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How far to the grocery store?

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.

How far to the grocery store?

Old 10-27-16, 03:03 PM
  #101  
JoeyBike
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Lately my wife has been getting most of the groceries with her car...so I guess when I am eating that food I am car-light. Once a week, at least, I hit Whole Foods (by bike) on the route home from work to pick up the stuff she can't/won't get at the store she shops at. So one grocery pannier and my regular commuter pannier have been enough, along with a very lightweight backpack that folds to fit into a pocket.

I have a better bike (better than my beater/commuter) that can carry more groceries than the trunk of a small car. Whenever my wife gets tired of doing the major shopping I just break out the other bike and haul a big load. Often while packing that bike full of groceries I get compliments about my setup. It's a BEAST.

The distance from Whole Foods to my house is about 3 miles. I have an insulated bag for summer use and Whole Food supplies ice cubes if I need them. Going there on my way home is only 5 minutes off my route. No biggie.
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Old 10-27-16, 03:47 PM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Your circumstances fit exactly into the issue I brought up. How many car free people have sufficient space/equipment/time to either cart home a typical family's groceries by bicycle, or conversely make daily trips to the grocery for each day's meals.
Who knows? I only know in my case I get groceries and make food at home. Until recently I was shopping for myself, my mother, my dog, and the occasional houseguest. Plus other stuff like five gallons of diesel fuel, a case of wine, 60 lb birdseed, or similar. A good cargo trailer is key.
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Old 10-27-16, 04:33 PM
  #103  
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FWIW -- and pardon the digression -- but my choice to go car-free was based on pragmatism, not ideology. I had a small pickup, paid for, ran well. But as my income decreased and medical expenses increased it became hard to justify keeping a vehicle. I was paying for liability insurance even when I didn't drive for an entire month. Some months that money was needed for prescriptions and uninsured medical expenses.

I usually took the bus anyway, and when I resumed bicycling in 2015 that's how I did most grocery shopping and errands.

My cousin lives in a rural area with no public transportation, her husband dumped her and left her with no vehicle, and she needed transportation for her job as a visiting nurse. So I gave her my truck. If I get into a situation where I really need a pickup to haul something I can call her and usually arrange it within a week. Good enough for my purposes.

I'd prefer to still have an automobile. It just wasn't economical considering how little I drove. And my cousin is getting better use from it.
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Old 10-27-16, 05:38 PM
  #104  
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Originally Posted by cooker View Post
Every single person here is well aware of these issues.
Even those who claim that nobody needs a motor vehicle or agree with that claim? Or appear unaware that life changes and life situations may be different than their own little/singular world? Think of the vegetarian and his fan club/supporters.
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Old 10-27-16, 05:54 PM
  #105  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Even those who claim that nobody needs a motor vehicle or agree with that claim? Or appear unaware that life changes and life situations may be different than their own little/singular world? Think of the vegetarian and his fan club/supporters.
None of that has been discussed in this thread. The entire thread has been civil and informative, until a few mean asides started to slip in in the last five days. By the way, I didn't notice you posting on how far you are from a grocery store - did I miss it?

Last edited by cooker; 10-27-16 at 06:02 PM.
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Old 10-27-16, 08:00 PM
  #106  
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The closest real stores are .75 miles Staters, .75 Walmart city store. 1.5 miles another Staters and 3 miles to a full sized Walmart and 3 miles to a Winco. There are 2 Carnicerias about 1.2 miles away as well.

The closest Staters and the big Walmart have bike racks the others don't.
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Old 10-27-16, 09:38 PM
  #107  
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Originally Posted by cooker View Post
None of that has been discussed in this thread. The entire thread has been civil and informative, until a few mean asides started to slip in in the last five days. By the way, I didn't notice you posting on how far you are from a grocery store - did I miss it?
Since you ask and are curious, one mile to Hy-Vee, 2 miles to Fairway, 3 miles to a bigger Hy-Vee with an Aldi across the street, 5 miles to a Walmart Superstore, 6 miles to a Target Superstore. The distance is irrelevant to me

I find at least as important/relevant as the distance to a food store, is how much time is spent food shopping per week or month and/or any associated answers about many people are being provided for by the bicycling food shopper. I suspect that the daily grocery shoppers are not bringing home the groceries for a family that way, regardless of the means of transportation, and probably has few obligations requiring getting home promptly after work.

