A ride that touches every single Pittsburgh neighborhood
I am planning on attending. I am a lone rider and would like to start doing group rides.
How do I know if I am fast, intermediate, or slow? Will that be figured out that morning? I cycle daily and every weekend do long rides such as Greenfield>Glassport>Montour to Corrapolis>back to Greenfield, or do centuries down the GAP or Panhandle. But I do get burned often by cyclist coming home down the Jail trail sometimes and I bet I wouldn’t stack up well with our more experienced riders on this board. I guess I would be conservative and go with the intermediate group.
Well, given that I’m leading the group, it’s not going to be terribly fast. And you can always drop back to the slow group if it’s too much for you.
The cue sheet is here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0SsCVLENRv4TUtXbGZqTjZRcVU/edit?usp=sharing
I’ll bring printed copies.
Jon or somebody: can you summarize the changes relative to last years’ route?
For those wondering how long this ride will take, we start at 8:00am and in 2012 when we did it as one stretched-out group, I finished at 5:15pm (I was not the slowest, but close), and in 2013 when we did it as two groups, and I served as sweep for the slower group, and the weather was in the 80s, I finished last at 7:30pm. I’m leading the slow group this year. I hope to finish no later than 7:30 this year. So yes, if you do the whole thing, it’s a long day. Bring your persistence.
Note that the route never gets very far from downtown Pittsburgh, so even if you’re not sure you can do the whole thing, I suggest you come out, give it a try, and if you choose to drop out partway, it won’t be a very long ride back to the starting point.
I’m pretty sure that the people in the slow group have the most fun.
The only real changes are near Ridgemont (mile 26) and at the end. We run up to the Parkway Center Mall to reach Ridgemont. It was left out of the neighborhood last year. And the end is at Arsenal Park, so we can hang out, instead of just riding back to the beginning.
There are other corrections to the cue sheet compared to last year, basically places where I’ve manually corrected errors in the autogenerated sheet, that don’t correspond to real changes in the route.
tomorrow! 8am! see you all at Penn & Butler in Lawrenceville!
So this thread has a lot of words. Where can I find a gpx? I will be there.
This was so well organized. Thanks to everyone who organized it, volunteered, rode.. Everyone involved. That was not an easy ride, but I rode on so many roads I have never ridden before. Thanks!
A thousand thank you’s to the organizers & support team for the cookies and all your hard work. Definitely a fun and extremely well organized ride around the city.
I think I’ll go take a nap now….
In the beginning.
Yes, a very well organized ride!
And I got to see parts of the city I had known nothing about.
Ended up getting a flat literally the block after we rolled out. 2.5″ screw in one side of the tire and out the other. Eventually got it fixed up. We skipped going over the West End bridge, got a bit lost on the north side (well, we knew where we were just not where we were supposed to be on the cue sheet). Ended up connecting with another couple who had a flat in McKees Rocks. Ended up losing them on Noblestown and caught up with the rest of the “slow” group at Brews on Broadway. Emma and I cut out early after climbing Main St to Bloomfield. We were so beat and our home was so close. Wanted to leave something in the tank for tomorrow’s pinball ride.
Thanks to everyone involved with this. Great day.
Things I like about this ride:
– It’s OCD nature. Not just in planning the ride, making sure it touches every one of the 80+ neighborhoods, but also the large number of rest stops, the large array of snacks there, free.
– Seeing old friends that I only get to see about once a year, that I know almost exclusively through this ride.
– Jake McCrea’s kindness and encouragement. I was planning to abandon at the beginning, because my rear derailleur cable broke just as I was arriving at the doughboy statue. But Jake helped me diagnose the problem & arranged for a derailleur cable to be waiting at his garage. So I did the first half of the ride with 3 gears. It felt so good to be able to shift the rear cluster again.
– Seeing Matt and Jenny’s kids grow up year after year.
– The surprising difficulty of the ride. It’s a lot of climbing, very hard, and deceptive because you get sort of close to the end but then veer off again. Jake’s garage seems like a very long ways, but you’re still only halfway through.
– Getting to know parts of Pittsburgh I’d never seen before and seeing the change year after year. There’s a lot of development happening in parts of the city. I love seeing the entire city, as a whole, in one day.
– Seeing the potential in Homewood, Lincoln-Lemington, and Larimer — lots of empty lots, abandoned or mostly unused houses and businesses — in an area of Pittsburgh that is, rarely, flat. That is where the next big development will happen. But it’s been a long time coming.
That was a very good ride, and Jake did a good job leading the group.
I was a bit intimidated at first showing up on my urban commuter bike falling behind going up East Street. But the rest was fun and it showed me parts of the city I never ventured in before. I never knew there was more than the East End, South Side, and North Shore. Just joking.
