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.

Continue reading “DC Bike List for 3/1”

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!”

DC Bike List for 1/11!!

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

Compared to the last two weeks, this MLK Day weekend is looking positively balmy, and some good rides are lined up for taking advantage of it. Probably most notable is that Proteus Bicycles in MD is adding a Sunday mountain bike ride to their outings; Friday, the Bikenetic people are heading out for an extended gravel ride in Loudoun County; and Phoenix Bicycles’ Saturday youth ride is heading to the MLK memorial.

All the usual shop rides are on as well, but double check with social media in case they get cancelled due to cold, as it’s supposed to get pretty chilly on Sunday. Also, as we get closer to spring and summer, the big cycling events are starting to pick dates, and I’ve added some in the “Looking ahead” section. Peruse, and think of how in no time we’ll all be complaining about the heat.

A few other things you may have missed this past 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


Anchor[scroll down or click to jump to:]

 


AnchorRambles
not about speed. enjoy the journey, get some coffee on the way

Spokes Etc. Vienna shop ride (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 8:15am
Leaves from the Vienna shop. Easy pace, no drop, covers about 15 miles. Check Facebook for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Urban Explorers (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 10am
Led by The Bike Rack, gathers at the Brookland shop. A social-paced 17-mile ride that loops through some of the prettiest parts of the city (National Arboretum, Kingman Island, Anacostia Riverwalk Trail). This ride will NOT take place if the temperature is below freezing. [Google Calendar]

Youth Ride (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 10am
Weekly ride for kids, youths, and adult volunteers led by Phoenix Bicycles from their shop in Arlington. Easy-going 10 miles. This week they’re heading to the MLK Memorial! [Facebook]

Nice & Easy (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 10am
A BicycleSPACE ride. Leaves from their downtown shop. This is a ride for everyone, and great for beginners: 8-10 miles at a pace that’s, well, nice and easy.

Cupcake Ramble (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 11:30am
A chill ride hosted by BicycleSPACE, 20-30 miles, with a stop for some kind of sweet treat halfway through. Leaves from the downtown shop. [BicycleSPACE]

Saturday Social Ride (MD)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 10am
A chill ~10 mile ride on trails from Proteus Bicycles in College Park to different local food spots and sites of interest. This week they’re hitting up the Shortcake Bakery! [Facebook]

Nice & Easy II (DC)
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 10am
Same deal as the Saturday Nice & Easy, but this one leaves from the Adams Morgan shop.

Slow Roll (DC)
MONDAYS @ 7pm
Gather at the African American Civil War Museum (11th and U) for this weekly 10-mile social roll through DC. “Ride bikes with good people and good things happen. You can ride with us.” Seems to be on hiatus for the winter, but join the Facebook group here for updates.

[back to index]


AnchorHill rides
often social, can be challenging 

Hills of Anacostia (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 9am
Hosted by BicycleSPACE. Meet at the downtown shop. A fun, brisk 20-25 miles of some good climbs and nice views up through Anacostia. No-drop ride. See our Ride Review here!

Falls Church Hills Ride (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 8:30am
Hosted by Conte’s in Falls Church. Gather there for 20+ miles of VA hills. Fairly hardcore group that moves at a brisk pace, but it’s a no-drop ride. Cancelled in the event of rough weather or ice. Check social media for updates. [Facebook]

Hills of Rock Creek Park (DC, MD)
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 9am
Led by BicycleSPACE. A beautiful and sometimes challenging ride along the rolling mostly car-free roadways of Rock Creek Park. No-drop. Leaves from the Adams Morgan shop.

Tuesday Hills (VA)
TUESDAY, 1/16 @ 6am
Bikenetic’s weekly hills ride. Meets at the shop in Falls Church. Can be somewhat brutal. Route changes every week, check the shop’s Facebook page for announcements and details.


AnchorLong rides
30+ miles, exploring new routes and interesting destinations

City Explorers (DC)
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 11:30am
A BicycleSPACE ride. Leaves from their downtown shop. A loooong rambler, 30 miles and up, with decent pace and a different route/theme every time. Lots of local history in this one, learn something about the city and get some exercise. [BicycleSPACE]


AnchorRoad rides
skinny tires, quick pace, use of group riding techniques

7am Ride (MD, DC)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 7am
Hosted by no one. Pure road ride, very fast. Gather in Rock Creek Park, at the intersection of Rt. 410 and Beach Drive. This ride is hard and fast, a 40-mile loop on MacArthur Blvd, along the Potomac, through Great Falls Park, an back to the top of Rock Creek Park.

