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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 09-09-07, 10:57 PM   #1
dohfoh
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Carfree in AZ?

Anybody here carfree cyclists in Arizona? I'm not talking about Sedona or Flagstaff (love it there!), but more central/southern where it's really hot for a big chunk of the year. How do you deal with the heat (especially if your commute is mid-late morning)? How do you deal with the sweat/stink factors?

Perhaps more appropriate on the Commuting board, but I'd rather post here first.

Cheers!
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Old 09-09-07, 11:03 PM   #2
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Hi dohfoh, welcome to Bike Forums! Yeah, there are at least a couple of carfree AZ cyclists here. While you're waiting for some live replies, you can look through the older postings or use the search function for Phoenix. The search link is at the top of the page.
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Old 09-09-07, 11:15 PM   #3
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I've got a friend that commuted on everything down to a skateboard, in Pheonix. I don't live there but, cup hands in bathroom and throw at body.
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Old 09-10-07, 03:23 AM   #4
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Where I am in Arizona... NO ONE does anything but Drive... and they ALL drive SUV's.

What is it with Americans. I'm concluding that Americans are all fat, lazy, stupid, people. Not all...but so many that it makes me sick.

Its like...now everyone owns SUV's, because everyone has to feel more macho then the next guy... I'm still stuck with my japanese camry. I feel a sense of threat when I'm on the road now because every ****ing car is a huge truck or SUV.

**** americans. I hate this country.
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Old 09-12-07, 09:19 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by dohfoh View Post
Anybody here carfree cyclists in Arizona? I'm not talking about Sedona or Flagstaff (love it there!), but more central/southern where it's really hot for a big chunk of the year. How do you deal with the heat (especially if your commute is mid-late morning)? How do you deal with the sweat/stink factors?
Car-free in Mesa here. Yeah, it gets really hot, but I think it's pretty bearable on a bike. I rode a motorscooter for a couple of months, and the heat felt much worse on that for some reason. I've seen temps over 115 degrees on my afternoon commute home, but even at those temps it's still completely do-able. Aren't many cyclists out on those days, though.
I don't have to wear nice clothes at work, so I just toss a shirt to change into in my backpack. Also, the air is so dry here that your sweat evaporates very quickly while you're riding.

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Where I am in Arizona... NO ONE does anything but Drive... and they ALL drive SUV's.
Yeah, most everyone drives everywhere here. Everything's really spread-out, and people here think they can't live without their air-conditioning. Although I'm still pretty new to being car-free, and I've only lived here for a year, I wouldn't call the Phoenix area a great place to live car-free. It's much more suburban than urban.
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Old 09-12-07, 10:01 PM   #6
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Where I am in Arizona... NO ONE does anything but Drive... and they ALL drive SUV's.

What is it with Americans. I'm concluding that Americans are all fat, lazy, stupid, people. Not all...but so many that it makes me sick.

**** americans. I hate this country.
Wah wah Americans are fat digusting wasteful slobs. Get over yourself. Good grief open your front door. You live in Santa Barbara for chrissakes.

ALL they drive is SUVs? How about ALL I see in this post is hyberbole?

I've traveled to many parts of the world and proudly represent myself as an American who doesn't fall into your stereotype. I'm not an unabashed nationalist marching in the July 4th Council Bluffs parade and having a subsequent orgy in apple pie, but I certainly don't hate myself, my neighbors, and my country.
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Old 09-12-07, 10:16 PM   #7
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Communted on single bike 5 days a week for 16 years in Tucson, AZ. While not car-free, we spent more miles pedaling than driving!
We also rode tandem 6 days a week year 'round; and for about a dozen year cycled 10,000+ miles a year.
Now retired, we get away to some place 'up north' for the summer months. Highest temp riding 117 degrees with 2% humidity. Fun? No, but doable.
Dealing with the heat? On the commute would leave the house around 6:30 a.m. but return home at 3 p.m. Get to work, wipe down a bit at the sink if sweaty, and change clothes.
On way home on 100+ degree days, wet cycling cap, wet bandana and put around my neck and . . . go!
No worse than riding in the snow (done that too!)
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Old 09-12-07, 10:27 PM   #8
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CagerTools:
If you 'hate' this country, what keeps you here? Feel free to move someplace else . . .
I am neither fat (135 lbs) nor lazy (now retired) and do not drive an SUV and live in AZ by choice. Have bicycled over a quarter million miles. Am an American by choice (naturalized) not by accident of birth.
While I do not agree with everything here in the US, it's the best place I've found.
Now be a nice kid and go ride your bicycle!
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Old 09-13-07, 05:41 AM   #9
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Well, I have never lived in Arizona, but spent 8 years in the Coachella Valley in California, where we joked that we were the only people who would go to Phoenix to cool off.

