MassBike Bikepath Snow Plowing Report
Wednesday, March 9, 2005

Bikepaths are an integral part of the bicycle transportation network, and these reports are provided to encourage their use by bicyclists who might otherwise not venture out in the snow, and to encourage their proper maintenance (which includes snow plowing) by the responsible agencies given in bold type below. Paths with significant foot traffic become unskiable within a day, and remain a mess for everyone if they are not plowed while the snow is still soft.

4-6 inches of wet, then drier, snow fell on the city during a period of very high winds last night, so there was a lot of drifting by daybreak. I'm still recovering from my crash almost a month ago, so after shovelling drifted snow off my front walk and resting up for my 10-mile commute, it was around 10 am when I got out of the house. Boston and Brookline plowed; the DCR did not.

Please send updates and reports on the conditions of other paths in Massachusetts to Doug Mink

Arnold Arboretum
1.5 miles of park roads which are mostly closed to automobile traffic with no intersections
Boston Parks and Harvard University
All of the hills were almost totally bare, but there was packed powder over ice on the flat places, especially along Hemlock Hill.
Arborway "Bike Lanes"
1 mile of wide paved shoulder which is unmarked but usually clear of parked cars during rush hour
Department of Conservation and Recreation,
Division of Urban Parks and Recreation
The shoulder hasn't been plowed to the curb, but there is a good clear zone outside the fog line.
Jamaicaway Bikepath
1.5 miles of mostly bike/ped-separated paths paralleling a busy 4-lane parkway; two intersections with traffic lights
Boston Parks Deparment
The path was plowed to packed powder, but there was a lot of drifting. I rode the bikepath north from Kelly Circle to the Pond St. light, then took the path along the pond because it looked lots less drifted. The parallel pedestrian path to Perkins St. was passable, and the bikepath to Willow Pond was sanded and quite rideable, with a patch of deep snow at the old Kelly Rink entrance. It was pretty drifted along Daisy Field, though sort of passable. I'll take the Brookline side tonight.
Olmsted Park Paths
3/4-mile of mostly bike/ped-separated paths built over Riverdale Road, across Leverett Pond from the Jamaicaway.
Brookline Park Department
Both the bike and pedestrian paths looked clear from Route 9. They are probably plowed to the parking lot near Chestnut St., but not quite all of the way to Perkins St.
Muddy River Path
12-foot-wide 0.6 mile shared bike/ped path with no intersections
Brookline Park Department and DPW
There was a mixture of bare pavement, packed snow, and slush. It was bikeable and should be clear by the evening commute.
B.U. Bridge
Boston University
I finally found out who plows the bridge sidewalks when I passed a Boston University SnowCat plowing this morning. The wind swept all of the snow off the bridge proper, and the rest of the bridge was plowed, but there was a lot of snow on the Cambridge approach.
Charles River Bikepath
Narrow, shared bike-ped path with few intersections
Department of Conservation and Recreation,
Division of Urban Parks and Recreation
The Charles River Bikepath was not plowed on the Cambridge side of the river from the B.U Bridge to Harvard Square. I rode on Memorial Drive and noticed that there were places where it was swept clean by the wind and many other places where it was totally covered with several inches of drifted snow. It is unbikeable.

Ask the DCR to plow the path right after snowstorms, at their feedback web page.

J.F.K. Park
Wide, shared bike-ped path from river to Harvard Square
Department of Conservation and Recreation,
Division of Urban Parks and Recreation
Plowed to bare pavement, probably by Harvard.
Southwest Corridor Bikepath
Separated Bike/Ped path with poorly-designed intersections
Department of Conservation and Recreation,
Division of Urban Parks and Recreation
No report yet.
Melnea Cass Bikepath
Separated Bike/Ped path
Boston Parks or Transportation Deparment
Not checked yet, but probably not plowed.
Neponset Trail
Mostly paved Bike/Ped path
Department of Conservation and Recreation,
Division of Urban Parks and Recreation
This path is usually not plowed.
If you use this path regularly and want the DCR to plow it, let them know at their feedback web page.
Somerville Community Path
Wide rail trail from Davis Square to Cedar St.
City of Somerville
Not checked, but probably plowed.
Red Line Linear Park Path
Alewife MBTA station to Davis Square over Red Line
City of Cambridge City of Somerville
Not checked yet, but probably plowed here and there.
Cambridge Bike Lanes
Striped lanes of varying widths on major and connecting streets
City of Cambridge
Some lanes have not yet emerged from the parking offsets caused by the January blizzard, but this storm doesn't look like it covered up any of the lanes that were clear already.
Fresh Pond Bike Path
Parallel to Fresh Pond Parkway in Kingsley Park
City of Cambridge
No report yet.
Minuteman Bikeway
From Cambridge through Arlington and Lexington to Bedford
Each town
Not checked yet, but it was clear from Arlington Center to Alewife Monday.
Northampton Bikeway
East-west across the City of Northampton
City of Northampton
Craig Della Penna, who lives next to the path, reports that it is the intention of the DPW to make it passable ASAP after a storm. If the storm is significant, then they plow it repeatedly --sometimes 10-12 times during the course of the storm to ensure its usability.
Norwottuck Rail Trail
Northampton to Amherst
Department of Conservation and Recreation,
Division of State Parks and Recreation
No report yet.