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Class 3 on bike paths

Old 03-23-21, 09:28 AM
  #26  
linberl
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
I love riding trails full of people and kids, I love seeing families enjoy the trail. Recumbents are great for this since you sit eye level with the people you meet. One does need to anticipate problems and be ready to stop. If you had to put your bike down to avoid a kid than you were going too fast for conditions. The only time I've hit anything on a MUP was on a human powered bike when a dog literally ran under my rear wheel as I passed.
I was riding human powered, and I'm 71 years old on 16" wheeled Bike Friday. I was maybe going 10 mph at most. FYI, it takes less than 2 seconds for a little kid to break free and run into you. I was not going too fast for the conditions - the conditions changed suddenly and with zero warning as the parent failed to keep their grip on the kid. Things happen. And the results will always be worse at 30 mph than 20 mph. No one wants to have to ride <10mph just in case the conditions change in the blink of an eye, so that's why a top speed limit makes sense.
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Old 03-23-21, 04:33 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
- the conditions changed suddenly and with zero warning as the parent failed to keep their grip on the kid. .... No one wants to have to ride <10mph just in case the conditions change in the blink of an eye,
Not to sound like an ahole but that is why you have to anticipate the hazards and just assume the worst. When I see distracted parents, loose kids, retractable leases, earbuds or a combination of these things I slow to stalling speed. Hard to track stand a recumbent but I come close often times. A 15 mph speed limit in those conditions is about 10 mph too high.

It is not just kids either. I knocked a grown man unconscious once, a jogger, when he made a completely unannounced U turn on a MUP. It was an early spring day, first ride in months, so I was flying 20+ mph down the trail. Early morning, only myself and the jogger on the trail. He was running with a dog on a lease, I could see the earbuds from a distance so knew he wasn't going to hear me shouting to him (which I did). Thought I could go far enough to the left, but at the last second without looking he did a U turn right into me. It was on a bridge so I had no escape route. I sat bolt upright, didn't hit the brakes, and we hit face to face. I'm 240# so he flew backward a good 15 feet cracking the back of his head on the pavement. It took him a couple of minutes to get up, his poor dog was scared to death. I sat with him for a good 10 minutes while he recovered. I even gave him my sweatshirt to stop the bleeding from the back of his head. Found his glasses 20 yards down the trail. He didn't want me to walk him home.

Would be easy to blame the guy, he did plenty of things wrong, but still know I should have slowed down. First ride of spring, felt good to have the wind in my sails, but now I always slow to pass.
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Old 03-23-21, 06:36 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
Not to sound like an ahole but that is why you have to anticipate the hazards and just assume the worst. When I see distracted parents, loose kids, retractable leases, earbuds or a combination of these things I slow to stalling speed. Hard to track stand a recumbent but I come close often times. A 15 mph speed limit in those conditions is about 10 mph too high.

It is not just kids either. I knocked a grown man unconscious once, a jogger, when he made a completely unannounced U turn on a MUP. It was an early spring day, first ride in months, so I was flying 20+ mph down the trail. Early morning, only myself and the jogger on the trail. He was running with a dog on a lease, I could see the earbuds from a distance so knew he wasn't going to hear me shouting to him (which I did). Thought I could go far enough to the left, but at the last second without looking he did a U turn right into me. It was on a bridge so I had no escape route. I sat bolt upright, didn't hit the brakes, and we hit face to face. I'm 240# so he flew backward a good 15 feet cracking the back of his head on the pavement. It took him a couple of minutes to get up, his poor dog was scared to death. I sat with him for a good 10 minutes while he recovered. I even gave him my sweatshirt to stop the bleeding from the back of his head. Found his glasses 20 yards down the trail. He didn't want me to walk him home.

