Safety

This is what bike maps should look like

From Velonews.com

 

Most bike maps are too complicated.

This is not because I am a simpleton, I like to think. It’s because all those curves and corners and superfluous details just get in the way of the goal, which is figuring out where to ride, how to ride there, and how hard it will be.

There is a solution. A new bike map, the one you see above, is not too complicated.

Graphic designer Zach Lee’s aptly named Boulder Bike Map borrows from subway schematics and ski resort maps to present Boulder, Colorado’s extensive road (and groad) rides in a manner that is simultaneously detailed and wonderfully simple.

Lee pared down the mass of information found on traditional road or trail maps using the well-established design language of Harry Beck’s original London Tube map. He then added cycling-specific difficulty ratings for each road using the color-coding of ski resort maps. Green is easy, blue is moderate, black is nasty. Extremely nasty climbs (the double black ski equivalent) are red because, as Nigel Tufnel taught us, a black line can be none more black than it already is.

The result is a map that provides the essentials — where does the road go? What does it connect to? How hard is it to ride? Is there a coffee shop at the end? — without crushing riders beneath a mountain of unnecessary information, like the frequency and radius of each corner between here and Timbuktu.

It’s what all bike maps should look like. It’s oriented using the predominant landmarks of a given locale — in Boulder’s case, the easily spotted Rocky Mountains — and is scaled roughly to the time it’s going to take a rider to get somewhere. That means that a big climb gets a longer line and more space than a flat road of the same distance.

“Since I was a young graphic designer, I was always inspired by transport maps, I loved them,” Lee said. “Beck’s maps, Massimo Vignelli’s of the New York subway; this whole project started when I realized that we can find a way to share local route knowledge in way that’s very simple and digestible.”
Read more at http://velonews.competitor.com/2016/09/news/this-is-what-bike-maps-should-look-like_419994#v5TpqWKV7kZQZXlx.99

10-point maintenance check for your road bike

Good advice from bikeradar.com

The bits that many people overlook

Despite road bikes being a relatively simple mechanical device, many cyclists focus on just one or two areas when it comes to maintenance check. They might be fastidious about keeping their bike clean and well lubed, or making sure their gears and brakes work properly, but many other maintenance tasks are often abandoned until something breaks or fails.

 

Headset

Even seemingly well-maintained bikes often hide spoiled headset bearings. They sit inside your head tube and are likely to suffer the torture test of your sweat dripping with every hot day of riding, and are likely to corrode.

To prevent this, remove your stem and drop the fork out of the frame. This is easiest with the bike on the ground. Newer frames will have sealed bearings, which just need a thin coat of grease on the surfaces. Put it all back together and torque to spec.

If you’ve let it go too far and the bearings feel rough, you must now try to source the right replacement headset bearing (that’s a whole different article).

This is also a perfect time to inspect your fork steerer for any signs of stress or damage. Be sure to check close to where the bearing races contact and where the stem clamps.

 

Gear cables

Gear cables can get kinked and fray, leaving you on the road without shifting. This is especially true for older 9- and 10-speed Shimano groups where the gear cable is external. These cables are constantly bent in the shifter and become weak over time.

Assuming you have external cable routing (likely given the age of these shifters), shift the relevant derailleur onto the largest cog. Now, with the chain holding the derailleur in this position, stop moving the cranks and click the shifter all the way down the opposite way — this will release all tension from the cable and allow you to pull it free from its guides. Poke the cable out of the shifter and check for any signs of fraying or kinks — replace if dubious.

If there is no kink to be found, drip some dry chain lube on that inner cable and work it through the housing segments.

 

Pedals

So many cyclists will repair or service nearly everything yet ignore their pedals — even moving old, clapped-out pedals across to a brand new bike.

Watch for loosening bearings and of course worn cleats. Many pedals can be tightened or serviced to keep them spinning smoothly, but a worn cleat surface on the pedal body cannot be fixed, and the off-axis movement this causes can lead to knee pain and other issues. For example, older Look Keo pedals without a metal contact surface would wear in this manner.

 

 

Freehubs

Despite the common belief that a good freewheeling noise is a sign of quality, most freehubs shouldn’t sound like a Harley. If your hub has gotten noisier over time, it’s likely that it’s dry or dirty and needs some attention.

