Asking for Some Feedback on Bicycle Riding in Somervell CountySomervell County Salon-Glen Rose, Rainbow, Nemo, Glass....Texas


Asking for Some Feedback on Bicycle Riding in Somervell County

18 February 2010 at 3:06:45 PM

I've been wanting to do some bike riding for awhile, and frankly, I would love to be able to bicycle into town to do shopping or eat breakfast at a local restaurant, etc. But I'm scared. Yes, I know I can join a bicycle ride on weekends which would be a group of people on an organized ride, and I do like the idea of that (at least, once I'm in a little better wind shape). But what if you want to use your bicycle as an average, every day mode of transportation?

Where I live there simply is no direct way to get to town without having to bicycle on state highways. I worry that I would be on the shoulder and some car would move over to let a car pass and bammo, there I would be, flying up in the air and landing in the ditch (or worse). Scott May told me about how Meridian has a bike lane -on the highway!. I called Meridian and the city office told me that TxDOT had done it. So now I've got a call in to TxDot locally to ask about this.

I haven't seen the bike path on the highway in Meridian. Oh, I've gone through there lots of times but I guess I never paid any attention.

Imagine that SH 144 had a sign that showed bicyclists and then had part of the shoulder marked off for bikes. I think it's big enough for that. Anyway, going to find out. I believe that, especially since this is already such a great tourist town, being able to get around via bicycle would only enhance the experience.

Mygnonne T suggested to me to look and see if there was any way to get from my dead end street over to some other subdivision with roads that go straight through. I think if I could figure out how to get down to where Paluxy and related streets are, that would be pretty safe.

On another note, I've been looking the last few days at things to put on the bicycle itself to make it more noticeable. I saw, when I was in Austin recently, a man on a bicycle who had a strobe light behind the seat. You really noticed him when he was peddling by. I don't plan to do any night riding but maybe evening and it seems to me that having a strobe taillight, some kind of really good headlight, maybe even a strobe, and a lighted ankle bracelet would be good. Ideas?

P.S. Decided to get  an amber Lightman taillight and then I saw these cool neon down low lights  Bet cars would see you coming with THESE on.

Here's a link to flickr pics- pretty cool. The site that sells them says that the problem with most lights (which are small anyway) is that they are straight ahead but these lights provide some area AROUND and OUT both sides under the bike.

More -I first found a DIY site for making cold cathode lights.

Then I found one for using LED strips. Looks to me that the latter method  would fit me better because I woudln't have to worry about breaking the lights.

I also phoned the local Texas sheriff's department to find out if there was anything that might be illegal before I put them on. Nope. The local deputy did say he wondered about me wanting to ride down 144. But, you know, there are NO good bike routes from the country into town that don't involve highways. And I think that having the LEDS as down lights, along with an amber flasher on the back and a headlight on the front ought to be good (I read one man's site where he said he uses a CAR headlight because, basically, that means business!)  Again, the whole point of me wanting to ride isn't only for the joy of it but to replace the car for trips of 5-6 miles which can be easily done on a bike.

RELATED. Okay this is rapidly becoming an edited entry for more stuff that is a litle unrelated. but I found a bicycle horn I want. WANT THIS! Airzound.

Be Still my hEart. Monkeylectric!  with pics of the patterns

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