This is the first time I’ve started a thread. Forgive me my presumptiveness if it comes across this way, but I want to make a plea to everyone.
On Saturday, January 2, I rode Old La Honda to Page Mill and while Skyline was mostly dry, visibility on this road and upper Page Mill was extremely limited—about 50-100 feet for most of the way. (It was like the lake crossing scene in Ugetsu for you movie buffs.)
Anyway, I was disappointed to see that the majority of cyclists (who may have outnumbered cars this day) were not using a headlight. Personally, I think it’s a good idea to use them at all times, but esp. when riding through thick fog. I noticed several cyclists heading the opposite (downhill) direction on Skyline who were going at a good clip. I could easily envision a situation where a driver exiting an open space preserve lot wouldn’t see a biker until it was too late.
I believe that cyclists who ride without a light under these conditions are showing a disregard for their personal safety. I could understand eschewing a light 25 years ago when the existing technology was primitive compared to what’s available today, but now a good LED system is relatively lightweight and unobtrusive.
Furthermore, from my lunchtime readings of the lawyer column in Velo News, I believe that if, god forbid, you are in an accident with a motorized vehicle (or another bike) without a light when conditions merit it, your legal position will be compromised, even if you weren’t strictly speaking “at fault.”