With the right instructions and tools (usually Allen keys and/or cone spanners, and sometimes a bench vice) this isn’t a hard or long job. Just be sure to read up on the process for your hub before starting, and be careful not to drop small parts.

Many quality brands will specify their own lubes. To ensure you don’t get chain droop or drops, it’s usually best to stick with the recommended lube. If in doubt, go with a thin grease or thick oil, standard grease will often cause drag and sticking.

 

Chain

Keeping your chain clean and well lubed is certainly crucial, but don’t forget to measure for wear every so often.

To give an extreme example, many pro teams replace their chains every 1,000km, so that over three seasons they very rarely wear out cassettes or chainrings. Of course it doesn’t make sense for everyday riders to change their chains this often, but it does give you an idea that if you replace your chain often enough, you’ll get plenty of life out of the rest of your drivetrain.

There are plenty of chain checkers on the market and they all work in roughly the same way, providing a rough guide on when to replace a chain. Personally, I use either a Park CC-3.2 or a Feedback Sports Digital Chain Gauge (it’s highly accurate but quite expensive).

 

 

Derailleur hanger

It’s easy to bend the soft alloy derailleur hangers on modern road bikes and so, if your shifting is not perfect, check whether your derailleur hanger is straight.

If your bike ever falls derailleur-side down (whether you’re on it or not at the time), you should always check that the derailleur hasn’t been hit or knocked out of line. Otherwise you could be pulling the chain out of your spokes before you know it.

If you’re keen to do it yourself, the Park Tool DAG-2 is one of the most affordable and trusted hanger tools on the market. Brands such as X-Tool and LifeLine make cheaper versions too.

 

Tires

Checking your tires between rides may pre-empt the dreaded roadside puncture.

Look for cuts or tears in the tread and sidewalls. If your tire is getting flat in the center, then it’s probably worn. Any protruding glass or wire must be removed, and if the tire is punctured through the casing, consider replacing it.

Personally, I have a maximum three flats per tire rule; after that the tire gets chucked.

 

Brake pads

Brake pads have wear indicators, so it’s easy to see if they have life left in them, but are they wearing evenly and still contacting the rim square?

If not, you can use a coarse file to get a little more life out of unevenly worn pads. Once you’ve squared them off, readjust the pads so that they contact the rim correctly.

On a similar note, your levers should have a light feel and not need excessive force to pull the brake. If they do, consider replacing your brake cables and giving the caliper a service.

 

Loose and rattling parts

Rattles and creaks can be avoided and while some can be a pain to find, most of the time it’s the simplest of things causing them.

To start, check for loose bottle cage bolts and jingling items in your saddle bag. It’s astonishing how often bikes have a slightly loose bottle cage.

Other common causes of rattling are loose cassettes, hubs or headsets. Rattling shifters is another, but can be harder to fix depending on the model, make or issue.

Chainring bolts can work themselves loose and easily disguise themselves as a creaking bottom bracket or pedal.

Tools for chainring bolts vary. Some brands need a 6mm and/or 5mm hex wrench, others now use Torx-30 and need a chainring bolt tool on the back — the Park Tool CNW-2 is a cheap and effective option.

 

 

Bar tape

Too many cyclists ride with ripped, torn or old and compressed bar tape. It’s cheap to replace and, like new tires, brings new life to any bike.

Another important reason to replace your bar tape occasionally is it gives you a chance to safety check your handlebar for cracks or corrosion.

Before you replace the tape, consider doing new cables too — they are tucked beneath it and replacing the bar tape is just as time-consuming as replacing cable.

 

Good advice from bikeradar.com

Be Careful Out There! Mountain bike pedal sparks forest fire

California fire ignited by a mountain bike pedal striking a rock, investigation claims.

Fire investigators have concluded that sparks from a mountain bike pedal striking a rock caused a recent fire in a US National Forest that spans parts of California and Nevada.

 

A statement posted Wednesday on the Inyo National Forest Facebook page claimed that an investigation determined the cause of the blaze to be a pedal strike.

“The cause of the Rock Creek fire that started on August 5th has been determined. Investigators have concluded that the fire was started from a bicycle pedal strike to a rock. Conclusive evidence was found in the fire origin area that was on the Lower Rock Creek mountain bike trail. A fire ignition from this type of trigger is a testament to how dry the area is right now. All residents and visitors are asked to be extremely careful with anything that may cause a fire while you are out in the forest,” the post read.