Thanks to everybody who put that together. I always ride the city solo and tried my first group ride. I should join again next year.
“- Seeing the potential in Homewood, Lincoln-Lemington, and Larimer — lots of empty lots, abandoned or mostly unused houses and businesses — in an area of Pittsburgh that is, rarely, flat. That is where the next big development will happen. But it’s been a long time coming.”
Jon, lets hope that the 30 million grant Larimer landed for development early this summer helps this along and spurs the development.
@shooflypie – For another crack at riding up East Street, join me on F8/29 for a law-abiding Critical Mass ride. In recent months, we’ve gotten six to eight riders, tackling a somewhat more difficult part of the city. No corking, stopping at lights and signs, moderate pace, just aiming to go the length of East and back down on Perrysville. I will have a separate thread about it here shortly, if I didn’t post it already.
OK, I’m done threadjacking.
But for those who did the neighborhoods ride, suggestions on where to take CM on future rides would be much appreciated.
Thanks to everyone who came out to spend a summer day with us. This is something we look forward to every year and a highlight of our summer. Among other things I could say, it’s always great to see old friends and make some new ones.
A hearty thanks goes out to my fellow organizers and contributors (too many to list!), who made or bought a staggering amount of cookies, brownies, pepperoni rolls, energy gels, soda, bananas, Gatorade, pastries, candies, trail mix and more. The rest stops were a smorgasbord of everything a hungry cyclist could want. Also, the mapping and other logistical work is significant, and should not go without recognition.
It was especially nice to have a bathroom and yard at the first rest stop, thanks to Jen’s efforts and the Sheraden United Methodist Church, which opened up its doors for us without hesitation.
As in years past Elite Runners and Walkers contributed cases of expensive energy gels for the good of the cause, which should be recognized when considering which local businesses to support.
Let it also be known that Pro Bikes, LLC took the unprecedented step of sending a fully stocked box truck, mechanic, tent and a ton of food and drinks to the first rest stop. We asked for some energy gels and without hesitation got a rest stop commensurate with what shops send to high profile charity events with 500 to 5,000 participants. That level of generosity and support for our region’s cycling scene should long be remembered when the time comes to purchase equipment and supplies.
As mentioned at the beginning of the ride, if anyone has feelings of guilt about the lack of entry fee, please make a contribution to Bike Pittsburgh in the name of the Webb, Heckbert, Reitzell, Franzen and/or McCrea families. The patronage of Pro Bikes, LLC and Elite Runners and Walkers is also highly encouraged for the reasons stated above.
We hope to see everyone again next year!
Yup. Slow group had fun. We were 7 people at one point, but 3 people did all 72 miles, finishing at 7:10pm. Thanks for the food and help at the rest stops!
This was so awesome, and I’m really glad we gave it a shot. I am so not a group rider, even though I do sometimes enjoy it. It takes me a long time to warm up to people, and I mostly ride alone or with Q, so I’m not great at riding in a group.
Once I got over the sort of stressy feeling of trying to “catch up” to a group after Q’s epic flat and just started riding, it was really fun.
Jake, your shop is IMMACULATE and beautiful. I love a neatly organized toolset so much!
a) sneaking through the hole in the fence, documented by Paul above.
b) penis pump box on the side of a road in Windgap (“advanced penis enhancement system”)
c) block party somewhere….. past Brookline? I forget where. But a couple kids had foam swords and shouted “people! there are people! our lives have meaning!”
d) Regent Square rest stop, featuring eight year old neighbor Teddy, who showed us lots of bike tricks and told us that if we wanted to see some REALLY cool tricks, we should google Danny MacAskill.
Thanks so much to the folks who organized this, led the groups, arranged and volunteered at the stops, and came up with the idea.
I’m totally in for next year, and gonna crank out the whole thing.
It certainly does look like the slow group had a lot of fun, or at least had time to take a lot of pictures.
Where did you have to go through a hole in a fence? We didn’t.
We could have gone about 20 feet down the tracks to go through the gate, but there was a hole in the fence right where we crossed the tracks, so hey!
This ride was incredible. Thanks to Jacob, John, Paul for leading and especially Jacob & crew for really bringing this event together.
Poppyseed hamantashen & apricot rugelach take the cake for the most surprising (and very appreciated) rest stop snacks I’d ever seen.
The ride beat me up good. but well worth it. I’ve lived here forever and I am still surprised to see how much there is to discover and new views to enjoy.
This ride will be Saturday, August 29 starting from Doughboy Square in Lawrenceville at 8:00 a.m. It will be about the same as last year, although the last rest stop will be in Squirrel Hill (Nate and Mary moved to Seattle and can’t host the stop, unfortunately), and we will avoid the abandoned section of Parkwood St. due to its poor condition. I will post a full ride description here later.
