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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Tonight was the ride of silence, which started here in Dallas, TX in 2003 to honor those cyclists who have been killed in car accidents. Thankfully I've never lost anyone that way, but I have been hit by a car and wanted to help raise the awareness level of the local drivers.

I was sort of surprised that the route was only around White Rock lake, which already has a MUT and road that is typically full of both cars and bikes. I thought it would make more sense to hold it in an area more visible to the general public, and maybe have signs or designated riders to explain what was going on to bystanders. In any case, the pics are below, and I'd like to hear from others who attended a ride in their area.
 

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Starting Out

I started out from my office with a few others, and met up with more local riders along the way.
 

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The Crowd Converges

The crowd was visible from a distance. We were positioned maybe in the front third or middle, and more riders kept showing up behind us.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
The Ride Begins

All told, there were over 2000 riders (estimated at 2500). After some short speeches from the organizer and local officials, the ride started with a bagpiper playing Amazing Grace. It was a very odd feeling riding in silence. Usually biking is such a happy experience for me: talking with friends, saying "howdy" to people, even just smiling my big stupid "i'm riding a bike" grin. But this was different. Just thousands of bikes, thousands of bikers, and the droning hum of thousands of tires sounding like the forlorn wail of fallen ghostly riders.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Overall, I have mixed feelings about the event. There was some bike advocacy at the start, and the ride was well organized with police blocking and directing traffic, but I felt that since we weren't in the public eye (and that those who did see us had no idea what was going on) that maybe it didn't raise the awareness it could have. Maybe that would have obstructed too much traffic - but maybe that's the point. I think remembrance is important, but I think that it should be directed so that good come out of it.

They also advocated bike lanes, while I think wide lanes (wide enough for a car and bike to share comfortably) are a better idea, but that's a whole different thread!
 

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los angeles

2500 riders! Wow that's impressive. But y'all are the ones who started this ride afterall.

L.A. had a scant 40 riders show up. Considering this city's population it should have been way more. They were mostly the urban/fixie/hipster crowd that I see at most of the other rides. But that wasn't really the point. The point was to hold a memorial ride and that's what took place. We made ourselves VERY visible, taking whole lanes on Hollywood and Wilshire Blvd's.

A few motorists and peds asked what was going on and we told them (*quietly*).

like you said it was interesting to be on a group ride without anyone talking. Really made the experience one to remember.
 

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Houston

I just blogged about the Houston Ride of Silence but to sum it up I was quite dissappointed with the behaviour of a lot of the cyclists that rode it just like it was a mini MS150 and am kinda glad that I haven't seen any media coverage of the local event as it probably wouldn't put us in a good light...
 
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