July/August/September 2017
3rd Quarter 2017

Editors Comments

Sharon Boyd & Dale Campbell



Can you believe it’s September already?  Where did the “summer” go?  While Sharon and Dale have been on the “injured reserve” list, we hope that you’ve been able to participate in any number of rides with the Colorado Springs Cycling Club.  We’ve managed to ride with a couple of the Monday Dinner rides, as well as several others along the way.  And, we enjoyed the Summer Picnic (see the article in this newsletter).  Even without riding, we were able to enjoy bicycling when the First Stage of the Colorado Classic was held right here in Colorado Springs.  This stage of the race “baptized” the cyclists with a variety of typical Colorado summer weather.  For your interest, we’ve included several of photographs of the event in the continuation page of this article.

As we move into the fall, the Club will continue to offer a variety of cycling related activities.  Several of these are highlighted in the articles of this edition of the Bent Fork.  And there are many more.  Just check the Club’s calendar on Meetup.  And remember that we have the election of Club Officers in November.  If you're interested in helping the Club, just contact us or one of the current Board members.  Having been members of the Club since 1993, we appreciate the folks that give their time to support this all volunteer organization.

In addition to highlighting upcoming events, we’ve also included commentary and photos of a number of rides held over the summer.  And, there are several Safety Stop articles to help remind folks to ride safely.  As always, we also include comments from the Club President (Prez Says), membership information, a bike related quote, and cycling input from local organizations (see Susan Davies article).

If there’s anything you’d like to see in one of the upcoming Bent Fork editions, just let us know.  And, as always, we appreciate your contributions and hope that you enjoy reading the 3Q2017 Edition of the Bent Fork.

Photos from Stage 1

Upcoming Club Meeting

Rich Hostak: Vice President

Our last scheduled CLUB MEETING of 2017 will be held OCT. 3 at 6pm. Don’t miss this meeting, as we’ll have an update on the state of cycling in Colorado Springs with Kate Brady Senior Bicycle Planner for Colorado Springs, and important news about the November election of CSCC board members.  As the date approaches, check the Meetup calendar for more specifics regarding time and place of the meeting.

11 Mile Canyon Fat Tire Ride - Fall Edition

Charlie Czarniecki: Past President

Do you have anything planned for Tuesday, 12 September?  Perhaps you might be interested in the Fall Edition of this ride.  This is the 2nd year for this "out of town fat tire bike ride."  AND this is 2nd ride this year (see the continuation page for pictures from the Spring Ride).

We'll meet in the parking lot with the goal to "carpool" our bikes and leave shortly after 8:30.  We'll drive west US 24 to Lake George, turn left on County 96, and park at the dirt lot just before the Elevenmile Canyon Park Entrance.

This is a 19-mile round-trip up the canyon.  There is no entry fee for bikes.  The dirt road is the old railroad bed that was used before the dam was built (in the 1930s).  So this is a gentle railroad grade and not a difficult climb.  This is about a 10 days earlier than our 2016 ride - I hope the aspen trees will be turning gold like last year.

After the ride there is a good chance that we'll stop in Woodland Park for a quick lunch before heading home.  If you would like to join this fun ride, be sure to signup via the Meetup event.

See Photos from the Spring Ride

Make Plans NOW to Join the Progressive Dinner Ride!

Janine Hegeman: CSCC President



Can you believe it's that time again?  Fall is coming and so is the time for the Club's Annual Progressive Dinner Ride. Come and join the fun and tickle your taste buds with all the delicious food provided by the hosts and your potluck contributions. There will be three stops - appetizers, main course, and dessert. Transportation for your dishes to the various stops will be provided at the start location.  OR park at the stop that matches your dish, drop it off or keep it in your car,  and ride to the start to join us. Either way, we'll make sure your potluck contribution gets to the right location.

 This year, the ride will start at Noon from Mary Kyer Park just off Voyager Parkway (1102 Middle Creek Parkway, Colorado Springs, CO).  The route will take us on a tour around the northern part of Colorado Springs.  The first stop will be at Dale and Sharon's new home in the The Farm, the main course will be enjoyed at Mike and Alanna Jones' home off Old Ranch Road, and dessert will be devoured at Doug Moyes home in Briargate.