Inyo National Forest spans portions of eastern California and western Nevada. Extremely dry summer conditions have increased the risk of forest fire. The Rock Creek fire burned approximately 122 acres before it was suppressed.

Speaking on behalf of the Inyo National Forest, fire prevention technician Kirstie Butler told BikeRadar that, while the exact cause of many forest fires go unresolved, the evidence in this instance was definitive.

“All the holes in the Swiss cheese lined up perfectly,” Butler said.

Investigators traced the source of the Rock Creek fire back to a single rock on a trail surrounded by cheatgrass. Cheatgrass is an invasive species in the western United States that is quick to grow back after fires. It dries out in summer, creating a fuel source for subsequent blazes.

The day the fire started, temperatures were high, winds were moderate and humidity levels were in the single-digits — ideal conditions for wildfires.

Marks on the rock and bits of metal indicated that a spark from a pedal strike ignited the cheatgrass.

“It really doesn’t take much for cheatgrass to ignite. Anything could start a fire in conditions like this. It would have been like striking a flint,” Butler noted.

According to Butler, while this may seem like an incredibly unlikely chain of events, the US Forest Service has evidence that this has happened before. She notes that sparks from chainsaws and lawn mowers are frequent causes of wildfires. To date, there have been 4,084 wildfires in California, burning a total of 150,498 acres in 2016.

Butler, who is a mountain biker and has frequently ridden the Lower Rock Creek Trail, doesn’t believe the incident will result in trail closures to mountain bikers, nor does she view mountain bikers as more of a fire hazard than any other trail user group.

“This is not about pointing fingers; we know it wasn’t done maliciously. We understand that mountain biking is a popular activity and we’re not trying to say that this is a reason to stop. It’s just something to be aware of,” said Butler.

 

Read more at bikeradar.com

5 Myths About Bicycling

From the ChicagoTribune.com

 

Each year, 100 million Americans jump on a bicycle at least once, especially when the weather gets warm. Some of these pedalers are recreational riders; others rely on their bikes for transportation to and from work. In the past few years, cities have rushed to accommodate such travelers: Scores of bike lanes and bike-share programs have popped up. But there are still a lot of misconceptions about getting around on two wheels. As the number of cyclists rises, it’s important to keep in mind some truths about who they are, how they behave and what impact they have on the space around us.

 

1. Mandating helmet use is the best way to keep riders safe.

There’s no doubt about it: Helmets save lives. Studies show they reduce the risk of cyclist head injury by 85 percent. Recently, bike advocates such as Greg Kaplan have argued that riding without a helmet should be illegal. “Wearing a helmet while riding a bike is analogous to wearing a seatbelt while driving,” he wrote in Bicycling magazine.

In truth, there are better ways to keep cyclists safe. And legislating helmet use can distract from the many policy interventions that would actually help more. Helmets don’t prevent crashes, and people can be badly hurt in a collision with a moving vehicle, whether or not their heads are protected. Building dedicated infrastructure to keep bikes away from cars is a more effective way to save lives.

Here’s proof: Most European cities don’t require riders to wear helmets. Yet in those cities, there are fewer cyclist deaths and injuries per capita than in the United States. Experts say that’s because of their infrastructure. And studies show that when drivers see cyclists in helmets, they behave more recklessly, driving closer to pedalers and increasing the possibility of accidents.

Mandating helmet use also tends to reduce overall ridership, since some people would rather skip bicycling altogether than risk punishment for not wearing a helmet. When that happens, bike density decreases and the presence of cyclists is less apparent, which leaves those who remain more vulnerable.

 

2. Cyclists break more traffic laws than drivers do.

When confronted with cycling safety proposals, lawmakers across the country have claimed that bicyclists don’t deserve new laws until they follow existing ones. When the Virginia Bicycling Federation was trying to get a new passing law enacted, it said it was told that “bicyclists are often lawbreakers, unworthy of any added protection under the law.” Others echo this claim: The Spectator, a British magazine, called cyclists “a menace to society.”

Most cyclists do say they’ve rolled through a red light once in a while, if the street was clear of oncoming cars, or have hopped on a sidewalk to avoid a crowded road. These acts are illegal in many cities. And occasionally, bikers act unpredictably and irresponsibly, putting themselves and drivers in danger.

