Ride in KC!
May 15, 2013
The sun is out. The rain is stopping. It’s time to pedal. The hardcore riders may pedal all year round, but now it is the season for anybody that likes to ride their bike. One, two, three, or four wheels; one speed to 27; on the pavement or in the dirt; the bicycle is an incredible way to enjoy warm days.
NO excuses. I know the casual rider can feel intimidated by other riders, magazines, and some shops around town. There is pressure to ride fast, far, and expensive. Just recently, I was passing by a lady who had ridden her one-speed cruiser to the YMCA. She was telling a staff member her story, which ended with "…this silly old bike is not very good. I should get a better one.” It was a nice looking cruiser, and she looked comfortable as she pedaled away. I have responded to blogs where people were asking for help picking out a new bike, and all of the responding posts were like reading a cycling mag: "best components," "lightest frame," or "go to your local bike shop." The Kansas City area has a few bike shops that cater to the casual rider. You usually can tell the moment you walk in the door. If the vast majority of the display bikes start at $600 and go up, and the employees all have on high dollar bike apparel, it is likely this shop has a different love of cycling than the casual rider. It is hard for them to understand the needs and love of the casual rider.
ALL one needs to ride a bike is a little balance, a bike that rolls forward when you pedal it, tires that hold air, and a place to ride. (I will also stress that helmets are a great safety feature, and a bike your size is nice for comfort and control.)
Kansas City is a great place for the casual rider and getting better each year. There are already hundreds of miles of paved trails that can take you from the Blue Ridge Triangle, to Olathe, and up to Shawnee Mission Park. In the next few years, the Kansas City area is expected to have over 1,200 miles of paved trails and bike lanes, webbing the area, and the longest single track dirt trail found in a metropolitan area.
That’s incredible! Don’t be ashamed of what you ride; just get on your bike and RIDE.
Red Bridge Branch