It’s been said that no experience is a true adventure until something goes wrong. In fact, that’s where the idea for this issue began: We wanted to share the most death-defying stories of cycling that we could find. But the more we thought about it, the more we realized it doesn’t take any special skills for things to go wrong (trust me, I know). So instead we turned it around to bring you stories about how to handle yourself when the proverbial poo hits the fan: how to keep your cool, how to get yourself out of a jam and how to avoid one in the first place.
Our longtime columnist Beth Puliti and her husband traveled through Nepal shortly after the devastating earthquake that killed thousands and left most roads impassable—except for bikes. In her extended column in this issue, read how Nepalese cyclists leapt to the challenge to shuttle medicine and supplies over massive mountain passes and help the recovery effort any way they could.
But communities shouldn’t wait until the worst has happened to start working. That’s the theme behind the Disaster Relief Trials, a cargo bike challenge that demonstrates to emergency management agencies how pedal power can be part of the resilience movement. I took part in one of the races and interviewed the founder of the growing series, Mike Cobb.
There are a lot of things than can go wrong on a ride, and while we could never publish an exhaustive list of all possible solutions, we reached out to some experts about what cyclists could do to take care of Number One. From getting lost to getting hurt, we hope these lessons will help keep you safe and ready for anything.
If the worst happens, it can lead to a good story. For our correspondent Chris Reichel, the cross-country bike tour of a lifetime almost came to a tragic end in a field in Kansas. Read how he rode out a tornado in his tent.
Reichel was alone on his ride, and having to face your fears without support can be difficult. But does it have to be that way? Amanda DelCore asked some solo bike-touring experts to weigh in.
Finally, I just want to encourage you all to push your envelope with cycling a little bit. Try to go a bit further, a bit faster or just conquer that hill you hate. Try a type of riding you never have before, or take someone new to cycling for a spin. It’s not until you’re out of your comfort zone that you learn just what you’re capable of and, who knows, you might just surprise yourself. Good luck, and enjoy your Bicycle Times.
- Soma Wolverine
- Yuba Spicy Curry
- Surly Wednesday
- Marin Four Corners
- Fat bike tires
- Packable jackets
- Solar and battery power
Where to ride your bike thru the drive-thru!
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