Yes indeed; glad you can make it. Here is what I just submitted to the Bike Fest calendar:
This is a road bike ride of around 72 miles which touches all 90 City of Pittsburgh neighborhoods (as well as a few suburbs). It’s not “every neighborhood that can be reached without too much climbing” or “every neighborhood where there are yuppies, coffee shops and yoga studios,” rather it is EVERY NEIGHBORHOOD. Be advised that the course involves between 5,500 and 7,000 feet of climbing, depending on whose GPS you believe, and is by no means an easy ride.
We will have three (3) ride leaders and three (3) groups, which will essentially be the “fast” group, the “intermediate” group and the “slow” group. This is not a race and the ride leaders will make reasonable efforts to keep their groups together. However, given the distance and hills it is NOT a “no drop” ride. In other words, we cannot and will not babysit riders who are out of their league and get dropped repeatedly. For riders who wish to cruise along at their own pace, that is all well and good. Cue sheets will be distributed at the start, but you are otherwise on your own, and don’t expect anyone to be waiting for you at the rest stops.
We mostly avoid busy roads, but a few roads will not be ideal for bicycles. There will be rest and food stops at various points, and about half way through the ride there is an aide station with food, drinks, a bathroom, bike repair tools, etc. for folks who stay with the ride leader(s). There are some serious descents; a properly functioning bike with good brakes is needed.
There are many good points to “bail out” and return to the start if you want to do part of the ride. If you plan to do the whole ride, anticipate a long day on the bike and plan accordingly; complaints such as “Can we hurry up, I have to get home to feed my ferret” will not be well taken.
To attend, please send an email to Jacob McCrea at jcm250b at juno dot com. There is no entry fee and we are not asking for a donation, but if you would like to contribute food or drinks, or give something to BikePGH in our names, that would be appreciated. Email me to discuss contributing food or drinks, if inclined.
The ride will obey all laws and traffic devices; running stop signs and the like will be condemned. Helmets are required. Other than an all-day storm, rain does NOT cancel the ride. Riders participate at their own risk and are solely responsible for their own safety, and acknowledge as much through their participation. The aide stations will be stocked with food, but bring money for the bus if you bonk or have a mechanical problem, and bring enough tubes for a few flats. Again, please note the considerable climbing and pack light! Hope you can join us!
Parkwood was fun (hey, I caught some air!) but I can see why maybe there should be an alternate route…
+1 on Parkwood fun
And is the Bloomfield bridge/Bigelow Blvd reconstruction project going to impact the route?
We’re still working on sorting out the rest stops. Once that’s done, I’ll update the route for 2015 and post it here. Everything should be set in stone within the next two weeks or so.
My wife created a Facebook event for it: https://www.facebook.com/events/403103906546457/403411666515681/. Please share it with anyone who might be interested!
@mattre, check that that facebook event’s not posted to a group, restricted or non-public–i’m getting a ‘you can’t see that’ message.
Still getting this:
Sorry, this content isn’t available right now
The link you followed may have expired, or the page may only be visible to an audience you’re not in.
Sorry about the Facebook page…it was accidentally created as a private event, and Facebook won’t allow it to be switched to public. My wife killed the old one and created a new one here: https://www.facebook.com/events/867195546648816/867234303311607/
Ever wonder how a neighborhood got it’s name?
If anyone plans to attend this but has not emailed me (jcm250b at juno dot com) or confirmed on Facebook, please do so ASAP so we can determine how much food to have on hand. Also, if anyone wants to bring a case or two of Coke (not diet), Gatorade, other drinks, bananas, cookies, energy bars/gels, etc., that would be greatly appreciated.
I invited some folks from Ft Lauderdale FL. I’d be really surprised if any make the trip, but maybe not that surprised. If I hear from any of them that they’re seriously into it, I’ll let you know.
I can see this being a real draw for people, now and into the future.
It was mentioned on the WESA report this morning about BikeFest events.
Here is the 2015 route: http://ridewithgps.com/routes/10018448
There are two changes from previous years: Parkwood has been scrubbed due to its conditions, and there is an out-and-back along Forbes to make the third rest stop.
For anyone printing cue sheets: Beware of the stretch up Mifflin Road. The mapping software still thinks it is closed, so I needed to manually draw those lines which is likely to give funky cues in that section.
Sad to miss this ride (will be out of town gettin radical elsewhere) but so happy that it’s happening and that y’all are maintaining this great tradition. Post photos!!!!
I am not planning on printing cue sheets for everybody this year. I plan to print one for myself, but will mainly rely on GPS.
I notice that the ride takes us up the Bloomfield Bridge, which is under construction, though the announcement is that the southbound direction is closed, so we should be fine. May encounter some issues there.
Really looking forward to it! See you Saturday at 8!
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