Map of the Day: Where the Cyclists Are

Source: Strava Global Heatmap
Source: Strava Global Heatmap. (Click for larger image.)

Strava Labs maintains a database of where runners and cyclists using its smart-phone fitness app are running and riding. The data set includes nearly 77 million rides and 20 million runs. The heat map above shows where cycling activity is the most intense across the state. (Sorry about cutting off Southwest Virginia and the Virginia Creeper Trail!) Clearly, more cycling occurs where there are more people — the activity occurs mainly within metropolitan and micropolitan regions. The biggest surprise to me is how strong, relatively speaking, cycling is in the Roanoke-Blacksburg area. Less surprisingly, the activity is strong in the college towns of Charlottesville and Harrisonburg. east_coast A higher altitude perspective gives quite a different picture. Virginia looks like a relative wasteland set between the Washington-Boston corridor and even the Raleigh-Atlanta corridor. The City of Richmond may have hosted the college cycling championship and is prepping to hold the world cycling championship but the metropolitan region barely registers on the heat map. Hampton Roads also makes a poor showing. (Hat tip:Streetsblog USA.) — JAB

Share this article


(comments below)


(comments below)


4 responses to “Map of the Day: Where the Cyclists Are”

  1. William Fralin Avatar
    William Fralin

    Jim, much of that is mountian biking. Roanoke has multiple great sites very near the city.

  2. downing87 Avatar

    William makes a good point. Most strava users are going to be either on mountain bike trails or going on recreational rides on the road. While this data is interesting, I hope that people don’t try to make conclusions about non recreational cycling habits.

  3. Excellent points. So, these maps should be seen as an indicator of recreational and/or fitness cycling, not practical, get-around-town cycling. Makes sense.

  4. shaunalex Avatar

    Ditto, and it does show some high heat in downtown Richmond on the world class mountain bike trails north and south of the James in JRPS.

    Strava is definitely a racer/enthusiast product.

Leave a Reply