Bike Michiana

resources, news, observations and ideas about bicycling in the Michiana area

Archive for December, 2008

North American Handmade Bicycle Show: Feb. 27 – Mar. 1

Posted by Henry Scott on December 30, 2008

The 5th annual North American Handmade Bicycle Show will be held in Indianapolis from February 27th until March 1st. A friend invited me to join him for a one-day trip down on Saturday the 28th, and I eagerly accepted. This should be very cool. I’m particularly stoked to see that Hunter Cycles will be there — as a graduate student in Santa Cruz, I lived in an 8′ x 16′ shack for two years to save enough money for a custom cyclocross frame (and the parts to build it up)!

Posted in Events, Gear | 4 Comments »

First Annual Polar Bear Ride on New Years Day

Posted by Paul Taylor on December 28, 2008

The Michiana Bicycle Association (MBA) has organized a Michiana First!  They invite one and all to the Granger Martins Grocery at IN-23 and Adams in Granger at 1:00 pm. We’ll park near the Deli. Best case is  a 41 mile ride; worst case  is to push your bike around the parking lot; most likely it will be something in between. In either case, you need to exchange high-fives with your fellow polar bears.
Eric has virtually promised us a balmy 31 degrees, but he says that if the weather is too bad we can always just eat and fellowship. Sounds good to me – hope to see a lot of you there! Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Group Rides: Special | Tagged: | 4 Comments »

Talk about tough winter riding…

Posted by Phil G-E on December 24, 2008

From the New York Times
Video Library Player:  Riders Through the Snow  

During the Iditarod Trail Invitational, racers brave hundreds of miles of frozen Alaskan wilderness on foot, ski or bicycle. 

This video focuses on two men training for the race by bike. Talk about tough winter riding!

If the link above doesn’t work, try CLICKING HERE or the link below

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments »

New Interstate Map

Posted by Paul Taylor on December 24, 2008

The AASHTO, working with the Adventure Cycling Association has approved a plan that lays the foundation for an Interstate Bicycle Route System. This has been talked about for years, and now it’s up to each state to create the routes and put up signs. Much of the route has already been designated, but not signed or marked. Part of two routes go through Indiana, and there are several routes through the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan. USA Today recently ran a story on the routes:Read it here. For more details, visit The Adventure Cycling link on the Bike Michiana web site.

Posted in News, Routes | 1 Comment »

“Active Transportation” = Less obesity according to study

Posted by Phil G-E on December 21, 2008

This Associated Press article was published in the Goshen News a few days ago. I thought this deserved attention, especially given Adam’s post on Cycling and Health (Dec. 16).

Study: Leaner nations bike, walk, use mass transit


Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

2007 Bicycle Traffic Safety Facts Released

Posted by Paul Taylor on December 21, 2008

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has published the 2007 crash statistics. There were 698 fatalities and 43,000 injuries. Fifteen of those fatalities were in Indiana, and seventeen in Michigan.

The most vulnerable group were men in the 45 to 54 age range; boys aged 10 to 15 were a distant second. The safest group were women over 75.  Alcohol was a factor in more than one-third of all fatalities.

The NHTSA does not try to interpret the statistics, or assign responsibility for the crashes, but you can read the report here.

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Cycling and Health

Posted by Adam Bee on December 16, 2008

Is cycling good for you or bad for you?

Sure, cycling is almost certainly good for the environment, for our neighborhoods and city, and for adding life to your life (although there are some who might disagree with each of those statements).

At first it might appear obvious to most cyclists that of course cycling is healthy.  The problem is that most non-cyclists don’t believe that to be true, and in qualitative interviews many cite the dangers of cycling as a major barrier to participation.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Street View comes to Michiana

Posted by Adam Bee on December 12, 2008

Google Maps (along with its predecessor Mapquest) have changed the way we drive, with on-demand customized directions.  Now it can even change the way we look at our built environment, with its new Street View feature.

Street View allows users to geographically browse through Google’s vast collection of 360-degree street-level photos.  Nearly every building in America now has a browseable photo of it.  It’s basically like taking a walk down any street in America.

For a while Street View has been available only in large cities, but the database has expanded outwards from there.  Now Street View is available all across Michiana.  Photos of your house, from two or three angles, is now Googlable.

Privacy advocates may shudder, but this service certainly makes giving directions much easier.  You don’t have to say, “It’s the 12th house on the right, the one with a door and windows.”  You’d just include a link to your house on Street View.

Even better though, is that cyclists can now get a good sense of what a road looks like before finding themselves on it.  I think this will be a big help to the Michiana Bike Map project, for example.  It can often be difficult to picture in your head what a certain road on a map looks like in person, but Street View makes that conceptual leap trivial.

Posted in Routes | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

Stop Signs

Posted by Adam Bee on December 11, 2008

Stop signs seem to be the #1 point of contention for bike haters.  You don’t have to read too many letters to the editor to get that.

Really, though, how many drivers actually stop?  In my experience drivers do that exact same thing cyclists do.  They slow down enough that they could stop if they had to, check for traffic, and then roll through.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Commentary | Tagged: , , | 4 Comments »

Trainer Nights

Posted by Adam Bee on December 9, 2008

Spinzone rides Wednesdays at 6pm, and ProForm rides Tuesdays at 6pm

If you’re like me, you eat more in the winter and get less time on the bike. Pumpkin pie and eggnog conspire with short days and slushy roads to sap away whatever fitness I accrue over the summer.

Sure, I’ve got a stationary trainer, a set of Sportscrafter rollers, and some training DVDs to watch, but it gets so boring!

Luckily, SpinZone and ProForm are each hosting trainer parties all winter. 6pm, Proform on Tuesdays and SpinZone on Wednesdays. You just show up with your bike and trainer (or call ahead to borrow one), and they pop in a DVD out of your collection.

It’s a weird and uncanny phenomenon, but training with other people is actually much easier than sweating alone in your basement. Spinning classes across the country will be packed come January, but now there’s no need for us to wait ’til New Years to fight our fatty fate!

Posted in Events, Group Rides: Weekly | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »