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Road riding in Tampa Florida?

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Road riding in Tampa Florida?

Old 12-05-05, 09:53 AM
  #1  
baiskeli
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I'm in Boston but may get to spend a week or two in Tampa Florida (Yaaayyy!!!) in early January.
I have two questions;

1. What is the road riding there like?

2. What are my chances of renting a decent road bike down there rather than shipping my road bike there. I know that in Boston I would be hard pressed to rent a road bike.

Thanks for any info
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Old 12-05-05, 10:01 AM
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I'm in north florida, so my knowledge of tampa is a little limited. But here are some links. http://www.floridabicyclesports.com/. This is a cool bike shop in St Pete. More for triathlons, but I think they'd be a good source of info. This link, http://www.floridacycling.com/, is a good source of race and touring info for all of florida.
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Old 12-05-05, 10:32 AM
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Check out the Tampa Bay Freewheelers web site. They have a couple of organized rides each week. I rode some in Tampa over the Thanksgiving weekend. It made me grateful to live in a smaller town where I can be on semi-rural roads within a few miles of my house.

Also, check out the web site of Carrollwood Bicycle Emporium: http://www.cbebikes.com/ They seem like very nice folks.
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Old 12-05-05, 10:52 AM
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I'm up in Gainesville and the road riding around here is very nice, but it is a two hour drive from Tampa. I've never ridden around there, but can offer some advice if you are willing to drive some first. There are areas around Ocala that are very pretty to ride in (thoroughbred horse farms!), but about 1.5 hours away by auto. The Cleremont/Ferndale area is closer to the Tampa Bay area, but it offers some nice road riding and is about as hilly as Florida gets. Google "Horrible Hundred" for more info. That is a Century ride around there that has ~ 3700' of climbing.
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Old 12-05-05, 12:20 PM
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Here are some sites for you to check.
http://www.dep.state.fl.us/gwt/guide...s/suncoast.htm

http://www.dep.state.fl.us/gwt/guide..._bay_trail.htm

http://www.pinellastrail.com/

http://www.recumbent-bikes-truth-for...rail-2004.html

Another place to possibley rent a bike
http://chainwheeldrive.com/site/intro.cfm

Hope this helps
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Old 12-06-05, 10:14 AM
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Try this link too...

www.stpetecycling.com
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Old 12-06-05, 11:42 AM
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Thanks for the info all. You guys are great

I'll know whether the trip materializes in a couple of weeks but I have begun looking at the links
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Old 12-06-05, 02:22 PM
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Hope you get a chance to be done in this area, we enjoy all the tourist dollars. You never know how the weather will be day to day during early January, but two things are for sure; it will be warmer than it is in New England, and over a couple of weeks you will certainly have at least a few beautiful days.

I know that many 'road' riders don't care much for multi-use trails, but I would suggest you give the Suncoast Trail a try. It has long sections without cross roads and therefore there isn't as much foot traffic. The first link from 80vette shows the high level map, here is a detailed map link: http://www.dot.state.fl.us/turnpikep...%205-14-04.pdf

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Old 12-06-05, 03:58 PM
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I live in Tampa, and I love riding. For rentals try University Bike shop, ask for Manny or Carlos. I ride in Thonotosassa, FL. which is quite rural. The Freewheelers are an excellent club, check them out. There are several bike trails, the Suncoast, The Van Fleet, and the Withlacoochee. Have fun in Florida!!!!
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