Here in Vancouver, as the sun begins to run and hide behind the mountains a little earlier in the evening and rise a little later in the morning and the rain at times beats down with an almost unrelenting resolve, the temperatures slowly dip towards freezing and the minds of many drift to day dreams of their winter pass times. It is not the time of year most people are thinking about pulling out their bikes, filling the tires and getting ready to ride to work. In fact for most it may be the last thing on their mind. But it is that time of year again, it’s time for Bike to Work Week. Some might question the timing and of our Bike to Work Week and the sanity of those involved, but if you take a moment to reflect you might find that it makes more sense than you would have thought. Because this is about more than just a week of riding to work, no, this is about working towards a change.
This week is about planting a seed and helping it grow. Find a group of committed commuters that can band together and convince others to park their cars for a week and momentum will start to build. If you can find the motivation and resolve to ride for a week in November then there is a chance that you might keep riding afterwords. And riding in better weather than November weather, which isn’t difficult, will be a cinch once you have pedaled in the Novembuary drizzle. Maybe you won’t ride everyday but even once in a while is better than not at all.
Best of all during this week (November 1-7) there are resources to help you ease into the waters of cycling to work. The Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition or VACC for short provides web resources for businesses, individuals and teams to help get involved and motivated. There will also be stations around the city that offer free technical support, hot coffee and snack for commuters, and who doesn’t love free coffee and snacks.
Even though it may seem like an unlikely time of year to start commuting to work by bike, those that do it love it. So pull that bike out of the garage read a couple of the articles below on commuting and get some friends, co-workers or whatever together and challenge each other to ride to work. Who knows you might find you like it and suddenly find that more and more often you leave your car keys at home and take your bike instead.
Commuting 101: A guide to Getting out There – Download the PDF
How to dress for winter riding – Read the Article
Arm and Leg Warmers : Why the will make your ride – Read the Article
Outerwear 101: Enjoying Wet Weather Commuting – Read the Article