But let’s put those bad acts in perspective: According to Wesley Marshall, a University of Colorado engineering professor who surveyed more than 17,000 cyclists and drivers, drivers copped to breaking the rules at a slightly higher rate than bikers. It’s the rare driver who never speeds, after all. And sometimes, drivers think cyclists are breaking the law when they’re really not – it’s usually legal to take up a whole lane, for example, rather than staying on the right side of the road.

 

3. If more people rode bikes, there’d be noticeably less traffic and pollution.

A lot of bicycle evangelists see cycling as the fix for all kinds of urban problems, from congestion to smog. Forbes wondered whether bringing back bicycles could fix Beijing’s traffic woes. Bicycling magazine says cyclists could be a “huge part” of combating global warming. “How much can bicycling help fight climate change?” Streetsblog asks. “A lot, if cities try.”

Sure, if everyone gave up their cars tomorrow, the health of our cities and our climate would improve. But this is wishful thinking. Just 1 percent of Americans regularly commute by bicycle. Even if that number doubled, cycling wouldn’t significantly cut smog and congestion. And for many people — families with small children, the millions who live 10 miles or more from their jobs, the elderly and the infirm — biking just isn’t a realistic possibility.

Even if significantly more people rode bikes, it probably wouldn’t make a serious dent in our traffic problems. Studies have shown that congestion increases in cities where there are more bike riders but no new bike lanes. As city planners have long realized, the only thing powerful enough to lure drivers out of their cars is a combination of robust bike infrastructure and a comprehensive transit system. Just look at the cities where the most people get to work using biking and transit: High shares of one mode tend to correspond with high shares of the other. Many cities simply don’t have anything like what it would take to meaningfully reduce car use.

 

4. Bicycling is mostly for the wealthy.

You probably know the stereotype of city cyclists: spandex-clad guys tooling around on bikes that cost more than your car. “Twenty-five years ago, they might have gone out to buy a Porsche or a supersport motorbike, now it’s a $5,100 carbon fiber bike,” marketing specialist Michael Oliver told Business Insider. Anthropologist Adonia Lugo explains that bicycling is often promoted as “an urban lifestyle. You don’t do it because it’s cheap and you need to get somewhere. It’s presented as an opportunity to be part of urban chic fashion.”

But in truth, the majority of cyclists are not the rich but the poor. Statistics consistently show that bicycling is equally prevalent among people of all income levels and may even be more common in the lowest-earning quartile. One PeopleForBikes study found that 40 percent of American adults who ride have incomes of less than $20,000. That makes sense. For distances slightly too far to walk, biking is often the fastest, cheapest way to get around, especially for people who can’t afford to buy and maintain cars. Unfortunately, the infrastructure has yet to catch up. People who make less than $20,000 a year say they’re less satisfied than others with the bike paths, lanes and trails in their neighborhoods.

 

5. Bike-sharing programs make roads less safe.

Whenever a U.S. city considers installing a bike-sharing program, people worry. When New York proposed its Citi Bike system, the Daily News warned of “hell on wheels” and suggested that it would be nearly impossible to keep pedalers safe. The city’s comptroller warned that the program would lead to more accident lawsuits against the city. This fear seems to make sense. People rent big, clunky bikes and ride them slowly around town, often without helmets, probably careening into stationary objects and causing pile-ups behind them. Right?

After a few years of collecting data on the systems that have sprouted in cities across the country, researchers have found this not to be true. According to a report released in March by the Mineta Transportation Institute at San Jose State University, there have been zero fatalities from bike-sharing programs in the United States since the first systems were established in 2010. They also have a lower non-fatal injury rate than bicycling generally, and researchers think that’s precisely because the bikes are so large and visible, and riders can’t pilot them as aggressively as conventional bikes.

In European cities, these systems make the rest of the cycling population safer as well, as they increase driver awareness, slow down traffic and increase pressure for safety-enhancing street infrastructure, such as protected bike lanes, for everyone to use.

From the ChicagoTribune.com

Bicycle Safety

Bicycling is one of the best ways to stay in shape, see the sights, save money on gas and reduce pollution. The benefits are well-known to cycling enthusiasts and local leaders nationwide who have created bike-friendly communities, complete with paths, special bicycle parking areas and other conveniences. National Bike Safety Month in May is just one way we celebrate our love to ride. (See more on that below.)