Spokes Etc. Vienna shop rides (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 7:15am, 8:15am
Two rides rolling from Spokes, Etc.’s Vienna shop. The first departs at 7:15am, moves at a good 16-18mph clip in a 15 mile loop, then back to the shop, where you can hop on the second ride, departing at 8:15am for another 20-25 miles at a slightly more relaxed pace. Check Facebook for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Introductory Road Ride (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/13 @ 10am
Hosted by The Bike Rack. Gather at the Logan Circle shop. This is a moderately-paced 25/30-mile ride intended as an introduction to group rides. You must have a road bike. Bring water and a spare tube. This ride will NOT take place if the temperature is below freezing. More details here.

Bike Rack Intermediate/Advanced rides
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 8:30am
Hosted by the Bike Rack from the Logan Circle shop. The intermediate ride is 40 miles at an average of 16-18 mph. It’s no-drop, but you have to move quickly. If you want something more challenging the advanced rides take place at the same time. It covers 60 miles at an average speed of 18-20 mph, and you have to be able demonstrated excellent bike handling skills. Both rides are canceled in the event of wet conditions, or if the temperature is below freezing.

Spokes Etc. Quaker Lane shop ride (VA)
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 9am
Departs from the Quaker Lane shop in Alexandria. Quick pace (15-20mph) for a good distance (30-40 miles). Check out the Facebook page for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Arrow Bicycle ride (MD)
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 9am
Gather at Arrow Bicycle in Hyattsville for this 32-mile no-drop ride that emphasizes group riding techniques. Ride heads out 52 weeks a year, rain or shine.

Spokes Etc. Belle View Co-ed Road Ride (VA)
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 9am
Meets at the Belle View shop for a solid 25-30 miles of riding at a moderate 15mph pace. Check Facebook for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Goon Ride
TUESDAY/THURSDAY @ 5:30pm
Hosted by no one. The Goon Ride is maybe the hardest ride around. Riders gather informally at Garret Park Road and Beach Drive. Average speed is 25mph. Good luck.


AnchorGravel and mountain bike rides
thick tires. trails. back roads. get dirty.

Hooky Ride (VA)
FRIDAY, 1/12 @ 8:30am
Led by Bikenetic folks, starts from Leesburg, VA. This is one of the area’s premier regular gravel rides. This week it’s a solid 47-miles of riding on beautiful Loudoun County gravel. I bet you feel that scratchy throat coming on already. Yep, you better call in, wouldn’t want to spread it to any co-workers. [Facebook]

Sunday Mountain Bike Ride (MD)
SUNDAY, 1/14 @ 9am
New Proteus ride! It’s mountain bikes, around Fairland Regional Park in Laurel. Bring a helmet, and you’ll need to sign a waiver. Cancelled in the event of too much mud, so check social media before you head out. [Facebook]


AnchorLooking ahead

–  1/18: BikeDC happy hour! Informal gathering at The Velo Cafe at the Warf, with drink discounts.
– 1/27: Ride to the Rink! Cycling PLUS ice skating, what a great combination!
– 5/19: DC Bike Ride! Registration isn’t open yet
– 5/20: 4th Annual DC Bike Swap and Expo! Hosted by Gearin’ up Bikes, Great opportunity to find a new or used bike.
– 6/9-10: Armed Forces Cycling Classic! Registration now open.
– 6/22-27: Bike Virginia Tour 2018! “Ride the River,” a week of adventure cycling. Registration now open.

DC Bike List for 1/4!

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

Happy New Year! And I’ll just get this out of the way, it is EXTREMELY cold right now and probably not great weather for riding a bicycle outdoors over any significant time or distance. If there’s a regular ride you do or you see one you’d like to try out this weekend, be sure to check the social media or call ahead to see if it’s happening, as lots of them get cancelled when it’s this cold.

Still, amazingly, there are a number of fun-looking things happening this week. The good people at Port City Brewing in Alexandria are heading up a 30-mile ride on Saturday that will end in beer. Also, Washington Women Outdoors have a women’s ride through Anne Arundel County scheduled for Saturday.

