October/November 2016
Volume 9 Issue 5

Editor's Comments

Sharon Boyd & Dale Campbell: Editors


Is it Fall already?  Where did the majority of the riding season go?!!  Well, perhaps the articles in this and the previous two newsletters will give us an idea.  For Sharon and Dale, we had a recent experience unlike any other cycling experience we’ve ever experienced.  As you can see in the photos above, during a recent trip to the Oregon coast, we had the opportunity to ride cruiser bikes on the Pacific Ocean Beach.  The costal views were phenomenal, unlike that we experienced in Hawaii (see Sharon’s article about our biking on Waikiki/Honolulu and Kauai in this edition).  Riding on the hard packed sand was a bit of a challenge.  It felt like we were riding uphill the whole time (and we thought it would be easy, being at sea level!).
 
This edition of the Bent Fork has quite the variety of subject matter.  There are multiple travelogs for trips folks have done in the past several months.  Additionally, we’ve included information and updates about Buffered Bike Lanes, which the City is starting to put into place.  As always, the articles below also include information about upcoming Club events, a recollection of the most recent ten years of the Club, an explanation of Bike Advocacy and a slightly humorous article on Ten Things Cyclists Shouldn’t Do.
 
We appreciate the contributions that many of you have provided for the newsletter.  And, we welcome your thoughts, ideas and articles for future editions of the Bent Fork.  In the mean time, get out there and ride!

Plan to Attend the Next CSCC Meeting!

Rich Hostak: Vice President

Here’s a summary of what we’re planning as the focus of our Club meetings for the remainder of 2016.  As always, if you have any suggestions for speakers or topics at our meetings, please contact me.
 
4 October:  Sharon and Dale will be describing their experiences with cycling in Honolulu and on the island of Kauai in Hawaii.  This will be an interesting perspective about vacation biking in an urban and tropical environment.
 
1 November:  Club members are invited to participate in this evening of Arts and Crafts.  For information, see the article immediately below.
 
December:  No Club meeting, as we will be having the annual CSCC Christmas Party.  More information is in the article below and further details will be forthcoming in the next several month.

Upcoming Social Events –Get Out Your Calendar!

Bill Gast: Social Director (retiring)


The end of the year is coming up fast and there are a lot of social activities that will be happening.  So get out the calendar and mark down the following dates.
 
First on the list is the annual Progressive Dinner Ride.  Scheduled for Sunday, 23 October, this annual ride is a good opportunity to catch up with friends and quite literally, enjoy some good food along the way.  The host locations are set, with the Susmans hosting the Appetizer/Salad Course.  Rick Rodriguez’s home will be the location for the Main Course.  Finally, we’ll be pedaling our way to Charlie and Margaret Oliver’s home for the Dessert Course, which fortunately is close to the start/end point for the ride.  This year, the ride will start at the Monument Valley Park Duck Pond at 1027 Glen Ave, which is between Uintah and Monument Valley Park.
 
As always, you are encouraged to help out with the food for one course or another of this ride, either with appetizers, salads or desert.   These can be dropped off at the appropriate host’s home before the ride or brought to the start point for the ride, where they will be collected and taken to the appropriate home.  Details for the locations will be included in the Meetup event description and will also be sent out via an email blast.  As you may remember from previous years, this is one the biggest social rides of the year!  So, note that the start time is 12 noon.
 
The November meeting brings in a new event - the Arts and Craft Show at the regular monthly meeting on November 1st.  We all realize that cyclists have other interests in life.  So, if you would like to display your artistic interest, here is the opportunity for you to shine and toot your horn.  Paintings, pottery, photography, quilting, crafts, or other, the range of artwork that can be included is unlimited. And, we expect that a number of artists will be willing to part with their work for the appropriate amount of money.  So, this will be just in time for planning some Holiday giving.  For the artists, the only rule is that some of your work has to be bicycle related and if you sell something, we ask that 20% of the sale goes to the Colorado Springs Cycling Club.  All donations from any sales will help the Club to continue supporting various activities throughout the year.
Contact Bill Gast via email (bghatman@msn.com) or phone (332-2890) if you have entries you would like to display.
 
Also in November is the Tour De Turkey Ride.  We will be accepting food donations which will go to Care and Share.  So, if you plan to join the ride, please bring some type of non-perishable food good to contribute!  Check the Meetup calendar for the specific date and details.
 
The month of December kicks off with the Parade of Lights, scheduled for Dec 3rd.  This is always a chilly ride, but fun and socializing afterwards always warm us up after participating in the parade.
 
Then, Dec 10th is the annual CSCC Christmas Party, this year to be held at the Satellite Hotel (411 Lakewood Avenue,  corner of Fountain and Academy).  The festivities begin at 6:00pm.   This year’s cost per person will once again be a tiered pricing, determined by how soon you sign up to attend (earliest is least expensive!).  The specific costs are currently being determined.  As always, this is a great time to wrap up the year with a party.  And, there is a special offer from the Satellite Hotel for those who want to take the elevator home that night.  They are giving us a special rate.   Again, stay tuned for an email update and details on the Meetup calendar for further information.
 

National Bike Challenge 2016 Comes to an End

Charlie Czarniecki: Immediate Past President



The National Bike Challenge draws to a close as the Bent Fork is published, ending the five month challenge for 2016.  We’ll have a more detailed report in the next issue.  Other teams are getting more of their riders to post last minute miles; so the ranking positions are shifting a lot in the last week.  Our “CSCC 2014” had been ranked #8 nationally all challenge, but it has slipped to #10 of the almost 1,900 teams in the Challenge in the last week of the Challenge.  We are still far ahead of any other Colorado team, making CSCC #1 in the state.  Colorado Springs has been the #11 city nationally out of the almost 4,600 cities in the challenge.  The Springs is still behind #7 Fort Collins and #10 Denver.  As of Sept 26th we have 6 people at the Diamond (5,000 point) level and 57 people at the Platinum (over 2,500 point) level.  During the Challenge, 131 of our 163 team members have posted their miles.

[Editor's Note:  the Club finished 8th nationally with almost 137,000 miles!  Look for a final summary in the December edition of the Bent Fork.]

Run into a Road or Trail Issue Recently?

Sharon Boyd: Co-Editor

Have you been on a ride recently and experienced an issue either due to the condition of the road or debris on the trail?  There’s a convenient way to get this reported immediately to the City for review and potential action.  Get the GoCoSprings app on your phone, take a photo of the problem and send it to the City.  These reports go into a database. Get reviewed and  then the issues are assigned to someone to deal with.  When you add comments to a submission about the potential danger or safety concerns, the issues get looked at expeditiously.
 
For more on the GoCoSprings app, go to https://coloradosprings.gov/gocosprings

Did You Enjoy These September Rides?

Dale Campbell: Co-Editor

Salute to the Ride for Heroes
With the Patriots’ Festival not being held this year, CSCC felt a need to still honor the hometown heroes and first responders.  So, the Club dedicated its 11 September Social Ride as a Salute to the Ride for Heroes.  The event had more than 70 riders who participated in one of the three levels of rides offered.  The Blue ride was the largest, with 55 riders, while the Black had eight and the Green supported the remainder of the group.  All three rides went in different directions, which negated any potential route conflicts.  After the ride, many folks gathered at the Triple S Brewery in downtown Colorado Springs to socialize and enjoy good brews and excellent food.
 
Thanks to all who participated in the ride and helped to honor not only the heroes and first responders, but also to remember the rights and privileges we have in the US of A!

Take a look at this video to see portions of the ride.

Read More about September Rides

CSCC’s Educational Focus

Rick Rodriguez: Ride Committee

LCI (League Certified Instructor) Training is HERE, October 7-9, 2016!!
 
CSCC is excited to announce the first ever League of American Bicyclists (LAB) LCI training in Colorado Springs. League Cycling Instructors (LCIs) are certified to teach the Smart Cycling classes to children as well as adults. Their goal is to help people feel more secure about getting on a bike, to create a mindset that bikes are treated as a vehicle, and to ensure that people on bikes know how to ride safely and legally.  LCIs are members of the League and have completed an intense 3-day seminar training. Our certified instructors are active within the bicycling community and are covered by the League’s liability insurance.
 
The upcoming LCI training, sponsored by CSCC, is the first time an LCI training has been offered in Colorado Springs.  The nine people signed up for this training class will increase the pool of LCI Trained teachers, allowing CSCC to expand its curriculum of rider education offerings to the Colorado Springs community.
 
Having multiple League Certified Instructors in our club means that: - We can offer MORE Traffic Skills 101 and Ride Leader Training, as well as other LAB training. - We can help more people feel secure about getting on a bike, and biking with a group. - We can help create a mindset that bikes are treated as a vehicle. - We can ensure that our members know how to ride safely and legally.
 
 We can also mention that Dave Vanderwege led a very successful Cycling 123 class in September, offering both a Bicycle Maintenance class at Ted's Bicycles with 17 attendees and Smart Cycling Road Skills class with 7 attendees at the Satellite Hotel.  Special thanks to Dave V and Tony from Teds Bicycles.

"Buffered" Bike Lanes Coming to Research Parkway in Colorado Springs

Allen Beauchamp: Advocacy & Dale Campbell: Co-Editor

We’re all looking for safer routes to cycle around the city and for options that help to keep cars and cyclists on the designated portions or the roadways.  Colorado Springs will soon be testing a concept that’s been used successfully in other locations in the US and especially in bike friendly countries in Europe.   For details on the project, refer to the “City Tests New Bicycle Lanes in Northern Colorado Springs” article in this newsletter
 
The project started long before Kate Brady was hired, and is just now getting to the point of the pilot project being implemented.
 
We personally am looking forward to supporting this effort, as this is the kind of "right sizing" (they don't like to use the term road diet anymore, nobody likes a diet!) project that we can implement all over Colorado Springs, especially in our sprawl zones that have large roads and no place to put additional bike infrastructure w/out shoehorning it in around the edges.
 
Kim Melchor and Michael Rigney from Bike Colorado Springs will be reaching out to coordinate CSCC's involvement in the ride day. We've been pushing the City for a number of years to not only communicate when projects like this were being done, but to publicly celebrate them and help to coordinate coverage of the event.
 
For an example of media coverage on this, take a look at the KOAA news clip from Tuesday, 27 September. http://www.koaa.com/story/33264358/buffered-bike-lanes-coming-to-research-parkway-in-colorado-springs
 
For the City’s definition of Buffered Bike Lanes, go to https://coloradosprings.gov/bufferedbikelanes
 
For further information about the use of Buffered Bike Lanes in the US and abroad, go to http://finance-commerce.com/2016/09/bike-lanes-becoming-more-than-just-paint/

City Tests New Bicycle Lanes in Northern Colorado Springs

Kim Melchor: Lead Communications Specialist, City of Colorad

The City of Colorado Springs will be installing a demonstration buffered bike lane on Research Parkway between Chapel Hills Drive and Austin Bluffs Parkway, Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 28 and 28.
 
