Cycling and Maps...

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Greggor McIntosh
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Cycling and Maps...

Post by Greggor McIntosh » Thu Apr 07, 2011 11:50 pm

Greetings all....

Ive kind of poured over this site and found lots of useful information...Thanks all that can or have contributed!

Not to rub it in or anything, but Im heading down in a few days and I've decided that I would like to explore a little by bicycle I think.Ill try to rent one..

I've read that there is or might be maps available at the airport...can anybody thats been through recently confirm that please?

How safe or unsafe is it to cycle on roadways in Tobago these days? Ive had the good fortune to have visited a few times in years past and I remember the roads being pretty quiet..not an over abundance of vehicles.Im sure thats changed to some degree or other but I wonder how much?
Im sure a lock for the bike is a good idea but is it critical ?

Thanks all in advance...Ill look forward to some feedback.

Josefa Patience
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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Josefa Patience » Fri Apr 08, 2011 11:03 am

Hello,

don`t forget about the dogs. I find this is a big problem for bikes and motor bikes.

Josi

Carol G
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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Carol G » Fri Apr 08, 2011 1:54 pm

Hi Greggor,
Just a few comments about cycling...with the proviso I have not nor will I ever bike in Tobago! The traffic has gotten unreal on the main roads. The volume of cars has increased to the extent that there are traffic jams on a regular basis. The paving of the airport runway has also caused an increased number of dump trucks on the roads. They are not the least bit interested in slowing down for anyone nor are most Tobago drivers! Also a lot of roads have big pot holes or patches of gravel (awaiting further repairs) So, if you are a confident and experienced biker; rent a bike and find some back roads to use.
Cheers,
Carol

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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Andy K » Fri Apr 08, 2011 11:07 pm

Greggor,

Carol has painted the traffic situation of Tobago in very dark colors, but i have to admit, due to the increased number
of vehicles it is not always nice, especially on mornings between 7 and 9 and in the afternoon from 3 to 5.
Numerous mostly young drivers also adopted a "trini" style of driving and do not observe any speed limit whatsoever.
Cycling on major roads may not be nice at it was some years ago.
I personally would look for another way of transportation or at least avoid major roads and rush hour.

Cheers,

Andy

Greggor McIntosh
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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Greggor McIntosh » Sat Apr 09, 2011 1:15 am

Josi...Ha...I wouldn't even have thought about dogs...good point...I'm certain I wont be bringing boots along...Carol and Andy..thanks for your insight...sounds like it might be a little risky for main roads...is there a decent amount of "sort of" developed back roads then maybe? I think that's my likely choice then..
Thanks folks for your responses

GervaisAlkins

Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by GervaisAlkins » Sat Apr 09, 2011 4:52 pm

hey,
I've been a mountain biker and tour guide in Tobago since 1998. I've ridden around this island a few times and consider myself a unabashed 'Tobagonian Cyclist'.
Anyway, if you wanna stick to the main roads while cycling, a normal tourist map is fine. In my opinion, the roads along the coast are so easy to follow one does'nt need a map. But if you want to explore inland and trails that's a different story.
My buddy has been conducting mtn bike tours and rentals since 1999. He's on MyTobago, i think. Slow Leak Mountain Bike Tours. Contact him......because honestly the best person to ask is a cyclist. It does'nt make sense to ride a road bike or crap mtn bike cus even the paved roads are bad.
As for busy paved roads....that is true. But as any cycling tourist to a tropical island would knwo....you ain't comin here to ride in the congested,busy, car filled capital.
Yes some people drive like idiots, yes some dogs are evil and run you down like crazy but I like gettin home after a long ride then do some yoga and look in the mirror at my tanned figure and my shapely legs and !! :D
Tobago is an awesome place to ride.The naysayers can talk but I've never seen them cycling on 'Sweet Man Trail' or flying down to 'Coker Trace' or spinning through our Mangrove forests! I've ridden trails in the Uk and the US and can say that Tobago's got some great riding.....to bad the people here don't even know this yet!
Good luck down let the gas guzzlers bring you down!!

Greggor McIntosh
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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Greggor McIntosh » Sun Apr 10, 2011 2:07 am

Thanks Gervais for your thoughts....Ive been talking with Eamon a little...Ill connect with him at some point I think...Ill get a look and decide when I get there...

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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Ronald » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:21 am

Hi. about maps at the Airport

These maps are tourists maps and they do not show all roads or not even all roads as they are in real. I use to take long walks, and one week I went the Caribbean side up to Lex Coteaux.
I´ve been walking that side all the way up to Castara, but this time I starded late so I was thinking to cut down my walking by choosing the Providemce Road down to Scarborough.

On the map that road seems to be not so long, but in real it´s a Looong road! The road goes in-out into many valleys, so it did take me quit many hours to get down to Scarborough.
If you want a good map, try to find a map at home before you go down, otherwise you might get bad surprises!

I also support those who say that using a bicycle on the roads isn´t the best idea. The roads are narrow and the traffic is bad in the south. many, locals & visitors, are using the sidewalk! Go on a tour, that´s a different story.

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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Gabriele » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:19 am

Ciao. I have been biking almost everyday, and the scenery offered by Tobago is very catching, and I fully agree with Gervais that is possible to enjoy great rides by using mountain bike on smaller roads and trails.
If you move more 'inland', away from the major roads that generally lead to/from Scarborough (like Studley Park, along the east coast which has heavy trucks), (or like Airport), the amount of vehicles on the roads is drastically reduced: example Scarborough to Mason Hall via Calder Hall trail, along the Bacolet river, may encounter 5 cars (if not parked), and once along the trail, one house, two dogs and nobody else other than birds and butterflies.
Maps: I have been searching at land and Survey office, and have a few maps (detailed) some showing trails through the old Estates all around Tobago, with the only exception of the Charlotville Area (not yet in my plans). Will be very glad to show them to you. Riding with experience people that like these activity, (Eamon and Gervais for example), its a better way not to miss small but interesting details that our Tobago Nature has to offer. Can assure you that every ride you will note a new path you want to explore, and a few weeks might not be enough! A presto, Gabriele

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Re: Cycling and Maps...

Post by Andy K » Thu Apr 14, 2011 8:20 pm

I use a map from Lands and Surveys in Trinidad, it is the best i could ever find and it is, surprisingly, now
available at the newspapers stand in Piarco Airport. Well, this is Trinidad ... Gabriele has something like that
for Tobago. Perhaps he can tell where to buy it.
It is advisable to walk with a handheld GPS receiver or cell phone with GPS, if you want to make full use of
the (professional) map.
Electronic maps are now available for Trinidad, i am not sure if there are any for Tobago and if so, which quality
and resolution they provide.

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