Be sure to sign up for this ride via the Meetup event.

Please note that this event is reserved for paid CSCC members. Annual membership dues are $21/ individual, $28 family. If you are not yet a member of CSCC, please sign up.  Go to the CSCC website for more details about becoming a member.
 

Celebrating July 4th with a Cool Ride!

Dale Campbell: Co-Editor

Colorado summers often create opportunities for getting out of the intense sunlight and still be able to enjoy outdoor activities.  The annual Shady Lane Ride, held on the day celebrating our Nation's birth, is an excellent example.

Led by the Club's president - Janine Hegeman, the event was an relaxing 17 mile ride through some of the coolest parts of town. Riders met at (where else?) America the Beautiful Park at 9 am to start, and and later stopped for coffee - the iced variety - during the ride. Even with trying to keep cool, it was a good idea for all the riders to be sure to bring lots of water.

To see the group in action, take a look at the  YouTube video taken by Allen Beauchamp.

See more Photos of the Ride

Did You See the Dark Side of the Moon?

Charlie Czar – Immediate Past President



The concept for the Dark Side of the Moon Ride is just a simple one.  Gather together some cyclists, carpool north to Ft Collins, view the eclipse at 96% obscurity and also fit a bike ride into the day.  All this was scheduled to happen on Monday, 21 August, the day of the Great Eclipse.

Considering the great interest in the eclipse, traffic on the day of the eclipse was pretty insignificant in both directions for our drive. Weather in Fort Collins was ideal: bright clear sky until we resumed the bike ride after the eclipse (96% there vs 90% in Colorado Springs), then high clouds kept us cool for the rest of our 21-mile ride. Doug got us to The Mayor of Old Town for lunch. Great food! We ate outside on the front covered patio. The owner recognized our jerseys. He graduated in the first class at Liberty HS. We explained what we did and the name of this ride. He went inside and played the Dark Side of the Moon album on their sound system while we ate.  What a fitting closure for the activities of the day in Ft Collins!
 
Speaking of closure, there were railroad tracks down the center of the street that we thought were trolley.   Just before we finished eating (and the album) a fairly big freight train of wheat cars went pass us and headed toward the campus.  It was LOUD and much unexpected.

For photos of the ride, click on the continuation link below.

Photos of the Day's Events

Tour de Ladies in Parker, CO July 8, 2017

Sharon Boyd: Co-Editor



On a beautiful Colorado Saturday, a group of CSCC lady cyclists participated in the Tour de Ladies in Parker, CO.  It was a beautiful sunny day to ride in the women-only cycling event through the rolling hills of Douglas County.  The Cherry Creek concrete path was fun to finish the ride.  Ask Ann Lebahn about the 4-foot long Bull Snake on the path that she swerved her recumbent to miss.  Ruth and Sharon were happy to be riding behind her and followed her expert maneuver.  Participants were Ruth, Sharon R., Janine, Ann, Heather, Jessica, Amy and Christy.  The picture above is Sharon, Ruth and Sharon R. post ride. Everyone had a great time.

National Bike Challenge 2017

Dale Campbell: Co-Editor

Colorado Springs Cycling Club has a team in the 2017 National Bike Challenge (NBC) during the duration of the 2017 Challenge (1 May through 30 Sept).  This is the 5th year that the Club has organized a team for the Challenge.  Charlie Czar updates the Club's, state's, and Colorado Springs's positions daily and posts it to the link shown below.

There are still some days left in the Challenge for this year.  If you haven’t yet posted your miles, please do so.  In the mean time, come ride with us, be safe, and post often.

http://www.bikesprings.org/docs/NBC_2017_Daily_Rankings.pdf

Fountain Creek Regional Trail Closure - Sept 15, 2017 – Nov 15, 2017

Trails and Open Space Coalition

The Fountain Creek Regional Trail will be closed for approximately two months at the Fort Carson railroad spur, near the Al Kaly Mule Train Farm. Due to heavy construction activities, site restrictions, and the nature of work, no trail detour will be available. Please respect all trail closures to ensure everyone’s safety. Efforts to reduce the closure length are being made and the closure will be lifted as soon as construction is completed.
 
 For all El Paso County trail questions please call the El Paso County Park Administration office at (719)520-7529.

