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Biking in the Chicago Area

Updated on November 30, 2015
Flora Crew profile image

Flo is a "professional student" with degrees in psychology and an associates in computer programming and operations.

Putting the brakes on aging!

This is a lens on biking in the Chicago area. I have been biking since my sister got her first bikel Ha! I got my own the next year and rode continuously through the freshman year in college when I misplaced my bike after smoking a cigar! (I got sick and dizzy and walked off forgetting where I left it.) My husband and I each had our own bike when I was married and I always had a bike when I didn't have a car.

I had a hiatus in biking when I first moved to Chicago but made up for it once I got my first bike here. It was a red mountain bike. I bought it the first time my boss said I could make overtime by working on Saturdays. I bought it so I would have reliable transportation to work when the bus wasn't running.

It was a ticket back to possible health that I bought and I am grateful for the decision I made to buy a bike at that time. Biking is a great way to get my aerobics in. I have biked to work consistenty when there was no public transportation to a job at the hour I wanted to go or to come back home. I biked to chemotherapy some days! Biking is my thing. The picture on the right was taken on my cell phone by my friend Helene when I met her for breakfast.

Greenbay Trail

A fun meander north...

The Greenbay Trail is my favorite recreational biking trail. I will ride the trail from Kenilworth to as far north as I can go, have a cup of coffee, and then come around and come back. The route parallels the Metra train. Some of my favorite memories are a Gazebo in Lake Bluff, riding through the sound of a Ravinia concert, seeing the small pint sized stop sign for cyclists when the trail crosses a highway. The picture on the right is of me and was taken by a friend of mine at Oakton and given to me.

Road Trip - Things to order from Amazon

Signature Trail Mix, Peanuts, M and M Candies, Raisins, Almonds and Cashews, 4 Pound
Signature Trail Mix, Peanuts, M and M Candies, Raisins, Almonds and Cashews, 4 Pound

Trail mix is a good way to kill the muchies on a long bike ride! Water and trail mix goes a long way on a short budget.

 

Botanical Gardens Trail

Harms Woods

I enjoy riding my bike to the Botanical Gardens. I have riden the Botanical Gardens Trail from Devon in Chicago and back. I think it was on this trail that I came across a huge buck deer that stared me down as I braked to keep from hitting him. He then turned and galloped away. Once I took a brown bag lunch to the gardens, and ate in a gazebo before riding back. The picture of me is a selfie I took riding up the hill at Oakton Community College. There is a bike path that get me to the Botanical Gardens close to Oakton.

My Mantra: Cheap bike, Expensive Lock!

Kryptonite KryptoLok Series 2 Standard Heavy Duty Bicycle U Lock with 4ft Flex Bike Cable
Kryptonite KryptoLok Series 2 Standard Heavy Duty Bicycle U Lock with 4ft Flex Bike Cable

A cheap bike and an expensive lock are good for protection againt bike theft!

 

Chicago Lakefront

Beautiful Scenery

The Chicago Lakefront path is riding at its most scenic. I get on the path on the north side at Hollywood and go as far south as the Museum of Science and Industry. Sometimes, I will just ride as far as Navy Pier if I have to go to the city for something. It is best to ride this path when everybody else is at work! Ha! I love the area around Belmont Harbor. I used to ride my bike there and sit in the park with a friend who stayed in senior housing near the Harbor. In the picture on the right I haven't gotten to the Lake front yet. I ran into a young man i tutor, and asked him to take a picture of me with my cell phone camera. We are at Ridge and Church in Evanston.

My Google Maps - Evanston to Northfield

The company moved and so did I! Type in 725 Washington, Evanston to see this route.

show route and directions
A markerHome -
725 Washington Evansston, IL 60202
get directions

B markerWork -
916 Waukegan Rd. Northfield, IL
get directions

My Google Maps - Wilmette to Arlington Hts.

This was my most challenging bike to work gig. Type in 1722 Lake Wilmette to see this trip.

A marker1551 North Dryden Arlington Heights, IL 60004 -
1722 Lake Ave. Willmette, IL 60091
get directions

Bike Gear - Help from Amazon

Delta Cycle Bicycle Toe Clips, Strapless Set
Delta Cycle Bicycle Toe Clips, Strapless Set

These are for hard core riders. They definitely make you focus on riding.

 

How to get extra calories burned when you bike... - Digging out your bike!

