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Taking off on what Spoke Wrench said below...(Friday topic!)(14 posts)

Taking off on what Spoke Wrench said below...(Friday topic!)cory
Aug 2, 2002 10:32 AM
In the thread about the newbie's request for advice, Spoke said there are two kinds of drivers. One is:
". . . the assaulters. I think that the majority of those people who pass you too closely are trying to scare you. That's assault."
I know that happens around here. As part of the continuing debate about Arrogant Roadie Pr!cks, though, I think a lot of RIDERS are assaulters. I see them on bike paths, brushing back old people and kids, and on some of the heavily used rural roads around here. Instead of "On your left" and a little distance, they'll come up suddenly and pass within inches, sometimes literally touching. The local cops and the newspaper where I work have had lots of complaints, which is never good--if there's a crackdown, they're going to crack down on ALL cyclists.
I'm a middle-aged guy and do a lot of my riding at moderate speeds with a Geek Special glasses-mounted mirror, so I can see them coming. If they cut close enough that I interpret it as deliberate, I call into play the no-hankie nose-blowing skills I worked so hard to develop: Honk, SPLAT; Oh, jeez, sorry, man--didn't know you were there. One by one, I'm teaching them manners....
On your left.gs6769
Aug 2, 2002 10:47 AM
Some good points here. I think if someone wants to ride 20+ mph on a trail one of their primary responsibilities is to keep the safety and comfort of others in mind at all times. I think that means always giving proper warning when passing, giving those ahead of you time to move to single file if need be and always always always SLOWING DOWN when kids are around. Trails are for everyone's use and most people aren't out for sheer speed. That said, they've got just as much right to enjoy the trail. Think of slowing for safety and spinning back up to speed as an interval. If you've got the legs you can handle it. if not........tough.

One of my pet peeves is having riders 'sneak' past me at a point where a trail crosses a road and I'm stopped waiting for a break in traffic. I think cyclists should 'line up' just as cars do at a stop sign. Especially if no verbal warning is given, the 'passer' has no idea whether I'll drift into their path as I start out to cross. Even worse is the guy who's been sucking your wheel and THEN wants to get ahead at a stop sign.

"On your left". Learn it, live it.
Aug 2, 2002 10:54 AM
I see people out on the weekends that are using the bike path on the beach as their personal time trial course, which is very dangerous. I try not to be on the bike path after 10am, and if I am, it's on the way back from somewhere, and I'm just spinning and going slow anyway.

And what's with people flying down a multi-use trail/bike path without a helmet? It doesn't look that cool.
Aug 2, 2002 11:25 AM
I totally agree with the stop sign thing! A few weeks ago I was riding up to a red light, and there were two guys on mtn bikes on the sidewalk next to the road, also waiting for the light to change. They looked like they should know what they're doing (bike clothes, nice bikes, etc) so I breifly wondered why they were on the sidewalk, then forgot about them.

Anyway when the light turned we all started, and suddenly I realized we were about to collide because they came off the sidewalk into the traffic lane, where I was, and didn't seem to even see me. I said something like "hey, watch it" and sped up a bit so we wouldn't hit; they didn't say anything but proceeded to draft me for the next couple of miles. I was out for an easy ride, getting over a bad cold, so I wasn't going very fast, but I could hear their knobbies right behind me no matter how much I slowed down or sped up.

(not trying to say anything about mtn bikers, I ride a mtn bike too sometimes, but just bad etiquette in general...)
I think anyone using a multiuse path for training on a roadMXL02
Aug 2, 2002 11:07 AM
bike is the ultimate "Fred", no matter how good they are.
I think anyone using a multiuse path for training on a roadda cyclist
Aug 2, 2002 11:33 AM
Why? Depending on where you live and the times that are available to you for training, a multi-use path may be the only option. Personally, I use about 12 miles of multi-use paths in order to get to an area where all of the local cyclists go to train. To try anything else would be suicide. Just the other day I ran into a buddy of mine heading home on the trail as I was heading out. Nobody in their right mind would call this guy a fred. He's a cat 1 who did very well at nats a couple of weeks ago. The bottom line is that multi-use trails are there for you to ride your bike on. Obviously other people are using them as well, but as long as you excercise some caution and common sense, there isn't anything wrong with training on them.
the difference...TomS
Aug 2, 2002 11:44 AM
It sounds like you (and your buddy) are using the trails to get to a place to train... you're not doing intervals or practicing sprints on the trails, trying to dodge rollerbladers and little kids on bikes at the same time.

Like you said, exercise some caution and common sense... some people don't seem to get that.
have to disagreeyeah right
Aug 2, 2002 11:45 AM
like many others i pretty much have to ride multiuse trail to get to good rides, i'm not inclinded to go slower than is necessary for the conditions, but i'm not going to put me or anyone else in danger doing it. there are plenty of times to go 20mph safely on a trail, but you've got to be careful, not mind slowing down when required, pass safely, be especially careful on blind corners, and ride slowely on the "end" where the walkers and kids are. i'm cool with that, sure there are jerks, but assuming you're not trying to do at 6pm after work or 2pm on a nice saturday afternoon you're fine
I guess it depends on your situation.MXL02
Aug 2, 2002 12:06 PM
My emotional response was due to my experiences on the trail I commute on. I ride my fat tire comfort bike, and most cyclists like myself are commuters or people just out to get some exercise. We don't usually go faster than 15 mph, because there are a lot of walkers, joggers, dog walkers, etc. I just hate it when some show-off comes through on a high end road bike in full regalia pushing 20 mph. It endangers everyone, and the person is usually some kind of poser. The real cyclists, in my neighborhood anyway, wouldn't be caught dead doing a training ride (18-22mph & up) on a path; it is just a poor place to train. If your roads are too crowded or unsafe, go out to the country, or ride early Sunday morning.
I think anyone making such statements is a total JackassJohnG
Aug 2, 2002 2:54 PM
Damn, this board has really gone downhill. :(

If you would read my explanation above,MXL02
Aug 2, 2002 4:09 PM
you wouldn't be in such a rush to judge. Have a nice weekend, and please don't do speed trials on the multi-use paths. :)
Or let me be more explicitMXL02
Aug 2, 2002 6:03 PM
Maybe my message was just too subtle for you, so let me spell it out. People complain about Freds being guys who ride expensive Italian road bikes wearing a camelback and a helmet mirror, and are more worried about being safe than winning. Well I do all that, and I'm da#% proud of it. What I don't do is get on a multi-use path and ride like a bat of hell and like anyone else on the path is an inconvenience to me, just to bolster my own weak ego. If you feel like I'm a jackass for feeling that way, then tell me how I'm wrong...engage in some discourse. Otherwise, lighten up.
Or let me be more explicitda cyclist
Aug 2, 2002 8:06 PM
You're first post said that anybody training on a roadbike on a multiuse pass was the ultimate fred. In this post you're talking about riding like a bat out of hell, etc. I guess my point is that if you think "training=riding fast", then you have a lot to learn about cycling. You can get plenty of good training in while riding at a reasonable speed on a multi-use trail.

Personally, I think the real freds are the guys who chuckle as they pass me when I'm doing 10mph between sprints on Saturday and Tuesday...
My point exactly.MXL02
Aug 3, 2002 8:52 AM
your last sentence is what I was trying to say all along.
In my cycling club a training ride is 18-22 mph or up, which I think is way too fast for a multiuse trail. I use them for recovery rides. And you're right, I do have a lot to learn about cycling, as does most of everybody else on this board.