The Risks

Bicyclists must take extra precautions when they ride. They often share the road with vehicles, which creates a host of hazards, but injuries can happen even on a designated path.

Did you know in 2014, bicycles were associated with more injuries over all age groups than skateboards, trampolines, swimming pools and playground equipment combined? According to Injury Facts 2016, the statistical report on unintentional injuries created by the National Safety Council, 510,905 people were treated in emergency rooms in 2014 after being injured riding a bicycle. The only sport resulting in more injuries overall was basketball, at 522,817. Football was third, at 396,457.

According to Injury Facts, about 1,000 deaths resulted from cyclists colliding with motor vehicles in 2014. With about 80 million bike riders sharing the road with millions of motorized vehicles, the importance of safety precautions in traffic cannot be overstated.

Use Your Head, Protect Your Noggin

Cyclists who wear a helmet reduce their risk of head injury by an estimated 60% and brain injury by 58%. That statistic makes sense when you consider the first body part to fly forward in a collision is usually the head, and with nothing but skin and bone to protect the brain, the results can be fatal.

Helmets must meet federal safety standards and should fit securely. This National Highway Traffic Safety Administration video offers instruction on how to properly fit a helmet.

Follow These Rules to Keep Safe

 

  • Get acquainted with traffic laws; cyclists must follow the same rules as motorists
  • Know your bike’s capabilities
  • Ride single-file in the direction of traffic, and watch for opening car doors and other hazards
  • Use hand signals when turning and use extra care at intersections
  • Never hitch onto cars
  • Before entering traffic, stop and look left, right, left again and over your shoulder
  • Wear bright clothing and ride during the day
  • If night riding can’t be avoided, wear reflective clothing
  • Make sure the bike is equipped with reflectors on the rear, front, pedals and spokes
  • A horn or bell and a rear-view mirror, as well as a bright headlight, also is recommended

California Driver Handbook – Sharing the Road

Bicycles

Bicyclists are entitled to share the road with motor vehicles. Many people choose to travel by bicycle because it can alleviate traffic and reduce air pollution. Bicyclists are also required to obey traffic laws just like motorists. Bicyclist responsibilities include:

  • Obeying all traffic signs and traffic signal lights.
  • Riding in the same direction as traffic.
  • Signaling when changing lanes or turning.
  • Yielding to pedestrians.
  • Wearing a helmet (if under 18 years old).

Turns for bicyclists
Diagram showing how cyclists should enter and exit an intersection.
Intersections with special lanes
Diagram of an intersection with special bicycle lanes.

 

  • Allowing faster traffic to pass when safe.
  • Wearing the appropriate, reflective attire when it is dark.
  • Staying visible (e.g. never weave between parked vehicles).
  • Riding single file when riding with a group of bicyclists.
  • Riding as near to the right curb or edge of the roadway as possible—not on the sidewalk.
  • Making left and right turns in the same way drivers do, using the same turn lanes. If the bicyclist is traveling straight ahead, he or she should use a through traffic lane rather than ride next to the curb and block traffic making right turns.
  • Carrying ID.

Bicyclists shall not operate a bicycle on a roadway unless the bicycle is equipped with a brake which will enable the operator to make a one-wheel skid on dry, level, clean pavement.

During darkness, bicyclists should avoid wearing dark clothing and must have the following equipment:

  • A front lamp emitting a white light visible from a distance of 300 feet.
  • A rear red reflector or a solid or flashing red light with a built in reflector that is visible from a distance of 500 feet.
  • A white or yellow reflector on each pedal or on the bicyclist’s shoes or ankles visible from a distance of 200 feet.

Bicyclists have the right to operate on the road and may:

  • Lawfully be permitted to ride on certain sections of roadway in rural areas where there is no alternate route.
  • Move left to pass a parked or moving vehicle, bicycle, animal, or avoid debris or other hazards.
  • Choose to ride near the left curb or edge of a one-way street.

 

Bicycles In Travel Lanes

When passing a bicyclist in the travel lane, you should allow at least 3 feet between your vehicle and the bicyclist, unless doing so would cause a hazard. In these cases, slow down and pass the bicyclist when it is safe to do so.

