Due to a job change, my awesome cycle commute from Southeast Evanston to the Loop has been converted into a far less awesome cycle commute from Southeast Evanston to Deerfield (on Saunders between Deerfield and Lake Cook). My first ride was last week. After much research and a few car trips, I settled on Sheridan to Cherry, to Willow, to Old Willow, to Sunset Ridge, to Voltz, to Waukegan, to Walters and then finally Saunders. The ride wasn't terrible. However, Sunset Ridge has no shoulder and there was plenty of high speed traffic at rush hour, which wasn't great. Saunders is not great either. Lake Cook is dangerous. Deerfield isn't great. Any other suggestions?
My recommendation. Directions here would be on the way to your new office. I often ride on Glenview Road. Safe and wide. From Glenview Road, turn right (north) on to Lehigh through the Glen. Go left (west) on West Lake to Shermer. Turn right (north) on Shermer untl you get to Walters, and go left (west) on Walters. When you get to Landwehr Road, turn right (north). Take Landwehr Road all the way past Dundee into a business Park. Landwehr will curve into Huehl Road so curve to the north (would be a soft right turn on the way). Take that to Commercial Ave and turn left (west) again. You'll get to Sanders Road, turn right (going north) and that will become Saunders at Lake Cook. All of this should be pretty safe. The only part that could be treacherous is Shermer from Willow to Techny where it's 40-35 mph with four lanes. Traffic on Shermer isn't too bad. Just be aware of the high school traffic at GBN which could include a lot of new drivers. I take the whole right lane through that section to ensure I am seen. Hopefully this is all clear and makes sense!
Matt - Many thanks. This looks like an interesting alternative. I'll give it a go this week.
Gave this route a go this week Matt. Thanks much for the suggestions. I liked it better than my route but man I miss my commute into the city...
You are welcome! Glad it worked! I actually go that way often. If you are ever on a non-commute ride you can keep going on Saunders until it becomes Riverwoods. That will take you up to some great roads for riding up north.
Ernesto - Thank you. I hadn't thought of going all the way up to Route 22 given what I assumed would be a substantially increased distance but it appears that route is only a mile longer that my current route. If I recall correctly, there is a path along Route 22, which is great. Will give this a go too.
Try going west earlier. Church to North Branch. After you cross the bridge at Lake look for a left turn just before the trail crosses Happ Rd. by New Trier West. This will have you cross Winnetka and wind up on Happ. Take Happ as it winds to Sunset Ridge. Turn Left (counter intuitive) to get to Volz. Volz/Grant/Lee will have you get to Walters. Walters to Meadow and north to Cherry. Cherry to Landwhehr which will have you get across Dundee. North to Commercial and West to Sanders. At this point you grin an bear it on Sander/Saunders about a mile to your job. I often ride west after the viaduct from Commercial to Sunset to Port Wine to get up to Riverwoods but there is no good way to go back east using that route.
If you really are not into the North Branch trail take Church to East Prairie/McDaniel up to Grant. Grant to Central Park and north to Wilmette. Go to Glenview and use that to get to Laramie. Take that past Loyola to Illinois to Happ. Left on Winnetka to pick up the route that is exiting the North Branch Trail a block west of New Trier West right by a fire station.
There are some great ideas here too David. I hadn't appreciated that Cherry would be good substitute for Walters. Walters is good just west of downtown Northbrook but then the shoulder narrows to nearly nothing and, notwithstanding the signs advising drivers to share the road, they drive fast and they've never heard of the 3' rule. Many thanks.