Author: Tom Babin Page 1 of 16
Tom is an award-winning author and journalist who has written about cycling for years. He is the author of Frostbike: The Joy, Pain and Numbness of Winter Cycling, a bestselling exploration of getting around on two wheels throughout the year. He has delivered speeches about cycling around the world, and is often in the media addressing issues related to cycling. For several years, he wrote the Pedal blog for the Calgary Herald. He lives in Calgary.
There’s a route in my city that I’ve hated for years. It’s bad to drive on. It’s bad to ride a bike on. It’s bad to walk on. But I never could really put my finger on why it was so loathsome until I read the new @Strong Towns book Confessions of a Recovering Engineer: Transportation for a Strong Town by Chuck Marohn. Now I know why: This route is a stroad. So I decided to go a bicycle adventure all along the worst stroad in my city to really get to the heart of its awfulness.
A few weeks ago, I made a video about mistakes that newbie winter cyclists make. But the things we can do individually is only part of the equation. Of even more importance to winter cycling is the things our cities can do to make winter cycling work. Unfortunately, cities don’t always get it right. So after exploring winter cycling for years, here are some of the mistakes that I’ve seen cities make.
Riding a bike through winter can be a challenge, but there’s no need to miss out on the pleasures and benefits of riding in winter. So, after doing it badly for years, I’ve compiled a list of mistakes that I (and some other people) have made over the years with the hopes of helping you avoid these rookie missteps.
A viewer emailed recently with a question I had long pondered but never actioned: Is listening to music on a bike a good thing? If so, how? I have never worn headphones while riding, always assuming that it was terribly unsafe to plug your ears while riding city streets, so I had no answer. So in this video, I set out to answer the question.
If your city is like mine, there have been many initiatives over the years to improve its bike-friendliness, from painted bike lanes to pathways to separated bike lanes. But if you’re city is really like mine then many of those routes remain islands unto themselves, disconnected from each other and untethered to a more comprehensive plan intended to help cyclists really get around the city. So after exploring these disconnections, I have a theory that there are four different types of disconnections that can be easily fixed to make our cities more bike-friendly.