It's a Beautiful Day to Bike to Work, But is it Possible from Pacifica?

The Bay Area's annual event, Bike to Work Day, moves many out of cars and onto bikes. Pacifica may be another story, however.


Today's 18th Annual Bike to Work Day is expected to draw hundreds of thousands of participants throughout the Bay Area who can stop at energizer stations along major commuting routes to pick up freebies and bicycle resources.

San Carlos city officials notified residents that they could stop by the San Carlos Train Depot this morning to receive bicycle goodies and some coffee and breakfast treats before heading to work. In Redwood City, the Peninsula Congestion Relief Alliance is holding a raffle for those who pledge to bike to work an average of eight times before June 1.

And in Millbrae, at the Intermodal Terminal that connects BART and Caltrain, Environmental Programs Manager Shelly Reider said 75 bikers had been past the energizer station by 8:15 a.m., just a little hour after it opened. Bagels, power bars, fruit and coffee were offered for free to those who stopped.

But what about in Pacifica?

Needless to say, it's more than difficult to bike in and out of Pacifica. So if you biked to work, how did you do it? Did you drive out with your bike in your car and go from there, or did you brave the Highway 1 shoulder or Sharp Park Drive?

Tell us in the comments, preferably with an outline of your route.

-Bay City News contributed to this article

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Chris Fogel May 10, 2012 at 11:11 PM
There is simply no easy way out of Pacifica -- all routes north and east are extremely steep. I've tried them all and the "easiest" route I've found is Hickey, but it's still a matter of putting your head down and peddling away in low gear, cursing your lot in life the entire time. To the south, Devil's Slide is okay at in the southern direction as it's mostly downhill at speed, but coming back north through this stretch is something I HIGHLY recommend against. I did it once, but never again -- I thought I was going to get hit for sure and had some c-l-o-s-e calls. Those who MUST bike from HMB to Pacifica are advised to take the Montara Mountain fire trail and cross over to Pacifica on Old San Pedro Mountain Road if you have a wheel set that can hold up to it.
Camden Swita May 11, 2012 at 12:23 AM
So for that HMB to Pacifica route, road bikes are a no-no?
Chris Fogel May 11, 2012 at 03:35 AM
You could probably pull it off with a cyclocross bike (as long as you had a third chain ring), but I wouldn't try it with a pure road bike -- you'd most likely wreck your wheels.
Karen Curley May 11, 2012 at 04:06 AM
I have tried every route to cycle out of Pacifica, and Highway 1 has the gentlest uphill slope. However, when Hwy 1 meets Skyline, merging with the cars and lack of bike lane make that part pretty hairy. If I take Hwy 1 out, then I actually head south on Skyline, take Hickey west, take the first right on Gateway, then right on Skyline Drive, which requires another hill. A bit of back tracking, but safe. Skyline Drive is a nice suburban road with good views and few cars.
Chris Fogel May 11, 2012 at 04:35 PM
Karen, I believe it's illegal to bike on Highway 1 north of Westport Drive (where the roadway is designated as a "freeway"), but admittedly the signage is confusing. All the on-ramps between Westport and 35/Skyline have signs prohibiting cycling -- except for the northbound Monterey/Oceana on-ramp which is missing its sign entirely. The clue is the corresponding "Bicycles must exit" sign which would be in place up at the 35 interchange if it were legal to cycle this stretch. As an example, you'll see these signs along I-280 between Skyline and Trousdale South of Westport on Highway 1 is a different story -- the highway is no longer designated as a freeway, so you're free to cycle it.


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