Bike to work day wraps up
“Bike to work day” was hailed as a success despite the rain by the dozen people who took a rest from pedaling Friday evening outside the Kelly Bike Company store in Nevada City.
Janelle Black, a member of the Association for People-Powered Transportation who helped to coordinate the event in Nevada County, said this year’s biking day was definitely “bigger” than it had ever been before, with one cyclist riding all the way from Auburn for the barbecue outside of Kelly’s.
Alan Stahler, another local resident at the celebration, said he rides his bike every day, whether it’s a quarter-mile or 8 miles he needs to travel to teach lessons in math, science or English.
Darwin Leek, a local chiropractor who is also involved with local biking groups, said he frequently rides his bike from Allison Ranch Road to work at Kenwood estates. The route usually takes 45 minutes, “depending how feisty I feel coming up that hill on Wolf Creek,” he said.
Biking is a good way to exercise and lose weight, said Leek, especially for people who have knee problems.
With current gas prices, Leek estimates that he has been saving $50 per week by riding his bike to work.
Black rides her bike to work every day.
She said she likes biking because of the lack of pollution and also the “physical and mental strength” it brings, and the “freedom of not being tied down to this huge vehicle.”
Repairing potholes and paving shoulders would certainly improve people’s ability to bike around the area, Black said, adding that her bicycling group works with residents to overcome concerns about cycling in traffic and in the area’s hilly terrain.
Dan Landon, director of the Nevada County Transportation Commission, who said he wasn’t riding his bike to work Friday because it needed repairs, said the county had submitted a grant application to improve biking opportunities in the area. Plans include paving shoulders and updating bicycle and non-motorized trails, he said.
The application seems to have gotten lost in a “black hole” of government agencies, Landon said, delaying, as he wrote in an e-mail, “opportunities for Nevada County citizens to use cycling as an alternative transportation mode and to enjoy the energy savings, environmental benefits, and health advantages of cycling.”
To reach staff writer Josh Singer, e-mail joshs@theunion .com or call 477-4234.
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