August 02, 2009

Forbes Traveler On Bike Friendly Cities, and Best Bike Trails

In the most recent of two stories Forbes Traveler Magazine announces what it considers to be "America's Most Bike-Friendly Cities".

 As traffic continues to increase everywhere, pedaling within the urban grid only gets better: Municipal cycling commissions are encouraging pedal power over car congestion by putting in new bike lanes, paths and signals. Bike-only trails are also expanding everywhere to the suburbs and the exburbs. Getting to know a city by bike affords views and experiences you won’t encounter behind a windshield, as well as excellent passive exercise, often absent from travel itineraries.

The July package of online stories tells a little about each of the cities chosen, Austin (TX.), Portland (OR.), Eugene (OR.), Boulder (CO.), San Diego (CA), Davis (CA.), San Francisco (CA.), Seattle (WA.), NY City, Madison (WI.), Chicago (IL.), Minneapolis (MN.), Montréal (Quebec, Canada, and Vancouver (BC).

1, Original Article, with Photo Slide Show: North America's Most Bike-Friendly Cities

2. Yahoo News Briefing, featuring short bits, and links, on 7 of the cities mentioned: Forbes Traveler on North America's Most Bike Friendly Cities.

In March Forbes Traveler did a story called "10 Great American Bike Trails.

From dirt tracks to converted railroad tracks, great trails throughout the U.S. provide a variety of terrain, scenery, amenities, challenge, and overall experience for riders of differing abilities and intentions.

Their choices were:

Underground Railroad Trail; Mobile, Ala. to Owen Sound, Ontario.

Deschutes River Trail, Ore..

Trans-America Trail, Yorktown, Va. to Astoria, Ore..

Katy Trail, Mo..

Slickrock Trail, Moab, Utah.

Green Mountains Loop, Vt..

Great Divide Trail; Roosville, Mont. to Antelope Wells, N.M..

Route of the Hiawatha Trail; Idaho to Montana.

C&O Canal and Towpath and Great Allegheny Passage Trail, Washington, D.C. Area.

Central Park Loop, New York, N.Y.

This informative article includes a slideshow, describing more about each route, and providing links to more information on each.

Read: 10 Great American Bike Trails.



August 2, 2009 in Cycling News Network, Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 19, 2009

Happiness is Fitting Bicycling into Your Vacation

Jeff Yeager is The Green Cheapskate, over at The Daily Green, and he has written an outstanding article on how taking a Cycling Vacation can change your life:

If you've not been on a bicycle since you were a kid, maybe this is the summer to rediscover the joy and freedom of what it arguably the fastest machine ever invented by man, when you factor in the energy it requires to build/buy and get on down the road.

Or better yet, why not make your family vacation this summer a bicycle trip? It's inexpensive, eco-friendly, healthy, and, I bet, will give you memories to last a lifetime.

His report offers tips under the titles of Going the Distance, Keeping it Simple and Cheap, Picking a Route, Don't Overspend, Pack Light, Safety First, Take a course on Safe Cycling, and Stay Cheap.

Read the whole thing here.

As regular readers know I've done some long rides over the years, as can be found in my archives...

My vacation begins next Friday, and I plan a couple of more long ones that I hope to take, camera in hand, and blog about.

June 19, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 03, 2009

New Discovery Down Under! Official Says Cycling Makes You 61% More Likely To Live!

Wow! I mean, who would have thunk it! ;-D

Sydney Body Art Ride, a 3 year old BikeBlog in Australia, reports on a study that opines that "despite the overwhelming health benefits associated with cycling, a dominant car culture and concerns about safety risks prevent many Australians from commuting by bicycle."

The study compared Australian cycling conditions with overseas examples to highlight the many areas in which local cycling infrastructure needs updating.

Read more, including links, here.

June 3, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

May 27, 2009

WWJST? Salt Lake City to Become More Bicycle Friendly

What Would Joseph Smith Think? ;-D

The Salt Lake Tribune has a great story this week on cycling in "Mormon Central".

Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker's passion for bicycling gets painted on asphalt this summer with new bike lanes along 22 miles of city streets.

Over the next two or three years he hopes to double the 60 miles of road currently buffered by bike lanes, and his budget includes $500,000 toward the goal. That's a tenfold increase over bike budgets before his term, and doesn't include $100,000 in federal economic stimulus dollars helping complete the Jordan River trail.

The City Council still has to sign off on the plan, though.

"It's important for our whole quality of life, for our health, for reducing air pollution, for better use of energy," said Becker, himself a bike commuter to City Hall. "We've got wide streets and we should be able to accommodate bike lanes as well."

Bumping up the budget meant slowing down street maintenance, the mayor said. He also expects cyclists to take some responsibility and stop running red lights -- a common sight downtown. The city is aiding educational efforts to stop it.

