As most active Austinites know, one of the best ways to experience the Texas Hill Country is by bike. If you can relate and own more cycling jerseys than dress shirts, have been known to stash spare tires, tubes, nutrition and Co2 in your car, and amass a sink full of used water bottles at the end of each weekend - this blog is for you. Read on to discover how to experience the best of Austin's cycling scene:
Be sure to fill up pre or post ride at these cyclist friendly joints:
Bouldin Creek Cafe: Old bike rims and tires convert to quaint chandeliers to decorate this earthy, offbeat vegetarian cafe. Menu offerings include veggie chorizo tacos, zucchini migas and hippy shakes made with hemp seed. Vegan and gluten-free options available. 1900 S. First St.
Rudy's Country Store and Bar-B-Que: Conveniently located for cyclists on S. Capital of Texas Hwy, one of the more popular cycling routes, this one-stop gas station, garage and grocery store serves up oak-smoked sausage, brisket, ribs and turkey. Don't forget the special sauce and maybe a Grease Monkey wipe for clean up after. 2451 S. Capital of Texas Hwy.
Tacodeli: An Austin original, Tacodeli uses locally sourced, organic ingredients to create some of the best tacos around. My personal faves include the Frontera Fundido (grilled sirloin with sauted poblanos and onion rajas) and the Conquistador (pork shoulder seasoned with chile pasilla). Best of all, Team Tacodeli raises funds and awareness for Multiple Sclerosis, participating in organized group rides and sporting custom Tacodeli jerseys. 1500 Spyglass Dr. and other area locations.
Looking for cycling essentials, service or just some cool new swag? There's no shortage of great bike shops here in Austin starting with Bicycle World off South Lamar. This shop is a favorite among locals and offers some of the friendliest and best service in town. Check out the Sunday shop rides for intermediate, advanced and no-drop routes.
Literally about a block down the road, Bicycle Sports Shop offers one of Austin's largest selections of cycling clothing and accessories for roadies and commuters alike, and Austin Tri-Cyclist (ATC) is a specialty shop haven for triathletes. For serious cyclists looking to push the pace, check out the infamous ATC Saturday ride that offers 30 and 50 mile options.
Whether you're looking to spectate or compete, the Driveway Series is one of Austin's best kept cycling secrets. This family (and canine) friendly event is a weekly crit-style road race held on a privately owned racetrack just a few miles east of downtown Austin.
This is draft-legal all-out fun people. Categories include first-timers, women, juniors and pros. Kids who have a helmet can even take a lap. Stick around for the food, drink and socializing. The action starts every Thursday, March-October at 4 p.m.
Looking to venture out on your own or with a group? The best bet is to join up with a local club or bike shop ride. For more information on coordinated rides and maps of Austin bike routes, visit austincycling.org.