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riding past midnight

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riding past midnight

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Old 09-09-07, 03:05 AM
  #1  
contador
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riding past midnight

round here in Spain roads become specially dangerous on weeck ends:
young people at the wheel,alcohol,saturday night stuff.Last saturday
i had to take my bike about 1am for a half an hour ride and people told me
i was crazy and that i was going to get hit by a car.The question is
how many of you ride in such conditions? (i mean at night during party time)
and do you really find it specially dangerous.
I know many of you start commuting in the middle of the night 5 am or so
but how many of you avoid riding on a saturday night?
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Old 09-09-07, 03:26 AM
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I ride at night frequently. During party time at night the drivers might be younger and drinking, but there will be fewer of them then daytime driving. Almost all drivers do not want to hit you if they can see you. Just get a stronger set of front and rear lights and keep riding. Tell people it is part of your Machismo.

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Old 09-09-07, 03:44 AM
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contador
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Originally Posted by ken cummings View Post
I ride at night frequently. During party time at night the drivers might be younger and drinking, but there will be fewer of them then daytime driving. Almost all drivers do not want to hit you if they can see you. Just get a stronger set of front and rear lights and keep riding. Tell people it is part of your Machismo.
I know ken but the fewer the drivers the faster they drive my only fear is having the bad luck
of been in the way of a saturday night racer.Anyway i know most of the fears are in my mind
and once im riding, even at night,i find it safer than i thouhgt.Drivers here dont expect to find people cycling at night
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Old 09-09-07, 03:58 AM
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I have biked at all hours. I like it better at night. Even at 2am when the bars close there is a lot less cars to deal with. I do get yells from drink drivers going home so I know that they see me just fine.
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Old 09-09-07, 03:58 AM
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I've done commutes and other rides past midnight on many occasions, and those have included Friday and Saturday nights. I haven't really noticed any increase in problems I have with drivers during those times. Around here people are just as drunk at 7am on the Monday morning anyway, so I'm just used to dealing with the idiots.
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Old 09-09-07, 08:43 AM
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Late at night I switch my Planet Bike Superflash blinkie to continuous mode to avoid the "hypnosis" effect I've heard blinkies have on drunks.
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Old 09-09-07, 08:59 AM
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Originally Posted by contador View Post
round here in Spain roads become specially dangerous on weeck ends:
young people at the wheel,alcohol,saturday night stuff.Last saturday
i had to take my bike about 1am for a half an hour ride and people told me
i was crazy and that i was going to get hit by a car.The question is
how many of you ride in such conditions? (i mean at night during party time)
and do you really find it specially dangerous.
I know many of you start commuting in the middle of the night 5 am or so
but how many of you avoid riding on a saturday night?
only incidents i have ever had was during these times
everyone gets rowdy then
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Old 09-09-07, 09:45 AM
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I live in a redneck college town now. I prefer to bike in the early morning hours and did so quite peacefully in Atlanta, even in the less safe neighborhoods with no problems.
Here it is a different story. Drivers seem to think it is cute to pretend too run you down or try to scrape you with their mirrors even swerving from the opposite lane to do so. I have had some turn around and try it again. I know of other bicyclists who have had the same problem here.
I know it is not safe, but I have had less problem running with no lights than with and sticking to the shadows.
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Old 09-09-07, 11:18 AM
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Saludos contador, I've been to Spain and there's one big difference between riding at night in your country compared to here in the USA. In Spain, a much larger percentage of the population is awake and out on the streets at 1 or 2 am than almost any other place in the world. After all the tapas, paella, sangria, music, singing, dancing, they have to go home and sleep. It seemed like every night of the week I would see many people out late in every city. In your case, I would be concerned about riding a bicycle at 1 or 2 am on a Saturday on the main city streets. I would pick a route that would avoid the main streets where people are driving along at high speed, where a small mistake by a driver would cause big danger to the bicyclist.

Here is the USA, most city streets are nearly vacant at 1 am or 2 am, even in our largest cities. Regardless, I pick my night time riding routes with safety in mind. Of course, I have good lights and reflective items so cars can see me from far away also.
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Old 09-09-07, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by zephyr View Post
Saludos contador, I've been to Spain and there's one big difference between riding at night in your country compared to here in the USA. In Spain, a much larger percentage of the population is awake and out on the streets at 1 or 2 am than almost any other place in the world. After all the tapas, paella, sangria, music, singing, dancing, they have to go home and sleep. It seemed like every night of the week I would see many people out late in every city. In your case, I would be concerned about riding a bicycle at 1 or 2 am on a Saturday on the main city streets. I would pick a route that would avoid the main streets where people are driving along at high speed, where a small mistake by a driver would cause big danger to the bicyclist.