See the Map of the Closure

Colorado Springs Bike Master Plan – Are You Aware

City of Colorado Springs

The city is in the process of updating the bike master plan. The plan is a road map to develop our bike infrastructure from where it is right now to where we want it to be. The plan includes specific recommendations and priorities.
 
The Bike Master Plan envisions a healthy and vibrant Colorado Springs where bicycling is one of many transportation options for a large portion of the population, and where a well-connected and well-maintained network of urban trails, singletrack, and on-street infrastructure offers a bicycling experience for present and future generations that is safe, convenient, and fun for getting around, getting in shape, or getting away.
 
Colorado Springs has a vibrant bicycling culture. However, the current level of bike infrastructure does not accommodate the range of users who want/need to bicycle. Many people don’t feel comfortable using existing infrastructure or are frustrated by the limited connectivity between bicycle facilities. We need to create a safe connected network that will match the level of demand for bicycle infrastructure in Colorado Springs.
 
For more about the Master Plan (including a variety of resource documents), go the Colorado Springs Bike Master Plan website.

Master Plan Overview

Membership Update

Sara Hill: Membership Coordinator

Each month more and more Colorado Springs 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 signing up on Meetup is not the same as becoming a member of the Colorado Springs Cycling Club.  Meetup enables those on the Meetup list to view and receive notices about the Club’s calendar of events.  But, being on Meetup does not enable the insurance coverage and does not enable attending certain Club events throughout the year.  Please pass this update along to anyone who might be on Meetup but has not yet joined the Club.
 
MEMBERSHIP REMINDERS:
 (1) Family memberships are eligible for two adult online logins. With each login, members can comment on the message boards or respond to surveys independently. If you wish to have a second adult login, please contact Membership at membership@bikesprings.org. Provide the following information: Name on membership account, secondary member's name and email along with a preferred username. If you have a preference for billing identity, indicate this as well.
 (2) Has your personal information changed? Don't forget you can update your mailing address, phone numbers and email at anytime by logging into the membership area and clicking the "Change Contact/Profile Information" link under Member Information. You can even change your username.
(3) You can check your membership payment status online - and pay online as well.

If you have questions regarding membership, please contact Sara Hill, Membership Coordinator at membership@bikesprings.org.

Sara Hill, CSCC Membership Coordinator

A Quote to Ponder

Valentino Rossi

FOR SALE - Campagnolo Athena Compact Groupset in Black

Michael Mannebach

2016 Athena Groupset features compact 50-34 chainrings and the 11 speed cassette from 11-29. This set includes the ergo power control shifters and cables, front and rear derailleurs, 172.5 cm crank, chainrings, and chain. Also included are the dual pivot Chorus skeleton brakes in black, and power tongue outboard cups in BSC and IT. The set has been used for less than a year and has about 1000 miles on it. The rear derailleur and brake levers on the ergo power controls have some surface scratches. However, I am also including in this set and still in the original boxes the brand new 2017 ergo power controls in black, rear derailleur in black, and extra chain. For all this I am asking the very reasonable price of $650, which is about half price of brand new.
If you are interested contact Michael Mannebach @ 719-684-5396 and leave a message.

Prez Says

Janine Hegeman: CSCC President



Have you ridden your bike today? This week?

If you’ve been meaning to get out and ride more there is no time like now. The CSCC Meetup calendar is loaded with options for riders of all abilities. And there is so much more going on. (Please check Meetup for more details https://www.meetup.com/Colorado-Springs-Cycling-Club/ )

-The Salute to Heroes Ride is on Sept. 10. Be sure to wear your most patriotic clothing, and show up early for the ride to sign up, as this is  very popular ride. Ride starts at 1 p.m. and the “Red, White Bikes and Bluegrass” celebration will be held at 3:30 p.m. at the Buffalo Lodge Bicycle Resort. Music food and fun!

-Tuesday Oct. 3 is the last club meeting of the year. Time 6:30 p.m. Location TBA. Please join us for a Presentation by Kate Brady, Bike Planner for the City of Colorado Springs, and information about the election in November.

-Oct. 15 brings the Progressive Dinner Ride. This year we will tour the northern part of the city, and you can sign up to bring a specific dish. See Meetup for details.

