How Was Your Ride Today? Week of Sept. 14th

'Twas a fast ride in this morning. I'm running lights front and rear, so my sleek one-speed is festooned with brackets and cabling. It's totally worth it though - drivers are giving me a wider berth.

Forums: 

Chilly

After one week break - a bit chilly. And dark in the morning. Despite having lights I hit something in a gutter and almost fell over. Just next to the bunch of hungry me cars. Brrrrr...
Lucky me.

Deer

I saw 4 deer, a buck and three does, while I was struggling up the
pathway from the river to Sovereign Crescent. Nice to see wildlife like that.

rode in Edmonton last week

Tuesday - Mtb in & around St Albert, Wednesday - Road Ride in Edmonton & River Valley/Hawrlak Park ... (think I saw Alex Steida there too), Thursday - Mtb East River Valley Ski Hill (could see the refinery...)

64TH IS INSANE

SeanYYc will probably aggree here... it's really time to adjust my route to only using 64th from the last side road onward (by the Cdn Tire Gas Station). The volume of traffic from Centre to the Deerfoot has gone up 2x to 3x in the last 2 weeks or so.

you know it

Sure is. I come in from the south of 64th, so I go along Blackthorn Rd or 56th Ave to Laycock Park instead of tangling with that nonsense, especially with the construction at 4th St. (looks almost done finally).

Now, if I could find a reasonable way to avoid the Deerfoot overpass... ha.

I will be bypassing it from the other side...

I come in from the NW so I have options on where I decide to cut south. I really hate the bridge but I don't have options either. The 24 million (bridge) would be better spent building basic bike/ped bridges across the Deerfoot to better connect the east/west parts of the city. I would love to see one about 200 - 300 metres south of Beddington Trail...

the city should conduct a workplace survey to target this type of development... Postal Codes should be enough info to get a rough idea of commuting patterns.

agree

I'd take a few hundred metre detour north to use a dedicated bridge. I've nearly been nearly hit at least a dozen times on that overpass this summer - both in riding and pedestrian mode. The crosswalks across the on/off ramps to the Deerfoot are unreasonably bad for pedestrians, people just aren't paying attention.

I know a lot of people use the overpass in cyclist mode. What would it take to convince them for the need for a dedicated crossing this far north? I'm not too familiar with how receptive the city is to such things.

Hawksworth is the alderman?

I think Bob is the Alderman for that area. His background includes a stint as an ND MLA. The map indiactes Deerfoot is the divider there... I looke dup the ward survey and traffic is a top concern... making it easy to get across deerfoot might get some out of the car...

64th Ave NE Maintenance Blackhole

I'll join in, as this is my least favourite part of my commute...

I come from the south, so during the summer I drop on to 64th Ave from the end of the short section of pathway at the Canadian Tire T-intersection (Hunterhorn Rd I believe). Riding downhill and timing the lights, the traffic isn't too bad.

However, during the winter the fantastic grey zone that is the Deerfoot Maintenance Area makes this section sketchy. Either it is the accumulation of snow & ice on the bridge decks or the impassable accumulation of snow on the accompanying sidewalk, the result is not a bike-friendly route. Despite several calls to Carmacks and the City this section of road & sidewalk were real horror shows last winter. I especially felt for all the foot traffic (some with strollers!) making their way through the drifts.

The "best" route I found - I can't believe I'm saying this - was going through the hole in the chain link fence off the Nose Creek pathway, hopping over the railway tracks and up the rutted single track to face 50% less of the 64th Ave bridge gaunlet. I'm still not happy with this route... How do you find the roadway conditions in winter? Is it not as bad as I've remembered it to be?

A better bike / ped bridge indeed! The implication of the current design is the pathway meets the 64th Ave sidewalk and the sidewalk becomes the de facto "pathway" across Deerfoot. It is too narrow & too busy for this purpose.

I like your idea of a commuting survey! Defining the major non-downtown commuting destinations might be elucidating for new construction & maintenance priorities.

What am I going on about winter though?! It is a beautiful summery day outside! :)

it's gnarly sometimes

It's the exact stretch you're mentioning that's making me question my resolve to try and bike all winter this year. Driving is bad enough there, often black ice and lots of snow piling up. Glad someone does it :D

I walk my bike across the span sidewalk if there's pedestrians on it. It's definitely too narrow. Sometimes I'll stay with traffic flow, but with the volume increase the last couple weeks it's becoming the option I take.

Between the outlet mall, the light industrial park north of there, and destinations south down 11st NE, this is a chokepoint in many, many people's commute.

much agree

The $20+M bridge is a poor allocation of funds. I don't know how much it costs to build the average ped/bike bridge but I bet you could have 3 or more built for the price of that one. I don't think basic concrete or steel bridges look all that bad either. If you take a look at some of the recent overpass bridges there is some decorative formwork happening and the actual shapes can vary quite a bit. There are some older bridges such as the Edworthy Park bridge that are simple and not too ugly either. I think some motivated engineers and a good design team could come up with some eye pleasing and useful bridges rather than spending so much money on an art piece at this point.

As for good locations, I have no doubt the city is aware of many good suggestions for new ped bridges. They have received lots of input on this over the last few years and many surveys took place as part of the Plan-it initiative. Why they ignore this input in favour of a single expensive structure I don't know.

In addition I think the city could do a much better job when retrofitting existing bridges. Many technical implications of course but they have torn several bridges down to the rebar over the past few years and rebuilt the whole top surface, there has to be room during this process to widen it somewhat in order to provide even some extra room for a cyclist lane. Maybe just rethink the size and material of the car/ped buffer rather than bulky concrete barriers. Possibly a slightly narrower sidewalk too?

