DC Bike List, 4/19

Wow, can you believe winter is almost over already?? I tell you what. OK, so a couple of rides that were cancelled in previous weeks have been rescheduled for this weekend, namely the Oxon Hill season opener and the first DC Jews on Bikes ride of the year. OK.

Also, a little announcement: I’m trying something new this week. Since I started this list, I’ve wondered what to do with bicycle club rides. The clubs have SO MANY rides every week that it would be impossible to list them all here, yet certainly they deserve some kind of mention.
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DC Bike List, 4/12

A number of interesting things going on this week. First, the Emancipation Ride would be a great thing to jump on if you have Monday off work in celebration of Emancipation Day. Second, Proteus Bicycles’ Saturday social ride seems like a good way to see cherry blossoms without all the crowds. And third, Tour de Bike Lane on Friday sounds like a blast!

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DC Bike List, 3/22

Welcome to spring! Officially! The big thing to watch out for this week is the March for our Lives on Saturday, which is guaranteed to cause significant disruption downtown and could impact the routes of regular group rides or the timing/destination of social rides (for example, Proteus’s social ride on Saturday is going to the march). So be sure to double-check social media for last minute changes before you head out.

Here’s a few other odds and ends of cycling news icymi:

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Bike List for 3/15!

[fyi, the DC Bike List is also on Facebook and Twitter]

As spring edges closer, more regular rides are blooming! This week’s new additions include ProBike FC’s weekly women’s training ride; Papillon Cycling’s social coffee ride, and Conte’s first day of spring ride. Also, one that looks pretty fun that starts this week is the twice-monthly Coffee Outside ride, on Friday morning before work on the C&O towpath.

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DC Bike List for 3/8

As spring draws near, holy cow there are a lot of new events piling up! Check the “looking ahead” section for stuff going on past this week, it is becoming EXTENSIVE. Also, had to add the “Events” section back in, because people, we have events again! A refurbished bike sale, a crazy garage race, even the DC Bike Party is back in business! Green shoots everywhere.

A few more good tidbits you may have missed:

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DC Bike List for 3/1

Welcome to March, we’ve made it through the winter months! Such as they were. There is quite a bit going on this week, if we all don’t blow away in the nor’easter. The Proteus Bicycles Saturday social ride will tour 3-4 breweries, so that’s fun. And the Phoenix Bicycles youth ride is going to see BLACK PANTHER! You will note there are no cars in Wakanda, which is very inspiring. Two more tidbits worth highlighting:

  • Registration for Bike to Work Day 2018 is open! It’s scheduled for May 18. Pick your pit stops for a T-shirt, food, goodies, etc.
  • The first Wednesday night Garage Race is set for this Wednesday, March 7, in Crystal City. The beginners and open races are full, but the women’s race still has slots available, so get in there! Also, even if you’re not racing, my understanding is there will be pie, grilled cheese, beer, and a pretty good race to watch.

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DC Bike Ride route = terrible

The major cycling event news this week is that the DC Bike Ride–the big annual ride backed by the DC government–posted its route for this year. And you know what, I’m just going to level with you, it’s a terrible route.

We have a beautiful city full of monuments and sights and wide boulevards lined with historic buildings, yet this ride boils down to a tour of the crumbling car commuter infrastructure along the waterfront–off-ramps, tunnels, jersey barriers, and HOV lanes are apparently the very best this city can offer its cyclists for this once-a-year event.

Have you ever wanted to ride your bicycle on the Whitehurst Freeway? Sign up for the DC Bike Ride and you can do it twice!

How about the E St. Expressway tunnel? Sign up for the DC Bike Ride and you can do it twice!

And who hasn’t dreamed of riding a bicycle on 395, across vast, featureless, pointless expanses of asphalt and concrete into northern Virginia, only to immediately turn around and go back?

This is the route of a bike ride that someone is hiding, like they’re ashamed it exists and wants to keep it away from where people live, work, shop, and park cars. Or maybe it was designed by people who primarily experience the city from behind a windshield and assume casual cyclists are itching for that same “stuck-in-traffic-under-the-Kennedy-Center” experience.

