BikePortland

Exploring Alameda, California by bike


The East Bay city of Alameda, California has some gorgeous places to ride.
Photo Gallery / Flickr Slideshow

My family and I spent a few days in Alameda, California over the holidays. Some friends of ours from Portland recently moved down there and were eager to show us the local bikeways. I ended up being quite impressed with what I saw.

We pedaled along dedicated paths with unobstructed views of the San Francisco skyline, we rode up and over a sweet little biking and walking-only bridge, and we even rode a terrific, two-way, physically separated cycle track.

Scroll down for more photos and thoughts from the ride.

Just a few blocks from their house, a dedicated bikeway peels off from the main roadway…

Soon we were right on the water with a path all to ourselves…

Around the next corner I was amazed to see this two-way cycle-track on Fernside Blvd…

The facility was nicely done, with physical separation from auto traffic, and a standard bike lane for people who don’t want to be “forced” to use the cycle track…

With facilities like this, even young kids can ride up front all by themselves; which makes sense, because this cycle track was built specifically to access a middle school…

We rode it in both directions and it seemed to work very well (our friend’s daughter is 12 and rides to school on it by herself every day)…

Continuing on back to the SF Bay Trail, we rode from Alameda to Bay Farm Island via the Bay Farm Island Bicycle Bridge — which is the only biking/walking only drawbridge in the U.S…

Beyond the bridge we were treated to more dedicated paths…

And excellent views of the San Francisco skyline…

On the way back to our friend’s house I explored an unpaved section of the trail, which came right up against a bird refuge…

The combination of these on and off-street paths means that people of all ages can explore the East Bay by bike with confidence. Now, if Alameda would commit more to connecting some of these existing pieces, adding more wayfinding signage, and smoothing out some of the rough edges, they could really have a great local bike network.

Check out more images from our ride in Alameda in the photo gallery.

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