I’m finally starting to get the whole bike craze around here, after 4 weeks of wariness and lots lots lots of walking.
My policy on transportation is normally along the lines of, ‘Why zoom on by when you can take it slow and appreciate the scenery,’ but this morning I caved in to a sense that I really ought to try biking somewhere, since it’s what people do around here. Culture of biking –> positive peer pressure.
Anyway, I guess the TART trails all over town (and connecting counties!! Now that my confidence has improved a bit, taking the trail all the way to Acme on one end and Suttons Bay on the other is next on my TC bucket list), coupled with all those “bike-friendly community” signs downtown, must have lured me into a false complacency. Turns out that while Traverse City itself may be wonderfully bike friendly, that civic attitude has a southern boundary right around city limits. Misinterpreting a map (story of my life) and thinking that the trail along Boardman Lake would connect to the string of trails leading down to the Boardman River Nature Center, I happily and obliviously pedaled south.
And then became confused. Right at the spot where it would make logical sense for the two trails to combine, if ever they planned to, I found… South Airport Road. Helpfully marked by a stop sign and a more sinister “two-way divided highway” sign. After circling around for a few minutes in futile search of an underpass, overpass, trailhead, anything that might suggest that some planner somewhere had taken pity on the pedestrians/nervous newbie bikers hoping to cross the road, I said to hell with it and went ahead. I proceeded to discover that there are many areas on the other side of S. Airport that, while they appear promising, do not in fact lead you to the aforementioned Nature Center trail.
I gave up and took Cass into downtown. Amazing how much less intimidating the wonderful one-way(!) TC streets were after that little expedition, though. Guess I should just bike more often.