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Thread: Commuter route from Greenbelt/College Park/Hyattsville to DC

  1. #1
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    Default Commuter route from Greenbelt/College Park/Hyattsville to DC

    As I noted in a different thread, I've started playing with a video camera to record rides. A couple people have asked about my route, so I recorded this morning's commute from Greenbelt to DC and put in some time indicators in the description to show major turns or other highlights. This route takes the Anacostia Tributary trails down toward DC, neighborhood streets over to the Monroe Street bridge, then down the MBT, then over to the 4th St NE and East Capitol Street bike lanes, and then past the Capitol to the PA Ave. median lane. It's quite a roundabout route -- you could cut off a mile or two by taking 1st Street NE or 2nd Street NE toward Union Station, or maybe other routes to get downtown. But I like this route because it is not very congested, and does not require any riding in traffic. (Plus I had a tailwind this morning so I didn't really lose any time.) I know real-time, unedited video is kind of dull, but I hope it's a helpful reference if you're commuting from that direction.

    Greenbelt to NE DC:

    NE DC to Capitol Hill/Downtown:

  2. #2
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    Since your nifty new camera also has audio perhaps you could narrate your turns as you come upon them. Just a thought. It's actually pretty good view of the ride even skipping ahead on some parts. Thanks for taking the time to create and post it.

  3. #3
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    Thanks -- wil do. As I figure out how to use the editing software, I'll add narration or text captions. The mic on the camera doesn't seem to capture much other than bike noise. Which is OK, I think, since you can't hear me swearing when I crunch a gear change or panting trying to get up a hill.

  4. #4
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    This is great stuff, thanks. I was actually trying to get from College Park -UMD campus to downtown DC today, but decided to take metro because I didn't know a good route. What I'm most unsure about is getting from the Northwest Branch trail to the Met Branch trail - after that I'm home free. But I'm nervous that roads like Bladensburg or Rhode Island look super scary to ride on, and I'm admittedly timid when cars travel fast. I much prefer car-free trails, and am willing to go out of my way to ride on them.

    Any chance you could put this in a google maps route? I'm much better at the birds-eye view. Visual learner, I guess.

  5. #5
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    I'm not very good with Google (or any technology really), but here's an attempt to show the link to the map. So suggestions on how better to do this appreciated. Even if this works, these directions aren't perfect -- they got a little jumbled in spots. But is basically the route I took in the video. If this doesn't work, please feel free to suggest how better to create a map.

    http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&sour...&z=14&lci=bike

  6. #6
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    Hey, thanks!

  7. #7
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    So after some experimentation with video editing software, I was able to figure out how to compress the length of the video route examples, and also add in captions for the turns.

    Here's Greenbelt to DC by my scenic route (in HD even):


    And here's my usual return:
    Last edited by Greenbelt; 03-24-2011 at 08:38 PM.

  8. #8
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    This is GREAT! THANK YOU!! (although I can't see a link to the compressed version). I tried riding out to Greenbelt from DC once and it was NOT a pleasant ride. I didn't know about that trail at the time. I'm inspired to try your route now.

    I still think we need a more direct way to get through the CUA-Union Station funnel (roughly paralleling Rhode Island Ave). That part of the city is really really bad for biking. I wish WABA would put some attention there.

  9. #9
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    It could be that the youtube embeds aren't working. Here is old fashioned link to the vimeo version:
    DC to Greenbelt (via MBT, CUA area, Anacostia Tributary trails)

  10. #10
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    So I know I'm two months late to the party but the search bar is my friend, eh?

    I'm looking to commute from College Park to downtown all summer...I ventured the safest way for a gal by herself was probably just taking Rhode Island all the way down, but these videos are still a great resource, so thanks

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