newbie manhattan route questions

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Anonymous's picture

hey all...i've just started cycling around manhattan this summer (i live in the battery park area) - and after making my way up to 125th-130th street (where the cherry walk ends) i just turn around and come back. i'm a single girl on a safe are these areas?

and where is the safest/best way to cross over to the east side so i can make a loop of the island? i figure if i throw in a few laps at central park i can up my mileage more.

i'm not quite ready for 50 mile rides as posted on the home page. thanks!

Anonymous's picture
Ron Gentile (not verified)
bike map

Stop at any bike shop in the city and pick up the NY cycling map. It shows routes recommended by the DOT, bike lanes, bike paths, etc.

I think 72nd St. is a good cross-town route. If you take the East side bike path don't take it north of 120th St. It ends abruptly at a somewhat dangerous underpass.

If you want to do a group ride but want a shorter ride, you can 1) do a 50-mile C ride and leave the ride early or 2) go on a 5 Borough Bike Club ride with a smiley face next to the ride listing (

Anonymous's picture
Alan (not verified)
Manhattan Bike Routes

I think it's perfectly safe to ride to the GWB (although not being a woman, I defer to those who are). From the end of Cherry Walk, you need to ride over to 12th Avenue (under the viaduct), and then follow that a few blocks past Fairway until you get to the beginning of the bike path past the sewage treatment plant/Riverbank Park (it is marked by bike route signs). From BPC to the GWB and back is about 22 miles.

The NYC Bike Map will show you the route around Manhattan. Basically, you go past the GWB, up the hill, and continue along the Henry Hudson Parkway to Dyckman Street. From there you have to walk your bike down the stairs and then continue on the streets through Inwood until you get to Harlem River Park. From there you have a path to 155th street, where it gets a little hairy until youget to St. Nicholas Avenue, to 120th St, to the East Side path. But you have to get off the path to ride on the streets between 63rd St and 34th, and even after that the path just isn't as good as the bike pathon the West Side. My bottom line: A circuit around Manhattan is 32 miles; BPC to Dyckman St and return is 27 miles. The West Side path is (generally) smooth and well maintained, and definitely more populous than the East Side.

The other thing for you to try is ride up the West Side path to 70th St, then go accross to Central Park. That will give you a variety from the West Side path.

Good riding!

Anonymous's picture
Kacy (not verified)

thanks guys! i appreciate it.

Anonymous's picture
Fendergal (not verified)

Since no women have replied so far, I'd like to offer that I ride to the GWB, through Harlem and the Bronx, and to the park by myself on a regular basis, and feel very comfortable doing so. I live near 125th and Riverside, and come and go from my building whenever I please. I don't have any firsthand experience with the bike/ped trails on the east side. My understanding is that they're nowhere near as nice as the Hudson River greenway. Try the Hudson River greenway as it approaches and goes under the GWB. Very pretty, and not very crowded, esp. during the week.

Anonymous's picture
Betsy (not verified)

I ride the greenway from Dyckman to 59th street fairly often and have never had a problem. The Harlem detour is, at most, annoying, but not unsafe. I tried the east side path once and really didn't like it.

Anonymous's picture
Chris Trivell (not verified)
bklyn too

yes, that TA map available for free about everywhere is excellent; you'll enjoy it. My favorite ride from the Battery is most certainly over the Brooklyn Bridge and into Prospect Park- the singlemost cosmopolitan place in this town-and ideally out Ocean Parkway or Bedford to the water, catch a breeze, catch a bite, and catch a train home. In time, consider route to Riis Park and over Jamaica Bay bridges to Howard Beach A train stop- 45 minutes on that train and you're at Bway/Nassau. But Prospect Park around and about and back is NYC****!

Anonymous's picture
Evan Marks (not verified)
NYC maps
Anonymous's picture
hal eskenazi (not verified)
safe rides

kacy, welcome aboard. in addition to the excellent suggestions you've received i recommend that you look at club rides that meet your current skills and will allow you to get acquainted with the city with people who know the areas.

cycling trips