Despite what you may have heard from suburbanites, Hartford is a very bike-able city. It’s relatively small in geographic size. Many shoulders are wide enough to provide safe bike passage. And, Hartford even has a few bike lanes. Plus, Connecticut in recent years passed legislation that protects bikers on the road (see also: the three foot law) and is supporting it with public displays on billboards and buses. The Share the Road campaign is a great way to affirm to disgruntled drivers that bikes are transportation too, and they are in fact supposed to be on the road, not the sidewalk. Like any city, Hartford also has it’s problems for bikers. As a bike commuter and hobbyist I’ve compiled some observations:
- There are lots of people biking in Hartford
- Biking is good for you and the city – some drivers think bikers are snooty, holier than thou nuisances, but we have every right to be. Think about it – what other 100+ year old technology is as efficient, as clean, and as healthy as biking?
- Riding in the rain can be fun (or not)
- Potholes should be avoided at all time unless your face likes pavement
- Biking during traffic jams is especially rewarding, but try not to show your enjoyment too much (see second bullet point)
- Strong winds can and sometimes will knock you off your bike
- I don’t quite understand the non-helmet riders
- Fixing up a bike you find in the trash is totally awesome and could be habit forming
- Some drivers like to honk their horns just because they are near bikers. While this may be well-intentioned, it doesn’t help, in my opinion. In fact, it can be startling or distracting for a biker.
- People who steal bikes are DBs.
- Men who catcall women on bikes are also DBs.
- This site rules: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/
Don’t have a bike? Get one! You can always find a cheapy on Craigslist.