Also, if you really don’t want to ride in the cold but you also really want to do a bike thing, might I suggestion volunteering with one of the great bike co-ops in the DC area?? Phoenix Bikes in Arlington has a new volunteer orientation night on Tuesday. VéloCity Bicycle Cooperative in Alexandria has regular volunteer nights on Tues/Weds/Thurs, and Gearin’ Up Bicycles in DC always welcomes new volunteers. Or if you just want to do some work on your ride, all these co-ops hold clinics and open shop hours where you can use their tools and get some help for a nominal fee or suggested donation. Just an idea!

A few more things worth reading from the week icymi:

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


AnchorRambles
not about speed. enjoy the journey, get some coffee on the way

Spokes Etc. Vienna shop ride (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 8:15am
Leaves from the Vienna shop. Easy pace, no drop, covers about 15 miles. Check Facebook for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Weekly Youth Ride (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 11am
Leaves from Phoenix Bikes in Arlington. Kids, parents, and registered volunteers are all welcome to join this easy-going ~10-mile jaunt. Different route every week!

Urban Explorers (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 10am
Led by The Bike Rack, gathers at the Brookland shop. A social-paced 17-mile ride that loops through some of the prettiest parts of the city (National Arboretum, Kingman Island, Anacostia Riverwalk Trail). This ride will NOT take place if the temperature is below freezing. [Google Calendar]

Nice & Easy (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 10am
A BicycleSPACE ride. Leaves from their downtown shop. This is a ride for everyone, and great for beginners: 8-10 miles at a pace that’s, well, nice and easy.

Cupcake Ramble (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 11:30am
A chill ride hosted by BicycleSPACE, 20-30 miles, with a stop for some kind of sweet treat halfway through. Leaves from the downtown shop. [BicycleSPACE]

Saturday Social Ride (MD)
Saturday, 1/6 @ 10am
A chill ~10 mile ride on trails from Proteus Bicycles in College Park to different local food spots and sites of interest. New this year, it replaces the regular Sunday coffee ride. Check their Facebook page for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Nice & Easy II (DC)
SUNDAY, 1/7 @ 10am
Same deal as the Saturday Nice & Easy, but this one leaves from the Adams Morgan shop.

Slow Roll (DC)
MONDAYS @ 7pm
Gather at the African American Civil War Museum (11th and U) for this weekly 10-mile social roll through DC. “Ride bikes with good people and good things happen. You can ride with us.” Seems to be on hiatus for the winter, but join the Facebook group here for updates.


AnchorHill rides
often social, can be challenging 

Hills of Anacostia (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 9am
Hosted by BicycleSPACE. Meet at the downtown shop. A fun, brisk 20-25 miles of some good climbs and nice views up through Anacostia. No-drop ride. See our Ride Review here!

Hills of Rock Creek Park (DC, MD)
SUNDAY, 1/7 @ 9am
Led by BicycleSPACE. A beautiful and sometimes challenging ride along the rolling mostly car-free roadways of Rock Creek Park. No-drop. Leaves from the Adams Morgan shop.

Tuesday Hills (VA)
TUESDAY, 1/9 @ 6am
Bikenetic’s weekly hills ride. Meets at the shop in Falls Church. Can be somewhat brutal. Route changes every week, check the shop’s Facebook page for announcements and details.


AnchorLong rides
30+ miles, exploring new routes and interesting destinations

Pedals and Pints (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 9:45am
Hosted by Port City Brewing Company out of Alexandria. This is a brisk, 30+ mile ride, followed by (of course) beer! No registration necessary. [Facebook]

Anne Arundel Adventure Bike Ride (Davidson, MD)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 10am
Beautiful women’s ride through farm country. About 37 miles of rolling hills, horses, country homes, etc. You must register by FRIDAY if you want to go. [WWO]

City Explorers (DC)
SUNDAY, 1/7 @ 11:30am
A BicycleSPACE ride. Leaves from their downtown shop. A loooong rambler, 30 miles and up, with decent pace and a different route/theme every time. Lots of local history in this one, learn something about the city and get some exercise. [BicycleSPACE]


AnchorRoad rides
skinny tires, quick pace, use of group riding techniques

7am Ride (MD, DC)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 7am
Hosted by no one. Pure road ride, very fast. Gather in Rock Creek Park, at the intersection of Rt. 410 and Beach Drive. This ride is hard and fast, a 40-mile loop on MacArthur Blvd, along the Potomac, through Great Falls Park, an back to the top of Rock Creek Park.

