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Old 08-17-05, 06:10 AM   #1
HiYoSilver
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Is this moonlight ride a good experience?

Anyone been on a moonlight ride like this? http://moonlight-classic.com

Is it something not to miss, or just so so?

What level of security locks would be appropriate for something like this?

Thanks...
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Old 08-17-05, 12:49 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
Anyone been on a moonlight ride like this? http://moonlight-classic.com

Is it something not to miss, or just so so?

What level of security locks would be appropriate for something like this?

Thanks...
Never done night riding, except when a ride takes too long and night comes early, but it sounds fantastic. Something that comes to mind though is that a lot of people would be new to night riding, and as we all know from the car, extra care has to be taken when driving/ riding on artificial lights. Will the other riders take the care necessary? or will they just suck you into trouble.
I must admit that bike security is not something I think of. If I am not sitting on it, my hand is on it, but a good "D" locks and cable deter many people from borrowing your steed. That is what I use in my garage for the 5 bikes that are there. They want to take one- they take the lot and the reinforced bolt that is 6" in the floor aswell.

I am contemplating a night ride, but for any of you that know my riding- It will be on the Tandem, and it will be off road, and it will be on the South Downs Way. Details at http://www.trailbreak.co.uk/maxx_exp/
But I have a problem that some may be able to answer. 8 hours riding and we need good lights and plenty of battery power. We think we have that covered but How about Emergency lighting? If our main system packs up we will need a backup. It must be lightweight, it must give us good light and it must not cost a fortune.
Any ideas? Both for me and Hiyo Silver, as I should think it will be one of our priorities. Riding at night may be a problem, but NO lights will make it more difficult.
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Old 08-17-05, 12:56 PM   #3
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My plan is simple:

1. main light: 10w rated for 4 hours burn. 20w rated for 1 hr burn time. They both use the same battery, so will use Low [10w] until I need Hi [30w] and recharge the battery the night before.
2. backup: flashlight and bungee cords. Not great, but should get me thru
This ride should only be 90 min max. Hard to judge time as don't know how many idiots will be riding. A shower or two might keep the crowds down.

Don't know enough about your setup, but flashlights might work for you at well. Main problem will be length of time. If you were starting fresh, you could get some of those 24 hr mtb lights, but they cost a bit.
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Old 08-17-05, 01:08 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
My plan is simple:

1. main light: 10w rated for 4 hours burn. 20w rated for 1 hr burn time. They both use the same battery, so will use Low [10w] until I need Hi [30w] and recharge the battery the night before.
2. backup: flashlight and bungee cords. Not great, but should get me thru
This ride should only be 90 min max. Hard to judge time as don't know how many idiots will be riding. A shower or two might keep the crowds down.

Don't know enough about your setup, but flashlights might work for you at well. Main problem will be length of time. If you were starting fresh, you could get some of those 24 hr mtb lights, but they cost a bit.
Lights shouldn't be that big of a deal given the number of participants. It wasn't last year - most riders had blinkies if anything at all. I had a 10W and a good LED, and barely turned the 10W on. Most of the route was on well lit streets last year, and in combination with a clear night and a full-ish moon visibility was quite good. Rear lighting is probably more important, just so that the nimrods who aren't paying attention might have a chance of seeing you before they run into your rear wheel. I almost clocked a guy after he hit my rear wheel 2 times. Turned out I didn't have to - when he ran into me a 3rd time, he went down like a sack of spuds. Ain't karma a biatch?

Looks like they've decreased the length of the ride this year - I'm pretty sure the long route was 20 or 25 miles last year, and given the experience level of the majority of riders plus the sheer volume of riders, average speeds were quite low. Starting are was very congested - I think we arrived at the starting area about 30 mins before the official start (midnight), and still didn't actuallly get started until well after 1230.
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Old 08-17-05, 02:09 PM   #5
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Appreciate all the info.

I'm fine for rear, cateye TL-LD1000. Maybe I should add a whistle for numbskulls. Bull horn could be overkill though.

I haven't make up mind if good to get in the seriors wave or not. Guess I just see how it goes as it gets closer.
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Old 08-17-05, 02:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
Appreciate all the info.

I'm fine for rear, cateye TL-LD1000. Maybe I should add a whistle for numbskulls. Bull horn could be overkill though.

I haven't make up mind if good to get in the seriors wave or not. Guess I just see how it goes as it gets closer.
Believe me, a bull horn would be useless. If they do not hear" Passing on the Left" at 90 decibells, they won't hear anything. (I use a horn on the Tandem and it is not heard very often) The serious wave will be at the front- they hopefully will know what they are doing- but any accidents will be at a higher speed.
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Old 08-19-05, 08:34 AM   #7
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Without a great front light, you might scout out the route in the daytime before the main event to make mental notes of any potholes, ruts or road hazards to avoid.

Looks like fun...
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Old 08-19-05, 09:31 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
Anyone been on a moonlight ride like this? http://moonlight-classic.com

Is it something not to miss, or just so so?

