Monday, June 30, 2008

Thunder and Lightning

The Triboro Bridge is frightening...

So, I went for a ride, and it didn't go well.

By the time I got to Randall's Island, I could see the storm clouds gathering.

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Normally, I don't mind riding in the rain.
I don't actively seek it out, and if I'm commuting, I hate it. But on a warm summer day, at the end of a long ride, it can be kind of nice.
Not this time.

The pedestrian/bike path of the Triboro Bridge is a little daunting at the best of times. The construction annoys me. When it's windy, the barrier feels suspiciously low. And when you approach the metal-caged on-ramp and see lightening repeatedly hit the bridge, well then it's time to run away.

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Thunder cracked directly overhead, the sky opened up, and I wondered if instead of a bike, I should have built an ark.

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So, there I was... underneath the Triboro Bridge. In the rain.

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For those of you who have never crossed the Triboro by bike or foot, it can be very confusing. The DOT provides this map, but I get confused all the time, so here's a simple explanation.

triboro path

There is no direct route for cyclists and pedestrians from Queens to Manhattan or the Bronx. Instead of following the traffic, the path drops you on Randall's Island from all directions.
You need to cross the island and find the correct span for the borough you are going to, making the bridge a two-step process.

I haven't actually taken the Manhattan entrance this year, so I can't vouch for it, but if the ramps are open, they're at 124/126th and Second Avenue. If not, the stairs are at 124/126th and First Avenue.
Alternately, there's the Ward's Island Bridge at 103rd Street and the FDR, which is for bicyclists and pedestrians only. Ward's Island connects to Randall's Island.

The Queens entrance is the stairs at 27th and Hoyt.

The Bronx entrance is the ramp structure at 133rd and Cypress.

Cyclists need to be very careful. The path is broken by steep stairs.
When you see the spray paint telling you to slow down - SLOW DOWN!

2 comments:

Seth said...

Couldn't agree more. That bridge is a pain to navigate and the signs for bicyclists are practically non-existent (at least the last time I was there).

00 said...

Hi, I am just wondering... Just about how long does it take to cross the Triborough Bridge (by foot and also by bike?)