Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 20 of 26 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
481 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Lately I've been taking advantage of the early sunrises and getting out to ride at 5 am. I get to see the sun rise and avoid the hot part of the day. It's incredibly peaceful and gives a great chance to prepare for the stress of the day to come, and at that time I usually don't have to worry about less-than-attentive motorists.

"Usually" being the key word. At 5:40 this morning on a deserted stretch of rural Wisconsin county highway, I was nearly T-boned by a guy who was obviously half asleep behind the wheel of his little VW. I saw him pull to a complete stop at the intersection and look both ways, and since I was the only thing moving, he had looked right at me, I had the right of way, my blinkies were on, and the sun was up, I figured he had seen me. Naturally, he starts to cross the highway just as I pass, slamming on his brakes within two feet of me. I just yelled "look out!" and continued on.

Not too big of a deal and not the closest scrape I've been in, but it just goes to show that you can never let your guard down, no matter how safe you think you are.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
5,480 Posts
I had an encounter with an on-coming car. I swear the driver was looking right at me. Apparently her mind on the other hand was on a parking spot to her left (my right). Without any signal or indication, she yanks herself over...

Like you, I wasn't hit - just very close - but holy **** was I about to pull out my caveman club during that pause where she stopped and we made eye contact. People have "duh" moments, but the duh factor in some scenarios are considerably higher.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
448 Posts
You’re right about having to always be vigilant. You’re also doing the smart thing by having your blinkies on. I ride at dawn as well, and I live in an area that has quite a bit of bike traffic. I’m surprised at how rare blinkies are. It really is difficult to see a bike or a pedestrian when looking into the sun or driving through shadows. Not that blinkies will guarantee that you will be seen, they really help.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,011 Posts
Oracle7775 said:
Not too big of a deal and not the closest scrape I've been in, but it just goes to show that you can never let your guard down, no matter how safe you think you are.
If you had let your guard down, would it have changed the situation at all? Seems that in this case all that having your guard up accomplished was to stress you out, whereas if you'd have been riding cluelessly along with your ipod blasting, you never would have known how close the guy came to hitting you and would have reached your destination thinking what a smooth ride you had! :)
 

· waterproof*
Joined
·
41,745 Posts
Be extra careful when the sun is low... we had a commuter killed here in TX a couple years ago, riding toward the low morning sun, the driver behind with a dirty windshield never saw him.

Personally, I stay off of roads where the low sun is aligned with my direction of travel, in front of or behind me.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,121 Posts
early AM like that is always danagerous

there are less cars, but the cars that are out there are full of drivers who are generally much less attentive than fully awake drivers. most everyone out at that time has just gotten up, or worse, is on their way to bed...
 

· Registered
Joined
·
141 Posts
i love early rides also. yesterday, a car passed a truck coming straight at me for a head on in my lane. i know he saw me before he pulled out to pass the truck but didn't care and did it anyway. i had enough room on the shoulder to avoid him and gave him the finger as he looked right at me. would of loved to give him a beat down.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
481 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
pacificaslim said:
If you had let your guard down, would it have changed the situation at all? Seems that in this case all that having your guard up accomplished was to stress you out, whereas if you'd have been riding cluelessly along with your ipod blasting, you never would have known how close the guy came to hitting you and would have reached your destination thinking what a smooth ride you had! :)
So, you're saying I should try to be as oblivious as possible, because it is more 'zen'? :D
 

· Registered
Joined
·
481 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Creakyknees said:
Be extra careful when the sun is low... we had a commuter killed here in TX a couple years ago, riding toward the low morning sun, the driver behind with a dirty windshield never saw him.

Personally, I stay off of roads where the low sun is aligned with my direction of travel, in front of or behind me.
Yeah, I though of that, but in this particular situation the sun was behind the guy, so if anything it should have helped him see me better.

The bitter and jaded side of me has started to think the guy did it on purpose just to f**k with me.
 

· Banned
Joined
·
7,191 Posts
Oracle7775 said:
Lately I've been taking advantage of the early sunrises and getting out to ride at 5 am. I get to see the sun rise and avoid the hot part of the day. It's incredibly peaceful and gives a great chance to prepare for the stress of the day to come, and at that time I usually don't have to worry about less-than-attentive motorists.

"Usually" being the key word. At 5:40 this morning on a deserted stretch of rural Wisconsin county highway, I was nearly T-boned by a guy who was obviously half asleep behind the wheel of his little VW. I saw him pull to a complete stop at the intersection and look both ways, and since I was the only thing moving, he had looked right at me, I had the right of way, my blinkies were on, and the sun was up, I figured he had seen me. Naturally, he starts to cross the highway just as I pass, slamming on his brakes within two feet of me. I just yelled "look out!" and continued on.