Last edited by I-Like-To-Bike; 10-27-16 at 09:44 PM.
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Old 10-27-16, 09:39 PM
  #108  
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Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
For those of you who use a bike for groceries, how far one way?
15 miles. 2,300 ft of climbing on the way home.
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Old 10-27-16, 09:57 PM
  #109  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
I suspect that the daily grocery shoppers are not bringing home the groceries for a family that way, regardless of the means of transportation, and probably has few obligations requiring getting home promptly after work.
Yes, one time my wife took the car for a couple of weeks to visit her ailing sister and I had to do some of the shopping on the way home by bike and it was an extra burden. My kids were self-sufficient in getting to and from school and we ate a bit late some of the days during those two weeks, and we were fine. Fortunately you can buy fresh stuff in small quantities once or twice during the week without needing a trailer etc. and then get staples in bulk on the weekend, which in my case involved a 3 km round trip walk with a two wheeled wire cart and it was a bit of a pain, but it certainly seemed manageable to me. For people who have to do it all the time, clearly they find a way, although I don't envy them, especially single parents.
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Old 10-28-16, 02:28 PM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Even those who claim that nobody needs a motor vehicle or agree with that claim? Or appear unaware that life changes and life situations may be different than their own little/singular world? Think of the vegetarian and his fan club/supporters.
Who says?
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Old 10-28-16, 02:44 PM
  #111  
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If we look at the folks here on the LCF forum we can quickly see that life isn't about rules, expectations, hopes, or ideologies. Real life is about situations, and those encompass a broad spectrum. We all adapt in our own way, balancing our needs and preferences within time and financial constraints. That adapting includes every person and household, not only those who opt to be car free or lite.

It doesn't matter that some can be car free even with a family of 5. What matters is what each person chooses in managing his own life, and I, for one, don't assign moral values how people decide to live (within reason).
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Old 10-28-16, 03:53 PM
  #112  
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
Who says?

I think at least 3-4 people on this list... They may not say it out directly but the message is there is you read between the lines.
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Old 10-28-16, 04:13 PM
  #113  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
I think at least 3-4 people on this list... They may not say it out directly but the message is there is you read between the lines.
I'm car free but I may not always be. I'm thankful that it works for me so well. But for many people circumstances that are not easy to control make it difficult or impossible.
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Old 10-28-16, 05:22 PM
  #114  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
I think at least 3-4 people on this list... They may not say it out directly but the message is there is you read between the lines.
No, I don't think it is. A number of people have expressed a dislike for cars (in other threads) and a desire to see changes in the future, but nobody is pretending that cars can easily be dispensed with or suggesting that people who rely on them are morally deficient. When I-Like-To-Bike misrepresents their position as
Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
nobody needs a motor vehicle
he's exaggerating for rhetorical effect, in order to sow dissent and create discord.
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Old 10-28-16, 06:57 PM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by cooker View Post
No, I don't think it is. A number of people have expressed a dislike for cars (in other threads) and a desire to see changes in the future, but nobody is pretending that cars can easily be dispensed with or suggesting that people who rely on them are morally deficient. When I-Like-To-Bike misrepresents their position as
he's exaggerating for rhetorical effect, in order to sow dissent and create discord.
Sure it is easy for everybody to ride a bicycle everywhere, in any weather as long as each trip is less than 10 miles and the rider has good clothing; or maybe you forgot this recent exchange, and this poster for whom several of the "Regulars" posted high fives, and similar posts that have been made by some of the zealots on this list through the years.

http://www.bikeforums.net/19130363-post149.html

http://www.bikeforums.net/19130715-post166.html

http://www.bikeforums.net/19131051-post172.html

http://www.bikeforums.net/19135917-post275.html


You have a very selective memory that filters out the wacky proposals posted by a few of your comrades on this list in the name of Living Car Free.
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Old 10-28-16, 07:30 PM
  #116  
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
Rowan, am I missing something? I don't see how the attachment at the rear dropout is going to work. 1) what prevents the extension just rotating up, ie the back end folding with the dropout sagging to the road? Don't you need a brace from the extension "seatstay" to the bike's seat cluster to keep that from happening? (Even if the bolt through the dropouts was tightened that securely, I would expect it to twist or break. Plus, I would expect the bolt to bend as it is considerably smaller effective diameter than an axle. (For bending, the threads don't count except as crack starters.)

I'm not trying to get down on your bike. I just feel like I am looking at a suspension bridge with the middle one foot of cable missing and hoping that it will be installed before they open the bridge for traffic.

Ben
That is a solid rear MTB axle that is holding the rear dropouts of the main frame, and the suspension swing arm unit together at the bottom. It's a perfectly acceptable way of doing it. Refer to the Utlity Cycling thread and the stickied extrabike thread.

The picture I posted is a first stage of getting bits together... a concept picture, if you like.

There is a brace now that runs from the top of the rear triangle down to the chainstay bridge on the main frame to stop the whole lot from folding together. Before finalising that component, I need to check the BB height to restore the geometry of the steerer tube... although a slightly lower BB would be useful as this is a utility bike, and being able to stay seated with foot on-ground is useful in a suburban environment.

The bike has progressed just a little since that picture. Stem, handlebars, brace, seatpost and seat. I am awaiting a headset, and I am renovating a cartridge BB to go with an old MTB crankset off another donor bike. By the end of next week, I hope to have it going on a test ride. Then comes the extra challenge of designing and/or fitting a rack system. I am also figuring out a system for large panniers or bags.

After that, it will be dismantled again, the relevant braze-ons put in place, painted, and reassembled before commissioning.

The Utility Cycling thread has been highly useful and inspirational.
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Old 10-28-16, 09:02 PM
  #117  
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Hey guys, let's not drag baggage from other threads into current ones. Let's try to avoid arguments instead of looking for reasons to have one. There will never be any peace if everyone drags out some butthurt they once witnessed, heard about, or experienced somewhere on this forum. What's the freakin point of that?
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Old 10-29-16, 05:18 AM
  #118  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Sure it is easy for everybody to ride a bicycle everywhere, in any weather as long as each trip is less than 10 miles and the rider has good clothing; or maybe you forgot this recent exchange, and this poster for whom several of the "Regulars" posted high fives, and similar posts that have been made by some of the zealots on this list through the years.

http://www.bikeforums.net/19130363-post149.html

http://www.bikeforums.net/19130715-post166.html

http://www.bikeforums.net/19131051-post172.html

http://www.bikeforums.net/19135917-post275.html


You have a very selective memory that filters out the wacky proposals posted by a few of your comrades on this list in the name of Living Car Free.
To support a claim of "at least 3-4 people on this list" believing that cars are unnecessary for anybody, you quote a total of two people. One of whom is an infrequent poster and the other is a well known extremist that can only unfairly be represented as typical of LCF.

The fact remains that most people that support LCF don't make the arrogant claim that it's right for everybody given today's transportation infrastructure etc.
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Old 10-29-16, 05:39 AM
  #119  
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I ride about 1 km to a supermarket everyday. I can walk there of course, but unless it rains I prefer the bike. There are two supermarkets closer, one at 0.6 km and one at 0.7, but I don't like those. And there's another one at 1.2, I go there about once or twice a weak to get some specific products. 3 of them are in the city centre, 1 is more outside the centre than my house, I could actually park my car in front of that supermarket, but I'm faster by bike and probably even walking. The ones in the city centre I wouldn't be able to park the car close to them, so I'd have to walk about 0.5 km anyway.

It's not really an issue, even if I have to get groceries for the whole week or something. A big bag on the front rack, and a case of beer I hold in my hand while it rests on the handle bar.
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Old 10-29-16, 07:07 AM
  #120  
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When I moved to Maine, four years ago, I had the fore-sight to position my living quarters close to work/amenities. My supermarket is a twelve-minute walk (when there is ice) and about a four-minute, liesurely ride. All nice and flat.
On the other hand, fifteen miles of rolling hills to my camp, which I also use the A.T.B. for.
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Old 10-29-16, 12:45 PM
  #121  
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
To support a claim of "at least 3-4 people on this list" believing that cars are unnecessary for anybody, you quote a total of two people. One of whom is an infrequent poster and the other is a well known extremist that can only unfairly be represented as typical of LCF.

The fact remains that most people that support LCF don't make the arrogant claim that it's right for everybody given today's transportation infrastructure etc.
I am in agreement with your post and description of claims about what all people need or do not need and the few posters who make them on this list.

True I only quoted recent posts from two posters in response to another poster who stated that nobody on LCF made/makes such claims. I didn't do a search for more examples because I didn't think it necessary to counter that statement. Given Mod guidance I will let the matter drop.
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Old 10-29-16, 03:09 PM
  #122  
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Consolidation had one big chain Safeway buy out it's IGA Competitor, tear down the old store and build a Photocopied store of theirs in it's place
its 3 miles from my house to the east ..

Kroger Owned Fred Meyer is 6 miles and a 2 lane draw bridge away, to the West.

The Small typically Higher Priced CoOp is still in town and Buying more Beer Is just a convenience store run
a few blocks away, or across the Highwau 1/2 block from my door..




'/,
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Old 10-30-16, 08:09 AM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by gerv View Post
I have a half mile trip to the Hyvee supermarket and 2 miles to the "hippie" food. It's called New City Market.

My theory is that if groceries aren't at a convenient distance, you will starting lusting for some vehicle other than a bicycle.
I've always been interested in efficiency, but it was when I really committed to LCF at an ideological level that I started really thinking about efficiency in terms of food. So much of food weight and volume is water, and it's really not hard to cook things like pasta, rice, grits, etc. I keep planning to make bread by kneading dough rich with berries, seeds, maybe some protein powder, etc. and baking it as lumps, maybe in a cupcake pan, or maybe a cake pan, whatever takes the least time to bake.

I've found that once you develop a repertoire of dry foods that store easily for a longer time, it becomes much easier to pick up fresh items every couple days as part of a work commute.
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Old 10-31-16, 01:01 AM
  #124  
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
I've always been interested in efficiency, but it was when I really committed to LCF at an ideological level that I started really thinking about efficiency in terms of food. So much of food weight and volume is water, and it's really not hard to cook things like pasta, rice, grits, etc. I keep planning to make bread by kneading dough rich with berries, seeds, maybe some protein powder, etc. and baking it as lumps, maybe in a cupcake pan, or maybe a cake pan, whatever takes the least time to bake.

I've found that once you develop a repertoire of dry foods that store easily for a longer time, it becomes much easier to pick up fresh items every couple days as part of a work commute.
Making your own bread is a great idea. I've done it for 50 years now, since I was 11 years old. Actually, baking time in the oven is a non-issue. Even a huge loaf will bake through in just over an hour. My favorite no-knead wheat bread takes about 10 minutes to preapre the dough, up to 20 hours of rising time, and about an hour to actually bake a one pound loaf.

You might not save much on weight by baking your own. Most of the weight of a loaf of bread is not the water, but the flour. A quick calculation suggests that 11 ounces of flour makes 16 ounces of bread. Flour is easier to carry than bread of sourse, since you don't have to worry about squishing it.

BTW, the recipe you're describing sounds more like muffins than bread. All those additions would detract from the texture of a yeast bread, but would be delicious in a quick bread like muffins.
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Old 11-07-16, 12:10 PM
  #125  
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I have a mile to the Fred Meyer (Kroger owned store in the PNW) and about 2 miles to the Winco (another locally owned PNW store). If I need to do a lot of shopping I jump on the train outside my condo and catch it to the Fred Meyer in downtown Portland. It's less than a 500 ft walk off the train line.
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