What level of security locks would be appropriate for something like this?

Thanks...

It looks like a fun, short ride. Riding at night is very different from the day, it is also very addicting.

If there are going to be lots of cyclists around I don't think a super strong lock is going to be needed. But, there's no harm in getting a very secure lock. It depends on what you have for a bike too. Do you have something super expensive? If not, a medium price D lock should me MORE than enough.

The main light you have is plenty for this ride. In a short group ride in the city I don't think the backup light needs to be very powerful, or to go very long. The ride is only 90 minutes it's unlikely that you will lose power at the very beginning.
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Old 08-19-05, 10:04 AM   #9
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Again, thanks for the info. With all the inexperienced cyclists, I am torn between going or not. Currently thinking of going and observing this year and riding next year.

I don't have any idea of how many will be wearing costumes, or if the first 2 waves are better behaved than the masses. If I had someone from here to ride with, I'll probably ride this year. The bikers here I talked to basically said "been there, done it, not again unless for family member".
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Old 08-19-05, 10:28 AM   #10
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Charlotte, NC used to have a Midnight Moonlight ride. After the pro series of criteriums downtown, hundreds, maybe thousands of people would mount bikes and ride an 18 mile loop through the city at midnight. Great fun! Lights were encouraged, but the vast majority of the riders just had rear blinkies. It is no longer an event, my guess is the insurance risks, and large crowds scared off the organizers.

A few points of safety. You will have a hard time seeing cracks and potholes in the road. You will also have a hard time distinguishing crackheads and potheads in the crowd. There will be a percentage of riders that will spend the hour or so before the ride trying to drink all the beer they can find. They may present a danger as you ride the course. There will also be many young children and people that are unfamiliar with bike handling skills and maintanence requirements, beware!
If you take the ride at face value, a nice slow easy pedal through the city, you will enjoy it. If you decide to approach it from a racing standpoint, starting last and seeing how many people you can pass, you may encounter problems along the way.
I have done the Charlotte ride from both standpoints. A good friend ended up spending the morning hours in the hospital getting a broken collarbone treated the year we decided to start last and finish first.
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Old 08-20-05, 08:10 AM   #11
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[QUOTE=serotta]A few points of safety. You will have a hard time seeing cracks and potholes in the road. You will also have a hard time distinguishing crackheads and potheads in the crowd. [QUOTE]

I love this part.
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Old 08-22-05, 06:02 AM   #12
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[QUOTE=2manybikes][QUOTE=serotta]A few points of safety. You will have a hard time seeing cracks and potholes in the road. You will also have a hard time distinguishing crackheads and potheads in the crowd.
Quote:

I love this part.
There is always a certain amount of humor in truth!!!!
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Old 08-22-05, 02:44 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
Again, thanks for the info. With all the inexperienced cyclists, I am torn between going or not. Currently thinking of going and observing this year and riding next year.

I don't have any idea of how many will be wearing costumes, or if the first 2 waves are better behaved than the masses. If I had someone from here to ride with, I'll probably ride this year. The bikers here I talked to basically said "been there, done it, not again unless for family member".
Everything is an experience, so rather than listen to others, do the ride, and then you can say never again.
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Old 08-22-05, 02:50 PM   #14
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So HiYoSilver, did you go? How was it?
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Old 08-22-05, 06:37 PM   #15
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Many years ago I commuted on my bike. In winter, it was mostly at night. I found that lights were for letting motorists know you were there. They didn't help and were unnecessary. Unless it was raining, or there was traffic, I left them off. I was able to travel most of the way on side streets so traffic was rarely a problem. Once my eyes adjusted, the front light didn't help.
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Old 08-23-05, 06:33 AM   #16
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So HiYoSilver, did you go? How was it?
Actually I passed this year. I hadn't checked the TV guide. There was a broncos~49ers game at the same time. With the rumor/fact that Monday night football might only be on cable, I had to get my football fix.

Fellow biker went pass the site and noticed many not with it drivers coming out of the game. She also passed. If it doesn't conflict with a broncos game, I'll probably try it next year. I'll see if I can find others to ride with me, but if not still interested. The capital is close to the stadium, so only blocker will be game same night. There a huge increase in traffic and influenced drivers.

Alternative this year is a 25 mile morning ride around a lake and riverway next week. It's with my brotherinlaw so should be a lot more fun than riding alone. Won't be the same as a night ride, but still good.
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Old 10-24-05, 06:15 PM   #17
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I've ridden this for the last few years (except the year I was recovering from being hit by a van, ugh). If you're looking for a workout, this isn't it. But if you're looking for a fun ride on a Saturday night, this is it, particularly this year when they moved the start time from midnight to 10pm. It's a nice easy ride, and well-supported. Even a new or out-of-shape rider can manage the short loop. I use it to inspire my less active friends to get on their bikes. It's fun, unless you're easily irritated by children (lots of those). Just don't start in the first couple of waves with all the gonzos.
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