Here's a web page I wrote about it. Summer Cycling

As far as smell, find a way to wash off at work. Rubbing Alcohol works well to cut the odor too.
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Old 09-14-07, 05:03 PM   #10
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I lived in Glendale worked in Phoenix,. Riding to work was simply not an option. We have to wear appropriate clothing (khakis/polo) and there are no shower facilities. It is as simple as that. Throwing water on yourself in the bathroom is not going to fix much.
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Old 09-15-07, 01:11 AM   #11
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Thanks for the responses so far. I often wish that I worked a predictable schedule, but I'm an adjunct professor at the U of A, and some days I don't need to be there until after 10 or 11am, so I have a warmer than average bicycle commute. I also work part time for a major arts organization in Tucson, and often have a rehearsal beginning as late as 2 or 2:30, near the heat of the day. I guess I have a fairly unique situation since my schedule is not so regular. I lived in Tempe/Mesa for eight years and I must say that being car "light" seems a little easier now that I'm in Tucson, but still...once the monsoon has ended, the midwesterner in me yearns for some football weather!!
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Old 09-15-07, 05:56 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zonatandem View Post
CagerTools:
If you 'hate' this country, what keeps you here? Feel free to move someplace else . . .
I am neither fat (135 lbs) nor lazy (now retired) and do not drive an SUV and live in AZ by choice. Have bicycled over a quarter million miles. Am an American by choice (naturalized) not by accident of birth.
While I do not agree with everything here in the US, it's the best place I've found.
Now be a nice kid and go ride your bicycle!
See Moving to the car-free dream city, Davis, CA ,

Cager Tools appears to be missing a few tools.
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Old 09-15-07, 12:20 PM   #13
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I hope we'll hear back from CagerTools. The rest of the story could be very interesting. It's never been uncommon for young folks to launch themselves into the unknown. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Even when it doesn't work out, a person can still relish the satisfaction of having done things his own sweet way.
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Old 09-15-07, 12:30 PM   #14
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Where I am in Arizona... NO ONE does anything but Drive... and they ALL drive SUV's.

What is it with Americans. I'm concluding that Americans are all fat, lazy, stupid, people. Not all...but so many that it makes me sick.

Its like...now everyone owns SUV's, because everyone has to feel more macho then the next guy... I'm still stuck with my japanese camry. I feel a sense of threat when I'm on the road now because every ****ing car is a huge truck or SUV.

**** americans. I hate this country.
So leave. You are allowed to, you know.
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Old 09-16-07, 07:49 PM   #15
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bike on bus to work and ride home.
They even sell the morning papers on the bus in Tucson.
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Old 09-17-07, 09:43 AM   #16
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Where I am in Arizona... NO ONE does anything but Drive... and they ALL drive SUV's.

What is it with Americans. I'm concluding that Americans are all fat, lazy, stupid, people. Not all...but so many that it makes me sick.
Not that it matters, but AZ is the 44th 'fattest' state in the US in 2006. Yeah, 'everyone' motors and the infrastructure is more car oriented than some larger and denser cities, but many people in AZ are quite active including a very large recreational cycling community (yeah, they drive to the ride start)

Al
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Old 09-17-07, 05:41 PM   #17
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Not that it matters, but AZ is the 44th 'fattest' state in the US in 2006. Yeah, 'everyone' motors and the infrastructure is more car oriented than some larger and denser cities, but many people in AZ are quite active including a very large recreational cycling community (yeah, they drive to the ride start)
http://calorielab.com/news/2007/08/0...t-states-2007/

yes, 44th fattest, meaning there are 43 states that are fatter!

I certainly have heard that Arizona is a "drive-everywhere" state... perhaps people in Arizona have figured out something the rest of us haven't about being motivated to exercise. Personally, I just couldn't manage the motivation if it weren't something that's already fun, like outdoor bicycling.
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Old 09-18-07, 06:43 PM   #18
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Not that it matters, but AZ is the 44th 'fattest' state in the US in 2006. Yeah, 'everyone' motors and the infrastructure is more car oriented than some larger and denser cities, but many people in AZ are quite active including a very large recreational cycling community (yeah, they drive to the ride start)

Al
I moved here from Missouri last year, and one of the first things I noticed was how much slimmer people are here. To me, it seems more to do with differences in dietary choices than physical activity, though. I do see more cyclist out here too (mostly roadies).
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Old 10-05-07, 01:45 AM   #19
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I'm new to AZ. But I want to throw my hat into the "it's all good" corner. I've biked to work some ...about 5 miles in 95-105 temps. And I dress nice at work. Take some deodorant. Take a doo-rag to wipe down with. Stay hydrated. You'll be fine.

I'm from Ohio and I'd rather ride in 105 with 0% Humidity than 85 with 90%.

As a secondary thought...shut up Cager. You're not likely to change anything by ranting at a BIKING forum.
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Old 10-05-07, 09:43 AM   #20
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I'm from Ohio and I'd rather ride in 105 with 0% Humidity than 85 with 90%.
Me too, but I'd much rather ride in 85F/90% vs. 110-115F/35% which is not uncommon in the late part of the summer here.

Al
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Old 10-05-07, 09:55 AM   #21
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I drove through Flagstaff this summer and saw tons of people on bikes.
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Old 10-05-07, 11:48 AM   #22
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I'm working on it, I'm gonna get a road bike soon so I can (try) to ride from my house in Mesa to ASU. I use either of my parents' cars, so I figure the miles I'm driving are ones that they're not, so at least I'm not increasing our family's car mileage haha.
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Old 10-05-07, 11:35 PM   #23
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I ride from Tucson Boulevard and Grant Road to damn near the airport five days a week. Thankfully, my workplace has a shower. The heat is nothing; you don't really feel it unless you're stopped at a light.
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Old 10-07-07, 10:09 AM   #24
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I commute from the east side of Tucson (pantano and golf links) to U of A. about 11 or 12 miles. I tis not bad at all in the heat. I shower before I leave home and clean up in the bathroom when I get to work. If I needed to I could use the showers at the rec center.
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Old 10-09-07, 12:15 AM   #25
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I used to commute to UA in the Tucson Summer. Loads of deodorant and a wipedown. UA has shower facilities in many buildings, like the research building where I worked. Single person shower - perfect for commuting. Check around.
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