 

Right                                  Wrong
Vehicle properly passing a bicyclist.                  Vehicle improperly passing a bicyclist.

Bicyclists may occupy the center of the lane when conditions such as a narrow lane or road hazard make it unsafe to ride in a position that may provide room for a vehicle to pass. With any slow-moving vehicle or bicycle, drivers should follow at a safe distance. When it is safe, the bicyclists should move to a position that allows vehicles to pass. Remember, bicyclists are entitled to share the road with other drivers.

Bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as vehicle and motorcycle drivers.

 

Respect the right-of-way of bicyclists because they are entitled to share the road with other drivers. Bicycles may be travelling faster than you think. Do not turn in front of a bicyclist unless there is enough time to safely make the turn. Here are some critical points for drivers and bicyclists to remember. Motor vehicle drivers must:

  • Always look carefully for bicyclists before opening doors next to moving traffic or before turning.
  • Allow bicyclists enough room to avoid colliding with vehicle doors that are opened into traffic.
  • Merge toward the curb or into the bike lane only when it is safe.
  • Not try to pass a bicyclist just before making a turn. Merge safely where it is allowed, then turn.
  • Not drive in a bike lane unless initiating a turn at an intersection or driveway, and not more than 200 feet in advance.
  • Make a visual check for bicyclists when changing lanes or entering traffic. Bicycles are small and may be hidden in a vehicle’s blind spot.
  • Be careful when approaching or passing a bicyclist on a two-lane highway or freeway.

 

Read more here.

Could your daily cycle commute be saving your life?

From road.cc

New research suggests we need an hours’ exercise per day to counter eight hours at a desk

The latest research into the perils of modern working practises, published in the Lancet(link is external) on Wednesday, suggests the current WHO recommendation of 150 minutes of exercise per week may not counter the risk of premature death caused by long hours of desk work.

However, the team of international experts behind the paper found this risk was eliminated among those who did at least an hour’s physical activity per day, and only sat for four hours per day.

Middle-aged cycle commuters typically 4-5kg lighter than those who drive to work

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Researchers analysed data from 16 previous studies encompassing more than one million people, and predominantly focused on those aged over 45 living in the USA, Western Europe and Australia.

In a two- to 18-year follow-up the risk of dying was 9.9 per cent for those with desk jobs that did little activity, compared with 6.8 per cent for those who sat less than four hours per day and were active for at least one hour per day.

While not everyone lives within cycling distance of work, or feels safe cycling on UK roads, there are other smaller things people can do to improve their health. Five minute breaks every hour are believed to be beneficial, as are replacing some of each evening’s rest time with some form of physical activity.

Standing desks(link is external) have been mooted as a solution to computer-based work, with recommendations people spend two hours standing at work, building up to an ideal four. Meanwhile staff at the journal that published the study, the Lancet, have introduced cycle desks.

Stay Cool on the Hottest Rides

From Bicycling.com

Your performance doesn’t have to dip as the temperatures rise. Here are 8 strategies for success.

As soon as you start pedaling, an internal battle begins between your skin and your cycling muscles. Your skin needs your blood to radiate heat, help you sweat and keep you cool. Your muscles need it to get the oxygen and nutrients they need to keep your cranks turning. When the outside temperatures rise, that battle becomes particularly fierce—but skin always wins when the threat of heat illness rises, taking juice away from your muscles. So basically, you’re going to slow down unless you can keep yourself cool.

The heat battle is all too familiar to James Herrera, CSCS, with Performance Driven Coaching and the Wounded Warrior Project who has trained and worked with athletes from the high dry heat of the Southwest to the muggy sweltering conditions in the Southeast. “The humidity thing is a new beast for me,” says Herrera, who is currently practicing in Jacksonville, Florida.

“I’ve had to employ all those strategies I’ve prescribed to people living in muggy climates for years. That being said, it’s not as bad as I thought once you acclimate and pay attention to the details,” he says. Here’s what he recommends.

Pre Cool your Jets

Drink something really cold before you head out—a slushy if possible. Research shows that athletes were able to run nearly 10 minutes longer in tests to exhaustion in the heat after drinking an iced slushy compared to when they drank just cold water. “I have a smoothie for breakfast, which works as a slushy since I make it in a blender with ice cubes and frozen fruit,” says Herrera. “I also have my Americano over ice, so I can get my caffeine fix without heating up my core.”