Here is the USA, most city streets are nearly vacant at 1 am or 2 am, even in our largest cities. Regardless, I pick my night time riding routes with safety in mind. Of course, I have good lights and reflective items so cars can see me from far away also.
hola zephyr saludos thats true they say "Spain is different" in fact bars dont close untill the next morning
and you can find people partying for three days and things like that. Of course I try to choose the safer route but I find there aint no safer routes round here if you have to ride on a road from one town to another,unless you combine cycling and walking when your absolut visibility is not possible (blind spots and things like that)

thank you
thank you
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Old 09-09-07, 06:49 PM
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I'm with Ken and the others saying that night biking is fine with the proper preparation. As zephyr said, safety with a large number of inebriated people in the wee hours of the night can be dangerous. However, if you stay aware of your surroundings, understand which route will take you home fastest with the least risk and the most visibility, and equip proper lighting on your bike and person, it should be fine.

I bike to and from the university daily, including weekends, in Los Angeles. Much of the time this is after dark, with a lot of cars whizzing by, and neither bike lanes nor sidewalk to ease the commute ("Bicycles share the road" is never a good sign ...sorry for the pun ). Before I took the necessary precautions and purchased bright, dual beam front headlights, and blinking red backlight, blinkies, and a reflective windbreaker, this was at time quite nerve racking. Since then, however, I have yet to have a problem (knock on wood) sharing the road with urban commuters and drunks. If my experience is at all applicable, I would imagine you should be fine.
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Old 09-09-07, 06:51 PM
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Hi, I ride home past midnight two days a week. On Saturday night I ride through to areas where bars are plentiful. And yes, I do worry about drunk drivers and people on the sidewalk stepping in front of me. I ride with a bit of alertness.

However, in my opinion, a worse case than that is the next night, Sunday night, where there is no one on the street. This is when I could be assualted. Riding the lonley streets with my lighted bicycle makes for a clear target. I ride at a fast enough speed and in the center of the road to deter someone from coming off the curb toward me.

In doing this for two years now, nothing has happened to give me reason to stop commuting at late night.
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Old 09-09-07, 08:00 PM
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I've never had to commute that late (well, barring the odd late maintenance night) - but I frequently ride late, at least a couple times a week I'll be riding after 11pm often towards 1am - I just try to focus more, and ride as normal - downtown the streets aren't so different driving wise - it's more the idiot pedestrians I have to watch for when they're all pissed up staggering about.
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Old 09-09-07, 08:06 PM
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I said it many times, I'll say it again: I feel safer riding at night. Yes, even Friday and Saturday nights. The drivers may be younger, drunker and more reckless, but there are so few of them, I can easily track the movements of every single one in sight and see trouble early. Haven't had any close calls or even uncomforably close passes etc. at night.
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Old 09-09-07, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by contador View Post
but how many of you avoid riding on a saturday night?
The short answer is that I do avoid it, although I agree with many of the ride-any-time sentiments expressed here as well...
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Old 09-10-07, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by SouthernGothic View Post
I live in a redneck college town now. I prefer to bike in the early morning hours and did so quite peacefully in Atlanta, even in the less safe neighborhoods with no problems.
Here it is a different story. Drivers seem to think it is cute to pretend too run you down or try to scrape you with their mirrors even swerving from the opposite lane to do so. I have had some turn around and try it again. I know of other bicyclists who have had the same problem here.
I know it is not safe, but I have had less problem running with no lights than with and sticking to the shadows.
Wow, unbelievable. I think I'd combat that with one of those million-candlepower rechargable lights on the front and a helmet cam. Have the cam running, flick the light on as they buzz you, and you should get a good description and maybe a plate on the video. Should also scare the hell out of them. Hand the video to the cops. If they're like the cops in most small college towns, they don't mind paying a few scare visits to moron students, especially if you hand them cut and dried evidence.
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Old 09-10-07, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by contador View Post
hola zephyr saludos thats true they say "Spain is different" in fact bars dont close untill the next morning and you can find people partying for three days and things like that.
Thanks for the tip! I am SO moving to Spain!!!
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Old 09-10-07, 11:38 AM
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I ride whenever I want, as safely and as predictably as I can. Anything beyond that is beyond my control.

But I do feel safer riding at night than during the day simply because of the less traffic and the fact that the traffic HAS to be able to see my lights at night.

The only time I'm ever really worried is at dusk when the sun's at bad angles. There's a section of my route that puts me riding directly into the sun at this time of year, which also puts the drivers going in my direction going directly into the sun.
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