-Full Moon and Eleven Mile Canyon rides are scheduled, as well as the Wednesday Road Ride. The Tour de Latte, Buffalo Lodge Bicycle Ride, and Saturday Road Ride roll every weekend. Tuesdays and Thursdays have the Old Phaertes ride and the Group Ride. And of course there’s the Sunday Social and the Hill Climb Rides on Sunday.

We are also offering Smart Cycling Classes and Ride Leader Training Classes. You are incredibly fortunate to belong to a cycling organization that has such a wealth of certified cycling instructors. Other cycling organizations in Colorado Springs are requesting that we lead these classes for their membership…please be sure to RSVP for a class soon! There are discounts for CSCC members. And speaking of discounts, did you know our sponsors (Ted’s Bicycles, Old Town Bike Shop, Buffalo Lodge Bicycle Resort) offer deals to CSCC members?

And finally – thank you for being a member of CSCC. As an all-volunteer club, many of you contribute to make CSCC great. The Board of Directors, the cycling instructors, and volunteer coordinators keep this club running. However, you should know that many of us are, well, tired. It is time for those of you who’ve gotten so much from CSCC to consider giving a little back. Three of the four elected Board officers will not be returning for a second (in some cases, third or fourth) term this November. CSCC is a tax-exempt organization and as such, must maintain an organizational structure to include these officers. In the event that no one steps into these positions, the future of CSCC as we now know it is in jeopardy.  The Board is currently considering different strategies and making contingency plans for the very, very last resort, dissolution.

I know the great people in CSCC will find a way to make this work. Many changes have taken place over the last year or so, and many more are to come. Some things never change though – like all the reasons YOU like to get on a bike. So, do an ABC Quick Check on your machine (the Smart Cycling class will teach you how) and COME ALONG FOR THE RIDE!

Janine Hegeman

President, Colorado Springs Cycling Club

The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route - A Retrospective Summary

Dennis Struck - CSCC Member

Editors Note:  To realize the accomplishment that Dennis summarizes in the following article, I thought it would be appropriate to remind folks just what it is that they have ridden.

The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route (GDMBR) is a long-distance, off-road bicycle touring route from Banff, Alberta, Canada to Antelope Wells, New Mexico, USA. As of 2016, the route is 2768.4 miles (4455.3 km) long; its length is likely to change over time as the GDMBR is continually being refined. The GDMBR was developed by Adventure Cycling Association and was completed in 1997.  Following the Continental Divide as closely as practicable and crossing it 30 times, about 90% of the GDMBR is on unpaved roads and trails and requires basic off-pavement riding skills to complete. The unpaved portions of the route range from high quality dirt or gravel roads to a few short sections of unmaintained trails which may not be possible for most people to ride at all. The GDMBR has over 200,000 feet (60,960 meters) of elevation gain and loss for the rider to contend with.


Terry and I finished the USA Portion of the GDMBR last October (Cuba, NM, to Grants, NM, http://www.struck.us/BikePics/BikeStories66.html), our major final leg obstacles were a chronic lack of water (surviving from cattle tank to cattle tank), more road sand than planned (which means pushing the bike a lot, causing a 1 day delay), and then we got hit by a heavy rain (from one extreme to the other).
 
In the town of Grants (formerly of Route 66 fame), New Mexico, we stopped at a Walmart (I cannot remember why) and on the parking lot we met a fellow bike traveler who was Through-Riding 'The Divide'. We gave him a general trail report, we told him that we just completed the complete USA portion of the 'The Divide', and He asked 'When did you start'? Terry immediately replied 'In 1999' and we all busted out laughing!
 
Grand Adventure Summary
We started the GDMBR in July of 1999 and we ended the GDMBR in October of 2016 (finishing the first summer after we both had been retired). The GDMBR had come into existence in 1997 but we knew nothing about it. We read about it while sitting in the Criterium Bike Shop (Colorado) while waiting our turn for some unexpected service need. The original GDMBR only went from the USA-Canada border (Roosville) to the USA-Mexico border (Antelope Wells), a 2,500 mile trek and 90% of the route was off-road. Another Canadian 250 miles from Banff to Roosville was added later.
 