The capital's bike program is easily Utah's most aggressive, but bicycle commuters valleywide are finding reason for hope. Salt Lake County is completing an interactive map to show where 16 cities plus townships and unincorporated zones could coordinate for continuous bike routes.

The rest of the article discusses the plans, and reactions of cyclist, motorists, and the Business Community and, in a nice finishing touch, there is an interesting Statistical Chart that discusses Bikes and Crashes as summarized from the Utah Department of Public Safety, Division of Highway Safety, 2007 Utah Crash Summary.

Read: Cyclists await friendlier commutes in Salt Lake City - The city will double lane miles as the county maps routes By Brandon Loomis

May 27, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

May 18, 2009

Europe Falling Down on the Job of Promoting Bicycling?

I came across an interesting article at 7th Space Interactive:

On Friday 15 May 2009, the concluding plenary of the international conference on cycling policy "Velo-City 2009" took place in the European Parliament. At this session, the EESC signed the "Charter of Brussels", a commitment to a European pro-cycling policy ., Among other things, the charter calls for a policy target of at least 15% share of cycling in journeys made in Europe by 2020. EESC Secretary General Martin Westlake launched the first "European Cycling Lexicon", containing key terms of cycling infrastructure and different types of cycles for different mobility needs in all 23 official EU languages.

"Cycling is the fastest, healthiest, cheapest and greenest means of transport for medium distances in cities and must be supported by adequate measures at EU level" Janos Tóth, President of the EESC's Section for Transport, Energy and Infrastructure, stressed.

Read the rest here:  Europe must do much more to boost cycling in cities, says European Economic and Social Committee.

May 18, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 30, 2009

Here Pedals De Judge! 3: We Have a Winner!

Last month I was invited, by my friend Larry Lagarde, of Ride This Bike, to be among those judging the worthiness of entrants in a contest, the prize for winning which would be a brand new Folding Bike.

Here is a list of links to the explanations of the entrants for why they should win, and my thoughts on who I was considering voting for.

On Aprill 22, Larry announced the winner:

Gladly, the consensus was clear. With a huge margin of votes in her favor, M. Ferber of Burlington, Vermont won the folding bike.

I called Mrs. Ferber to personally give her the news and she was quite excited. She had been looking at bicycles that fold for some time now but could not make up her mind which bike to go with. I suppose the contest solved that problem. ;-)

What M. Ferber wrote to make her case.

Read more, including the thoughts of Larry on what the bike will mean to the life of the winner, here.

Congrats to the winner!

I'm sure she will get great use out of the bike. ;-D

April 30, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 07, 2009

Here Pedals De Judge! 2

Last month I was invited, by my friend Larry Lagarde, of Ride This Bike, to be among those judging the worthiness of entrants in a contest, the prize for winning which would be a brand new Folding Bike.

Voting in Round 1 begins today, and ends on the 13th, then Round 2 goes from the 14th to the 21st, with a winner announced on the 22nd, Earth Day.

Pondering my choices has only been part of the reason I've not blogged in a week. ;-D

It's time to introduce you to the contestants, and their explainations for why each feels they deserve to get a free bike. ;-D

I include my thoughts on those entrants I am considering voting for.

D. Saluto from Louisiana.

S. Moretto from Redford, MI.

J. Burnette from Mercersburg PA. - I wouldn't mind if he wins if for no other reason than to see the shitstorm of a controversy over what he wants to do play out in the Mainstream Media, not because I agree with him about Cuba. ;-D

E. Strickland of So Ro, VT.

K. Oakley of San Jose, CA. - A young, idealistic, teacher, who not only wants the exercise, but believes in setting an example for the young skulls full of mush in her classroom. ;-D

P. Davis of Arlington, MA. 

N. Nelson of Mercersberg, PA. - A College Student, with limited storage space, looking for an appropriate bike. ;-D

K. Dossman of Tyler, TX.

S. Jones of Champaign, IL. - A Teacher goes to bat for a student she really cares about, and thinks the world of. ;-D

M. Ferber of Burlington, VT. 

S. Faulkner of Davenport, FL.

A. Brewer of Wellston, OH.

So there ya have it, a Desperate Dozen!

Larry has some thoughts on the contest, as it relates to the state of the economy in our nation:

Given the daily barrage of negative economic news on television, radio and in print, if participation in this contest is any gauge of the economy, I have to wonder whether the media has been hyping the downturn in a disgusting attempt to recapture market share.

Think about it.

Yahoo, Google, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Hulu and more are making mainstream media irrelevant. Newspapers are closing because their circulations are in free fall.

Read the rest of his musings, here.

Like he says..."Go outside. Soak up that wonderful Spring air and go for a bike ride! You owe it to you!" ;-D

April 7, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 24, 2009

Here Pedals De Judge!

My friend, Larry Lagarde, of Ride this Bike, is holding a contest!

How would you like to win a brand new folding bike for free?