Spokes Etc. Vienna shop rides (VA)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 7:15am, 8:15am
Two rides rolling from Spokes, Etc.’s Vienna shop. The first departs at 7:15am, moves at a good 16-18mph clip in a 15 mile loop, then back to the shop, where you can hop on the second ride, departing at 8:15am for another 20-25 miles at a slightly more relaxed pace. Check Facebook for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Introductory Road Ride (DC)
SATURDAY, 1/6 @ 10am
Hosted by The Bike Rack. Gather at the Logan Circle shop. This is a moderately-paced 25/30-mile ride intended as an introduction to group rides. You must have a road bike. Bring water and a spare tube. This ride will NOT take place if the temperature is below freezing. More details here.

Bike Rack Intermediate/Advanced rides
SUNDAY, 1/7 @ 8:30am
Hosted by the Bike Rack from the Logan Circle shop. The intermediate ride is 40 miles at an average of 16-18 mph. It’s no-drop, but you have to move quickly. If you want something more challenging the advanced rides take place at the same time. It covers 60 miles at an average speed of 18-20 mph, and you have to be able demonstrated excellent bike handling skills. Both rides are canceled in the event of wet conditions, or if the temperature is below freezing.

Spokes Etc. Quaker Lane shop ride (VA)
SUNDAY, 1/7 @ 9am
Departs from the Quaker Lane shop in Alexandria. Quick pace (15-20mph) for a good distance (30-40 miles). Check out the Facebook page for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Arrow Bicycle ride (MD)
SUNDAY, 1/7 @ 9am
Gather at Arrow Bicycle in Hyattsville for this 32-mile no-drop ride that emphasizes group riding techniques. Ride heads out 52 weeks a year, rain or shine.

Spokes Etc. Belle View Co-ed Road Ride (VA)
SUNDAY, 1/7 @ 9am
Meets at the Belle View shop for a solid 25-30 miles of riding at a moderate 15mph pace. Check Facebook for updates and cancellations. [Facebook]

Goon Ride
TUESDAY/THURSDAY @ 5:30pm
Hosted by no one. The Goon Ride is maybe the hardest ride around. Riders gather informally at Garret Park Road and Beach Drive. Average speed is 25mph. Good luck.


AnchorLooking ahead

–  1/18: BikeDC happy hour! Informal gathering at The Velo Cafe at the Warf, with drink discounts.
– 1/27: Ride to the Rink! Cycling PLUS ice skating, what a great combination!

DC Bike List, 11/30

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

The run of remarkably fine fall weather we’ve been having looks set to continue on through this weekend, and there are many great opportunities to take advantage of it with a bike ride. If you’re feeling really adventurous and can call in sick, Bikenetic’s hooky ride on Friday looks like a great time. The top pick for Saturday is without question the Brrrewery Ride, which hits up four different breweries along the W&OD trail. Also, BicycleSPACE’s hills rides on Saturday and Sunday are beginner rides, so good time to check those out if it’s your first time.

Switching gears a little bit, just FYI, the last two DC-area cyclocross races of the season are coming up. These are a fun time even (especially?) if you’re not racing, with refreshments, music, and kids events. The races follow a tight loop, so it’s easy for spectators to watch. All sorts of shenanigans ensue: costumes, people racing tandems, lots of falling down, etc. This Sunday is the 2017 Capital ‘Cross Classic, in Reston, sponsored by The Bike Lane. Then next Sunday, Dec. 10, is BikenetiCX, sponsored by Bikenetic. Come on out, bring a cowbell. Hey, maybe even register and get in there. They need fresh meat… er, legs.

OK, that’s the deal! Scroll to the “Looking ahead” section at the end for events beyond this week. 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, 11/30”

DC Bike List for week of 11/16

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

OK so yes, it might rain on Saturday, but think of it this way, you’re going to be busy all next week with travel and cooking and hosting and trying to keep the dinner table conversation civil despite the Great Orange Turkey looming over everything, and by then you’re going to WISH you were riding a bicycle in the rain. So THIS weekend, get out there while you have the chance! Plenty of good options. Saturday is, of course, Cranksgiving, which is a fun scavenger hunt AND a way to help feed hungry people. (fyi, the Brrrewery Tour was moved to Dec 2.) The BicycleSPACE rides usually run even during less than perfect weather. The rained-out tweed ride was rescheduled for this Sunday, and there’s also a fun-sounding long ride that day through the Virginia countryside led by the Washington Women Outdoors. And next week, Proteus Bicycles is doing a Thanksgiving Day morning ride so you can work off the mashed potatoes before you even eat them!

