|Trace The Mitten|
When I was at the Adventure Bike Club meeting last month two bikes next to me caught my attention. With the initial glance I notice a headlamp mounted above the fork with wires leading into the frame. At that point I realized that I was looking at an e assist bike. This was the first time that I had seen one in a situation that allowed we a chance to look closely. Two years ago I was on a group ride and noticed one. This gave me a chance to talk to the rider about how it worked.
She had ordered off the web. I cannot remember the site, but I know from recent searching that you will not have a problem finding information.
E assist bikes is a good descriptive name. First off, they look like a bike at a quick glance. There are handlebars, seat, tires and maybe a front basket and rear rack. The batteries come in various sizes. Some could fit in a cereal box and may mount under the rear rack. Others can be more streamlined and fit on the diagonal tube going from the handlebar to the pedals. The battery can plug into on electrical outlet. You pedal as you normally would and the electric power gives you a speed or energy boost.
I am sure that we will see more around soon. Not only were they in a local bike shop but a February AARP Bulletin had a one page article written by Erik Hedegaard. A few quick bits of information from his article.
A windy ride
I just had to go out; it was sunny and 50°. All the way home I heard the radio talking about the high winds and intersections with lights not working. I could not feel the wind affects on the car, but I could see the swaying trees.
I decided to ride in areas with many trees. I wanted to stay off the roads where gusts could quickly blow me into danger. I decided on a very safe paved walk path through my residential area. The trees are decorative and are not overhead. This path is about 6 feet wide. I predicted that I would have the path to myself.
Most riders hate windy days and hate riding into the wind, but I would rather do wind than hills (that sounds like a good topic for another blog). I saw today as an opportunity to experience something new. The wind was steady at 31 mph out of the WSW and gusting to 58. My path is loop, so I know that I I will get some spots of less wind. I knew that buildings would also provide some protected spot. I would be close to home so I knew that I could quit whenever I had enough.
As I pulled upon the path I checked my watch and said that I would ride for an hour. I looked forward to a continuous effort with no stops.