Recreational cyclists urged to avoid Burke Gilman Trail work area

While the closure of the Burke Gilman Trail from Log Boom Park to the Seattle city limits is a huge inconvenience for commuting bicyclists, recreational cyclists are being urged to stay out and avoid the area altogether.

A long-needed renovation of a 30-year-old section of the trail through Lake Forest Park began on Wednesday and forced cyclists onto a meandering official detour over hills and side streets with no less than 20 turns.

Apparently this was the best that King County could come up with, as they were thwarted in their efforts by local governments and agencies to create something better. [See the online map and street-by-street turns.]


The issue of bike commuting through the region during construction, expected to last until November, has been covered in-depth by Tom Foculoro at Seattle Bike Blog and the Cascade Bicycle Blog. In addition to their own takes on the alternative route, readers have posted their own suggestions.

Also see the community forum at Cascade that notes bicycles are a legal use in the bus lane on Route 522. Because of the narrow width of that bus lane and frequent bus use, however, Metro is urging bicyclists not to use it.

Metro is suggesting cyclists take the bus through the area and use the bike racks. Here's information of using Metro bus racks and how to mount a bicycle on them.

Recreational bicycling

Meanwhile, both Kevin Brown, King County Parks Director, and Cascade Bicycle Club executive director Chuck Ayers are urging recreational cyclists to avoid the area. See the video .

Ayers says:

“I encourage recreational riders to find alternative trails. King
County, Snohomish County and Pierce County have wonderful trail systems
you should go and explore. Try to stay off this area during the

While not directing cyclists out of the area, Brown said:

“King County has 175 miles of trails, many other trail systems, that can be enjoyed. During this closure, please take the opportunity to explore one of those
other trails.”

Trail links

Here's a link to the regional trails in King County. Of course the first one listed is the Burke-Gilman, which should be avoided. This might be a good time to check out the other trails.

Also, King County has a Bicycling Guide Map that shows trails and bike routes.

Bike trails in Pierce County features the scenic Foothills Trail from near Puyallup to South Prairie.

Snohomish County bike trails include a connection to King County's Interurban Trail, and the Centennial Trail, which rolls along for 23 miles from Snohomish to Bryant.

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