Public input from local bike studies has identified a need for additional bike facilities and enhanced bicycle connections in northern Colorado Springs. Research Parkway was identified as one of the top 21 Corridors in the Pikes Peak Region for connecting multiple bike facilities with local destinations.
 
Because this is a new type of bike facility and the roadway will be resurfaced in 2017, the City decided to take the opportunity to test the buffered bike lanes knowing the project can be reversed or made permanent with the scheduled overlay. City crews will install the demonstration lane roadway markings with paint and flexible delineators to separate bicyclists from motorists. This method of testing has been used by other cities to evaluate the benefits of new bicycle infrastructure with minimal cost to taxpayers.
 
The demonstration project includes a painted buffer with vertical delineators to raise awareness of the presence of bicyclists on Research Parkway while providing separation from traffic. Research Parkway is ideal for this type of project because it uses existing infrastructure to add bicycle facilities in northern Colorado Springs and because existing and projected traffic volumes on Research Parkway are more consistent with a four-lane versus its current six-lane roadway configuration. Because minimal traffic on multiple lanes encourages speeding, modifying Research Pkwy to four vehicle lanes and two bicycle lanes should enhance safety overall by reducing vehicle speeds, providing dedicated space for bicycles outside of vehicle travel lanes and offering an improved walking environment for pedestrians.
 
The proposed bike lanes will provide connections to several existing bicycle facilities in the area connecting cyclists to destinations such as the future John Venezia Community Park, local schools, the Briargate YMCA, and several local shopping centers.
·         Summerset Drive Bike Lanes (connects south to Chapel Hills Mall)
·         Skyline Trail (near Chapel Hills Drive)
·         Briargate Trail just West of Austin Bluffs (connects to east/west Woodmen Trail and Cottonwood Trail)
·         Rangewood Drive Bike Lanes
·         Neighborhood/local trails
 
What’s Next:
 
The City will monitor the project and continue to collect data to understand any safety and mobility changes that occur for all modes of travel. Prior to resurfacing, the City will evaluate the success of the demonstration project based on metrics of safety and roadway operations for both bicycles and vehicles. If the demonstration is determined to be a success, the facility will be re-installed with green bike lanes in high conflict areas and long-life markings.
 
The City has launched an online survey to gather input from people utilizing Research Parkway. Residents may learn more about buffered bike lanes and right sizing of Research Parkway, and complete the survey by visiting https://coloradosprings.gov/RideOnResearch.
 
Colorado Springs is home to an active and vibrant bicycling community. With more than 110 miles of on-street bicycle routes, nearly 120 miles of urban bike trails and more than 60 miles of unpaved mountain bike trails, our city is committed to ensuring that biking is a convenient, safe, and connected form of transportation and recreation. Colorado Springs has achieved Silver status in the League of American Bicyclists-Bicycle Friendly Communities Program.  Colorado Springs was recently recognized in the American Community Survey (ACS) as #38 for the nation’s fastest growing cities for bicycle commuting and is funded in part by a self-imposed bicycle excise tax to fund bikeway improvement within the City of Colorado Springs. For more information about bicycling programs, mobile-friendly bike racks, safety information and a map of bike lanes around the city visit www.coloradosprings.gov/bike

Membership Update

Sara Hill: Membership Coordinator

Each month we recognize cyclists that have either renewed their membership or have become new members of the Colorado Spring Cycling Club (CSCC).  To become a member of the Club, annual dues for an individual membership are $21, and for a family membership, the annual dues are $28.  Membership not only provides you with the opportunity to participate in our many biking and social activities, but also enables you to be covered by the Club’s insurance while participating in a Club sanctioned activity.
 
Note that joining CSCC’s Meetup group is not the same as joining the Club.  We encourage riders who are part of the Meetup group but who have not yet paid any dues to do so to realize the above noted benefits.
 
WELCOME NEW MEMBERS!
Peter Allong & Family, Alan Arata & Family, Jessica Boda, Jenna Burlon, Jo Cervone, David de la Vega & Family, Susan Fritts, Kelsey Gage, Larry Guerin, Barbara Gutow, Kent Ladd, Pamela Lednicky, Phyllis Meyer, Sharon Reibel, Suzanne Roseberry, Irvn Rynning, Ben & Michelle Schwenk, Jim Taylor, Denise Warbritton, and Velette Webb.
 
RENEWING MEMBERS – THANK YOU!
 Duane Babcock, Allen & Cece Beauchamp, Gary Breig, Graeme Cloutte, Dottie DiGirolamo, Mary Ensminger, Bev Fallis, Eric Fetsch, Skip Flemming & Family, Liz Ford, Bill Gast, Peter Gilfoil, Michael Haftel, Rich & Sherrie Hostak, Chris Jacob, Stan & Ann Lebahn, Chris Lieber & Family, Tim Lopez, Will Luden, Larry & Shelly Mann, Mary Marcussen, Michael Nutting & Family, Thomas Plumb, Baruch & Julie Rhea, Ben Ringsred, George Robbins, P.K. Robinson, Rick & Joan Rodriguez, Don Sarton, Joe Schultes, Kevin & Kelly Sears, Carrie Simison, Jim Sledz, Terry Smith, and Larry Svoboda.

MEMBERSHIP REMINDERS

Special Activities & Rides of Interest!

