November 2015

Reviewed: Bontrager Flare R

Here’s a nice review of Bontrager’s Flare R from VeloNews

Price: $60
Weight: 35 grams
We like: Crazy bright for day or night use, easy mount bracket
We don’t like: Weatherproofing in cold temperatures is not up to par

The Bontrager Flare R, a massively bright rear light, can dazzle even at high noon, with a purported daytime visibility of two kilometers and eye-catching blink patterns. It might not survive a snowstorm, though.

The sense of security that the Flare R provides, even in the middle of the day, is fantastic. It is truly the brightest rear light that VeloNews has ever tested, so bright that your riding partners might ask you to turn it off during pace line riding, even in the middle of the day. 270-degree visibility means that cars can see you coming from side streets. Bontrager is pushing the Flare R as a light to be used any time you ride, day or night, and we love that idea almost as much as we love not getting hit by cars.

On full beam, a full charge lasts just over four hours, or just under six hours on daytime blink mode. Nighttime blink mode provides almost a full day of run time — 23 hours. That’s impressive for a 35-gram unit that charges in about 2.5 hours with a micro-USB cable. A single, large button on the top turns the light on and off and cycles between modes.

The Flare R comes with two mount brackets, one stretchy rubber contraption that easily mounts to most seatposts (long, aero seatposts might be an issue) and another clip to attach the light to clothing. Both are solid and dependable.

Now, the downside. We killed two Flare R units in very cold, very wet conditions. Summer rainstorms were never a problem — perhaps the rubber sealing is more effective when it’s warm and supple. Both Flare Rs died after the same cold, wet ride in an incoming snowstorm, as temperatures dropped to around 30 and heavy spray from the rear tire shot up at the rubber-covered USB port.

Prior to this one (rather large) issue, the Flare R performed admirably for more than six months, and two other units in for testing are still going strong. Few lights can get a driver’s attention in the middle of the day like the Flare R.


Who’s To Blame as Cyclist Collides with Pedestrian?

Footage has come to light of a collision between a cyclist and pedestrian in South London, and the incident has sparked a debate as to who’s at fault.

This video was shot on the dashcam of a bystanding vehicle that captures the moment the rider comes into contact with the crossing pedestrian.


Cycle Off Thanksgiving Dinner

The average American consumes about 4,500 calories at his or her Thanksgiving dinner. That’s right, 4,500 calories. That’s more than twice your requirement for a full day. Now, short of climbing Mt. Rainier or running a marathon, there’s no way you’re going to burn off nearly 5,000 calories but you can make a sizeable dent by exercising.

Riding your bike fast, say 16 miles an hour for 3 hours would burn off roughly 2,900 of those extra K-Cals. If you skipped breakfast and ate only your Thanksgiving meal, that little bike ride would put you right in the ballpark for the number of calories you should have for the day: 2,000.

– See more at:

5 Most Expensive Bikes In The World

For those with extra disposable income, here are some insanely expensive bikes.

Some Great Gifts Under $100

Top Socks

Just a decade ago, cycling purists were protesting the move toward black socks. And now? There’s no easier way to add style to your ride than wrapping your ankles with chevron stripes, ideally executed in contrasting colors. We’ve found the six-inch cuff to be just the right billboard for your fashion statement. (Oh, and, you know, look for Lycra-nylon compression blends and wicking knits and all that stuff.)


Handlebar Mustache

Mad Alchemy

The Athletic



Service Course Wash Kit


The Service Course Wash Kit provides an all-in-one system for quick and painless washes so you can get back to riding your bike and getting it dirty all over again. The Wash Kit’s Tampico-bristled brushes are made with natural fibers that won’t smear grease and grit all over your bike.


HipLok D


Bike thieves beware. The Hiplok D isn’t just another candy-from-a-baby lock that leaves bikes vulnerable outside the office or bar. This 1,000-gram, hardened steel lock is rated “high risk” for sketchy alleys or dark city streets. With clips on the back, the Hiplok D hooks onto your belt for a convenient, hands-free transport.




$28 (pack of three)

It’s the perfect white elephant gift for your cycling holiday party. Turbine’s sports breathing technology is sure to get some laughs, and hey, it might just make you faster next season. Out-performing nasal strips, the Turbine, which is inserted into the nose, helps open each nostril for a claimed 38 percent increase of airflow. In all fairness, Chris Froome did wear one in the 2015 Tour. Which he won.


Nutcase Helluva Houndstooth Helmet


Houndstooth. On a helmet. Enough said.


Club Ride New West jersey

Leave the superhero Lycra at home and shred your happy-hour spin after work in Club Ride’s New West jersey. It’s lightweight with a comfortable cut for easy spins and sprints to the bar. The underarm and side panel mesh vents provide plenty of airflow to keep things dry so an après beer doesn’t mean changing shirts in the parking lot.


