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Rules of the road.......(2 posts)

Rules of the road.......unkushunkus
Apr 5, 2003 9:20 PM
Im a mountainbiker, but i find myself on the road alot during the yucky seasons.
How do you guys deal with cars? I find myself riding in the gravel on the side of the road so i dont get clipped by someones mirror. I imagine you guys dont ride your roadbikes in the rough, so do you just ride in traffic? Im not talking about urban streets, im riding on backroads in upstate NY.

Apr 6, 2003 6:09 AM
There are many schools of thought on this. The "Rules" of the road for most states state that if we are not keeping up with traffic we have to ride as far right as practical. How you interpret that is up to you. Much of it depends on specific conditions where you are riding.

Traffic creates a natural sweeping action on the road. Vehicles push debris off the road to the right. I tend to ride just on the left edge of this area. On a really narrow road I end up blocking traffic. On a wide road I'll be on the left side of the shoulder, right of the white line.

Many people believe that if you ride more to the left you will force traffic to pay more attention, slow down, and go around you. Others run puncture resistant tires and ride through the debris to stay out of everyone's way. While I agree with both, the further left you are, the more likely you are to get clipped by a driver who is distracted and doesn't see you. Ride through the debris minefield and you'd better bring a couple extra tubes. It depends on your comfort level.