Rick Rodriguez: Ride Committee

We have bid farewell to summer, but cheer up, we still have lots of great riding ahead of us this year.  Fall has always been my favorite time in Colorado Springs.  Delightfully cool, calm days with very little rain and abundant sunshine.  Since we have joined forces with the CFA group and taken over their Saturday morning rides, there are now five opportunities each weekend to join in a Club ride.  The Saturday Morning Bicycle Resort ride which offers three different levels of activity (Black, Blue, Green),  Jim's ever popular Saturday Road Ride for folks that really want to push their limits, Sara's Saturday Morning Latte Ride for folks looking for a more relaxed ride with some coffee and socializing mixed in, the Sunday Morning Hill Climb ride which always challenges riders to crank it up those hills, and of course the Sunday Social Ride which now offers both a Blue and a Green ride opportunity.  With all these great rides on our calendar, more than ever we need folks to step up and volunteer to lead rides.   There are still lots of open spots to lead rides on the calendar this Fall, so now is your chance to be part of keeping the wheels on our club turning.   If you are new to leading, there are a number of folks that would be glad to co-lead with you and help you get past any concerns you might have about the process.  For more information about leading rides, feel free to contact me (719-761-1057  or rickrodriguez@sprintmail.com) and I will connect you up with a mentor.
 
 Oh and don't forget, now that October is here, you want to mark your calendars for the Progressive Dinner Ride on the 23rd at noon.   Bill is planning a West side tour this year, starting from the Duck Pond location at the North end of Monument Valley Park.
 
And, be sure to let the Newsletter Editors know if you enjoyed a particular ride.  They appreciate your input as potential articles for upcoming newsletters!

Special Rides Calendar

Call for Volunteers: VeloSwap, Oct. 22

Bicycle Colorado Newsletter – 28 September 2016

Help out at VeloSwap, the world's largest consumer bike expo, on Saturday, October 22 at the National Western Complex. As a volunteer, you get free entry to the event plus a Bicycle Colorado t-shirt!
Bicycle Colorado members are needed to work both indoor and outdoor shifts selling memberships, jerseys and Share the Road license plate certificates and spreading the word about Bicycle Colorado's work. Join us for one of the most fun days of the year!
 
Sign up to volunteer at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSclHpmSHEl92bmGJMDKeR9ppG6oLgdSUxc1wr53j0oQrLRwLw/viewform

A Quote to Ponder

The Editors

[Editor’s Note:  After pedaling each day for 153 days during the National Bike Challenge, this one makes perfect sense to me.]

Greenway-Rock Island-Shooks Run Connector Close to Reality

Trails and Open Space Newsletter – 14 September 2016


Beacon Street protected bike lane, left, and Numismatic warehouse, right, future rail-with-trail (along the railroad corridor) connection between the Pikes Peak Greenway and the Rock Island Trail.
 
City Parks was able to secure a deal with the Union Pacific Railroad to allow space for a rail with trail connection between the Greenway, the Rock Island Trail and the Shooks Run Trail. The missing link was a piece of property owned by the Numismatic Association. The Association and the City have reached a deal that will allow TOPS to buy the property and finally connect the trail! Both the Tops Working Committee and Parks Advisory Board unanimously supported the proposal. City Council makes the final decision.
 

Prez Says

Janine Hegeman: President CSCC

Autumn. Some of the best riding days in Colorado Springs are usually around this time of year. Not too cold, not too hot, but just right. Hope you are out there having fun. Autumn is also a great time to reflect, and to look forward.
 
So much has happened with CSCC over the summer. We’ve had some fantastic participation in our rides – 60 to 70 riders on the Mystery Ride, the Shady Lane Ride, and the Salute to the Ride for Heroes. CSCC is growing thanks to Meetup and we’re seeing more and more new people riding with us. The introduction of the rating system, and the addition of a slower paced, “Green” rated ride on Sunday is helping to fill requests and suggestions we received in the membership survey done in January.  We will be doing another survey in January, with some far reaching questions. Where do you think CSCC will be in 2026? 2046? The Board always finds great ideas in your input, and we’ve implemented many of them, and will continue to do so.

The 30th anniversary jersey is currently being designed and will be available to club members for purchase by the end of the year.  The Board of Directors took extra care to find a cycling clothing manufacturer that makes their great fitting products in the US. We are sure you’ll like it.
 
We are sponsoring a League of American Bicyclist (LAB) LAB Certified Instructor training seminar for the first time ever in Colorado Springs, October 7-9. This intensive training will result in our club having several people qualified to lead classes in bike safety, safe commuting, basic bicycle maintenance and more. Keep an eye out for these offerings on Meetup. CSCC’s bylaws are dedicated to safe riding, and we’d like to promote bicycling safety as a regular part of how we have fun.
 
The Buffalo Lodge Bike Resort has come on board as a sponsor of CSCC, and many rides are starting at Torie’s place in Old Colorado City. All of the former Chick Fil A Saturday rides are starting there, and they are now under the CSCC umbrella. Numerous cycling related events have been held there (the Bike and Splash at the pool was fun!) and many more are planned.

So much more is happening this year – the ever-popular Progressive Dinner Ride in October, full moon rides, the Tour de Turkey. A bunch of CSCC folks are riding in the Tour of Moon in Grand Junction in October – check the Meetup calendar for details. And our November 1st member’s meeting will be an art show – members with an artistic flair will be showing their creations, with some for sale.  This 30th year of CSCC’s existence is turning out to be one of the best ever. And one of my goals for next year is to hold a strategic planning session in January with the Board; the outcome would be to increase efficiencies, ridership participation and safety, and overall promotion of CSCC By-Laws.
 
If you are interested in, or curious about becoming an “At-Large” Board or committee member, or sitting in on a committee meeting, let me know. We always welcome the help, new ideas and of course, invite you to “come along for the ride!”