Before we move on: There’s been lots of discussion of the dockless bikeshares currently littering/gracing the District of Columbia. At this point, there are five companies involved in this pilot: Mobike, Ofo, Spin, Limebike, and Jump. Bikescolding and concerntrolling aside, one legit question I’ve seen over these weeks is sustainability. Dude, these bikes are getting TRASHED. How long can these companies keep it up? A few thoughts:

  • The bikeshare companies are LOADED. Mobike and Ofo are Chinese companies, each worth a couple of billion dollars. US-based Limebike just raised $62 million and is valued at over $200 million.
  • The bicycles they’re putting on the street are produced at a MASSIVE scale in China and can be incredibly inexpensive. Check out Alibaba.com. You can order 100 bikeshare bikes straight from the factory for $6,000.
  • Potentially, one dockless bikeshare company’s entire 400-bike pilot fleet would cost it only like ~$40,000.
  • Or, you know, the price of a single new Uber. And they don’t even need to pay the driver!
  • Basically, even if they’re losing money as fast as possible, these companies will STILL easily have the financials to stay in DC for a very long time, no matter how many of their bikes get chucked into the C&O Canal.
  • From this angle, the more important concerns going forward may be safety and waste. Bikes that fall apart as you ride them would be… bad. And the companies need to be responsible to collect and reuse/recycle their damaged vehicles.
  • In any case, it’s important to remember this is a DDOT pilot program and they want feedback! Send it their way.

OK, onward! Scroll to the “Looking ahead” section at the end for events beyond this week. 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. Stay safe, ride fast, ride on.

– Peter

Continue reading “DC Bike List for week of 11/16”

DC Bike List for week of 11/9

If you missed WABA’s Cider Ride last weekend, all I can say is you made a grave error and should substantially reevaluate your life choices and goals. The weather was tremendous, the route was a blast, the community was wonderful. Just a 10/10 perfect fall ride. Huge shout-out to the WABA people and volunteers for all their hard work and for FINALLY figuring out how to work their weather machine, really great work.

This week is looking, uh, cold. I’ve confirmed most of these rides and linked to Facebook or other event pages, but it’s still a good idea to double check before you head out the door. Of note this weekend: Friday is Veterans Day! So Bikenetic has a pretty awesome-sounding VA gravel event lined up involving wine, and Proteus has a solid 45-mile MD loop going too. Also, this month’s DC Bike Party is on Saturday night. Oh, and on Sunday, Jews on Bikes is doing a PRETTY fun-sounding ~50-mile loop on VA trails, hitting up a number of breweries. And don’t forget to read all the way to the bottom for events beyond this week. A couple other things:

OK, now on to the list! If you like this newsletter, feel free to forward it along to friends and tell them to sign up or follow on Twitter. If you have a ride or event you’d like added, submit it here. Stay safe, ride fast, ride on.

– Peter
Continue reading “DC Bike List for week of 11/9”

DC Bike List for week of 11/2

Fall has fallen, the leaves have turned, and the mercury has finally dropped below 80 degrees! Wonderful time of year. The big deal this week is, of course, the WABA Cider Ride on Saturday. As of our publication deadline, registration was still open and the weatherperson was forecasting no rain and a high of ~62F, which is, uh, perfect. Other good ways to enjoy the fall colors this weekend are the Bike Rack’s once-a-month Urban Wilderness Ride on Saturday, or BicycleSPACE’s Hills of Rock Creek Park ride on Sunday. Note also that it’s the first weekend of the month, so both the Hills of Rock Creek Park and the Hills of Anacostia rides cater to beginners. Good time to get out there and give them a shot if you’re new! Finally, there is NO Proteus ride on Saturday, on account of the WABA thing.

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One unusual bit of news is that DC has been picked as a test market for a new cycling app called LaneSpotter. Described as “Waze for cyclists,” LaneSpotter aims to help find good routes by offering maps of bike lanes and trails and by crowd-sourcing tips on the best routes through city streets. Now, I do not have an iPhone, so I can’t tell if it’s good or bad, but what would be cool is if you would download the app, use it a couple of times, and then take this quick survey to let me know how it went. I’m curious if it even has enough data yet to be useful.

A few other interesting reads from the week:

OK, onward to the list! If you like this newsletter, feel free to forward it along to friends and tell them to sign up or follow on Twitter. Stay safe, ride fast, ride on.

– Peter
Continue reading “DC Bike List for week of 11/2”