Anyone want to go to DC on Saturday?

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mattre
Participant
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I posted to craigslist rideshare, but so far only have a few “maybes”. I’ve got a minivan that can carry six passengers (in addition to me), five comfortably. I’m hoping to find at least four people to come along to help share the cost of gas.

Any bike-pghers want to go and need a ride? I’ve got a rack that can carry two bikes if anyone wants to ride around there.

Matt


Lolly
Participant
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What time are you leaving to go or come back?


mattre
Participant
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Leaving early in the morning (planning on no later than 7am departure from somewhere near downtown) and coming back in the evening. I’m open to playing the return time by ear a little bit, but I also don’t want to be getting back to Pittsburgh insanely late.

I’m working out logistics with the people who are interested this afternoon…if you have a preference, speak up.


Lolly
Participant
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Oh! Can’t go, just found out one of my old DC roommates is coming to town today. Have fun!


stefb
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I hope you left way before 7am. I had friends driving from Baltimore and they aborted the trip cause traffic was so bad. We took the blue line metro (I think) at 9am and got to the mall a bit before 10am and it was starting to get packed.


Marko82
Participant
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Woohoo for DC rally! The trail system down there is awesome. We were taking the old dominion trail in from about ten miles out and actually got lost on another trail since there’s so many to choose. Ended up doing a lap past Reagan airport just for fun. Stew, I ran into a guy on a uni with 36 inch wheel, he said he does about a 20 mile commute on it daily. He even had a speedometer on it. Very cool guy. There was like a bazillion people there – no fights, no hassles, just a good time.


Erica
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Noah Mustion
Participant
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Reagan airport

Ahem… you mean National Airport… :)

I hope you pulled off at rocky point and took some time to watch planes take off and land right above your head. Very fun


sloaps
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Sooooo much fun. I forgot my bike locks and shoes, so I had to take the Metro in from Bethesda. Doing the Wave was the highlight for me.

I showed up early and got into East Park where the stage was. Getting there by bike would have been pretty easy with the bike lanes, signals and other bike infrastructure in the District, but there was nowhere to park other than street signs and old parking meters. When leaving the mall, the rush of pedestrians were blocking motor traffic on the streets for several blocks away from the Mall. I had to wait for a fourth train on the Red line

at Metro Central to head out – luckily I was standing where the doors were opening or else I’d probably still be there waiting for an outbound train. AND, in that packed train of strangers we all sang Happy Birthday to some lady. We all mumbled when we got to her name in the song, because no one knew.

@marko82 how was the bike trip outbound?

Rally for Sanity


Marko82
Participant
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Bike trip outbound was fine. I expected the bridges and trails to be “bumper to bumper” or the biking equivalent but it went real smooth. We also paid a little bit more attention to the way-finding signs so no getting lost. There were a few very small hills that didn’t even merit a gear change (for me) but my non-biking buddy was swearing a little at them – good naturedly of course.

A few comments about the trails: They seamed to be wonderful at point A to point B travel or a relaxing cruse, but they are probably not what you would want to ride on if you were trying to get in a fast workout. The trail is kinda narrowish in most places and crosses roads often with lots of walkers and joggers, and the use of shared sidewalks is frequent. Going above 12 MPH or so would not be safe most of the time. At all of the street crossings the bike-trail users have a stop sign and an additional ‘it’s the law!’ or some such sign. Every crossing also has a corresponding stop-for-pedestrians-in-crosswalk sign for the motorists. And absolutely every car stopped, even when we were not quite up to the intersection yet. I found this very disorienting at first. I would go both feet down stop because that’s what I thought was expected. Then the drivers would give me a “what did you stop for?” look and wave me through. This happened four or five times. Then we started to follow a few other cyclists and noticed that the bikers would just slow down, make eye contact with the driver, and then just keep going usually with a friendly wave, knowing that the car would stop. This seems to work for them, but I’m sure many traffic tickets are required to get such good compliance from the drivers. Of course the flip side is that if you are in the crosswalk as the traffic light changes against you, the cars gun right for you. Every light has one of those countdown “walk” lights that lets you know how many seconds you have left until the light changes. So I guess if you are on a bike in the intersection as the light changes it’s their way of evening the playing field. All in all it seems to work well and it would definitely pass the “would you let your 10 year old bike there” test.


stefb
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i am jealous of all of the bike trails and rental bikes. noticed a lot more unhelmeted riders. i have cousins who live in springfield. one of getting into bicycling and it old her i envy her and her city.


Noah Mustion
Participant
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don’t ever envy springfield VA or anyone who lives there.


Lolly
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@Marko, did you happen to find out if the guy on the unicycle was named Ben? Unicycle Ben used to ride to my house for parties from the suburbs.


Marko82
Participant
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Lolly, I don’t remember his name, but here’s a pic :)


Mick
Participant
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Wow! That unicycle definately could help keep fear alive!

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