Europe by Bike & Barge

Richard Oliver


For the third year in a row, Pam and I again took Europe by storm -- this time with two back-to-back Bike and Barge (B&B) 7-day trips, 11 June - 4 July (plus 12 days of further wanderings).  When we state "by storm" it means we vigorously assailed all challenges -- to include some occasional stormy weather.

The first trip was on the good ship, Iris, a totally renovated former cargo barge with 12 cabins, departing from Cochem, Germany, up the Mosel River, thru Luxembourg to Metz, France.  The river was initially running at record high levels due to heavy rains.  This resulted in a few detours with some river-side bike trails inundated; but by day three, the  river level was near normal.
 
The Mosel Valley is beautifully idyllic, with teeming terraces of grape vineyards festooned on steep slopes topped by medieval castles.  The Mosel River meanders on a serpentine course, with horseshoe bends, and a new hilltop fortress at virtually every turn, interspersed with charming and picturesque villages.



Upon disembarking the Iris, we took three quick train rides to reach Bruges in Belgium, where we embarked on the newly-launched Magnifique II, in our quest to sail up the canals to Amsterdam.  The "Mag II" indeed lived up to its grand name, and was larger with 18 cabins.
 

Read more about our trip!

Pedal the Plains – A Day to Day Perspective

Alan Cavin


Pedal the Plains is an annual three-day ride that showcases the high plains of eastern Colorado. It is set in Colorado’s agricultural heartland. The proceeds from the event benefits the host community’s local charities as well as the Denver Post Community Foundation which supports the Future Farmers of America and the Colorado 4-H.  This year’s event was held 16 – 18 September
 
If you are not familiar with Colorado, you may need to look at a map to find towns of Ordway, Fowler, and La Junta (i.e. “the junction”). They are in the heart of Colorado’s agriculture and ranching area, in the Arkansas River valley. By all accounts the best cantaloupes and melons come from the Rocky Ford area which is a town in the middle of these 3 host cities
 
The Pedal the Plains organization is the same as the Ride the Rockies organization, which has been putting on that ride for several decades, so organization and logistics was generally well done.
 
Day 1 – Friday

This was an easy starting day of only 24 miles.  The opening ceremonies started at 11:00 – I suppose so riders could have time to drive in from Denver – and the starting times spanned 11:30 to 3:30.  The ride was almost flat – only 400+ feet of climbing.  It had several interesting “Educational Stops” including Bobby’s Animal Farm (above).  We saw several exotic animals – including kangaroos, a zebra, some camels, and I think a kookaburra!  We had a nice lunch at Olney Springs and stopped at the Vietnam War Memorial where a veterans band was playing.  We also stopped at the Fowler Historical Society and saw a running 1913 LeFrance fire truck.  Fowler bought it in the 1920s. It has been part of their fire department ever since!



The riding was relatively easy, compared to our normal Chick-fil-a Saturday rides.  The roads were amazingly free of traffic and we were able to ride taking most of the right lane except for a short stretch on Hwy 96.  By the way, Hwy 96 is part of the Adventure Cycling Association’s Trans America bike route – first ridden in 1976 for the Bicentennial Celebration!  They called the ride “Bike-centennial”.  The route started in Washington north of Seattle and headed east over the Rockies to Montana, then south and east to Colorado, then east across the plains of Kansas and over the Appalachians to Virginia.
 
When I reached our destination (Fowler) I pedaled around a few more miles so I could say I rode a “marathon” distance.🙂 Stats: 26.4 miles, 1:51 moving time at an average of 14.2 mph.  It took 3 hours 3 minutes of elapsed time, so you can see we stopped a lot to visit with folks and hear lots of educational information.
 
I rode a shuttle to La Junta to stay in a nice hotel for the evening.  A good starting day.  Day 2 would be a bit more of a challenge!

 

Find out about Days 2 & 3 here

Lee’s Mystery Ride 2016

Lee Murphy: Ride Planner and Facilitator


Riders at the Union Printers Home
 
On August 10th at 8:37 AM, approximately 50 riders embarked on an exciting and interesting mystery ride which loosely followed the Legacy Loop around the city.  This ride is unique in that it does not focus on speed, time, distance or climbing.  In fact, none of those factors mattered.  As has been typical for the previous Mystery Rides, only the Ride Planner knows the route and destinations of the ride.  From the riders’ perspective, the focus of the ride was to learn more about some of the landmarks and places of interest in this neat city we call home.  Built into the 13 mile route were six stops plus a rest stop which featured watermelon and pineapple spears.
 
On this ride, keeping track of the time and where the group was every minute occupied the ride facilitator’s mind.  The reason being he was responsible to get all the members to specific points at the precise time each lecture was to take place.  Persons knowledgeable about the landmarks listed below were standing by at each location, which necessitated keeping the ride on schedule.  This was primarily accomplished using a cue sheet or setting the pace, as well as monitoring the speakers to insure they did not get longwinded.  With military precision, it all worked out on schedule and the group received 15 minute briefings at the following sites: 
  • the Patty Jewett Golf Corse,
  • the Casa Verde Commons,
  • the First Congregational Church,
  • the City Auditorium,
  • the Union Printers home and
  • the Firemen’s Museum. 
 
Lee had previously arranged for a knowledgeable spokesperson at each stop to speak to the group and then answer five minutes worth of questions.  [Editor’s Note:  Take a minute to do a web search on each of these locations.  You might be delightfully surprised about some of the history in Colorado Springs.]
 
This event has grown into one of the clubs most popular rides because it is so interesting and entertaining.  It is like combining a social ride with a tour of the landmarks in the community. 
 