Would be easy to blame the guy, he did plenty of things wrong, but still know I should have slowed down. First ride of spring, felt good to have the wind in my sails, but now I always slow to pass.
I was not going too fast for the conditions. 10mph is slow, I'd probably fall over if I tried to go much slower (I can't track stand either). Indeed the parents in the pedestrian lane were responsible for letting their kid go who then ran across the first bike lane to get into my bike lane. I laid down my bike because I didn't want to cause the oncoming cyclists problems in their lane so had no where else to go. There is no way I could anticipate a child 2 lanes over, holding hands with a parent, would get away. No one in their right mind would use the bike lanes if they had to go 5 mph to anticipate "everything". This was not a shared path, it had designated pedestrian and bike lanes. The solution is not for cyclists to go less than 10mph, it is that people/parents/dog owners need to be responsible. But to get back to the original point, going fast on a bike path is a bad idea if there are non-cyclists there. Fast>10/15 mph.
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Old 03-23-21, 10:54 PM
  #29  
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My worst near misses have been when an out of control bike came at me unexpectedly. Three or so times I've had to dive off my bike to avoid a head on collision. That's why we (nowadays my wife is with me most of the time) try to ride off road where there are few others. Fortunately it's pretty easy in socal since there are many places available. Also, there are remote bike paths if that's our preference on a given day.
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Old 03-24-21, 06:37 AM
  #30  
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One of the nice things about an e bike is the fact that you can get going again easily after slowing way down for congestion. Many of the paths in our area also have easy grass bail points to either side and roads that parallel the path. With a fat bike I will often just bail into the grass with a wide berth and go around heavy congestion. Its an easier option for all involved. Sometimes I just bail through the grass and get on the road to bypass long congested sections. I am fortunate in being able to pretty much track stand. I also have a dropper post and can lower my seat and put my feet on the ground.
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Old 03-24-21, 07:42 AM
  #31  
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Guess I'm fortunate that there are no bike paths in my area. I started this thread because I anticipate travelling to some paths, mostly rail trails, and around here they aren't heavily travelled.
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Old 03-24-21, 08:12 AM
  #32  
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If you are in a collision with another path user you could get into trouble. If just riding along below whatever speed limit, bothering nobody, then there is close to zero % chance you will get caught.
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Old 03-24-21, 02:55 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by klevin View Post
Guess I'm fortunate that there are no bike paths in my area. I started this thread because I anticipate travelling to some paths, mostly rail trails, and around here they aren't heavily travelled.
MUPs are a wonderful place to ride. No auto traffic, often lots of nature. Converted rail trail means shallow grades. My local trail is a great place to meet my neighbors. Bigger trails are great places to see and meet people, especially on weekends. Bring a lunch, take a leisurely cruise and take in some sights. The C&O canal near DC is full of history and people. A pleasant way to spend a day.

People on here complain about MUPS mainly because they don't like slowing down. That and other reasons we won't go into. During off hours you can carry some speed, but if you feel like going fast avoid the trails during peak hours, especially on weekends. When there are lots of families you will need to come to a dead stop from time to time.
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Old 03-24-21, 03:40 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
MUPs are a wonderful place to ride. No auto traffic, often lots of nature. Converted rail trail means shallow grades. My local trail is a great place to meet my neighbors. Bigger trails are great places to see and meet people, especially on weekends. Bring a lunch, take a leisurely cruise and take in some sights. The C&O canal near DC is full of history and people. A pleasant way to spend a day.

