Road Biking Yosemite

Click for larger map.

Click for larger map.

I recently acquired a road bike and am now in search of bike paths across California – I’m not quite ready to brave actual roads. I was passing through the Yosemite area and decided to take Atticus for a ride on the Yosemite Valley bike path. I went 8.5 miles in 45 minutes, which included a beer break at Mirror Lake.

Gorgeous scenery, but the tourists proved to be a bit of a challenge. On numerous occasions I found myself riding up on a group of folks on foot spread out across the width of the bike path ogling the granite monoliths above rather than paying attention to their surroundings. I was missing my bike bell that was on my cruiser at home, but got lots of practice yelling, “on your left!”

For a moment I contemplated having better luck on the road, but then thought I bet the drivers are also ogling the scenery instead of paying attention to the road and decided I was safer dodging folks on foot than cars.

Atticus and Half Dome

Atticus and Half Dome

Some of the path has rolling hills and I was able to practice switching gears, plus I got a taste for a big hill riding up to Mirror Lake. I enjoyed the ride, but due to the tourists, I think I’ll look for a less populated area next ride.

However, I would consider bringing Atticus back to Yosemite for a ride during the few days that Tioga Pass Road is open to bikes only. In the spring after the road is plowed, park staff needs a week or so to prepare facilities, during this time Tioga Pass Road is open to cyclists, but not motor vehicles. Count me in! I will note there isn’t a big announcement regarding this cycle-friendly time, call Yosemite or monitor local road bike forums.

On your left!

One response to “Road Biking Yosemite

  1. Darn Tourists, enjoying the scenery! Though it is good point as to why drivers are extra scary around the mountains – windy roads and ogling. I have almost forgotten the uphill pain of biking Tioga rd, so maybe by next spring Curtis and I will be ready to tortoise behind you and Ryan’s dust?

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