[Editor’s Note:  If you have suggestions for destinations of future Mystery Rides, please let Lee or the Bent Fork editors know about your idea.  It could just be a primary stop on the next Mystery Ride!]

Hawaii: What’s It Like Biking in a Tropical Urban or Oceanside Environment?

Sharon Boyd: Co-Editor


The primary purpose for our July trip to Hawaii was to meet up with some Australian friends.  Knowing that we wanted to continue supporting of pedaling every day during this year’s National Bike Challenge, we also came prepared.   A bike helmet, a pair of bike gloves, two bike jerseys, two pairs of bike shorts, two pairs of biking socks and a smartphone with the MapMyRide app for three weeks of bicycling in Hawaii.  That should just about do it. We were excited!
 
Landing in the afternoon from a flight from Phoenix, we eventually got to our first night hotel in Waikiki.  Many of the bike shops were already closed, but we did find one still open that would rent us two bikes for the thirty minutes before they closed for the day.  We paid $10 each for a half hour on cruiser bikes a short walk from our condo. Not great bikes but we did get a ride in for the day.  In the following days, we found out that the cost to rent a bicycle varied as much as the quality of the bicycles.
 
We shopped around and found Hawaiian Style Rentals, 3/4 mile from our condo, that charged $15 for 4 hours for cruiser bikes. Add $5 for insurance and you are at $20 plus tax per person for each rental. The $5 insurance is recommended, since it covers transportation if any bike issues occur. The cruiser bikes were not very good. So we upgraded to hybrid bikes for $20 plus $5 for insurance for 4 hours per person.  This style bike allowed us to take rides to a number of locations.  We did enjoy riding to Diamond Head, historic Honolulu, Manoa Falls, many beaches & to shopping areas. Just getting back and forth to the bike shop had us walking a lot! 
 
To ride the city bus system was only $1 (if you have a Medicare card) and you could bring your bicycle. However, it was difficult to store a bicycle at our resort and to transport to places off the bus route. So, renting for only four hours worked out fine for us, as it was too hot to ride more than four hours!


Click for Much More about Our Hawaii Trip

Thanks from a Friend!

Susan Davies: Executive Director - Trails and Open Space Coa


Thank you for this opportunity to thank a good friend.  The CS Cycling Club and the Trails and Open Space Coalition have been partners for a long time.  You've supported our annual community bicycle ride - our "Starlight Spectacular" with a wildly popular rest stop.  You've also been a sponsor.  It's time we did something for you.  Consider "Bike Colorado Springs” as a gift to you and the community. Bike Colorado Springs is a program of TOSC.  The vision: “Everyone Bikes”.  The Mission: Transforming the Pikes Peak Region into a vibrant and connected community that is safe and accessible for people on bikes.
 
Working with passionate volunteers like Dave and Andrew VanderWege, Cory Sutela, Michael Rigney and Allen Beauchamp; and taking advantage of  new leadership in key sectors we are paving the way for a more bike friendly community.
 
Our new Bike Planner, Kate Brady is someone you need to meet. She’s leading a new Bike Master Plan effort for Colorado Springs and will be looking for help as we transform next year’s Bike to Work Breakfast/month. Were you able to attend our very first Bike Summit at UCCS last June? If not, we’ll soon start planning for the next one and make sure you get an invitation.
 
Have you ridden the Legacy Loop?  There will be plenty of opportunities to do so and see how neighbors are connecting to this great asset.
 
Please check out Bike Colorado Springs Facebook page and website for updates and events.  Feel free to post your favorite rides or gaps you see in our system.  Cities like Fort Collins, Denver and Boulder all have well-organized bike advocacy groups.  The good news: we needn’t reinvent the wheel.  The bad news: we’re a little behind.  Fortunately we have a number of well established bike organizations like CSCC to partner with and achieve a common vision - safe, connected and convenient trails and bike lanes.

Sharing Knowledge to Increase Protected Bike Lanes

Bicycle Colorado Newsletter – 28 Sept 2016

 At the Downtown Colorado Inc. Annual Conference last week, policy director Ted Heyd co-presented on two topics: how to quickly test bike infrastructure and how to implement permanent protected bike lanes. Staff and stakeholders from Trinidad, Woodland Park, Hotchkiss, Pueblo, Colorado Springs, Rifle and Denver attended the interactive sessions.
 
 
One session empowered participants to quickly install temporary bike projects that can be set up on-street to allow for community testing and included a demo of temporary infrastructure installation. The second session examined design and implementation considerations for protected bike lanes in downtown environments, including keys for successful community engagement.
 
 Protected bike infrastructure is still very new in many places and sessions like this allow communities to hit the ground running, rather than spending time reinventing the wheel.
 

Celebrating 30 Years: Recollections of the Past 10 Years

Dale Campbell: Co-Editor


Dale and Sharon - Rocky Mountain National Park, August 1992

Sharon and I have been members of the Colorado Springs Cycling Club since July 1993 and February 1994 respectively.  Needless to say, we’ve cycled a number of miles in the past 23 years, as well as had the opportunity to meet and ride with many cycling friends.  For us, that opportunity to get to know more folks in the cycling community, as well as “Come along for the ride” has been the biggest reward of being members of CSCC.
 
Needless to say, in the past ten years, - the last third of our celebration of 30 years for CSCC – we’ve experienced, participated in, enjoyed, contributed to and built memories as a result of multiple events and cycling experiences.  What I’m going to attempt to do in the remainder of this article is just to list a number of items that have done just what I listed above.  Hopefully, some of the items on this will bring memories to mind and hopefully a smile.  AND, if you happen to remember something else that you “experienced, participated in, enjoyed, contributed to and built memories from,” please send me an email about it.  Heck, your memory is probably better than mine.  SO, I expect to receive lots of email about things I’ve forgotten!
 
