Moving toward multi-modal

Recently, I’ve started to consider expanding my transportation options. No disrespect to the bus, which has served me well for many years and will remain my primary mode of transportation, but there are times when I want more control over when and how quickly I get somewhere. To that end, on Monday, I took a beginning commuter class through Cascade Bicycle Club’s Education Foundation. (Well, it wasn’t an official class; I spent a couple of hours getting schooled by their extremely knowledgeable commuting specialist, Chris Cameron.)

Busnerd biking
Busnerd, on Bike to Work Day, 2006

Despite the number of bike nerds I know, I’ve never really considered biking a viable option for regular travel, 1) because of practical considerations like how to dress, weather, and hours of daylight, and 2) because I am terrified to ride in the street. (I’ve participated in Bike to Work Day a few times, but for that, I used bike paths, trails and sidewalks. Plus, there was the added incentive of free food at the end of the line.)

Chris gave me some good information about how to equip a bike for safe travel, and we even did a trial run along Sand Point Way. I’m feeling confident enough to try biking on my trips to Madison Market and for other miscellaneous errands in my neighborhood. Next step: Find a decent used bike.

Highlights of Monday’s class:
• Riding the 74 for the first time (to get there)
• Meeting Patrick Burns McGrath (aka Cascade Commuter)
• The bowl of chocolate kisses in the CBEF office

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