My commute route varies during different times of the year but it is comprised mostly of Lightly traveled surface streets except when I pass through the downtown area. It can get hectic in the downtown section but then I'm usually moving faster than the cars and I'm more agile :-) Sacramento is blessed with the American River Bike trail which comprises about five miles of my commute. On Spring days I have been known to extend my commute by extending my mileage on the bike trail. Total length of the trail is about 33 miles and goes from the confluence of the American and Sacramento Rivers up to Folsom Lake.
I have always commuted by bike since my High School days in varying degrees. My highest mileage year was 6500 (commute only miles). I belong to several local cycling clubs but I'm most active with the Sacramento Bike Hikers leading quite a few club rides. These past couple of years I have been concentrating on Ultra distance events with my tandem partner Irene riding centuries, double centuries and Brevets. As a result my bike commuting has suffered a bit due to time restraints but I intend to incorporate more commuter miles into my training this year. I have two commuter bikes. Bike #1 is an old mountain bike in which I changed the large chain ring to a 52, changed the cog set to a close ratio set, and changed the tires to 1.25 Avocet Cross tires. Fully loaded it can still give many a roadie a headache :-) Bike #2 same as #1 except I made it a single speed to improve my spin on the flats and my strength on the hills.
I remember many years ago that I challenged my then girl friend to a race. We both attended American River College in Carmichael and she lived in the downtown Sacramento area (about 15 miles). She got on the bus and I got on my bike. The race was on! I probably wasn't obeying many traffic laws that day but it was worth the a risk to be laying on the grass in front of her house for a good ten minutes before she arrived home. :-)