Bicycle Commuting in a heat wave.
Western Wisconsin has been suffering through a heat wave for the past few weeks. Despite the heat there are still lots of bicyclists out on the road commuting to work, shop or just heading out for a cool drink with friends. Just like winter, the hot humid summers here can pose challenges for some bicyclists. Here are a couple of thoughts about bicycle commuting in a heat wave.
- Timing: Try leaving for work a bit earlier when it is more likely to be cooler.
- Slow Down: If you follow tip one, you should have plenty of time to ride a bit slower, that way you will sweat less. Plus you will get to enjoy the scenery more.
- Axe the Packs: Backpacks and messenger bags can look cool, but they can leave you with a sweaty back. Try equipping your bike with a rack and panniers. If you have a rack but not panniers, use a couple of bungee cords to hold your pack/bag securely to the rack.
- What to Wear: Light weight natural fiber clothing will keep you cooler, but will show wrinkles a bit more. A hat or helmet with a brim will keep the sun off you face and having a bandana handy will let you mop any sweat off your brow. I also like wearing my sandals and rolling up my pant legs when the thermostat goes up. Short pants or skirts are also a way to keep cool, just watch out for sunburn. Read more
By Ross Seymour
Wisconsin has a short statute on how people are to use bike/ped paths. Those rules are found at Sec. 346.803 of the Wisconsin statutes. The rules apply to “Bicycle Ways.” Bicycle ways are defined as any path or sidewalk designated for the use of bicycles by the relevant governmental body. (Sec. 340.01(5s)) Bicycle ways are distinguished from bicycle lanes. Lanes are for the exclusive use of bicycles while ways are not exclusively for bicycles (presumably to include pedestrians).
First, the bicyclist must exercise due care and give an audible signal when passing another bicyclist or a pedestrian. Due care would mean giving a wide enough berth while passing or taking care to pass on a section where it would be safe. While most bicycle ways around here have good sight lines there are a few places where you can’t see far ahead enough to pass safely. On a regular road these sections would have “no passing” signs or markings.
The audible signal requirement actually comes out of the Rule of the Road for motor vehicles. A little known requirement is that when passing another automobile, the passing car is required to give an audible signal while passing (presumable a toot of the horn). (Sec. 346.07(3)) An “audible signal” is left undefined by the statutes. Read more
Filed under: Advocacy, Bike Lanes, Bike Paths, Commuting, DRBC, Lifestyle
Found Online is a collection of links to interesting articles and items we come across online. Most of these are also posted to our Facebook page throughout the month (be sure to like our page) as we find them and are put here about once a month.
The best biking cities of the East race toward Gold: Boston, New York City and Washington, D.C. all receive Silver-level designations
The City of Onalaska, Wi submitted an application for Bicycle Friendly Status in the last round of the League of American Bicyclists (LAB), Bicycle Friendly Community program. We are sorry to report that they did not receive this recognition but did receive and honorable mention. We hope for the opportunity to work with the city on achieving this status in the future, as well as working on Complete Streets. If your community is interested in applying the DRBC would be happpy to help.
The LAB has also just released the latest annual ranking of Bicycle Friendly States. This year Wisconsin slip from the number 2 spot to number 3, main based on the efforts of Maine, who was in a close 3 place last year and moved to number 2 this year. Wisconsin had held the number 2 spot for the past three years. Minnesota maintain its numbe 4 ranking for the second year in row. For more information on the program and on the scoring of the individual states go the LAB program website here.
As some of you may know, by day I am a librarian, really I am. This means, in a very stereotypical way, I love reading as much as I love riding my bikes. When I can sit down in the evening after a nice long ride and read a book about bicycling pretty much all is right with my world. With that in mind I thought I would share a few of the titles I have read recently or my favorites, just in case you need something to read yourself.
The Lost Cyclist: The Epic Tale of an American Adventurer and His Mysterious Disappearance
By David Herihy, 2010
I really enjoyed this book. It is full of the romance of the bicycle that was at its height during the Victorian period. Frank Lenz sets out on a journey to bike around the world, this book recounts what is known of his journey and the search, although belated, to find him after he disappears in the Middle East.
Winding Rivers Library System Catalog