and a mind free of trouble.
For as long as I live.
and a mind free of trouble.
For as long as I live.
1. Separate lanes for bike and horse traffic.
2. Cars? Heavy machines that move without animals? That's a science fiction concept.
3. Bike racks and dining areas on roofs, since the ground is more valuable as gardens.
Anything else I can think of is probably P&R.
Regarding work, a "heaven" for me would be:
-- working from home, possibly going into the office once a fortnight for meetings or to "touch base" with my coworkers, and I'd travel by bicycle or bus.
-- working the equivalent of 3-4 days a week ... maybe a 7 day fortnight.
-- setting my own hours ... I might work a couple hours in the morning, then go for a couple hour ride in the warmth of the day, then work several more hours into early evening ... or maybe go for a ride between 10 am and noon, and then work until evening ... or however I felt like arranging my hours that day in order to put in about 56 hours/fortnight.
-- all while maintaining my current salary ... or a bit more. We are talking about a "heaven" situation here. I can dream.
Less time commuting, less time working, same income, more time cycling.
Terrain: A good mixture - flats, rollers, challenging climbs. Interesting geographical formations to look at. Areas with trees and areas of barren land. Water optional.
Roads: Wide shoulders, no potholes, maintained year round. A few paths for families and others who prefer to be away from cars. Traffic signals in town that change for bikes as well as cars.
Weather: Sunny most of the time, low humidity. A few hot days, a cool and dry summer, and a cold and snowy winter of several months for icebiking. (Hey, it's my paradise!)
Setting: A smaller city or larger town with coffee shops, universities, and an interesting downtown. Easy access to a nearby big city using bike-friendly public transportation; city also accessible by long bike ride. Low traffic in town; infrastructure to support pedestrians, cyclists of various speeds and abilities, and drivers. Bike parking always closer to the door than car parking.
"There are no fast bikes - only fast people." - Some smart person
Corporations that make it easy to plan a work schedule along a touring route. Free camping on public land. Pay-showers as common as convenient stores. Convenience stores with small, fast, washers that wash and centrifuge a small load of laundry with just a small amount of water and soap in just a few minutes. Ultralight overhead racks to fasten centrifuged laundry as a sun shade while they are drying.
50 million people with 17 million cars doesn't sound too bad for cyclists or anyone else, does it? If the cycling and transit-riding population had continued to grow with the number of cars staying constant, the US economy and environment would have grown much more sustainably.
If men (and their employers) had divided all the jobs into alternating shifts for men and women, families could have continued to operate using only one car and/or bicycles and transit. If men and women had shared the responsibility of cooking and performing other household labor themselves, costs would have stayed low and 40 total hours/week of family wages would have continued to be sufficient.
Unfortunately, instead of growing prosperous we grew gluttonous, prideful, jealous. lustful, and otherwise pushed in the direction of hyperconsumption and insatiability of economic growth.
Anyone else for rewinding to 1950 and getting it right this time?
Count me in. I try to live in the past as much as possible.
On a more constructive note, do you realize how dumb it is to refute claims that the past held positive aspects by pointing out negative aspects from the same period? It's like someone saying that dinner was good last night so you respond by saying, "yes, but I stubbed my toe." Not everything is a consequence of everything else that occurs in the same time period.
4. Retractable studs. A lever could be in the wheel to flip them out, or the tire could shrink automatically below freezing to expose the studs.
Last edited by Zedoo; 08-25-14 at 08:17 PM.
While I don't worry much about what would be my "cycling heaven", I was thinking about what I really like about where I live just yesterday. My spouse and I had just completed a 90 mile ride that included twenty miles of gated gravel logging road. We had six cars pass us in the first 75 miles and another twenty pass us in the last fifteen (all along an eight mile stretch). I had a great time and got to thinking how lucky I am. We've got:
1. A forty mile loop we ride most mornings with 3000 feet of climbing. It's just enough to keep us happy. The only downside is we feel compelled to start our ride between 0500 and 0545 in order to avoid the commuters. That's a pretty small price to pay and we have ridden at other times of the day and enjoyed ourselves; we're just playing the odds. We have other short loops, but this one is just perfectly full of deer, turkeys, foxes, pheasant and peacocks, not to mention a gorgeous view of the Three Sisters and Mt. Bachelor when the air is clear.
2. We have oodles of awesome paved roads through the tree farms/forests along rivers and creeks where we can go tens of miles at a time without being passed by a car. The downside is that during the work week there is currently a lot of logging activity. The logging crews are generally well behaved to us when we encounter them on the road. I'm not complaining, but it is more pleasant when they're not there (probably a mutual feeling).
3. It's incredibly easy to take care of our daily desires without using a motor vehicle. We live on a bike path that connects us to disparate parts of our small city. I really enjoy living in small cities that aren't contiguous with neighboring cities. Anything from 25,000 to 500,000 will do for me so that I can have most amenities without having to cross tens of miles of crap to get out into nice riding areas.
Sure, it could be better. The bike lanes in town could be corrected to not have any in the door zone. The roads into/out of town could have shoulders. (Oddly, many have shoulders shortly after one leaves town, but one must always take the lane for a few miles (often up hill) in order to get out, weird.) There are a few key connection roads in the county that could use a shoulder as well. The county could stop putting down grit every time there is a threat of frost. (It doesn't help anyone since it is brushed to the shoulder before the night is over.) Our motorists leave a lot to be desired, which is pretty typical of most everywhere, which is why we pick our times to ride with care.
Overall, I'll take it. Sure, I'll still complain and even get out of the saddle occasionally and put in some real effort to improve things. However, if I ever decide that I don't enjoy it anymore, I'll simply pack up and move elsewhere. Every nice ride is a real treat and I appreciate the many that I get.
We took the first likely-looking place we could find when we moved here, and it has some nice features, but cycling from home isn't the best and there were several other changes we wanted as well.
So now, at the end of our lease, we are currently in the process of moving to a place which will hopefully be a better choice for many reasons, not the least of which is that there seem to be more and better cycling options. We've even done a little bit of cycling in the area already, and have enjoyed it.
The jury is still out as to whether the new place will be a "bicycling heaven" ... but it certainly has potential!
I guess I'm really close enough right here. Roanoke has a 360 day bicycling season, lots of bike paths, the Blue Ridge Highway, I'm newly retired, with good legs and cardio, and plenty of desire to go out into the world on a daily basis. New tires, and a decent ride. Pretty polite drivers, and lots of new ground to explore.
"Think Outside the Cage"
B Carfree, who's forest land were you riding on? All the private land around me is now closed to public entry for fire season. It's Weyerhaeuser and Hancock though there is also some BLM.
Falls City, OR
1993 Rocky Mountain Fusion
2012 Fargo 2