Day one of my new commute was a little steamy but an overall positive experience. I did find it a little easier to navigate my way into downtown Minneapolis than to get out of the heavy traffic areas, particularly the bike path that shoots you right into head-on traffic at the intersection of Lyndale and Franklin Avenues. Just as I coasted south under I-94 I suddenly found myself traveling against traffic on a bike path that quickly becomes a skinny sidewalk… or so I thought… until today when I actually OPENED MY EYES.
Duh! Right there above my head was a beautiful bike path that carefully guides you over Lyndale Avenue without every having to encounter a single car. It’s been there for years. I’ve driven along side it on I-94 a bazillion times but I never really saw it because I didn’t need it. Maybe I should spend a little more time checking out all the cool interactive maps of bike lanes and routes the city has on their website. The bridge I stumbled upon today is clearly listed on the map. But hey, this is a learning process, right?
Today I shot up Aldrich Avenue across Franklin Avenue right onto my newfound bridge over troubled traffic and in an instant I had a pinch-me moment. I was cruising past dozens of cars that were on a slow crawl off Hennepin Avenue onto the I-94 ramp. I wonder what they felt like getting smoked by a girl on a bike with a big white basket?
Angela Keegan Benson is the Assistant News Director at WCCO-TV and a mother of two. On August 1, 2011 she began her quest to live one full year as a bike commuter. Follow along as she figures out how to mesh the cycling culture with the demands of parenthood and an affinity for 4-inch heels. And yes, she’s committed to sticking it out through February storms. For more Cycling In The Cities, follow @Angela_Keegan on Twitter.