SI04 Clove Lake Loop


Borough(s): Staten Island, Distance: 2.5 miles, Elevation: 238′, Terrain: Hilly, with decent roads.  Sometimes empty, sometimes not, Ride Rating: @@

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About (Clove Lake Bike Ride)

The lakes of Clove Lakes Park are, like much of the city, constructed nature. There was a Clove Brook that ran down to Kill Van Kull through the valley that cleft between Emerson and Grymes hills, but it was dammed starting in 1683. There were several dams built here, most of them to create enough water pressure to mill both grain and wood. The Clove Lake was created in 1825 to supply water pressure to a grist mill.

More Details (Clove Lake Bike Ride)

Challenging is in the eye of the beholder. This fairly simple route is one of the more strenuous rides we’ve mapped in Staten Island. Not that you can’t find hillier; you can always ride over Todt Hill, directly south of this ride, if you’re looking for long ascent. The top of Todt, at 410 feet above sea level is the highest point in the city and the highest point on the Atlantic Coastal Plain.

Still, while the rises might be challenging, the length of this ride makes it doable for just about everyone. The nice thing is that it gives up a challenge in small doses. This loop not only curves, but dips and rises over the distance. Because the elevation changes are on the straights, it’s hard not to be hyper-aware of the changes, possibly thinking they are greater than they appear.

To us, the surprises of the ride have more to do with the change that occurs shortly after the start of the ride. Clove Lakes Park, at the starting point, seems like many a small urban park, with a nice little patch of forest, and pretty ponds. But turning onto Clove Road, that sense of the park shifts. You realize how big the park really is. Clove runs along the longest edge of the park and Victory Boulevard the second-longest, and it can feel like the park goes on forever. But just as it is starting to feel infinite, you turn off of Victory and onto a quiet side street, which returns you pretty much to what you started with, and hugging the perimeter on lightly-traveled roads is what you’ve got in front of you.

Final Thoughts (Clove Lake Bike Ride)

While we don’t want to push the idea of “training” on to everyone, this is a good ride for just that. With very few turns, and almost no intersecting roads, this is a ride you can do over and over and over again. And because of the few places you might need to stop, it’s great for timing your efforts and seeing how your fitness measures up between when you first rode it and your next attempt..

Ride Specs (Clove Lake Bike Ride)

Borough(s): Staten Island

Distance: 2.5 miles

Elevation: 238′

Terrain: Hilly, with decent roads.  Sometimes empty, sometimes not.

Ride Rating: @@

Notes: The park has gotten friendlier to cyclists, but there’s a limit to that niceness.

Includes: A PDF with intelligence and a GPX file to upload to  your bike computer or mobile device.

Print out the PDFs or put them on your phone.  Put the GPX files on your phone or a GPS-enabled bike computer.  Pump up your tiresGet on your bike.  Go!

If you need a tutorial, here’s where you find that info: Download Rides.

LInks to: SI01

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JP Partland

Writer and rider.
Or rider and writer.
Author of Where To Bike NYC.
As well as: Tour Fever, The World of BMX, and Mountain Bike Madness.
Also the leader of Just Riding Along,

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SI04 Clove Lake Loop