If you happen to have access to a cold pool or other body of water, taking a plunge before you roll out also will help you stay cool longer, but unless you’re doing a triathlon or live near a creek, that’s not always a practical option.

Read more at Bicycling.com

Want to ride your bike from Canoga Park to Griffith Park? You’re a step closer

For cyclists and Los Angeles River strollers, it’s been the missing link to the Los Angeles River path across the San Fernando Valley.

But Los Angeles took a major step this week in completing the last 12 miles of a Los Angeles River Greenway that would allow Angelenos to walk and bike from Canoga Park to Griffith Park.

Gruen Associates, a 70-year-old Los Angeles-based urban design company, was picked Tuesday to lead the greenway design from Vanalden Avenue in Reseda to Zoo Drive in Griffith Park.

“The Los Angeles River is a common thread that links us to our history, and connects us to the natural world,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti, who grew up in Encino, in a statement. “This bikeway will give all Angelenos a new way to experience our city, build accessibility to our revitalized river, and expand green space for families to enjoy.

“I am proud to work with all of the partners who helped us reach this milestone.”

Portions of the bikeway, funded by both the city and Los Angeles County, have already been built.

But completing the last stretch has long been a dream of those who wanted to cross the Valley along both concrete and natural sections of the Los Angeles River, sometimes within view of snowy egrets and other birds.

A challenge to the greenway design team completing the greenway will be how to get around both the historic Sepulveda Dam and the 405 Freeway.

The greenway design will include a bike path, shade elements, stormwater capture features, pedestrian walkways, landscaped areas to support habitat, as well as fencing, gates, lighting, signage and additional educational and interpretive elements.

Besides Gruen Associates, the design team will include Mia Lehrer + Associates, landscape architects with a history of Los Angeles River work; and Oyler Wu, architects. Engineering firm Psomas will produce the team’s civil and structural work.

The cost of the design work is still being negotiated, said a Garcetti spokeswoman. Funding will come from the Mayor’s office, Valley Councilmembers Bob Blumenfield, Paul Krekorian, Nury Martinez, the Department of Recreation and Parks and Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl.

A detailed feasibility study is expected within the next nine months, with community input and review, city officials say. Construction will be done in phases.

“We are thrilled to bring together this exceptional team to work with us in the design of the Valley’s river bike path,” said City Engineer Gary Lee Moore “We have selected a group of designers known for their experience in successfully addressing architectural challenges, as well as bringing innovative and experimental thinking to their work.”

 

Read more at dailynews.com

SCOTT DELIVERS MIPS BRAIN PROTECTION ON THREE NEW ROAD HELMETS

From roadbikeaction.com

 

This week Scott is launching three new road biking helmets. Scott says they are entering a new era of helmet development, beating key industry benchmarks with regards to both ventilation and aerodynamic performance.

 

Centric Plus

The Centric Plus was designed and developed for world class road and mountain bike racers. With ventilation as Scott’s priority, they leveraged their extensive aerodynamic expertise to make one of the best ventilated helmets in its class. These achievements go beyond the outside profile with optimization of airflow on the inside of the helmet as well. MIPS with Scott air technology provides the benefits of a MIPS brain protection system and features a unique construction to further enhance ventilation. From Scott’s testing, they found it is so efficient that it cools your head by 2.2% better than if you were not wearing a helmet at all.

 

Cadence Plus

The Cadence Plus was designed and developed for world-class road racers and elite triathletes. Aerodynamics is Scott’s priority on the Cadence Plus leveraging their extensive aerodynamic expertise to make one of the fastest helmets in its class. This was achieved through optimization of airflow on both the outside and the inside of the helmet. This too is equipped with MIPS and Scott air technology to provides the benefits of a MIPS brain protection system. Scott offers aero plugs and by simply clicking in the plugs the aerodynamic advantage of the Cadence Plus increases even more but sacrificing some of the ventilation.

 

Fuga Plus

The Fuga Plus is the perfect helmet for road riders who are seeking a high-performance helmet with the versatility to go beyond the road. It features the MIPS brain protection system as well as the Halo 3D fit system. The Fuga Plus also delivers exceptional ventilation with a removable visor.