So, you’d like to go on a bike adventure but you’re not quite sure where to start?
Well, the first thing to figure out is where to go. And if you live in Perth, I can give you a head start there. I have mapped a bunch of ride routes in the Perth hills – both road rides and off-road/gravel rides. These are saved in my Fusion Cycle Coaching group on “Ride with GPS”, which I use for creating my ride routes. Here is the link to the group: Fusion Cycle Coaching – Ride Routes. Each route has some brief comments that gives you an idea what to expect. Download them, ride them, and tell me how it goes! As I map more routes, I will continue to add them to this group, so check back regularly.
The reason I use Ride with GPS for mapping routes is because you can use lots of different base maps to find and map the routes, which is particularly helpful for off-road rides. For example, you can use:
- regular maps
- open source maps (OSM) cycle – which shows bike routes, including bike paths and off-road trails, and topography
- satellite, so that you can check if there really is a trail where the map says it is!
Ride with GPS also generates a file that works well with Garmin computers (and I presume other computers, but I don’t have any other computer to check!), so that you get notified of turns even if you are not on the map screen.
You can also see the elevation profile and gradient of the route as you are mapping it. However, one downside to Ride with GPS is that it significantly under-estimates the grade of hills (uphill and downhill). It is pretty good for flats and small gradients, but for anything above about 8%, I think it under-estimates by about 10%. So if you have a grade shown as 10%, it is probably closer to 20%, at least in sections.
I am off to test one of my ride routes tomorrow that has some sections mapped as 20% – which if my theory holds up, would be as steep as 30%! I think I may be walking those bits….