Just wondering, wife's family live in Forest Hill, Crystal Palace and Bromley, all seems pretty close and commutable on a bike to Central London. Just wondering where people ride in from in the morning and how do they find it?
London bike commuters, how far do you ride and how is your commute?
Anything from 6.5 miles upwards (from North to Central) depending on how I feel. It's the best thing about my working week, frankly.
Above locations very commutable, I ride into St Pauls from Riddlesdown near Purley, roughly 15 mile each way, somestimes ride via crystal palace for the hills but usually A23.
Usually about 23 miles - Bookham, just outside the M25, to the City. A24 then CS7.
Only tend to do it once or twice a week, get the train once or twice and work in a more local office when I can.
It's fine, too many traffic lights, dead straight so a pain when it's windy - no hiding. The other cyclists and the pedestrians are more of a problem than the traffic frankly.
Currently ride in from Chigwell to Canary Wharf, about 11 miles e/w. If leaving after 7:30Am or coming home after 5pm pretty much continous traffic but you get used to it. Takess about 20 minutes longer to do the same journey by car during rush hour.
Have commuted from Crystal Palace and Bromnley in the past. Crystal Palace about 6 miles, bugger of a hill to finish the ride home though. Bromley about 12 miles.
Westminster to the Square Mile at the moment.
Vary my route, North of the river along the Etape du Embankment some days, south behind County Hall on others. Occasionally go along by the IWM and then up the Col du Blackfriars or Mont Southwark Bridge.
I look forward to riding in and out every single time I do it.
I'd not go that far, I do it because it's half reasoanble training and it saves £38 a day on the train, but it's a chore!
10.someting miles each way 5 days a week, from E10 to W8. Right through town.
It's easy, just got to assume 'they're all out to kill you' and you'll be fine.
I'm a bit shocked by all the positive remarks. I commute 20 miles a day between Zones 2 and 5 and frankly, I hate it. I do it purely to save myself £125 a month. I don't think of it as any sort of training. It keeps your legs ticking over when your not doing any other riding but it tires your legs out a lot with little training benefit IMO.
Having previously commuted into Zone 1 I struggle to understand why anyone would:
look forward to riding in and out every single time I do it.
I was doing 20 miles each way from near Richmond to North Greenwich. It had over 150 sets of traffic lights which could be quite painful. Coming back in the evening as I normally don't finish until 7:30 I ended up trying to work out what was each areas favourite food based on smell. I have to say its a draw between fried chicken and curry.
Now my commute is 5 miles into Chiswick with 2 days in Vauxhall and maybe a day split between Victoria and the other two.
Driving standards in west London are noticeably more aggressive than in south east London IMO.
N6 to bank, about 5.5 miles. Agree with it being the best part of the day- I commute we'll outside of peak times on reletavely quiet roads which helps (work 1-9).
I used to ride 10 miles each way from Kew Gardens to Spitalfields Market each day, was ace way better than being stuck on the tube. Occasionally got a bit hairy when in the City as it was so busy with pedestrians and traffic but otherwise I managed to do a fair bit on the thames path and in parks so I really enjoyed it.
12km round trip at the moment from Acton to Twickenham. I lengthen it on the way home in the summer a couple of times a week to 32km by adding a lap of Richmond Park. It's spooky in the winter and the ice crean's great in the summer!
I've done a fair assortment of routes at various times in the past. I used to do Wandsworth to Chiswick daily on the South Circular, but then again I was usually late in and out so it wasn't so bad. Plus bombing along past stationary cars isn't all that hectic
I find that there are a few different kinds of road in London
1) Busy arterial roads like say, Edgeware Road or the A13 through Limehouse. Some are mental, some are ok because there's bus lanes or a cycle superhighway. Find an alternative.
2) Busy shopping roads like say Chiswick High St. These can be ok off-peak but a bit busy at peak times. Not much worse than your average town high st though
3) Relatively quiet long roads that take you way into West London, like Grosvenor Road that goes to Chelsea. These are great, popular with cyclists.
4) Quiet back streets, lots of these in West London. Lots of one-way systems but generally good cycling and often very pretty.
5) Very quiet back alleys like you find in Southwark. Dodging the parked up delivery trucks is easy, pedestrians less so but a bell is handy. Also good cycling and you see some great little pubs and shops.
6) Major intersections like Parliament Square or Hyde Park Corner. These can be quite mental, and are best avoided if possible, but it often isn't possible. The surrounding roads aren't necessarily busy - Birdcage Walk for instance comes off Parliament Square and is very easy cycling.
7) Busy West London streets, like Picadilly or Regents Street. A bit hectic, and slow because of all the lights, but not death defying as traffic speeds are low. Avoid if possible simply for reasons of transit time.
Overall, I like cycling in London but I make sure I avoid types 1, 2 and 7. I find I rarely need them, with a bit of research. Certain type 6s are hard to avoid though - just save a bit of pace and be assertive and you'll be okay.
