Thanks to the power of the internet I have just discovered my new favorite route planning tool, a heatmap made from the GPS tracking information available from Strava. Check it out!
Strava, for the unfamiliar, is an App that allows you to track your rides using a GPS or phone (I'm broke, so I use my phone). It also allows you to "race" other users and will tell you where you come on certain rides. I use it whenever I remember to and while I'm not competing with anyone, I have a real thing for maps and get a kick out of it.
The Global Ride Heatmap takes all the data gathered by Strava and puts it into a map showing the most frequently ridden routes recorded by Strava. I've recently been wanting to explore outside my usual inner-city riding and have had minor "HOW WILL I FIND A ROUTE?" anxiety. One of the big reasons for this (for me at least) is because I don't ride a traditional drop handlebar road bike anymore, making it largely impossible for me to keep up with those who do. But my bike does just fine for more relaxed riding as long as I'm willing to chill out and look at the the scenery rather than focus on hammering the pedals. I'll be using this App to help plan my new loops as I try and get my lungs back to normal. Check out your town, since the data is user-generated, it's an amazingly comprehensive set of data.