We have seen: 5 Grizzlies, 1 Black Bear ('close, very close'), 2 Cougars, 2 Javelina, 3 Bald Eagles (close) many in the air, a few Ospreys, 2 Moose, 1 Badger, 2 encounters with Big Horn Sheep Herds, 4-5 Fox, 5-6 Coyotes (close), 1 Wolf (on a Rabbit trail), 5 or 6 Elk Herds, 100s of Deer, 100s of Antelope, several Sandhill Cranes, many Prairie Chickens, plenty of Ptarmigan (who fake a wing injury to lure a predator away from the nest), Quail, Grouse, Pheasants, many gaggles of Turkey, Rabbits, all types and colors of ground animals (from Chipmunks to Groundhogs), 1 Ermine, countless Snakes (not a single Rattle Snake), friendly Dogs, and we have been chased by mean Dogs.
 
Our Biggest Pucker Moment was riding the single track on the side of Richmond Peak, Montana, where long before our arrival all but three feet of trail on a mountain-side had calved away in a 500 feet straight down collapse.
 
Our Best Things Happened Too Fast to Think Moment was us slamming on the brakes to keep from running into a Bear. We missed colliding by 2 yards/meters and we scared the Fudge out of each other.  The bear took-off running and we had an Adrenalin Rush.
 
 
Some Interesting Numbers
Days on the Trail: 96 (+ 1 Weather Hold Day + 1 Wait All Day for a Ride to Hitch-Hike Out Day + Loop Days)
 
We had to Hitch-Hike Off the Divide 4 Times: Twice we did not have enough food (trail condition/delay issues), once our bike frame broke, and once I (Dennis) fell backwards (while taking a picture) and hit a metal camp fire ring across the back of my ribs.
 
Loop Ride Days: 8 (Additional Days Out and Back, All before we started to drop a 2nd Vehicle at the End-Point)
 
Flat Tires: 6 Bicycle, 4 Transport Vehicle, 1 Shuttle Vehicle (250 Kawasaki Enduro on Transport Trailer)
 
Bridge Out/Closed/Repair: 6, 4 with All Gear Removed (Panniers, Tent +, Removed and Carried Across a Stream, Separately)
 
River Crossing: 1 with All Gear Removed (Panniers, Tent +, Removed and Carried Across Separately)

CSCC Annual Summer Picnic - Food, Friends & Fun

Dale Campbell: Co-Editor

It's often said that the Colorado Springs Cycling Club could possibly be categorized as an eating club with a cycling disorder.  Whatever your perspective, the group does enjoy combining cycling and sharing good times with food.  This year's summer picnic is just another example of how the Club comes together to share good times.

We were fortunate to have the Buffalo Lodge, one of the Club's sponsors, host the picnic.  With plenty of space on their property, parking wasn't a problem and the large trees and pavilion provided plenty of shade from the hot sun.  We'd like to thank Torie Giffin and her husband for enabling the Club to have the event at the Buffalo Lodge.

Two rides (a Blue rated ride and a Green rated ride) started at noon to help Club members work up an appetite.  Riders were welcomed back to the venue with the aromas of Allen and CeCe cooking the food.  There was plenty to be enjoyed, especially with the potluck contributions from Club members who attended.

If your schedule didn't quite work out to attend, take a look at the photos and see just how folks enjoyed the afternoon.

See Photos of the Picnic

Trail Talk: Silent eBikes Now Rolling through Colorado Springs

Susan Davies: Executive Director Trails and Open Space



Editor’s Note:  This article was originally published in The Gazette on 24 July 2017
 
Electric bikes on the Pikes Peak Greenway? They're already out there.
 
You've probably been passed by one and didn't even know it. They look like other bicycles and make no sound.  Pick one up and you'll notice the difference. Electric bikes weigh 30 to 40 pounds more than
 
Conventional Road Bikes
Colorado lawmakers passed legislation allowing "eBikes" last spring. In Colorado Springs, Type 1 and Type 2 are allowed on our paved trails.  Both have a maximum assisted speed of 20 mph.  Type 1 requires you to pedal to move; type 2 has a throttle assist.  The bikes, wildly popular in Europe, are selling well in Colorado Springs too, shop owners say.
 
