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In these unusual times, it's more important than ever to keep yourself safe and healthy, and protect others. Cycling is a great way to keep yourself physically and mentally fit, and dicovering new areas to try new climbs, roads, and routes is vital in keeping things interesting and yourself motivated. It’s easy to slip in to old habits and simply head out from your front door to cover the routes you’ve been riding for years.
But with a bit of advanced route planning on komoot there is no reason you can’t find new roads, routes, climbs and inspiration while also staying safe.
Komoot’s route planning (opens in new tab) features are the most detailed on the market with on and off-road routes updated by users. They even have the ability to overlay detailed weather information on to your route, and if you tell it your estimated start time it will tell you if you’ll need lights, and how long for. So even on new rides there’s no reason to get into trouble or go too far.
When reviewing your route, hold down the M key on the keyboard to toggle the blue route line off and on. This allows you to see the road underneath and double check it’s suitable for your ride.
There are lots of ways to discover new places on komoot. Just hit the discover prompt in the top left of the website and see dozens of routes ridden by users near you. Click on ‘view’ to see the full map and profile, then click ‘create copy’ to save and re-plan the route to suit you.
The tantalising rides further afield can be bookmarked and saved for bigger post-lockdown adventures.
If you want to tap into some deep knowledge check out komoot’s Pioneers, regarded as the leading local experts. Click on the Pioneer link then select the sport type and region you’re interested in. This will bring you some of the best routes created by some of the most experienced riders around.
By using Garmin Connect, Garmin IQ and the komoot app on your phone you can sync your komoot profile across computer, phone and GPS, meaning your routes are sent directly to your device. No dragging and dropping required.
If you want to create your own route, then you could do worse than base it on other riders’ highlights. These appear as red circles on the map, and feature roads, points of interest, cafes or view points that others recommend. Set one as your end point or a point on your route to discover it for yourself – you can then up-vote it on komoot if you like it.
To create your own route, choose your sport, select your ability level and start clicking around. Always start with a one-way route, once you’ve created two-thirds of it you can change it to a round trip and komoot’s algorithms will direct you home. As you’re plotting a route the road surface and road type will be highlighted, as will any potential hazards.
Check out the komoot help guides from the drop down menu on the website. These explain the map legends, give route planning tips, explain how to create your own highlights and more.
Any of these can be easily found on the route and looked at in more detail with satellite overlays allowing you to decide whether or not you want to ride it.
Exploring new roads on komoot is easy and safe, meaning there’s no reason not to get out and enjoy your rides.
Four ways to explore on gravel
Komoot has a huge following in the rapidly growing gravel market. Here are just a few reasons the site has made such an impact on this scene.
1. When creating routes be sure to select the gravel option for your ride type. This changes the routing algorithm to help you find the best rides. If feeling really adventurous select the mountain biking option for more technical trails.
2. As you plot your route the types of surface will appear in the panel of the left of the screen. Hover over a chosen surface and those sections will appear on your route map. From here zoom in and overlay Google satellite maps (legend in top right corner of map) to check out exactly what it’s taking you over.
3. To improve your experience and that of others you can help keep komoot’s map updated. SImply hit ‘CTRL + ALT + click’ on the route planner to open OpenStreetMap.com where you can label surfaces, update paths and more.
4. If you find another user’s route you like the look of but fear it’s too technical simply create a copy and tailor it to your abilities. Ideal for when bike-handling skills vary.
The komoot website and app are free to use and navigation via the phone app will then only cost you your data. To download and use maps offline it costs £3.99 per region to £29.99 for the ‘world package’. All of which are one-off payments. Premium membership is £59.99 per year, and includes all world maps plus extras. Go to www.komoot.com/g (opens in new tab)
New users get a region bundle for free with voucher code ‘CW-PLAN’.
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Founded in 1891, Cycling Weekly and its team of expert journalists brings cyclists in-depth reviews, extensive coverage of both professional and domestic racing, as well as fitness advice and 'brew a cuppa and put your feet up' features. Cycling Weekly serves its audience across a range of platforms, from good old-fashioned print to online journalism, and video.
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