Thanks to VeloNews 


Upcoming Thanksgiving Day Rides has put together a list of some of SoCal’s favorite Turkey Day Rides that will help you burn some extra calories and enjoy the day on the bike with your cycling friends.

Mount Baldy to San Dimas Mountain Bike Ride – The ride starts at the Cow Canyon Saddle (near where Glendora Ridge Road and Baldy Road meet) at 8 am, then gathers at another saddle 2 miles up for a brief Thanksgiving celebration.  The ride then “flys” down the Sunset Ridge and regroups at the bottom, at the top of Wheeler in San Dimas. Some riders ride up the Sunset Ridge trail from the top of Wheeler or ride up Mt. Baldy Road and meet up there,  but most drive up, and are picked up at the bottom.

Velo Allegro Ride – The Velo Allegro Ride rides from Long Beach to Whittier, then screams back to Long Beach in long time tradition! The ride starts at 7:30 at the Marina parking lot near PCH and 2nd Street in Long Beach. The ride returns at approximately 11:30 am.

7th Annual M*G*E Racing/SDBC Turkey Ride & Hunt – The San Diego Bicycle Club and Ralph Elliott, organize the 62nd Annual M*G*E Racing/SDBC Turkey Ride & Hunt to Elfin Forest on Thanksgiving Day; 60 miles, No fee, No patch, No sag, just a good “old fashion fun ride”- and a great way to get ready to pig- out later in the day! The ride starts at 8:30am sharp from the La Jolla Village Square, UC Cyclery, Nobel Dr. off the I-5, and goes up the coast highway to La Costa, thru Elfin Forest, into Escondido, and back over Lake Hoges, RB, Poway, and Miramar Rd to Finish at UC Cyclery.  Please ride safely, obey all traffic laws and never more than “two on a breast!” The object is to hunt turkeys, not be one!

Rock ‘N Road Cyclery’s Annual Thanksgiving Day Mountain Bike Ride – Ride starts at 7:30am at the Modjeska Bird Sanctuary. Ride at your own pace 9 miles up the Harding Truck Trail and back down. Group photo at 9 am at the top of Four Corners.

Velo Club LaGrange’s Thanksgiving Day Ride for Meals On Wheels of West LA – Now in its 14th year, the Thanksgiving Day Ride is a La Grange tradition. It is a great ride, as well as an opportunity to make a significant contribution to the community. In years past, they raised $3,000 for Meals on Wheels of West Los Angeles, which provides home-delivered meals to the disabled, elderly and ill residents of our community who are unable to prepare or obtain adequate meals. The start is in Brentwood, but you can join the group along the route. Ride info >

Thanks to

The League’s five “Rules of the Road”

The League’s five “Rules of the Road” are the core of the Smart Cycling program and will prepare you for a safe and fun bike commute no matter where you are riding.

Your safety and image of bicyclists depend on you. You have the same rights and duties as drivers. Obey traffic signals and stop signs. Ride with traffic; use the rightmost lane headed in the direction you are going.

Make your intentions clear to everyone on the road. Ride in a straight line and don’t swerve between parked cars. Signal turns, and check behind you well before turning or changing lanes.

Ride where people can see you and wear bright clothing. Use a front white light, red rear light and reflectors when visibility is poor. Make eye contact with others and don’t ride on sidewalks.

Anticipate what drivers, pedestrians, and other people on bikes will do next. Watch for turning vehicles and ride outside the door zone of parked cars. Look out for debris, potholes, and other road hazards. Cross railroad tracks at right angles.

Check that your tires have sufficient air, brakes are working, chain runs smoothly, and quick release levers are closed. Carry tools and supplies that are appropriate for your ride. Wear a helmet.

Five Great Winter Gloves

The best gloves are sophisticated pieces of equipment, made from waterproof fabrics that keep precipitation from chilling your skin; windstopper fabrics to help maintain dexterity when the wind picks up; breathable fabrics that ensure your own sweat doesn’t work against you; long cuffs at the wrist for layering efficiency; and palm construction that addresses the needs of the cyclist, with strategically placed padding and reinforcement.

Endura Windchill Glove

Assos bonkaGlove_evo7

Rapha Winter Gloves

Louis Garneau Proof

Gore Road Gloves GTX

Read full reviews from VeloNews here

Top 10 Facts You Never Knew About Cycling

Via the Global Cycling Network

Remember – 3 feet when passing.

This playful video from the Santa Rosa Street Smarts Program is a good reminder to give bicyclists 3 feet of space when passing them on the road. It’s not only the right thing to do and it’s also the law.