Lights

Pretty sure I blinded someone at the bottom of fish creek near 37th this morning with my new light. My apologies.

BTW, not an off leash area....

Nice Riders

Yesterday afternoon on my way home, two people slowed down while passing me to say Hi and How is it going?

This was the first time it ever happened to me and it was very nice!! Made my day :)

Yeah... I was doing it for a

Yeah... I was doing it for a long time too. And then noticed those grumpy faces or those 'serious' Lance-like pro-looks (no time for Hi-s!)and said to myself "Geee... t'heck with it!". Bad, I know but...

Going thru the serene Fish

Going thru the serene Fish Creek this morning all of the sudden I hear clear and loud "good morning" from this guy passing me on a white hybrid. Shocked I mumbled a quick "hallo!". Geee... and I thought things like that died out.

I ride through a number of

I ride through a number of valleys... at the tops i was thinking to my self "Self - you should gear down it is so warm..." By the time I was in the bottom of the valley it was cold... I bet there is a 5 degree difference between average grades and the dips... it is kind of refreshing like a hot-cold-hot shower...

The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart. ~Iris Murdoch, The Red and the Green

Dogs

A big black dog tried to run me down around 530. Guess that's why the owner was walking him that early. He probably chased me for a km before he gave up. Least it was an off leash area and it woke me up.

dogs

I have had quite a few close encounters with dogs lately, had one jump into my front wheel. Good thing I slowed down to walking speed. Got my drivetrain tangled in a dog leash when riding on the street (!!!) just a few blocks from my house, the dog darted out in front of me on one of those extendable leashes. Prompted me to look up the legal situation. From the Calgary bylaws:

Calgary’s pathways are “on leash” for
dogs, even in off-leash areas.

and

Dogs must not interfere with, obstruct,
or chase other pathway users.

Dogs

That's good to know, I wasn't aware of that.

I'm not sure what his plan was if he caught me but he sure put down a good effort. By the time he gave up I couldn't hear his owner yelling at the top of his lungs to come back. I'm sure everyone who lives near that streach of trail appreciated that.

They defiantly seem to be the most unpredictable element of my ride. Got to keep an eye on them suckers.

and more dogs.

Some parks are so much better than others. Egert's Park is terrible for off-leash dogs on the pathway. I've taken to having to remind people of the fact, lest their precious dog be accidently run over.

Not always taken so well.

light

i love the light this time of year. the angle that the sun comes up at brings the light right into my house and lights it up with that warm, autumn hue that is so beautiful.

when i see an adult on a bicycle, i do not despair for the future of the human race.
- h.g. wells

Waiting for a green...

Waiting for a green light I count to 3 before even looking if I can start moving. We all now there are drivers for whom yellow means 'more gas' and pedal to metal. But today (and Wednesday) it was just horrible at Barlow with Southland! They kept going and going! What is wrong with us? Yellow is to leave/clear an intersection and not to enter! Geee...!

late leaving

I overslept, I hate that, have to rush and not enjoy the ride, BUT....as mentioned above, the glorious sunrise caught my attention in spite of my haste. The poplars have shed many leaves which were layering the ground with hues of yellow, the trees in the river valley are showing more hints of brighter colors, the sun was golden and reflecting off the river, the entire morning was golden hued and fabulous! Life is good.

Late day

Me too.

Slept to 6:30 which is when I am usually out the door. So a quick dressing and packing job, and out at 6:45AM.

Agree with all earlier comments, beautiful sky this morning and stopped to just take it in and snap a couple of photos.

My late start must have had something to do with my commute home which took from work, north of the airport to MEC and then home later, (36KM total.) It had absolutely nothing to do with the couple of wobbly pops at Brewsters, purely the long commute.

I applaud all of you that commute these distances like this daily. I am wiped today. Glad it's Friday! It has been an amazing week of riding. I love this time of year.

Good post Jaykay, sometimes

Good post Jaykay, sometimes we say "LOL" when we really didn't but your post did make me LOL! I'm glad it's Friday too, this has been a brutal week at work, not much spunk left for anything else. Doing a road trip tomorrow, alas, not on my bike but in my little red 4x4 pick up truck. It'll be the "Three Girls in a Truck Tour"..hahha, look out Black Diamond and Longview! Have a great weekend.

RADAR GUN ON HOME ROAD ????

Around 8:30 a.m.

I was buzzing down the hill and about half way down, under one of the 69kV power line towers was a guy and a girl with a radar gun?????

I was still half asleep and going too fast to notice, but I think it was the CPS, and that they may have yelled my speed or "good morning" or something at me. The only thing I remember is that they were both smiling, which kinda' put me into a good mood to start the day.

Did anybody else encounter these two?

I didn't ride today but...

My assistant manager biked to work today for the first time ever. Unfortunately he got lost a few times so was an hour and a half late for work, and during that time all of my co-workers blamed me. I think he's hooked now though. :)

Myself and a couple of

Myself and a couple of friends took a rip around the city today. There was one condition you had to ride fixed or single speed. The morning was a little chilly and wet, but once the blue sky broke through it turned out to be a great day. When all was said and done we logged right around 100 kliks and finished in around 6 hours. A nice leisurely ride, adn hopefully not the last of the year.

The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart. ~Iris Murdoch, The Red and the Green

Post ride feelings

Bah I woke up this morning and felt like I was back in the gym after yesterdays ride... Man my legs feel like I just did a days worth of squats not a bike ride. Sadly I ended up getting a ride into work, and will ride home. Needless to say I think I needed the extra hour of sleep and the double helping of breakfast that I decided to grab.

The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart. ~Iris Murdoch, The Red and the Green