Revolutionise your route planning and love cycling forever with these 5 tips
Bike sales are up, public transport options are down. Exploring outdoors is in, gyms are out. In short, the world and their nan are taking to their bikes and it couldn’t be more exciting! Whether you’re in the dabbling stage, the “I think I definitely like this” stage, or the “My bicycle is part of me” stage, the route you ride matters. Sharing the road with cars sucks – the fumes, the noise, the speed. Getting sweaty on a big hill on the way to work? Not great either. But when you get the route right, there is no greater sense of freedom. Arriving at work chilled with some light exercise and thinking time under your belt is priceless. Spending your Saturday pedaling along pretty lanes with the wind in your hair and fresh air in your lungs? No time better spent. The good news is that YOU can plan dreamy cycling routes. Whether your sights are set on a relaxing cycle commute, an escapist weekend ride, or a multiday bikepacking adventure, you just need to know what makes a good ride (hint: it’s rarely the direct route from A to B or the one you drive in the car).
Here are five things every awesome bike ride has in common
1) Quieter, safe roads and cycle paths
No looking over your shoulder, no holding your breath. Just easy-breezy pedaling and taking in the view safely.
Komoot tip: Enter your start and end points and komoot’s route planner will create a route prioritising quieter, cycle-friendly roads. Select bike touring as your sport and cycle paths get included too.
2) Distance and ride duration that’s perfect for your fitness level
Too short and you’re left wanting more, too long and your legs hurt and your ride gets a little less fun. Finding the right balance between doable and a good challenge is important.
Komoot tip: Set your fitness level at the planning stage, ranging from couch potato to pro. You’ll see the expected duration for your route, taking into account the distance, elevation, and terrain type.
3) Gentle climbs (and descents)
Some people love a climb, others hate it but do it for the descent. More still are happiest when the gradient is zero. Figure out what you like and plan your route accordingly.
Komoot tip: Set your cycling algorithm aims to avoid hills too steep to ride but unfortunately it can’t avoid inclines altogether. Review the interactive elevation profile to see the gradient/incline for every section of your route and adjust it to suit you.
4) The right terrain for your bike
If you’re on a skinny-tired road bike you’ll need to get off and push if you find yourself on a rocky gravel trail. And if most of your mountain bike route is on paved roads, you’ll be pretty disappointed. Check the route surface before you head out.
Komoot tip: Use the sport-specific planner for cycling. Then, check out the waytype (see gentile climb image above) and surface profiles to plan a route that’s ideal for the bike you’re riding.
5) Beautiful views
We can babble on about the sense of freedom and the leg-stretch, but really it’s all about the views. Even stiff climbs can be enjoyable if there’s a soul-enriching view to take in at the end.
Komoot tip: Komoot’s community of cyclists has a lot of experience to share, and they do so using the Highlights feature. Check out the red dots on the komoot map to see fun route segments and pretty views that local riders recommend.
Bonus Tip: A cake, coffee or ice-cream stop
If you want to make a day (or longer) of it, a great coffee (or ice cream) stop can be the cherry on top. All good rides include a snack break somewhere nice.
Komoot tip: Apart from the Highlights of the best views and stretches of road, the komoot community creates Highlights for cycle-friendly cafes and coffee shops. Alternatively, search for points of interest in the route planner, like places to grab a bite to eat, shops, and bus or train stations.
Download the Komoot app.
Take these things into account the next time you plan a route, and you’ll be on your way to a happy, healthy, and inspiring lifetime of bike rides. Want to cut a few corners on the way? Get komoot to make planning your next ride quicker and easier than ever.
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