People on here complain about MUPS mainly because they don't like slowing down. That and other reasons we won't go into. During off hours you can carry some speed, but if you feel like going fast avoid the trails during peak hours, especially on weekends. When there are lots of families you will need to come to a dead stop from time to time.
Yes, I've always been of the view that if you want to ride fast, go on the road and battle the cars. Rail and bike trails should be taken more leisurely, since almost all are multi-use, and you never know what will pop out in front of you. Fortunately, I'm of the age and energy where leisurely paces are ideal.
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Old 03-31-21, 09:47 AM
  #35  
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My bike is unclassed at 1000w, both throttle and PAS and capable of 30+mph, however I rarely ride it faster than 15mph as my commute is pretty short and riding a ridiculous fast pace isnt necessary. I originally went to a powered setup due to the distance I was attempting to commute at the time and riding a heavy cargo bike, it was nice to have a little oomph for the hills. I've not had any issues around where I live but I also keep the speeds down. Biggest problem I've encountered, and someone else mentioned it earlier, is the groups of roadies taking up the entire MUP. Like, I get it, you want to ride together. But ya'll cant ride 4 across like you own the place
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Old 03-31-21, 12:58 PM
  #36  
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Interesting discussion! Ebike users, regardless of type, have made this section of oceanfront path in OC, CA way dangerous for pedestrians and persons who just want to ride they're beach cruisers....just sayin!
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Old 03-31-21, 02:09 PM
  #37  
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There's at least a couple of bike paths in the OC that specifically prohibit e-bikes. Looks like more need that designation, then more importantly, a method of policing. There's a path I used to ride, which is almost always free of other traffic, that is taboo for "e". Been riding a folding (non-e) bike on it recently.
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Old 03-31-21, 02:45 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Just because a bike is in Class 3 doesn't mean it can go 28mph! What it usually means is that it can go faster than Class 1 or 2 (20mph). There isn't any production Class 3 bike that doesn't require at least 150W of rider input to reach 28mph. That locks out 1/2 the people that might buy a Class 3 bike from ever seeing top speed on level ground. I'm 62 and if I'm motivated enough to want to beat that stale green, I can muster much better than Class 1&2 just with my own two feet for at least 10 seconds. Put me on a trail with peds and I could do plenty of damage with no motor in sight. Y'all are splitting hairs in this thread if you want to know the truth. The real issue isn't Class 3. It's the wisdom of allowing bikes on trails. Period. That is the real question. Do cyclists in the aggregate have the discipline and social competence to operate safely around pedestrians on mixed use trails? I wouldn't know. I personally do not bike on trails. I don't like to, and so I don't. If I'm on a bike, I'm on the street. If I hit anything it's likely to hurt me a lot more than anything I might hit, so I try hard not to hit stuff. I am sure there are bike only trails around.
on my bosch its right around 200 watts. I need to check it next time I have a clear path. but it always seems more working going that fast then slower with less assist and pushing the same wattage.
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Old 04-04-21, 09:00 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Jan Feetz View Post
Interesting discussion! Ebike users, regardless of type, have made this section of oceanfront path in OC, CA way dangerous for pedestrians and persons who just want to ride they're beach cruisers....just sayin!
I bicycled in LA long before ebikes were common. It was the bikini's on roller blades that almost killed me.
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Old 04-06-21, 09:42 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
I bicycled in LA long before ebikes were common. It was the bikini's on roller blades that almost killed me.
Good point: the worst bike accident I had -only lasting injury, was caused by a rollerblader in 1998. Any crowded path is risky, on/for all bikes, and for all age groups. Heads up, be nice, and beware.
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Old 04-07-21, 12:37 PM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
There's zero possibility there will be any enforcement of E bike restrictions on bike paths and mt. bike trails. You would literally have to stop the criminal, take a whole lot of photo's, then report to whatever JHA. I'm reasonably certain that if I did so locally, the police charged with enforcing laws that pertain to parks (The Long Island State Parks Police Dept.) is going to pay lip service and do nothing.
Appears that as speed limit IS being enforced, now. This sign was flashing all this past weekend, until very early Monday morning