So, in no particular order, here they are:
  • Joan and Ron’s Fall Color Ride:  This one comes to mind first, due to it being that time of the year.  For this, we would gather at Joan and Ron’s home on 31st Street, shuttle up to the start of Gold Camp Road near Victor and then ride all the way back to their home via Gold Camp Road.  The 25+ mile ride was always an opportunity to enjoy the fall colors and the mountain scenery that we often forget is just around the corner from Colorado Springs.
  • Wind down and Handoff of BVBF:  The Buena Vista Bike Festival (BVBF) had been a mainstay in the Club’s fund raising efforts for 17 years.  The core planning committee, led by Aaron Rosenthal,  was dedicated to making the Festival a success each and every year.  It’s the dedication of that group and the other Club members who volunteered (many for multiple years) that impressed the cyclists that participated in our event.
  • National Bike Challenge: Relatively new to the scene, the Club has participated in the NBC with conviction over the last three years.  In the five months of the 2016 Challenge, the CSCC team. approximately one third of the CSCC membership, has logged almost 137,000 miles!  AND, this year, the CSCC team is Number 8 nationally, out of more than 1900 teams.  NUMBER 8!  I think that says something about the presence of cycling in Colorado Springs.  Just imagine if all the CSCC members logged their miles what the total might be….
  • Christmas Parties: These are always enjoyable experiences.  And the Club has had the opportunity to hold this event at a number of locations.  Years ago, we used to meet at the AFA Alumni building for a pot-luck event (that was in the 90’s).  But since then, a number of the Holiday parties had been at the Clarion.  But the two that stick in my mind (and not just ‘cause they’re the most recent) are the ones at the Pioneer Museum and at the Pinery.
  •  

More Recollections from the Past 10 Years

Bike Advocacy, Demystified

Piep van Heuven: Bicycle Colorado, 12 September 2016


ad·vo·cate: n. a person who speaks or writes in support or defense of a person, cause, etc. (usually followed by of): an advocate of peace
 
What’s a bike advocate?
Since I have a job in bike advocacy, I get asked this question often.  Usually it sounds like this: “But, what do you DO?  How do you convince transportation and political officials to do a better job for people who ride?”
 
The quick answer is we work to improve policies, practices and laws to increase safe biking.  Policies like permitting bike events in parks, practices like ticketing cars that park in bike lanes, laws like three feet to pass.
 
The “how” to the work usually involves relationship-building, building a case for change, aligning partners and messaging and speaking up to the right people at the right time with the goal of getting everyone to “win-win.”
 
Though I’m a professional bike advocate, advocacy is much broader than that.  A bike advocate is, first and foremost, someone who rides a bike or supports others who do.  And one of the most important things we do working in bike advocacy is to help you understand that it’s you!
 
Are you a bicyclist?
You can start by asking yourself, “Am I a bicyclist?”  That is a simple question, and it’s the most important one.  Invariably, when I ask a group of people this question, about 10% say “yes” and everyone else waffles and says something like “well, I don’t ride my bike every day…”
 
But there is no accreditation system in biking, no participation requirement, no class distinction—biking is for everyone.  It doesn’t matter how often you ride, how long you’ve been riding, what or where you ride, or what you wear when you’re riding.  So, you ride a bike and so do many of your family, friends, neighbors and co-workers.  And each and every one of you is a bicyclist.
 
Are you a bike advocate?
Now here is the next fun question, “Am I an advocate?”  This question makes a lot of people uncomfortable.  The word advocacy stirs up images of protesters in handcuffs or diatribes at the podium, and confrontational approaches.  Let me help you put those images away by sharing the dictionary definition of an advocate (above). Put simply: to advocate is to support.  In this case, supporting the cause of increased safe bicycling.  Not too scary, right?
 
A quick quiz
Check out these questions and see where you fit in:
1.  Have you ridden a bike in the past few years?
2.  Do you think your community benefits when it is safe for people to bike?
3.  Do you think increased biking is a good thing for the environment, local business or community health?
4.  Have you ever asked a school, business or neighborhood association about a bike issue like bike parking, speeding or signage?
5.  Do you participate in rides, races or kids bike events?
6.  Do you give money to, or volunteer with, bike-friendly organizations?
7.  Have you ever participated in a survey or poll and indicated that you support safe biking?
8.  Have you ever written or met with an elected official or transportation official to support biking?
 
If you said yes to one or more of these questions, consider yourself a bike advocate!
 
Five easy ways to rule the advocacy game
Now that you’re in the groove, and are (hopefully!) considering your role as an advocate for biking, I ask you to do five things to support increased safe biking this year.
1.  Identify yourself as a bicyclist.  There are so many of us with the same vested interest in safer biking for everyone.  Step up and claim your place, and get your friends to do this too.
2.  Do one thing for biking.  Attend an event, become a member or support biking via a poll or social media.
3.  Speak up at least one time.  Ask for what you want!  This can be as simple as asking your workplace about indoor bike parking or your local elected official about what bike lanes are planned for your area.
4.  Be courteous and positive, and take the time to say thanks and support the progress you see in your community.  It’s important to support elected officials and others who are fighting for improvements.  Hashtagging #StreetSweet will go a lot further than #StreetFail. So compliment someone when you see something that deserves it.
5.  Finally, have fun out there!