Not too big of a deal and not the closest scrape I've been in, but it just goes to show that you can never let your guard down, no matter how safe you think you are.
Today was definitely a weird day for riding in Wisconsin- got yelled at by a driver for the first time ever (in wisconsin) today. "Get yo [email protected] @ss off the road"

Charming. Especially since I was towing my daughter in the trailer.

Had this been Indiana or Ohio, I would have expected it- used to get it all the time there. But in Madison?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
481 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
NJcycler said:
i love early rides also. yesterday, a car passed a truck coming straight at me for a head on in my lane. i know he saw me before he pulled out to pass the truck but didn't care and did it anyway. i had enough room on the shoulder to avoid him and gave him the finger as he looked right at me. would of loved to give him a beat down.
I thought that was just a friendly way of saying 'hi!" in Jersey. :p
 

· Registered
Joined
·
481 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
buck-50 said:
Today was definitely a weird day for riding in Wisconsin- got yelled at by a driver for the first time ever (in wisconsin) today. "Get yo [email protected] @ss off the road"

Charming. Especially since I was towing my daughter in the trailer.

Had this been Indiana or Ohio, I would have expected it- used to get it all the time there. But in Madison?
Regrettably, Wisconsin has it's fair share of ignorant jerks, too. Just be glad you're in Madison instead of Milwaukee.
 

· Banned
Joined
·
7,191 Posts
Oracle7775 said:
Regrettably, Wisconsin has it's fair share of ignorant jerks, too. Just be glad you're in Madison instead of Milwaukee.
True dat.

Funny though, I've been in Madison nearly 20 years now and this was the first time anyone's ever yelled at me.

He was an angry one, though. Started honking at me a block from a block away. Best part is it's a wide road so he could have quite easily passed me on the right.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
448 Posts
When I read the comments about the rude motorists I have to count my blessings. I live in an area where there are so many cyclists, runners, and pedestrians that the local drivers pretty much accept the fact that they have to share the road. Not that there aren’t some jerks, but in relative terms, really not many.

There are members of organizations like the Granite State Wheelmen and bwanh.org who have worked hard over the years to make NH safer for cyclists. It’s easy to take things like the three foot law and cyclist friendly roads for granted, but a lot of work went into getting these things to happen. I’m grateful for those that have made the area such a good place to ride. I’ll guess that there are people in the Madison area that have done the same. Never been there, but it has a great reputation.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,651 Posts
The blinkie lights are great, but only when seen from behind. It has been my experience that motorists sometimes think that your light is stationary when seen from the side. Glad you're okay.
 

· turtle killer.
Joined
·
1,854 Posts
seacoaster said:
I live in an area where there are so many cyclists, runners, and pedestrians that the local drivers pretty much accept the fact that they have to share the road. .
One would think so, but it would seem that this is not always the case. It's actually I'd say about 50/50 the days I don't get buzzed, horns laid on for a block behind me, yelled at, flipped off, or otherwise messed with (like the retiree who decided that I needed to learn to ride ALL the way over to the right in the 10' wide shared shoulder on Kolb and passed me, honked then swerved all the way into the lane in front of me, or the ubiquitous diesel truck driver with something to prove..).. and I'm in Tucson, where the environment is ideal for training. Pretty much, I just accept it anymore. I don't recall ever having an issue in more rural WI though.

Interestingly though, yesterday was pretty cloudy early so I put my lights on.. didn't encounter any issues at all, tried it again today same thing... I think I'm going to leave them on and see how long that lasts, I guess they may be better than high-vis clothing and reflective strips when it's daylight too. Oh and I agree about avoiding being back lit by a low sun, that just scares me too... so I skip routes that do that.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
342 Posts
I try and avoid the early morning/dusk hours that drivers might not be fully awake, also try and avoid the commuting times too as you get the aggressive drivers who just can't bare to get home at 5:30, it has to be 5:29....

We've had two cyclist killed in my area over the past month riding at odd hours. One was a father of 2, one of us roadies getting a ride in after dinner around 8pm and was killed by a women on a side country road (beautiful tribute to him at the spot of impact).

The other was a fool who should have known better, riding no lights, dark clothing at 11pm....idiot.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
387 Posts
I think what happens to some drivers is that the actually see you, but the brain tells them 'bike. bikes are slow. I can turn before bike gets here.' The problem is, of course, is that not all of us are that slow and it can be difficult to tell how fast a small object like a bike/rider is moving when it is coming straight at you. That does not excuse the driver's action, but it is something for us as riders to think about.

I always assume I'm invisible and am ready to respond, especially at intersections.

I read once "never ride into the rising sun and never ride into the setting sun." Makes sense, as it can be hard for drivers to see you due to glare.

In this case, I'm glad the driver stopped before hitting the OP. Good cycling karma!
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top