What do cyclists think?  Some call it "cheating."  But if an eBike allows someone who loved to cycle in their youth the chance to keep riding, can that be a bad thing?  Perhaps you're a commuting student or instructor at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. The hill getting to campus is formidable. But an eBike makes it doable.
 
More controversial is the notion of mountain eBikes on our dirt trails.
 
They're not allowed on unpaved trails in our parks and open spaces.  Because they are considerably heavier than typical mountain bikes, they are more damaging to our trails, especially in muddy conditions.
 
Local mountain bikers are divided on the issue.  Equestrians say the idea of eBikes silently approaching from behind on a trail is frightening.  And the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service consider eBikes motorized vehicles, making them illegal on non-motorized trails.
 
It's highly likely, when cars first appeared on streets, bicyclists and carriage drivers were not huge fans.  But 100 years later, cars rule.  It's possible one day eBikes will dominate trails.
 
Better to have a "community conversation" on the topic before the horse is out of the barn.  There may be parks where they make sense and others where they do not.  And if you haven't tried an eBike, I suggest you do.  Youth may be wasted on the young, but riding an eBike will make you feel like a kid again.

Visibility of Cyclists – What Makes a Difference?

Sharon Boyd: Co-Editor



Getting out and riding involves wearing various attire, depending on weather and the types of riding we do.  Most of the time, we usually wear colorful clothing, with many of the bike jerseys having multiple colors.  But, does this brightly colored sports gear make a difference in how we’re seen by motorists, pedestrians and others sharing the roads/trails?
 
Here’s an article about a recent study about how conspicuous certain apparel makes cyclists during daytime riding, and how conspicuous are tail lights during daytime riding.
 
By the way, anytime you’re out riding, be sure to consider these four points before beginning your ride:
Be visible:  Wear brightly colored clothing from head to toe and consider investing in blinking lights, both for the front and the back of your bike.
Know your routes: The more you know the roads you ride, the better.
Be smart: Avoid rush hour and heavily traveled roads. Try not to ride at times of low light like dusk or when the sun is directly in drivers’ eyes, and stay away from roads that have little to no shoulder.
Obey the law: Don’t run red lights, come to a full stop at stop signs and don’t make illegal turns.
 

Safety Stop – Riding in the Rain

Dale Campbell/Sharon Boyd: Editors



We’re  sure we’ve all been out on a ride and have been caught in a rain shower or thunderstorm, at least a time or two.  We try to prepare for this sort of event by carrying rain jackets on those threatening days.  But, is carrying some weather protection the only things you need to consider in a wet situation?  There’s more that you should be mindful about.  Following is a contribution from Pedal.Com that may just be helpful the next time one of those typical Colorado afternoon storms comes your way.
 
Dear Spoke,
Rainy season is here! I don't mind it too much, but last week a cyclist friend of mine nearly wiped out on an oil patch (as we all know oil and water don't mix). I'm too old to fall! Do you have any suggestions of how to keep an eye out for them?
 
Dear Cyclist,
Riding in the rain is sometime unavoidable. Here are some tips for a safer and more comfortable ride:
1. Be prepared!  Be sure to wear or carry a rain jacket if there is any chance for rain during your ride.
 
2. Be careful!  The roads can be very slick, especially when the rain starts. Oil on the road is inevitable and it can take a while for the rain to wash it away.  And yes, you can easily wipe out on an oil patch, regardless of your age! Be on the lookout for colorful rainbow-like patches in the road as the oil will often reflect/refract the light around them as they get wet and begin to float on top of the water. In addition, the painted lines are also very slippery when they are wet. I suggest you lightly tap your brakes to make sure they are working while it is raining.
 
3. Keep dry!  Think about investing in some fenders as they help to keep the rain off of you.  They not only help you stay dry, but they also make it easier to see in the rain as you don't have to worry about as much rain water splashing back at you while riding.
 
4. Stay visible!  It is important to make yourself as visible as possible in the rain. Drivers have limited visibility in bad weather, so it's a good idea to use a light in the rear and front of your bike on wet days. If you cannot see, be smart! -- Pull over and wait for the rain to lighten up.
 

