Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Biking in Anchorage

Talk of Alaska is discussing increasing numbers of bike users in Anchorage right now (the show will be available as a pod cast later today or tomorrow). There's a draft bike plan and the commenting period has been extended to May 7 I think they said. (As I post this the website still says April 30 is the deadline, but don't believe it.) Lori Schanche of the Municipality said they've already got 80 comments. I suspect that some people haven't commented because they didn't have the time to read the whole plan. But if you're a cyclist and don't have the time, just say you didn't get time to read it all and tell them you support the general idea of improving biking conditions in Anchorage.

I did ride my bike three days last week to the Indigenous Summit last week, but there was lots of summit stuff to post on and I feel that some people out there get sick of cyclists pushing the idea of riding. However, it really is a viable alternative for many people for many trips. Not everything. The parts of Chester Creek I was on were almost totally clear of snow and ice. The picture shows one of the exceptions on the first day. But just in the three days I rode my bike, things cleared up significantly. And while I was disturbed that all the gravel that had been on the streets was now piled in the bike lane (on A Street) and the bike path next to the streets. But then the next day they were cleaning the A Street bike path - see the picture - and the day after the E Street path was clear of gravel.

Our streets were designed for cars so many people think that riding bikes isn't viable the winter makes it impossible here. But improving the infrastructure summer riding can be much safer and the advent of mountain bikes and LED bike lights has made winter biking much easier. And if people can ski or ride snow machines in the winter, then it isn't too cold to ride a bike. Listen to the show pod cast to hear what they are doing. Here's the Talk of Alaska link again.


  1. The weekend before last weekend, I was doing Pascha (Eastern Easter) at Lake Lucille and the ice was about 2' from shore. I went to the same place today to scope the lodge out for a wedding for a friend who lives out of state and it is 5' from shore. Just as the snow seems to double every week at a certain point in autumn, it does the same thing. My kids are blading all over the place now and I start looking forward to seeing bluebells. We can safely put away the winter gear.

    I am considering investing in a good mountain bike this summer so I can keep riding as you suggest we can in the winter.

  2. I used to ride my bike a lot but in the past few years I had quited this habit.

  3. biking all year long is definitely viable. i have been getting to work by bike, 10 mi RT most days for over two years running. it is a lot easier and way more fun than you'd ever imagine.


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