Click thumbnail to view full-size
What happened to my bike/ overnight snow between December 31st, 2013  and January 1st, 2014.Me and my bike.The porch bike.Stuck in a drift.
What happened to my bike/ overnight snow between December 31st, 2013  and January 1st, 2014.
What happened to my bike/ overnight snow between December 31st, 2013 and January 1st, 2014.
Me and my bike.
Me and my bike.
The porch bike.
The porch bike.
Stuck in a drift.
Stuck in a drift.

Videos about biking in Chicago - Chicago is bike friendly and getting more so.

Here are some videos about biking in the Chicago area.

Chicago is a bike friendly town. I have thought about getting a picture of myself taken at the totem where the couple takes each other's picture. As you can see in the picture below, I almost did!

Selfie at the Totem

I have been wanting to have a selfie at the Totem for ages.  I finally did it!
I have been wanting to have a selfie at the Totem for ages. I finally did it! | Source

I have travelled this many times. It brings back many fond memories. The trail goes near Lincoln Park Zoo as well as the lakefront. You have to get off it and go under the Viaducts at Navy Pier. That part is scary the first time.

Southside of Chicago

I recently moved to the Southside of Chicago. I have been taking the Halsted #8 CTA bus for the most part. The Redline goes down the middle of the freeway in this part of town. I was delight to see that there are bike lanes on Halsted this far south. I can't wait to get my flat fixed!

New Bridge on Halsted has bike lane!

Kinzie Bike Lane

Kinzie Protected Bike Lane

The Kinzie Protected Bike Lane between Milwaukee and Wells was finished in 2011. It was one of the first! You can see in the video below that it is well traversed.

Comments Targeted or Not

What is your favorite Chicago area bike path?

Flo's Biking Guestbook - Reader's Comments

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      susan369 3 years ago

      This can be very useful for local bikers. I'm planning to write a similar lens in my area. Biking is so much fun!

    • Flora Crew profile image
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      Flora Crew 3 years ago from Evanston, Illinois

      @evawrites1: Thank you. Glad you like it!

    • evawrites1 profile image

      evawrites1 3 years ago

      Beautiful lens!

    • Flora Crew profile image
      Author

      Flora Crew 3 years ago from Evanston, Illinois

      @flinnie lm: Yes, it is. My bike is so slow it is almost like walking but I enjoy it. Thanks for commenting in my guestbook.

    • flinnie lm profile image

      Gloria Freeman 3 years ago from Alabama USA

      Look like a lot of fun biking around town. I have not road a bike in many years.

    • Flora Crew profile image
      Author

      Flora Crew 3 years ago from Evanston, Illinois

      @takkhisa: Yes, having a bike is almost as good as walking a pet in terms of striking up conversations! My bike is retro style and a lot of people think it is a well preserved relic. Thanks for posting!

    • takkhisa profile image

      Takkhis 3 years ago

      It is really fun when I go to some destinations with my bike, I see many people around on the way and sometimes we have chat then I make friendship with them :)

    • Flora Crew profile image
      Author

      Flora Crew 3 years ago from Evanston, Illinois

      @shadowfast7: Cool. I hope you will. It is fun.

    • shadowfast7 profile image

      Sure Temp 3 years ago

      Just came across this lens :) it was an entertaining read, I have been meaning to start biking for awhile now.... perhaps I will start soon :) ~

    • Flora Crew profile image
      Author

      Flora Crew 3 years ago from Evanston, Illinois

      @Flora Crew: I meant to say retrospect.

    • Flora Crew profile image
      Author

      Flora Crew 3 years ago from Evanston, Illinois

      @Elsie Hagley: Thanks. That was pretty dumb but funny in rerospect.

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 3 years ago from New Zealand

      Great exercise biking. You put a smile on my face when I read the bit about smoking and the lost of you bike, the things we do.

    • Flora Crew profile image
      Author

      Flora Crew 3 years ago from Evanston, Illinois

      @SusanDeppner: Thanks Susan. Yes, it is great and today is a good day. The weather is in the mid twenties today, and I rode from my house to the Evanston Library, and then on to the Wilmette Library. Thanks for writing in my guestbook, too. You are my first!

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 3 years ago from Arkansas USA

      I've never been to the Chicago area, but I would imagine that biking is a great way to get around and really see the sites. Have fun!