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Old 04-07-21, 10:41 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by BiciMan View Post
Good point: the worst bike accident I had -only lasting injury, was caused by a rollerblader in 1998. Any crowded path is risky, on/for all bikes, and for all age groups. Heads up, be nice, and beware.
Given the other poster's userid do you really think he meant collision with a rollerblader in a bikini in a literal way?
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Old 04-08-21, 06:05 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Given the other poster's userid do you really think he meant collision with a rollerblader in a bikini in a literal way?
Yes!
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Old 04-08-21, 02:28 PM
  #44  
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Speed limits are easy to enforce, just radar the rider. Total ebike bans are also relatively easy to enforce, it either has a motor or it doesn't. Guess one could claim it is turned off, IDK. Banning bikes by class seems unenforceable to me. No way to verify what class the bike is and easy to reprogram after the fact. You might have to show up in court to beat it though.
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Old 04-11-21, 01:16 PM
  #45  
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Three road bikers got more exercise today because of my e bike. Went out for a short fast ride on my e fat bike on empty rail trail. I always stick with class one on MUP. I was just a mile into a 7 mile stretch and was about two tenths of a mile from crossing a road. At that point three road bikers dressed to the nines entered the trail at the road crossing and were headed in the same direction that I was. With no one on the trail is a rural area I was going about 18 mph. When I crossed the road they could then see me in their mirrors. I had closed the gap slightly because I was already moving.
They soon noticed my fat bike in their mirrors because I was no longer closing that gap. This was into a pretty stiff headwind. I bumped it up to the full 20 mph with another power setting. I started to close the gap again but soon noticed that I was not closing by much. They had upped their game. When they would cross another road they slowed by did not stop. On the other side two of them were standing on the pedals to get back up to speed again. I would slow to a track stand and go. I had good acceleration. On a slight uphill and in open areas of wind, I would close the gap a little bit but not by much.. In protected areas and slight downhills, they would open the gap a bit. I managed to get within a tenth of a mile or so behind them by the end or 6 miles.. They kept on going past the end of the trail and I stopped. I noticed they all backed off and coasted.
I turned around for a tailwind home and cut the speed back down to around 18 mph On road sections, I was around 22 mph. Average speed was 18 mph for 23.1 miles. I just wanted to try out some changes I had made in the bike. Glad to help the roadies get some exercise. Temps were mid 50's with 15-20 mph winds out of the SW. My big old fat bike was pulling about 500 watts out of the battery to maintain top class one speed. Those roadies probably had to put out about half of that but they did a pretty good job of staying ahead and busting any speed limits. I'm sure they never knew for certain that I had an e bike. Climb on that section was 10 feet in 6 miles
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Old 04-12-21, 04:43 PM
  #46  
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The problem is one of speed differences and short sight lines on many sections of bike paths. If one comes around a bend and there are people standing in the path chatting then it becomes a matter of stopping distance. Same problem comes into play with joggers that traveling at half the speed of most people on a bicycle. If you crash into anyone it becomes a no win situation. The reality is that no law enforcement person is going to come and take photos and witness statements, contrary to the b.s. shown on televison. Riding any bicycle on a "bike" path is risky and one needs to be cautious when sight distances are limited. This is nothing new and even when Sacramento put in one of the first bike paths in the early 1970's this was a problem as there was high brush along the sides and people out walking or pushing strollers along the path.

The regulations restrict use of a motorized vehicle and I would bet that means a gas powered engine and not an electric motor with current laws. There are minimum horsepower regs to keep people on scooters off the freeways and there are federal regulations that vary by country (e-bikes are sold all around the world) that are supposed to require a speed governor to limit the top speed of an e-bike. There are open sections on a bike path near my house where I often ride my regular road bike at 30 mph on the flats and 50 mph down the hills. But I do not rely on my bike's brakes to get me out of trouble.

An e-bike for myself and my wife is only so we can haul 20 lbs of photo gear on a rear rack to get to locations. Otherwise even at age 71 we have no difficulty riding 40 miles over hilly terrain with our road bikes. I am looking forward to trying a e-bike with 3-4 inch wide tires on dirt trails as that is not something I would want to do under my own power alone.

It comes down to being one of those increasingly rare people that exhibit common sense and are courteous to others on the roadways, paths, and trails.
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