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Old 10.09.2016, 19:24
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Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

Hi all. I'm a grad student that just moved to Zurich, Switzerland. I was hoping to be able to commute by bike to my classes at ETH Hönggerberg since I'd like to get in better shape and save money by not having to buy a bus pass. For the next 5 months or so I'll be living by a little north of the Zurich Altstetten train station. I looked up the suggested bike route on google maps and walked that route to try to learn it before going on a bike, and there were a few sections with extremely steep hills on cobblestone (like difficult to walk up, let alone bike up), some sections that were gravel, and a few places on steep and highly traffic roads that had bike lanes, and then the bike lane disappeared, and then reappeared a few hundred yards later. I was going to try to walk the route again and maybe try to find a more desirable path, but I thought I might come here and ask first. So, has anyone ever made a bike commute up to ETH Hönggerberg, and if so, do you have any recommendation on routes, roads to avoid in the morning and evening, tips or tricks (get off the bike and walk it up a certain area that isn't bike accessible or something) or general info on biking in that area?

Also, is there any sort of specific road rule system for bicyclists? I was looking on the Swiss websites, and couldn't come up with anything. When looking on google maps, it looked like there were some of the roads that would cross a river and avoid car traffic, but when I went there in person, it was labeled as a private road with a gate, but people were going in and out of it down to the river. Any suggestions for a newbie cyclist in Switzerland?
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Old 10.09.2016, 23:58
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Re: Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

This map from BBBike might be different,
http://www.bbbike.org/Zuerich/?start...%2C1%5D&scope=
and this one, which I found on the provelozuerich.ch seems to give a slightly different route from Google:
https://www.maps.stadt-zuerich.ch/zu...ate=&drawings=
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Old 11.09.2016, 05:05
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Re: Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

Just to put it in perspective, when my OH did his post-doc we lived in housing near the Hönggerberg campus. Our neighbour had his office at the central campus and got himself there and back every day in his wheelchair, on his own using the bicycle route (ie no bus no tram). He did comment that the mornings were zero effort

Where there is a will there is a way
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Old 11.09.2016, 09:48
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Re: Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

The direct route on:

http://fahrrad-routenplaner.ch/route...ich%2C+Schweiz

is almost a vertical ascent approach. Even with a steam driven and rocket assisted pennnyfarthing I would have to extinguish my cigar on the way up the steep bit.

Try:
At the end of Europabrücke, left on
Winzerstrasse, right on,
Limmattalstrasse, left at
Ottenburgstrasse, keep left at
Kürbergstrasse, left on
Emil-Klotistrasse, right on

This probably doubles the distance, but spreads the vertical difference out.

You could also go
at the end of Europabrücke, left on
Winzerstrasse, right on,
Limmattalstrasse, left at
Gsteigstrasse, left at
Regensdorferstrasse, right at
Michelstrasse, to
Sportplatz Honggerberg
then through the park walkways/forest.

Michelstrass is slightly less steep than the routenplaner link, you will be able to push the bike slightly faster.

I lived in Höngg 11 years, All routes are a tradeoff between steepness, and exhaust fumes.

Surprisingly, it is just as steep going downhill. Budget for replacement brakepads.
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Old 16.09.2016, 20:56
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Re: Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

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Where there is a will there is a way
I'm definitely sure that I'll be able to do it. My worry right now is whether I'd be taking roads that would be making it more dangerous for the drivers as they're going uphill, possibly trying to pass me and such, if I don't have a dedicated bike lane. Are there any specific rules for biking in Switzerland? I seemed to find a website about biking in Switzerland, but their English translation page wasn't available.
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Old 16.09.2016, 20:58
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Re: Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

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The direct route on:

I lived in Höngg 11 years, All routes are a tradeoff between steepness, and exhaust fumes.

Surprisingly, it is just as steep going downhill. Budget for replacement brakepads.
I will definitely check out those two routes. Thanks for providing them.

Are there any rules for biking in Switzerland? Can I basically act like a car, or do I have to follow specific bike lanes always? I don't want to make it more dangerous for myself or the other drivers by biking like I would in the US if there are specific rules here that I might not know. I tried looking online for that info but couldn't find it in English.
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Old 16.09.2016, 23:03
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Re: Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

If there are cycle lanes you are supposed to use them. You have to follow the rules of the road - no running red lights, respect pedestrian crossings, no riding on the pavement (that's sidewalk to you) unless a sign specifically indicates the pavement incorporates a cycle lane.

If your phone is Android based, there is a lovely app - OSMAnd that has downloadable maps in OpenStreet format - and you can incorporate official, numbered cycle routes into the displayed layers. I have a thingy for mounting my phone on the handlebars so I can use that and the app as a sort of SatNav

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I will definitely check out those two routes. Thanks for providing them.

Are there any rules for biking in Switzerland? Can I basically act like a car, or do I have to follow specific bike lanes always? I don't want to make it more dangerous for myself or the other drivers by biking like I would in the US if there are specific rules here that I might not know. I tried looking online for that info but couldn't find it in English.
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Old 18.09.2016, 12:54
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Re: Commuting to ETH Hönggerberg by Bike

I used to cycle from Dietlikon on the cycle paths through Oerlikon and then up through the forest to the ETH Hönggerberg - this route is not as steep as the other side. I politely greeted anybody walking. No problems, but this is some time ago -1984- shit I am getting old
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