Make lead-in distances clear at route selection [SOLVED]

Support suggested I shared this here. Posted as a result of getting “bitten” by a 7.5km lead in on the new Serpentine 8 route in Watopia, would be great to see a better visual hint that a route’s got a big lead-in

I know the map shows the lead in as a blue line - but in a lot of cases a lot if it gets covered by the actual route itself and it’s easy to miss. I’ve now taken to always checking ZwiftHacks to make sure I don’t get caught out - but I really shouldn’t need to go outside the “Zwift world” to find this stuff out

What might be helpful is an obvious visual prompt where the lead-in is (say) more than 10% of the distance or climbing of the main route itself - something like the example of Highline in this attachment (where the lead-in doubles the length & more than doubles the climbing!), except done properly by someone that isn’t a graphics idiot like me :slight_smile:

It seems to me like there is plenty of space on the right just just add the lead-in distance. This would be a huge help, and likely eliminate a load of Forum posts.


It’s a good place to start, and I’ve started a ticket to ask if this UI change would work well across Mac / Win / iOS / Apple TV / Android versions of the app.


@shooj I definitely think it would be great, and seemingly simple, to add the lead-in distance to the route selection list. There does seem to be room for it. The one additional thing I would like is ask is that this distance be denoted in blue, so that it corresponds with the blue in the map for the lead-in. Thanks!

Is it cruel of me to find it funny/ironic that my wife just got off a session annoyed with herself 'cos she did Highline and hadn’t realised the lead-in was so big or climby

I’d even mentioned this to her when I raised the suggestion on here :slight_smile:

I’d never really paid much attention to lead-ins until I got burned on Lutscher CCW. Nowadays I use Zwift Hub for route selection so it’s all clear in my mind before I set off.

I probably wouldn’t call this silly, but the lead-ins to course loops annoy me. Especially when I’m trying to get route achievements. Even though I know dang well there’s a lead-in and that the distance I have to bike to get the achievement to pop is more than the distance that is listed when I choose the route, it still leads every time to me trying to hang on while internally screaming “How much further is it??”.

Case in point, today I was trying to get the achievement for Muir and the Mountain. When I picked the course it said 21.1 miles. My stupid brain was thinking, “Just get to 21-point-something. I’m sure somewhere in there it will end.” By the time I reached almost 24 miles I gave up because I pushed too hard on the mountain part and was exhausted. Now that I’ve looked it up, there’s a 3.2 mile lead-in on that particular course. Which means I may have stopped just before I got it…oh well. I’m not sure if that lead-in means that I have to pedal 3.2 + 21.1, or if I have to pedal 3.2 + 21.1 + 3.2. Either way, it’s more than I bargained for today. lol

I’m sure there’s some reason that lead-ins exist. Perhaps so you can get up to cruising speed before your actual loop starts? Though I don’t feel you need 3.2 miles to do that… :slight_smile:

I’m not sure of the ‘reason’ that the lead-ins exist, but the reality of the situation is just that there are limited ‘spawn’ points in the various Zwift worlds, while a route could, theoretically, begin and end anyway. In general, though, the actual routes begin and end at a banner or arch (the one exception I know is the Mega Pretzel, which begins and ends on the land bridge near the volcano). So, when you’re trying to get a badge, always ride to the next banner/arch beyond the distance of the route itself. Sometimes this is crushing (as you discovered today, and may well find again if/when you do the Lutcher route), and sometimes it is just trivial. (When picking the route, though, always be sure to watch the route animation; the blue line is the lead-in and the white line is the route itself.)

Yeah, this one seemed like the longest one I had encountered thus far. Usually it feels like I have to ride no more than an extra mile beyond the official distance of the course. I guess the important thing is that I got a good workout in today. My Fitbit claims peak heart rate for 92 minutes!

I’ll have to make a habit of looking up the lead-in distances when I’m going for achievements. That way I’m mentally prepared for the true distance.

You might find this helpful:

So frustrating to have missed the badge after all that work! My notes from that ride include “Radio Tower almost killed me” lol! After missing a route badge more than once, I found this pdf and made my own ‘badge tracker’ Excel sheet that includes the lead-ins and XPs earned. It has saved me a lot of frustration. Hope this helps you too.

Zwift Routes by Difficulty .pdf

The longest lead in is in Insbruck.

@Gethin_Pearson @Nigel_Tufnel @Steve_S_T @MarcinMN @M_Newberry @Tim_Camden_C and everyone else who’s asked for this improvement:

Please update your game app to v. 1.14.0.