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You can choose ANY bike, as long as it fits your commuting needs. Here are some things to consider so you pick the best bike for your needs:
Riding surface - Is your ride mostly flat or are there hills? Will the surface be smooth or will it include rough roads or off-road terrain?
Distance and speed - How far will you go and how fast do you need to get there?
Bike weight - Will you have to pick up your bike to load it onto a bike rack or take it upstairs?
Weather - Will you be exposed to extreme weather?
This article from REI on How to Choose a Bike can help you identify a good bike fit based on your needs. If you want additional help picking out a bike that suits your budget and specific commuting needs, head over to a local bike shop and talk it out with a cycling expert.
Check out these county trail maps which identify bike-friendly routes and feature legends to help you identify the terrain type, bike lanes, non-motor vehicle traffic trails, and more:
Pierce County Bike Map
King County Bike Regional Trails Map
Thurston County Bicycle Map.
You can also use Google Maps or Komoot to plan your bike-friendly route. Just enter your starting point and destination, choose that you’re riding a bike, and get started!
Wearing a helmet while you ride your bike can prevent injuries and lower the probability of head damage in accidents. Wearing a helmet is also required in most cities in Pierce County. You can check out WSDOT's web page for information on which jurisdictions require helmets.
Check out these additional tips for what to wear while biking to keep you safe:
Dress for the weather: Dress in layers or bring layers with you so you can adjust your needs based on the temperature. Bring a waterproof poncho if there’s any threat of rain.
Wear bright clothing: You’ll be more visible to other bicyclists and motorists on the road by dressing in bright, reflective clothing that can be spotted from far away.