Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Totally Tarantula Tuesday: Rules for Riding the Capital Crescent Trail

I switched my bike from stationary to regular style on Saturday and rode up the trail to Friendship Heights. This ride should have only taken about 20 minutes and been relatively safe, instead it took about 45 and was frought with peril. The duration of the trip was extended because I have not made as much use of my bike during the winter months as I would have liked. The peril of the trip is due in large part to my foolish lack of proper garments and a rather complete disregard for the implied/suggested rules of the road by my fellow bikers, skaters and pedestrians. In the hopes that I may contribute to the safe enjoyment of the Capital Crescent Trail, I post the following list of rules for trailriding.

1. Always stay on the right side of the trail. Never cross the center line unless you are passing.
2. Always call out to indicate that you are passing another traveller. The use of a bell is encouraged.
3. Never pass when there is oncoming traffic, regardless of whether it is a bicycle or pedestrian.
4. Keep your headlight pointed at the ground in front of you, similar to a car's headlights. DO NOT SHINE IT DIRECTLY AT OTHER RIDERS. This will momentarily blind them at night.
5. Red lights may only be used as tail lights, never as head lights. This is also the law in Maryland. Rollerbladers and pedestrians are also encouraged to wear red lights on their backs at night.
6. Wear a helmet. There are many opportunities to build up an impressive speed on the trail and it is easily possible to be involved in a crash with a combined speed over 40 miles an hour. Accidents at speeds like this are dangerous enough with a helmet, let's leave serious brain trauma out of it.
7. Always walk single file on the trail. Two people walking abreast will occupy the entire side of the trail.
8. Shouting at people as you fly by them on a bicycle is NOT an effective way to change behavior.
8. Keep all pets on a short leash, be they canine, feline, avian or arachnid.
9. Clean up after all pets.
10. Please be courteous and remember that the trail exists for the enjoyment of all.

If anyone else has any serious suggestions, please leave them in the comments section.


Jennifer said...

Were you wearing a cup?? That nether region is one of the first possible things to suffer trauma during a bike/canine/pedestrian mishap!

I don't think you can put red lights on it though...

Remember, every day is wang safety day.

Chuckles said...

True, but I think a cup would interfere with proper operation of a bicycle.

I almost ran over a 6 year old kid because he was riding out on his left(my side) and would not move over. I had to dodge to avoid him and almost ran into a tree. If I had hit him, the kid would have needed serious hospitalization. He was coming down a bug hill and I was booking along at at least 20 mph so the combined momentum would have resulted in a bad accident.

Adorable Girlfriend said...

Bring lots of paper and pens to give out your number to AG!

I hate the bell shit. I always prefer, "On your left!"

For UC: Bring lots of reading for waiting in the car for AG.

fish said...

True, but I think a cup would interfere with proper operation of a bicycle.

Chuckles has a 3 pedaled bicycle.

Chuckles said...

Haha, fish.

Brando said...

LOL at fish. Chuckles changes gears with a wangshift.

I would like to have one of those cartoon horns that goes A-ROO-GA!

Chuckles said...

Either that or a horn that played La Cucaracha.

teh l4m3 said...

And so the comments remind us of #11: If you're sharing said trail with Jeff Gannon or Mark Foley, pedal like hell!

Chuckles said...

Yes indeed.

Poterhouse said...

#12 Wear clothing. Nude and/or nekid use of the trail is just disgusting.*

*There are exceptional individuals that would not be disgusting in the nude, but since there are so very few of them. This rule applies to all.

NotCarrie said...

I hate to drive by people on bikes. Scares the crap out of me...I'm anti-bike, I think. Unless you're away from the road.