Ten tips for a safer cycling mole

abc 10 steps

1 Most drivers are extraordinarily kind and accommodating if they see you.

2 They see you about half the time.

3 They have no idea that the raised left hand signal means a right turn. You need to signal by pointing left with your left hand or right with your right hand. Extending your whole arm, extravagantly.

4 Riding close in to a line of parked cars, where you’ll plow straight into a door if someone suddenly opens it, is an excellent way to court death. You need to ride a few feet out. It feels more dangerous but it’s actually much safer. It’s where drivers look for vehicles, where they expect them. And they’re not so tempted to try to squeeze past you if there really isn’t room.

5 In the mild maritime Northwest, at any rate, cold isn’t so troublesome as rain, and rain isn’t so troublesome as wind.

6 It’s your hands and feet that you need to keep warm and dry. The rest doesn’t really matter. You generate plenty of body heat for that.

7 Except that blue jeans, once truly wet, will stay wet for a whole workday. You need to keep them dry, not for the ride, but for the sequel.

8 You must always assume they don’t see you. Drivers, pedestrians, other bicyclists. (Bicyclists are no better than anyone else at being aware of bikes.)

9 It’s just as fun as when you were a kid. You go zoom! and whoosh! You’re a sky creature, not a miserable earth-crawler. And you get to the end of your commute feeling invigorated and intensely alive.

10 There’s always a parking space. Always.

posted by Dale at Mole

Some commuter wisdom from Dale at Mole –  posted by him after six months of commuting by bike – that  are also applicable to snobiking.


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