Showing posts from July, 2008

We need a freeway, not a bikepath...

Newsweek has two stories up now that people might be interested in:

Why the government wants you to drive more discusses the subsidization of automobile culture by the federal government in the States. The writer calculates the the feds spend approximately $100 billion a year on driving related subsidies. What's the best news?
The Transportation Department reported that Americans drove 9.6 billion fewer miles in May 2008 than in May 2007, a 3.7 percent drop. The result: rising demand for mass transit and declining revenues for the Federal Highway Trust Fund, which is funded by gas taxes. The Bush administration's counterintuitive policy response, as the New York Times reported, has been for the Highway Trust Fund to borrow funds from the department's mass-transit account.

Yes - President Bush pulled money OUT of mass transit to put into the highway system.

And Pedal vs. Metal is about the growing popularity of cycling causing friction between motorists and cyclists, now that…

open letter to the guy who stole my bike wheel

Police in Toronto have recently recovered over 3000 stolen bicycles. An investigation into one notoriously shady bike shop owner has led them to all these bikes, and the "reuniting" process - owners coming in with proof of ownership - has gone very slowly.
I personally think that they're going to end up with at least 2500 bikes that they have to get rid of somehow. Traditionally, this would be done via a police auction, but even if they do this, I can't see them selling 2500 bikes.
Instead, I think that, in this age of active transportation, the cops should search for a good way to use these bikes, and my solution, despite the problem of annual costs, is for the province of Ontario to take these bikes and then hand them out to cities across the province to start up bike share programs. If municipalities balk at the ongoing costs, up the gasoline tax and give the revenue to the cities to cover the bike share program.

As the price of oil is sliding away from the $145.00 …

From Orillia to Coldwater on the Uhthoff Trail

Leading out from Orillia there are a few old rail trails that are fun to ride, especially if you have a cyclocross bike and can put the hammer down to ride at speed for a while.
You can click on all these photos to go to my Flickr page, and look at the large version of these photos if you like

This morning I went north out of Orillia and rode the Uhthoff Trail to a town called Coldwater, which is a 25km trip one way.

The ride is dead flat the entire way. It's also pretty much dead straight - so it isn't exactly the most interesting ride in the world. However, it is really nice to be cycling all alone through forests and past farmland for two hours.

In places the trail is a bit overgrown. It's a shame, but I don't think this trail gets used very much, not like the Oro-Medonte trail which goes between Barrie and Orillia. After turning around in Coldwater, and starting the ride back to Orillia, I passed two ladies on bikes who were going to give up with their ride - worried t…


To go along with this old classicCampy Batman panel, Macleans magazine here in Canada has given us another example of a Batman comic, which, in 2008, just makes you giggle (if, like me, you have a weakness for juvenile humour).

P.S. - You can click on this image to get a slightly bigger, more readable version (once on the Flickr page, click on the All Sizes link and view the Large version).

P.P.S. - if you look at the big version, at look at the newspaper in the Joker's hands, even the headline is funny... Chortle at the Joker's Boner!

And, from this page, here's why the Dutch are awesome - they even have trailside garbage bins designed for cyclists!

Naked, you are blue as a night in Cuba

Yeah, you have to love Pablo Neruda (supplier of my subject line up there).

Peak Oil is even becoming a popular topic in academic and college magazines! This article from the Chronicle mentions that within 10 years of the peak, if we are to come anywhere close to the type of living that we have right now, alternative fuels will have to be able to produce as much energy as Saudia Arabia currently produces, by far the world's largest oil producer. The article is mainly about how colleges and universities need to start reassessing their entire business model in preparation for the end of cheap oil.

I'm really loving my Jamis. You know when a bike stops being some bike that you bought, and becomes your best friend, or your brother or something? My Jamis has pretty much reached that point. I'm currently riding it in training for the Orillia triathlon. I'm only doing the cycling portion, in a relay with my brother and a friend. My friend who is swimming has the hardest job - o…

mariposa folk festival

Holy Cow, I have not been blogging very much. I do have some very valid reasons however... getting married in September, bought a house and moving in on July 31..

pretty busy at work, and busy with the trails for life committee that I'm on in Orillia, specifically helping write a report on Active Transportation that we're going to send to city council. I'll be drawing on some material from my active transportation articles for the report (mainly the calamitous health effects of automobile exhaust from article 2).

Enjoying the first "summery" thing I've done this year, we spent the weekend at the Mariposa Folk Festival. The festival is in Orillia, and we spent the weekend cycling from our house in the north part of the city, along the lake, to Tudhope Park where the festival is situated, mainly on that northward point of land which means that when you're walking around the festival there is water all around you.

My God, it was a gorgeous weekend, with crystal…