376 exit at PNC first ave building. However, the nice signs/paint peter out at smithfield and the only wayfinding sign nebulously points forward.
Is there going to be a plan to point people down the mon wharf switchback with additional wayfinding signs once down there? The only thing down there is a “Walkway to stadiums” sign.
Rode from Millvale to Homestead yesterday. To echo Eric’s post from last week, Eagle Lake is pretty bad. I haven’t ridden to Homestead since mid-November, so with not a whole lot of precipitation recently, I thought the “lake” might be small/nonexistent. Not a chance. It’s deep with algae everywhere, plus it stinks too. Otherwise, pretty nice day for a ride. Really enjoy Mon Wharf switchback ramp connection to Point State Park.
And given that it has only rained 0.3″ in the last 11 days, when the spring rains and summer storms hit, that part of the trail will be impassable. Might as well stock it with fish and sell permits.
I had a wild idea on Twitter a couple weeks ago that we could line up a bunch of wooden pallets, rope them together and stake them down, along the edge of the path. You couldn’t ride on them, but you might be able to walk a bike on them. I figure start with three or four we could somehow lug down there from the nearest street crossing, as a proof of concept, and if it proves workable, it shouldn’t be too difficult to add to it. This shouldn’t cost much of anything beyond some rope and stakes. People pitch pallets all the time.
Who exactly is responsible for this part of the trail? Is it the city of Pittsburgh or whatever borough is over there? Is it SVTC (or are they the other side of the Waterfront?).
Basically a stakeholder really needs to get involved to fix this at a higher level, because it’s either going to be bullying the corporation next door to “do the right thing” or it’s going to involve a lot more money than building a trench to absorb runoff.
^eagle lake: I remember hearing that they (FoTR?) plan on building an earthen/gravel ramp to raise the trail, and yesterday I noticed some surveyor stakes along this stretch with grade markings on them. If I’m interpreting this right, the trail is to be about three feet higher at the middle of the lake and gently tapper out over a 100 ft. run. I also assume they will put drainage pipes under the ramp so it doesn’t just become a dam.
To answer Eric, the trail group managing the trail there is Friends of the Riverfront.
Who ask for winter to return?
Large rocks on n shore trail by truck Depot between Heinz and millvale. Seems like part of river Ave got undermined and rocks ran with water across the trail.
Here-ish location wise.
Near 1231 North Shore Trail, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
The run off was there well before the cement plant was there. I believe there are underground streams, but I’m not a geologist. I used to ride through there before the cement plant and the trail was there. It was always like this after rains.
The trail wasn’t built correctly. It should have been graded much higher. Any other method to resolve this problem than elevating the trail is a waste of time. That’s like asking someone to make the river wider or deeper by the convention center.
Today a local non-profit (forgot who) was planting about 20-30 new trees (with pink flowers!) right where River Avenue starts (where the trail meets the Morgan apartment buildings). It looks amazing.
Also, both “holes” under the 9th street bridge at the north shore trail are open again. No more needing to go up the arconic/alcoa ramp.
Tuesday night, Eagle Lake was edge to edge, maybe 4” deep in spots. My return trip, later evening, there were several frogs IN the trail, chirping merrily away.
I took a good hard look at the fenced in lot that blocks water egress there. I swear, you would not need much of a trench at all, maybe only 30 or 40 feet long and a single backhoe width wide, running at a narrow angle from the fence, to allow water to drain. I don’t think it has to be all the way to the river, only far enough away from the trail to let it permeate into the ground. Could probably do it in 10 minutes. Hell, throw a shovel over the fence and scale it, a human could probably dig it in a couple hours time.
At this point Eagle Lake may be considered a wetland with federal/state protection as per The Clean Water Act.
Maybe the US Army Corps of Engineers can build a bridge as this is a strategic byway…PGH to DC….
The baby ducks and geese are hatched and wandering around the trails with their aggressive parents.
Real bike rack at E. Lib Home Depot. That only took 20+ years!
Yeah. I know the pic is sideways. Tilt your head.
Um, the blue lines are for the clearance for side-lifts on vehicles adapted for wheelchairs. I’m pretty sure that’s an ADA violation.
East Street, on the hill leading down from Perry High School & Perrysville Ave, has several new large square asphalt patches. This is the abatement project for lead water lines that started up on the stretch of Perrysville Ave just south of the city line last year. The patches aren’t particularly dangerous, but there might be a bit of loose gravel lying about.
How would I get from Aspinwall to Garfield on Saturday because of the marathon?
The Pittsburgh Marathon publishes a map for cyclists-
This thread was fun before Iguana decided to grab every other tag (and make odd posts with this own tags) and call people whiners who disagree with him.
In an effort to preserve my inner peace (clearly this shouldn’t get to me, but it does) I’m not going to check this thread anymore.
Good luck with the game.
Asked the Millvale boro manager a few weeks ago to reopen parking spots in the riverfront Park now that the truck park people are MIA and not reopening. Was told no because they are still paying rent.
Then this happened:
9+ more parking spaces!
That food truck park seemed like such a cool concept when it was announced, but it ended up basically being a bunch of picnic tables and porta-johns in a cramped parking lot, with not much of a river view. And lots of exhaust from the food trucks.
It’s cool that people are at least trying to put more interesting stuff along the rivers and trails, but if they had an actual building, I think it would have worked out way better.
The issue also is that the owners also just ghosted. Don’t respond to any inquiries including the Borough. They were obviously losing money and also are putting their efforts in other restaurants they own. But the ghosting on the Borough is not cool.
Also part of grant st closed for 2 months.
During the marathon, Will it be ok to cross over the path of the marathon (Red lines)? From Morningside, can I cross Negley Ave at Stanton Ave. as well as Penn Ave. or Friendship Ave. as that would be the easiest way into Garfield from Aspinwall.
Generally yes. The key is to talk to the volunteers or police who are working it. Get their permission. And don’t try to cross when it is full of runners. Will be impossible and you will be yelled at. Also dangerous for the runners. You’re trying to cross at about mile 22. The marathon starts at 705 am. The elite runners will be there at about 845ish and the big herd probably from 915 onward for a good hour. I think if you go after 11 am you’ll be safe. People cross all the time. It’s just being smart.
And walk your bike across the path. Some police get very angry if you try to ride across it even if there are no runners.
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