Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A Car-Free Commute

I had a great opportunity for an extra bike commute since my wife had days off on both ends of the July 4 weekend. Since I didn't have to deal with getting kids ready, I decided to get out early and take another shot at riding to work the full distance from home. Totally car-free.

Up to this point, I had cycled from home on two previous occasions. The first was one of my first bike commutes ever about a year ago. I took a roundabout route to try to avoid some hills and it took me two hours to get to work. I proceeded to get a ride home from one of my coworkers. The second time was this year's Bike to Work Day. I rode all the way from home, but, again, didn't do the round trip because I got a ride home in order to get to my daughter's dance recital that evening.

Well, this time I had no excuses not to complete the round trip. During BTWD I did the trip in about an hour and a half or so, including three pit stops. I figured I should make decent time. How good I wasn't quite sure. It currently takes me about 25 minutes to bike my normal ~6 mile route, but including the drive portion, it typically takes me probably about 50 minutes to an hour door to door, depending on traffic, etc. My route this day ended up being 15.4 miles and I got to work in about 65 minutes. I was a little bit surprised the time differential was that small. Vehicular traffic congestion is no longer a worry. Certainly a plus.

I repeated the home to work round trip again this past Wednesday (during a drizzly, wet July San Diego morning, no less).  I think my multi-modal drive & bike commute days are over. When I started thinking about bike commuting, I thought a completely car-free bike commute was probably out of my reach. I guess I proved myself wrong. Looking forward to doing it again this week!

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