Safety Stop Too – Things to Consider after a Bike Accident

Dale Campbell/Sharon Boyd: Editors



As cyclists, we do not want to get into situations that could cause an accident.  That’s why we ride carefully, being aware of road/trail conditions, surroundings, other road/trail traffic and our own health/cycling abilities.  However, sometimes due to circumstances beyond our control, accidents do occur.  As a witness, participant, or just a bystander, do you know what to do and how to react?  Here are seven points to consider post-event.  Being aware before any such event may just help you safely react to an accident after the event.
 
1. GET OUT OF THE ROAD
Emotions, injury and a wrecked bike are just a few things that can get in the way of your otherwise sound decision making. If you’re still conscious and able to move, it’s best to get off the roadway as soon as possible. Doing so helps avoid further injury from oncoming traffic that may not see you lying on the ground.  When the injuries are too severe for you to bear weight, call for an ambulance right away.
 
2. HAVE A SEAT AND ASSESS YOUR INJURIES
Following a crash, it’s common to get a big shot of adrenaline. While your injuries might seem mild following an accident, they could be much worse than you realize. To be safe, have a seat whether you feel hurt or not and check yourself for injuries. If anything seems serious, don’t hesitate to call for medical attention immediately.
Other than broken bones, areas of pain and bleeding, make sure you can bear weight and walk normally. You can assess your upper body by lifting your arms above your head. Always check your helmet for cracks. If it is cracked always assume you have a concussion.

3. CALL FOR HELP
No matter what’s happened, you should always call someone after a crash. If there are no serious injuries apparent, give a family member or a friend a call and see if they can pick you up. It will be tough to know the extent of your injuries until you’ve been evaluated, and the same can be said of your bike. Having someone else around who’s thinking clearly can help you decide next steps.
For bike-car accidents, call the police, too. They’ll be able to file an accident report, document each party’s involvement in the incident and determine who was at fault, which can help with insurance claims.
Whatever you decide to do, it’s probably not a good idea to get back on your bike right away and keep riding.

4. GET YOU AND YOUR BIKE CHECKED OUT BY A PROFESSIONAL
For moderate-to-severe crashes, you should head to your doctor to get checked out. X-rays and a thorough evaluation should be done to make sure there aren’t any injuries more severe than they might appear.
 
The same can be said for your bike. One of the reasons getting back on the bike isn’t recommended is because the potential for catastrophic damage to the frame — especially if it’s carbon fiber. Any time your bike hits the ground take it to a bike shop to have it looked over by a professional. Hairline cracks in the frame or any other damage that could compromise the structural integrity of the bike are your primary areas of concern. Don’t forget the wheels, though, as they are commonly damaged during most incidents — even if it’s just a spoke.

5. DOCUMENT THE EVENT
Accidents on the trail or during a group ride might not need the attention of the police, but if you’ve been involved in a bike-car crash you’ll want documentation of the accident. While an accident report from the authorities is definitely recommended, it’s also a good idea to obtain contact information from the driver and any bystanders who may have witnessed the event.
Information you might need later on for insurance claims includes:
•Name, address, driver’s license number and phone number of the driver.
•The license plate of the vehicle.
•Insurance information.
•Names and phone numbers of any witnesses.
It’s also a good idea to take photos of your injuries and any damage that may have occurred to your bike for evidence.
 
6. CONSULT AN ATTORNEY
While this won’t be needed if you take a spill on your own, sometimes bike-car collisions get messy. If you are unsure what steps you need to take or are having problems getting reimbursed for your medical bills and damages to your bike, a lawyer who specializes in bike-car related accidents can help you deal with the insurance companies and ensure you get what you’re entitled.
 
7. STAY AWAY FROM YOUR BIKE AS NECESSARY
Unless you’re a professional cyclist, there’s no rush to get back on the bike. Let your road rash and other injuries heal fully before you decide to go out on the bike again. If you’ve had a concussion, make sure you go through a concussion protocol with your doctor before resuming activities.
Keep in mind that your mental state should also be considered. Hitting the ground is a traumatic event, and facing the fear of it happening again once you’re out on the road won’t be easy. Make sure you’ve got the right frame of mind and are looking forward to riding again before you get back in the saddle.

How Long Has It Been Since You Last Rode Your Bike?

Anonymous

Bent Fork 2017-3 - July/August/September 2017