Nearly 28 Million Americans Do Not Know How to Ride a Bicycle

Caitlin Giddings: Bicycling, 8 August 2016


Photograph by Steven Laxton
 
[Editors Note:  Do you remember when you rode a bicycle for the first time?  For many of us, it was probably sometime between when we were 4 and 10 years old.  But, today, there are many in our country who haven’t had the opportunity or desire to get on two wheels and pedal.  Take a look at the following and think how you might approach the same challenge these five folks faced when riding away for the first time!]
 
The gym was a flurry of bikes, wobbly riders, and decimated circles of orange that had once been traffic cones. Determined adults from all over New York City had come to this room on Roosevelt Island to finally catch up on a childhood rite of passage—learning how to ride a bicycle.
 
There are more American adults who don’t know how to ride a bike than those who ride a bike every day—a hard statistic to grasp if your life is filled with bike lanes, spandex, and shop rides. But what’s rarest is this group: Grown-ups—drawn to the freedom of cycling—taking a risk, being willing to look a little ridiculous as they try to pick up a new skill.
 
One woman announced she’d never touched a bike in her life before anxiously resting her hands on the rubber grips and stretching a leg over her bicycle’s top tube. Another recounted the story of a misguided parent who pushed her down a hill on her bike in an effort to jump-start learning. Everyone seemed a little nervous to get going. There was a common sense of having missed one’s window—as though learning to ride a bike were a foreign language that needed to be locked in at an impressionable age.
 
But 75 percent of the class would be riding by the end of this two-hour session, promised the instructor, a volunteer for cycling nonprofit Bike New York’s Learn to Ride program. The teaching process was simple—lower the seat and take the pedals off the bike, then help riders get used to sitting on the saddle, pushing off, and coasting before reinstalling pedals and teaching the new cyclists how to generate their own movement forward. Some students took to it immediately, gliding around the gym in confident, predictable circles. Others moved in fits and starts, uncertainly dabbing a foot down when distrust of the mechanics of speed and balance set in. Here are some of the riders’ stories.
 
Read the complete article at http://www.bicycling.com/culture/beginners/meet-5-inspiring-cyclists-who-learned-to-ride-as-adults/slide/1
 

10 Annoying Things Cyclists Should Stop Doing

Marc Lindsay: Map My Run Blog - March 21, 2016

[Editor’s Note:  Perhaps Marc has something here that we all can learn from, especially with on constant focus to remain safe cyclists, and to be courteous to others on the highways and byways.  By the way, Marc Lindsay is a freelance writer based in Scottsdale, Arizona. He holds a master’s degree in writing from Portland State University and is a certified physical therapy assistant. An avid cyclist and runner of over 20 years, Marc contributes to LAVA, Competitor and Phoenix Outdoor magazines. He is the former cycling editor for Active.com. ]
 
“While the act of riding a bicycle is fairly simple, the rules of the road can sometimes be a bit more confusing.  In order to clarify some of that gray area, we’ve created a short guide so you can put the etiquette into practice.  To be clear, these are 10 things cyclists should never, ever do:
 
1. Promote an elitist culture
You’ve seen these people before. They sneer at other cyclists, yell at motorists and think pedestrians should cease to exist. Whether you’re a road cyclist or a mountain biker, the only way to encourage others to take up the sport is to make them feel welcomed and encouraged. Acting like the road is your own personal raceway and everyone else is an obstacle just gives all cyclists a bad name.
 
The next time you’re out on the road and see a fellow cyclist, wave and say hello. Taking your eyes off your data, believe it or not, isn’t going to result in the end of the world.
 
2. Wheel sucker strangers
So you’re cruising along, minding your own business on the way home from work, when suddenly a shadow approaches from the rear. You move to the right, then to the left and the shadow follows. When you turn to look over your shoulder, there sits the wheel sucker in your draft — head down, eyes forward, with a serious-looking grimace. No introduction, no “how are you.”
 
Don’t be that guy. Riding up behind another cyclist without introducing yourself or taking your turn at the front is just weird.
 
3. Disobey traffic laws
Yes, there will be times when you’re sitting at a red light all by yourself without a car in sight. There will also be moments when you’re about to break a course record, and all of a sudden a stop sign appears out of nowhere. Regardless of what you’d like to do, you should not ride through that red light or stop sign.
 
Disobeying traffic laws isn’t just dangerous; it gives motorists the fuel they need to act abusively and irrationally toward other cyclists on the road.

4. Ride on the sidewalk
There are some cyclists who think they are safer riding on the sidewalk. Regardless of which end of this argument you may agree with, riding a bicycle on the sidewalk is illegal in most states. Sidewalks are intended for pedestrian use, and if you don’t want them walking in bike lanes, it’s best to return the favor and stay off their sidewalks.

5. Ride without a helmet
Do helmets look cool? No, not really. But you know what’s way less cool than a helmet? That’s right, a head injury. No matter how short or long you plan to go, you should always wear a helmet. It could make the difference between a simple spill and an overnight stay at the hospital.

6. Tighten bolts on carbon parts without a torque wrench
If you think a bolt can never be too tight, this advice is for you. All carbon parts on your bicycle have torque specifications that you must adhere to. If you tighten past these recommendations, you’ll likely cause damage that can’t be repaired — whether it be a handlebar, seat post or even your bike frame.
 
The good news is torque wrenches are pretty inexpensive, not much more than your standard set of Allen wrenches.

Read More about the Top 10

Here’s Something to Consider

Sharon Boyd: Co-Editor

Here’s something suggested by Terre Topp, one of the Club’s members.  I think there is something to this bit of subtle humor.  Agree?

Bent Fork 2016-5 - October/November 2016