Once you mastered the daily bicycle commute or found a group that does recreational rides to places and at a pace you enjoy, you might be ready to roll onto new adventures. There are lots of options for cycling tourism, from fully supported with a tour operator, hiring someone to make all the arrangements so you can ride on your own, or self-planned and/or self-supported, either with camping or stays in hotels and bed and breakfasts. It is s always fun to her about trips others have made so you can decide if you want to duplicate it. At the Nov. 19 Evanston Bicycle Club meeting we heard about two types of trips, one relatively near and another farther.
In 2014 Chicago was declared the second best city for biking, and in 2018 it dropped to number 6. Big changes in 4 years, so imagine what changes occurred in Chicago cycling from the turn of the last century to today! According to Chris McAuliffe, author of Cycling in Chicago, who spoke at the Nov. 13 meeting at Earth Rider, Chicago was a cycling powerhouse at the end of the 19th century.
First there was the manufacturing. More than two-thirds of all bikes manufactured in the United States were made in Chicago. It's prominence was due to its Midwest location, railroads, 2,000 miles of paved roads, a industrial and manufacturing base including over 90 bicycle manufacturers, and the entrepreneurial spirit rising from the rebuilding of the city following the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.
With the days getting shorter there is less time for cycling outside when it is not dark. But the definition of “darkness” includes more than the nighttime hours—-it is when visibility is limited. That means if there is fog, overcast skies, or heavy rain it is considered darkness under the law. So even if your commute is only between sunrise and sunset, you should seriously have a lighting system on your bicycle.
Sharon Kaminecki comments on adventures in bicycling and other stories