The good thing is that there are LOADS of cyclists these days, far more than any other city I've been in, and 50% of the other drivers are taxis so whilst they might be arseholes they are used to cyclists buzzing all around them. I've never been so much as looked at dispariginly by a driver in London never mind road raged. They are a) used to it and b) Londoners so never say anything to anyone
11 miles each way Brentford to Bloomsbury five days, as said traffics a pita but better than the tube generally I love it even in the rain it's OK
Legs are tired by the weekend so tend to tube it on Friday if I've got a ride on
I'm on my hardtail with slicks so get to ride a lot of steps drops and stuff
Mine is 15mins,an I could get killed everyday,but hey,that's life
I ride in from Sydenham/Forest Hill border a few times a week.
Crystal Palace hill is steep but do-able but you can get round most of it by sticking on the South Circular to East Dulwich.
Route through Dulwich Village and Herne Hill velodrome for a quieter ride, and then through Brixton north. Bus lane all the way up the A23 from Brixton makes for good riding out of the main flow of traffic.
Caterham to Gilette Corner in Hounslow, 22 miles each way.
Do it 3 times a week.
I ride in from Bromley most days. Its not a bad ride in and fairly flat. Sometimes take the motorbike or train when I fancy a rest day, but always feel guilty for doing so:)
17 miles a day - North London to the City.
Currently having a bad time at work so taking my frustrations out on RLJers who respond by ignoring me or hurling abuse...
I had to get the tube on Tuesday. Now I have a cold. Meh.
Central London miles cost more in effort and time than other miles obviously. So if you have 12 miles to work and you live on the side of town you work it will be a lot easier than crossing central.
My 2.5 mile SW London commute (barnes to putney) is particularly easy. Although, all going well in the next few weeks, it'll be 6-7 miles each way (west dulwich to Putney).
10.5 miles each way 5 days a week. N21 to southwark
Sets up my day. Supersix in the dry and a singlespeed Roadrat when wet.
Finchley to Farringdon - 10 miles each way.
Great route over Hampstead Heath and down through Regents Park, only busy section is Euston Road, but to be honest it isn't too bad.
Always do extra training laps around RP mind. Great fun.
Anyone fancy a Singletrack commuter meet up / pint /cup of tea then?
Be nice to put faces to these anonymous screen names.
Drive to edge of Richmond park and then ride from there into Chiswick so a smidge under 6 miles i think. Do it four days a week as i take my shirts in on monday. Half tempted to stretch it out a bit further but it will start taking me longer to ride than it does to drive.
I would be up for meeting.
can't we just have a race?
Crouch End N8 to St Pauls, about 5.5 miles. Agreed best part of the day, find the best route (not necessarily the shortest) and it becomes a relaxing pleasure. Just dont treat it as a race, assume everyone else is blind.
I think London is getting much easier to cycle in every year. Infrastructure is improving (thanks Boris/Ken), there are more and more of us on two wheels (sometimes cyclists ARE the traffic) and I think a lot of drivers are getting used to us being on the roads. Cabbies and bus drivers certainly are, buses especially used to pull out on me all the time, much less of that now. Still a long way to go but definately going in the right direction.
I'd happily meet for a coffee or pint or sommat - where though...? London's quite a big place.
MTB-idle - very similar route to me, probably seen each other! Geetee1972 does a similar route too, bumped into him previously.
I ride eat to west so am happy to meet Central-ish or where ever.
Sunny Catford to W1. 9 miles each way on a rigid HT with slicks. I feel much better for cycling in, even with daily near-death experiences.
The London Cycle Commuting manifesto:
No drafting, unless the person you're drafting is a jumper (rides the red lights) then they're open season.
By all means race fellow commuters, but never acknowledge the fact with each other and try to hide the fact you're blowing like a steam kettle. Don't make conversation with fellow riders at the lights, that's like talking to strangers on the tube: you'll get sectioned.
Only insult a driver who's cut you up, when he's stuck in stationary traffic and you can make a safe getaway (trouble is he/she may take revenge on a subsequent rider).
Use a bell for the benefit of pedestrians who blindly step off pavements. They wont appreciate your warning; expect well dressed business types to tell you to **** off.
Don't p*ss off Black Taxi-cab drivers; they will hunt you down and drive over you on Waterloo Bridge, after barraging you with a long monologue of cockney insults.
Don't get p*ssed off with the hipster fixie couriers, they're on a measly wage risking their necks; just enjoy the spectacle of said rider trying to suddenly stop, unclipping and sliding down the top tube until the headset acts as a buffer around their testicles (I didn't laugh, it looked wayyyyy too painful).
Ahh cycling in London; the congestion, the pollution, the road rage, the looming HGV death. Still less stressful than commuting via the train/bus/tube.
I'd meet centrally - I'm currently working in Southwark.
1.0 mile on the nose. down the avenues and alley ways!
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