The economy has put the pinch on a lot of people. Even if you're out of a job, you still need to get around and a folding bike is a great way to do it. So here's the deal: is giving away a brand new E-Z Pack folding bike including free shipping anywhere within the USA lower 48 states.

To apply, post an appeal on explaining why YOU deserve to get a free bike.

At 5pm Central Time on Earth Day 2009 (April 22nd), a brand new E-Z Pack folding bike will be awarded based on voting by readers of the email newsletter, and a panel of inspirational, and respected bicycle enthusiasts.

Got a convincing Sob Story? No Sob Story, but you want to vote on who has the best one?

Read this story to learn more. ;-D 

As Larry mentions there will be a panel of Inspirational, and respected, Bicycle Enthusiasts (Cycling advocacy and industry leaders.) involved in the voting.

I am honored to have been asked to be on this panel. ;-D

Larry recently introduced us to his readers this way:

Harvey Botzman only rides a Folding Bike, and is the author of several cycling books.

Zahid Buttar is an elite cyclist in the United States Cycling Federation.

Sue Derada is the founder of the Bicycle & Pedestrian Action Committee (BI-PAC), a bicycling advocacy group.

Tony Hoar is a Tour de France veteran and dedicated bicycling advocate,and engineer, and a respected builder of top-quality human-powered transportation devices (such as bicycles, racing wheelchairs and custom bike trailers). 

Arnold Kamler is a CEO with an extensive, 36 year, history in the bicycle industry, including the manufacture of mini folding bikes.  

Richard Masoner is a dedicated bicycle commuter and the prolific bike blogger behind CommuteByBike. His multi modal commute (via bike, bus, train and bike) spans 3 California counties and 2 transit agencies.

Leah Neaderthal founded The Chainlink (the online community for Chicago cycling) to create a sense of community among the large population of Chicago cyclists.

Mark Sanders has created a variety of innovative products including the Strida and IF MODE folding bikes.

Rick Shaffer is the "Prime Minister" of historic Wallace, Idaho (former mining town & Biking Mecca of the Northwest).

Ira Stone is a 60 year old Conservative Rabbi, published theologian and professor of Jewish Philosophy who rediscovered the joys of cycling less than 3 years ago.

Lauren Sullivan is the founder and driving force behind Nola Cycle (a project to assemble the first, comprehensive, high quality and up to date cycling map of New Orleans).

As for me, in January 2003, I started one of the world's first BikeBlogs. Dedicated to the proposition that bike riding is good for you and fun, the blog includes commentary, links, news, opinion, reviews, stories, poetry, travelogue, and occasional heads up about events.

You can learn more here, and explore the best of the 1st 5 years of Blogging, here.

You can learn more about my fellow panelists, including links to their websites, here.

***UPDATE - 4/7***

A Desperate Dozen entered, and here are the links, and my thoughts, on ones I'm considering in Round 1 of the Voting. ;-D


March 24, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Yo, Cuz! Get All Rapped Up in How to Properly Use Bus Bike Racks!

Anyone who knows me knows that, despite have lived in the "Hood" in Pomona, Ca., from childhood in the early 70's, to 2002, my tastes in music are decidedly uncool, what with a love of Classical, Ragtime, Big Band, and Swing, all music of bygone eras in music history for the most part. ;-D

Rarely do I find anything in Rap to smile about. ;-D

Well, I've come across a sterling example of the form that deserve the attention of cyclists. ;-D

It's surprising how many bike riders are flummoxed by the simple act of loading on, and unloading their bike from, the Bike Rack on the bus. ;-D

This video, courtesy of Louisville's Transit Authority (TARC), was found by the 9 month old Blog of the folks at Trek, Life in the Bike Lane (I've added them to the Blogroll!).

The tune is a catchy one, and there are several standout bits in the piece that catch your attention, and stick in the head long afterward.

"Bring it down, pull the bar, put it on..." indeed. ;-D

March 24, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 10, 2009

2009 National Bike Summit Starts Today

The League of American Cyclists report that, as usual, the event is "packed with education, advocacy, a congressional bike ride and plenty of networking."

As the promotional page for the event says:

Bicyclists led the Good Roads movement in the 1880s, successfully lobbying for paved roads to drag our nation out of the mud.

In 2009, the stage is set for bicyclists to once again lead reform of our transportation system.

A “smart” transportation movement is needed to solve the challenges of climate change, obesity, congestion, pollution, safety, and dependence on foreign oil.

The 2009 National Bike Summit is focused on making a powerful case for expanding Federal support for bicycling – for active transportation and recreation.

Join fellow advocates, industry leaders, and retailers as we make our voice for change heard: we have a new President, new Congress and new administration to address.

The new Congress begins writing a new federal transportation funding bill and bicyclists must be at the table.

There are at least 15 Workshops, and several important speakers, over 3 days, and you can learn what, & who, they are about, here.

March 10, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack