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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

Old 10-02-17, 03:47 AM
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Originally Posted by drewguy
Is there any discussion of paving the Reformatory Branch?
someone said there was & there are some narrow sections that would benefit from widening. but I like it the way it is









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Old 10-03-17, 08:11 AM
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Originally Posted by drewguy
Is there any discussion of paving the Reformatory Branch?
The plan is to pave the Bedford section, as an extension to the Minuteman. If there are plans for paving the Concord section, I haven't heard about them.

rod
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Old 10-03-17, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by rholland1951
The plan is to pave the Bedford section, as an extension to the Minuteman. If there are plans for paving the Concord section, I haven't heard about them.

rod
You can find a pointer to plan presentations here. These projects tend to move through the system like a deer moves through a python on a warm day in the Everglades, so there should be plenty of time--current estimates seem to range between 2019 and 2022--to enjoy the Reformatory Branch as it is, before we get to enjoy it as it will become.

rod

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Old 10-03-17, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by rholland1951
The plan is to pave the Bedford section, as an extension to the Minuteman. If there are plans for paving the Concord section, I haven't heard about them.

rod
Well, there are aspirational plans for extending the Minuteman through Concord (about another two miles).

Concord is WAY too busy with Bruce Freeman trail right now though.

So don't expect them to even *START* serious planning on Minuteman until after the Minuteman extension from Bedford to Concord line gets closer to start if not completion.

(The Assabet River Rail Trail is expanding at an astonishing rate too.)

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Old 10-03-17, 10:16 AM
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Merging the subjects of "good ride today" and paving the Old Reformatory RT, this past Friday I went out with some friends, all participants over in the C&V forum, to ride the Northern Rail Trail in New Hampshire.

L to R - PastorBobnlnh, myself, Prowler:


We rode from Boscawen to Andover and back, about 46 miles. It was all on the packed gravel, mostly through woods, and my longest non-paved ride ever.



I figure we managed about 12 to 15 mph for most of it depending on the minor surface variations. The slightly slower than road-speed and the enclosing woods sure made it relaxing.





Of course we were 100 miles from Boston.



A nice lunch was provided by Pastor Bob and his wife Ginger and their cabin.



Prowler's sister Sally also joined us there and rode the return trip with us.





I've also ridden parts of the ORRT. One observation is that a decent non-paved surface makes for a different riding experience. West of Bedford the roads are quite nice and commuters looking for a fast run from from, say Concord into town could do worse. Surely the sections through or near Great Meadows could be left as is. There is a price to be paid for "progress". Just my opinion of course.

On the subject of the MM and bike commuting in general, we could use some dedicated education of both drivers and cyclists. Make all the babies stop screaming, take away all the car horns, install hidden speed governors on the bikes of all the Giro Heroes, enforce speed limits and stop sign behavior, teach right-of-way laws to everyone, etc. It would still be stressful, alas.
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Old 10-03-17, 11:29 AM
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maybe speed bumps for the cyclists at road crossings on the MM?

thanks for sharing that ride, Jim. 46 miles on gravel sounds awesome. thought I looked into the Northern Rail Trail in New Hampshire last fall /winter & not sure why I didn't check it out, maybe it was just a bit further than the others I was doing south of me. you make it sound perfect. you start from Eldrige Park near Spencer St? How many hours were you away from your car?

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Old 10-03-17, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6
maybe speed bumps for the cyclists at road crossings on the MM?
Back to the future.

Arlington used to have three feet of inset flat cobbles as you approached the crossings. Helped pick up many a rollerblader caught out by those.

Lexington/Bedford used to have sort-of-cattle gates at the intersections, the gate blocked the path and you had to go around the tight radius narrow paved section around the edge of the gate. Many a tandem or trailer got caught up in those. One in Lexington was so infamous that they finally just left it open.

(I don't know that the tandems with trailers that I see time to time could have made it through any of those. Might also explain why I don't remember trikes on the path when I was younger.)

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Old 10-03-17, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6
maybe speed bumps for the cyclists at road crossings on the MM?
Why not speed bumps for the drivers where the roads cross the MM?
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Old 10-03-17, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by drewguy
Why not speed bumps for the drivers where the roads cross the MM?
good question, but I've found, with all the signage & flashing lights etc, with the exception of one blind curve, all the drivers are overly courteous, stopping when they don't have to
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Old 10-03-17, 09:49 PM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller
Merging the subjects of "good ride today" and paving the Old Reformatory RT, this past Friday I went out with some friends, all participants over in the C&V forum, to ride the Northern Rail Trail in New Hampshire.

...
Jim, that looks like a dandy ride. Bravo!

rod
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Old 10-04-17, 03:20 PM
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I had the chance to put a few miles on this afternoon. I have a heck of a time to get motivated to go for pointless rides with no destinations but I am a cheapskate, so I rarely have a "place to go". I was able to corral my "go as fast as I can" impulses (which is funny becasue "as fast as I can" isn't really very fast at all) and enjoy the ride. The outstanding feature was a relatively short, bikeable path that is part of the Essex County Greenway.



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Old 10-04-17, 04:32 PM
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I rode my commute once again, as I do just about every work day. On the way home approaching Lake Street eastbound I saw a policeman who had accosted a cyclist and giving him grief for not stopping. The guy was handing over something which was possibly some ID. I stopped before crossing with the blessing of the stopped motorists. I think others followed me. As I passed I heard a motorist say "Get off the bike." Huh? If it had been me he was talking to I would have stopped, gotten off the bike, walked not fast across the road while he waited, and gotten back on the bike possible while still blocking his lane. Of course he had nowhere to go anyway.

This morning I head a woman in a car yell at a cyclist behind me "That's not a complete stop." Ho hum.

Other than all that it was a great commute!
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Old 10-05-17, 06:26 AM
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Recent Boston Globe Article. Yes, another catch and release on the Minuteman, this time at Lake Street.

And Howard Louis Carr Jr did yet another segment on the menace of bicyclists recently.

So, yeah, thar be grumpy drivers about. Don't let them spoil your day.

-mr. bill
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Old 10-05-17, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller

This morning I head a woman in a car yell at a cyclist behind me "That's not a complete stop." Ho hum.
Easy enough for her to say when she's propelling her vehicle with the liquified, refined remains of dinosaurs and club moss. Let her pedal that SUV, and see what she says then...

rod
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Old 10-05-17, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller
a motorist say "Get off the bike." Huh? Of course he had nowhere to go anyway. & a woman in a car yell at a cyclist behind me "That's not a complete stop." Ho hum
video taped all my road crossings on the MM last night. every time I stopped, the cars stopped. wutz the point?
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Old 10-05-17, 09:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Ghazmh
I was back on the saddle Wednesday and Thursday for my AM rides and did the same route Friday during my lunch break. Being so close to 2 major mileage milestones how could I not keep on trucking. Today I went out for a 49 mile obligatory spin on the Roubaix which put me at 1000.4 miles for September, a feat which I never planned for until last week when I realized that it was within reach-kinda. The other is that I hit my yearly goal of 6000 miles today as well. 6002 to be exact. With the exception of grocery shopping and local errands my bikes are gonna be parked in their racks for a few days. Now I'm either going to ease up and keep it around 100 miles or less per week until the snow prevents even that or go for bear and make it a 7000 mile year. Until I decide I may just have an extra scoop of ice cream, extra glass of wine, and an extra cheese cheeseburger tonight.
That's awesome, keep it up! That's more mileage than I have on my current bike!

I haven't been able to ride much, even this weekend, but I did finally get a chance to wash my bike after D2R2 (wow!). I also thoroughly cleaned my brakes, chain, and replaced headset bearings - mine were brinelled (steering was notched). The bike is now amazingly quiet to the point where people on the bike path have no idea I'm coming up from behind if I don't yell out "passing left". Only then they start veering left into my path

Originally Posted by jimmuller
I rode my commute once again, as I do just about every work day. On the way home approaching Lake Street eastbound I saw a policeman who had accosted a cyclist and giving him grief for not stopping. The guy was handing over something which was possibly some ID. I stopped before crossing with the blessing of the stopped motorists. I think others followed me. As I passed I heard a motorist say "Get off the bike." Huh? If it had been me he was talking to I would have stopped, gotten off the bike, walked not fast across the road while he waited, and gotten back on the bike possible while still blocking his lane. Of course he had nowhere to go anyway. How about that "vulnerable road user" bill?

This morning I head a woman in a car yell at a cyclist behind me "That's not a complete stop." Ho hum.

Other than all that it was a great commute!
I did my commute yesterday too and saw a familiar beard in Arlington center - this time I did wave but I think it was too late. Oh well.
I did see the young policeman as well. I did not give him a reason to pull me over. I think they expect everyone to put their foot down and not just come to a slow rolling stop, but come on.

“I would like to see the laws change. I don’t think this ‘bikes are equal to cars’ thing should stay on the books,” she said. “We need a separate set of rules. . . . There are more and more bikes out there, and the rules need to change.”
I agree with her. I am not advocating for having my cake and eating it too though. But that's the reality - bikes are not cars, they don't have the same protection and yet share pathways with pedestrians. So yes, we should have separate rules for bikes and enforce them with the same vigor we enforce rules for cars (which, from my experience, is very rarely).
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Old 10-05-17, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6
video taped all my road crossings on the MM last night. every time I stopped, the cars stopped. wutz the point?
They're stopping to avoid getting the failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalk ticket. It's not a cheap one, IIRC. My brother got one in Lexington years ago.
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Old 10-05-17, 11:57 AM
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I decided to reconfigure my 520 for urban riding since it spends most of its life hanging from the garage rafters. I pulled the seat tube cage and mounted a holder for my Kryptonite folding link lock, reinstalled the front rack with its light mount and adjusted the clips on my Ortlieb grocery panniers to fit its rack. I hung my small handlebar bag for the pocket items like phone, keys, etc. Grocery duty will still go to the Montare hybrid with its trailer but for longer rides to farm and produce stores I'd rather be on the 520.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B5OFU9P3GG6DaHhSUENYOGdaWTg

I mounted fenders on the Montare and dug out my old and small Bontrager roll top panniers for the off chance the trailer is really full.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B5OFU9P3GG6DQkVPTk9vMXUzMFU

The Roubaix has been getting love too. Early morning 30 mile spins Tuesday and today. Cold weather kit Tuesday and summer kit today.
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Old 10-05-17, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by athrowawaynic
They're stopping to avoid getting the failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalk ticket. It's not a cheap one, IIRC. My brother got one in Lexington years ago.
I so dislike fighting tickets myself. but I'm not in the crosswalk, in fact sometimes I'm stopped 3 feet from the road. frustrating but I just wave in thanks & get going again. last night one guy had just pulled onto one of these cross streets from a parallel side road so he didn't see me, as I was coming to a stop, he saw me & waved. always trouble when a cager waves. cuz 9 times of of 10 the biker thinks that means they see you & you can go, but actually it means they see you & they are going. knowing this I stopped & he crossed in front of me. so his wave, was in thanks, for me stopping. it's better if you know everyone will stop, or is it? cuz some do not ...
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Old 10-05-17, 12:24 PM
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Timely article:
https://www.bicycling.com/news/delaw...ses-idaho-stop

Jeffrey Whitmarsh, a lieutenant in the Delaware State Police and a cyclist himself, said it’s best when traffic laws reflect how people actually behave on the road. That way, everybody knows where they stand.
Certainly that doesn't mean we should let people run red lights or cyclists shouldn't stop (or at least slow down) at bikepath/road crossing

There's also this interesting common sense tidbit:

Police officials also suggested the requirement that drivers change lanes while passing cyclists, even when there is a double yellow line, on roads too narrow to share side by side. That rule arose from the fact that police often struggle to enforce the state’s existing passing law, which requires drivers to provide a three-foot buffer when maneuvering around cyclists.
Basically, "It's impossible to gauge and enforce the 3ft passing rule, so we're going to make it really clear - you have to change lanes or cross the yellow line".
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Old 10-05-17, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6
video taped all my road crossings on the MM last night. every time I stopped, the cars stopped. wutz the point?
Originally Posted by athrowawaynic
They're stopping to avoid getting the failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalk ticket. It's not a cheap one, IIRC. My brother got one in Lexington years ago.
Believe it or not - people on bicycles are not pedestrians.
Pedestrians have the right of way in marked crosswalks.
Bicyclists in a crosswalk? M.G.L. are currently absolutely silent on the matter.

Unless S. 1905, s t i l l _ s l o w l y _ m a k i n g _ i t s _ w a y _ t h r o u g h _ t h e _ S t a t e _ H o u s e, passes and is signed into law:

Originally Posted by S. 1905
SECTION 26. Section 11 of said chapter 89, as so appearing, is hereby amended by inserting after the second paragraph the following paragraphs:-

When traffic control signals are not in place or not in operation, the driver of a vehicle shall yield the right of way, slowing down or stopping if need be so to yield, to a bicyclist crossing a roadway or intersection at a bicycle crossing marked, signed, or otherwise designated in accordance with standards established by the department, including but not limited to road crossings of bicycle or shared-use paths and intersection crossings of bicycle lanes, if the bicyclist is on that half of the traveled part of the way on which the vehicle is traveling or if the bicyclist approaches from the opposite half of the traveled part of the way to within 10 feet of that half of the traveled part of the way on which said vehicle is traveling. Nothing in this statute shall relieve a bicyclist from the responsibility to yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian in a crosswalk.

No driver of a vehicle shall pass any other vehicle which has stopped at a bicycle crossing to permit a bicyclist to cross, nor shall any such operator enter a marked bicycle crossing while a bicyclist is crossing or until there is a sufficient space beyond the bicycle crossing to accommodate the vehicle he is operating, notwithstanding that a traffic control signal may indicate that vehicles may proceed.
Oh, BTW, the Boston Globe caption is incorrect, "....where a stop sign is in place for bike and pedestrian traffic on the trail." (Pedestrians do not have to stop for stop signs.)

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Old 10-05-17, 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6
I so dislike fighting tickets myself. but I'm not in the crosswalk, in fact sometimes I'm stopped 3 feet from the road. frustrating but I just wave in thanks & get going again. last night one guy had just pulled onto one of these cross streets from a parallel side road so he didn't see me, as I was coming to a stop, he saw me & waved. always trouble when a cager waves. cuz 9 times of of 10 the biker thinks that means they see you & you can go, but actually it means they see you & they are going. knowing this I stopped & he crossed in front of me. so his wave, was in thanks, for me stopping. it's better if you know everyone will stop, or is it? cuz some do not ...
Like turn signals, I don't believe them until the car is halfway into the turn.

Originally Posted by mr_bill
Believe it or not - people on bicycles are not pedestrians.
I know that, and you know that...
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Old 10-05-17, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by athrowawaynic
I know that, and you know that...
And one guy who waved me through the crosswalk down the Cape knew that too.

"We get extra points for hitting a moving target."

One of those moments when you are not quite sure if you should laugh, or sprint. I laughed *and* sprinted.

-mr. bill

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Old 10-05-17, 05:32 PM
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Today was another nice commute day.

Who among you waved at me just outside of Alewife? Was that @automony? Or @mr_bill? I was too occupied to wave back.
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Old 10-05-17, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill
Believe it or not - people on bicycles are not pedestrians.
Pedestrians have the right of way in marked crosswalks.
Bicyclists in a crosswalk? M.G.L. are currently absolutely silent on the matter.

Unless S. 1905, s t i l l _ s l o w l y _ m a k i n g _ i t s _ w a y _ t h r o u g h _ t h e _ S t a t e _ H o u s e, passes and is signed into law:
That was my surprising finding too, when I looked into it - apparently it's legal for a cyclist to be in a crosswalk (really?) but they must yield to pedestrians and cars don't have to stop for them.

Originally Posted by jimmuller
Today was another nice commute day.

Who among you waved at me just outside of Alewife? Was that @automony? Or @mr_bill? I was too occupied to wave back.
It sure was a nice day! I was so inspired by yesterday's commute, that despite the extra hassle I hauled out my heavy bike and biked my daughter to daycare (which I try to do on nice days when she's cooperating). We stopped twice - first to admire the tree wraps, then to look at the butterflies. On the way back I saw @jimmuller again, and this time I think I startled him with my waving - oh look, he noticed! So many evening bugs out but hey, it's October and 80 degrees? I'll take it!

Is it me or are there a lot more people hauling their kids around than a few years ago? Maybe I'm just paying more attention? I see unusual basket/cargo/whatever bikes everywhere and all the time. And today there was a guy unicycling near Alewife.

Also, there's another Minuteman regular that I want to mention - long-bearded guy in a recumbent trike.
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