The ride is, I think, in its fourth year. I’m glad it’s happening. I’m registered for it, and you should register for it, if for no other reason than to support the local advocacy work of WABA. But we should demand a better ride. It is a sin that the ride doesn’t (for example) do a lap around the National Mall, and that it misses the spectacular promenade down Pennsylvania Ave. toward the Capitol. I’m sure the cycling advocates and ride leaders who do this kind of thing as part of their lives have HUNDREDS of ideas for better routes.

Would it be more disruptive? Absolutely. That’s what happens when you plan a big, beautiful, community event to bring a city together on a Saturday morning in May. But if the DC government and Muriel Bowser are serious about promoting casual cycling and not just using us in photo ops to pitch DC to investors as a bike-friendly city, they’re going to have to be a little more disruptive.

DC Bike List for 1/25

There is quite a bit going on this week, as we continue to enjoy some totally bearable weather. All the regular rides are on, although with rain perhaps in the forecast for Sunday, be sure the check social media before heading out (fyi I try to post updates on Twitter and Facebook as I get them).

A brand new ride to check out this weekend is the Hills of NE. Designed and led by @zacycles, the 30-mile ride gathers at the BicycleSPACE shop in Ivy City to hit all the major climbs in that neck of the woods. The ride snakes through the Arboretum, past Union Market, and visits the Basilica. One plus is that it leaves a little later (10am) than the other hill rides, so good for cold mornings. A few other goings on:

  • Voting is open for the 2018 Bicyclists Choice Awards! Vote for categories like best bike shop, best social ride, best semitruck permanently parked in the 1st St NE protected bike lane, etc. The bike nerd prom itself is scheduled for Feb. 8, hosted by WAMU’s Lauren Ober. RSVP by Feb. 3!
  • The thing where people race their bicycles around an empty parking garage in Crystal City is coming back this year! Now called Wednesday Night Spins, it’ll be every Wednesday night in March. Registration opens in February.
  • For some reason there’s an International Winter Bike to Work Day?? It’s on February 9. What the hell, I say go for it! And if you’re riding through Rosslyn, you can swing by BikeArlington’s WBTWD pitstop for coffee and snacks.

And be sure to scroll to the bottom to scope out more events scheduled for beyond this week. OK, that’s all I’ve got. If you like this newsletter, feel free to forward it along to friends and tell them to sign up or follow on Twitter and on Facebook. Also, if you have a ride you want added to the list, you can submit it via this form. Stay safe, ride fast, ride on.

– Peter
Continue reading “DC Bike List for 1/25”

DC Bike List for 1/18!

[fyi, the DC Bike List is also on Facebook and Twitter]

Welcome to the middle of January! How are you feeling? Even as we sit here with ~20-degree winds howling past our windows, an interesting thing is happening, which is that the broad strokes of summer cycling are starting to take on their shape. So for example, the DC Bike Ride has a date. The Armed Forces Cycling Classic registration is open. Hagerstown is hosting the national amateur road cycling championship in July. And some longer tours like Bike Virginia Tour 2018 are open for registration.

Along those lines, this week the Oxon Hill Bicycle and Trail Club opened up registration for its 2018 Patuxent River Rural Legacy Bicycle Ride. Set to take place on Saturday, June 9, this gorgeous ride on paved rural roads offers routes of 22, 35, 44, and 64 miles through Maryland farms, wetlands, and woods. Early registration is $25 through February 28, which includes a marked route, SAG support, cue sheets, rest stops with food and drinks, and a picnic afterwards.

Just a little reminder that winter is… uh… going. Two more things for this week:

  • Both of the BicycleSPACE hills rides (Anacostia and Rock Creek Park) are beginner rides this week. It’s irregular, but that’s the deal, and it looks like the perfect balmy weekend to try them out if it’s your first time.
  • TONIGHT is BikeDC happy hour! This informal gathering will take place at the Velo Cafe at the Warf, with drink discounts. Please join us!

OK, that’s all I’ve got. If you like this newsletter, feel free to forward it along to friends and tell them to sign up or follow on Twitter and on Facebook. Also, if you have a ride you want added to the list, you can submit it via this form. Stay safe, ride fast, ride on.

– Peter
Continue reading “DC Bike List for 1/18!”