Fifty Ways to Adelaide... and counting

I'm into my ninth year of commuting into Adelaide from Elizabeth. It's the best accidental thing I've ever done: I'm happier, healthier, and a lot better to be around. I also do better work.

But the road straight into Adelaide from our place is about the last route you'd want to commute on a regular basis. It's 28km of always busy highway; the bike lanes disappear into dangerous pinch points at many traffic lights; there are several kilometres of three lane highway with no bike lane, no verge, and with a concrete kerb which means even an emergency bailout into the parkland is not an option.

Main North Road has, in fact, improved a lot in this time. But it is still an hour and a quarter of concentrated noise, where occasional hamburgers and drink containers— sometimes full— are thrown at you, and contains some of the most glass-laden bike lanes in the metropolitan area. Traffic is actually quite well behaved, but is often so heavy that cyclists are relatively invisible; it would be easy to hit a cyclist as you tried to avoid a bingle in front of you.

So I have developed a long list of alternative routes, rarely more than 32km, which provide entertainment, training, little traffic, and the silence to think. The space between Adelaide and Elizabeth is a haven for a cyclist wanting to unwind after work, and a delightful way to start the day.

And if you're seriously hardening up for a big trip, the slightly longer loops home will knock the stuffing out of you, if you wish.

The basic ride is here. With a slight variation, I came home this way last Friday. One hour and six minutes riding time; less with a tail wind.

There is a variation for this ride when coming in. You can turn off at the parklands and avoid O'Connell Street by doing down Frome Road. This means I end up on North Terrace by the old RAH, which is very close to my work.

Route 1 GPX
Route 1 Variation GPX





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