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Sep-16-14 01:41 pm
Category: Social
Forum: Advocacy

When Anne Arundel County placed "Bicyclists May Use Full Lane" signs up, a motorist complained to State Highway who then said that the signs were wrong and bicyclists should always ride far right unless they are travelling within 10 miles of the speed limit. ( You may recall that Md Law follows the Uniform Vehicle Code (UVC) in providing exceptions to keeping right, incl but not limited, to lanes that are too narrow to safely share side by side with a motor vehicle).  When Barry Childress on behalf of Baltimore Spokes contested Md's unique interpretation, MVA and SHA "circled the wagons" and refused to budge.  Fortunately cyclists have a friend in power - Brian Frosh who was former Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee and currently the democratic candidate for Attorney General.  Mr. Frosh, an experienced bicyclist, took the time to write to Md Sec of Transportation Jim Smith (remember when Smith was Balto Cty Executive) to set the record straight.  Mr. Smith responded to Frosh's letter by agreeing that bicyclists should have flexibility to take the lane when needed and copied the SHA and MVA Departments. This exchange shows that to get respect and proper information from SHA and MVA, it helps to have contacts with people in power. My helmet is off to Brian Frosh.  For full details click on today's Baltimore Spokes.

Jul-19-13 06:26 am
Ways to Keep Shipping Affordable - Jeffrey H. Marks
Category: Social

I found UPS Ground to be most affordable way to ship a bike to Washington State.  One needs an address (Bike Shop, friend, tour, etc) where to ship.  Ground Transportation - least expensive method - takes 5 business days, and I normally allow an extra day to be safe.

       The shipping cost depends upon the size of the container - sum of length, width, & height.  One helpful piece of advice that Joe's Bike Shop told me about is that a shipping container whose 3 dimensions total 91" or less costs far less than a container whose dimensions are 92" or greater.  I verified this information on UPS's website and found the one way ground cost for a 91" box is approx $100, but a 92" box is $160.  Consequently, Joe's will try to use a smaller box, even though it means removing the rear rack.  Good padding is needed to protect bike.  Also, Joe's will arrange shipping.  I just need to tell Joe's  where the bike is to go and when it needs to arrive.  Joe's will pay UPS and bill me for cost.  Having  UPS pick up bike at Joe's saves me cost of having to schedule a separate pickup.  It's also possible that a volume shipper bikeshop may be able to get a better price than I could obtain as an individual.

Jul-03-13 10:18 pm
Getting Caught in Storm at Starbucks Mt Washington
Category: Social
Forum: Ride Reports

With the weather a broken record of intermittent rain and thunderstorms, getting in bike rides has been challenging.  My usual strategy is to ride in the morning before storms hit.  Since it was raining this morning, I waited under the sun came out in the afternoon.  I decided to stop by the Mt Wash Starbucks - with just 3 miles left to ride home. Unfortunately, I neglected to pay attention to the weather.  Next thing I know it was pouring, with lots of lightening. Water was coming through the roof.  Putting up my bike as collateral, I was able to borrow an umbrella to get some chicken soup next store.  As the water kept rising, I remembered that we are in a flood plain, and too much rain will mean a mandatory evacuation. But  not to worry, the rain stopped, the sun came out, and I was able to take my escape route via the pedestrian - bike tunnel under the JFX.  Water was rushing in the stream, but I still had 6 inches of clearance before my escape route flooded out. However, I never saw a rainbow, much less a pot of gold. Anyhow, let's hope for better weather on Gloria's 4th of July ride.

Jeffrey H. Marks

Jan-23-13 12:10 pm
Oregon Ridge Booked on fall Saturdays but Available on Sundays
Category: Social

End of Season Celebration Scheduling - Jeffrey H. Marks

       The EOS Celebration is well before the playoffs and the Super Bowl.  And football games can be anytime Saturday or Sunday.  In fact the Ravens recently defeated  Denver in a game that began 4:30 pm east coast time on SATURDAY, Jan 12.  Especially with the football schedule not having been set, I don't see the possibility of a football game being a good reason to black out SATURDAY or SUNDAY.

Jan-23-13 10:55 am
Oregon Ridge Booked on fall Saturdays but Available on Sundays
Category: Social

Add'l Comment on 2013 End of Season Celebration - Jeffrey H. Marks

      I just wish to mention that Oregon Ridge Lodge is booked for all fall Saturdays in 2013.

Jan-23-13 10:47 am
Oregon Ridge Booked on fall Saturdays but Available on Sundays
Category: Social

The BBC Board would appreciate hearing from you on whether you prefer to have the Nov 2013 End of Season Celebration on Sunday 5 - 9 pm at Oregon Ridge Lodge, or if you would rather switch to a different location, possibly the Md State Fish & Game Hall in Perry Hall, to be able to have the Celebration on Saturday.  Arguments for having the Celebration on Saturday include not having to go to work the next day and getting in a little more riding time with a later Sat Celebration ( 6 - 10pm or 7 - 11pm).  Reasons for having the Celebration 5 - 9 pm Sunday at Oregon Ridge  include (1) the familiar central location, fire, and atmosphere and (2) reducing conflicts with friends & families & other social activities. Spreading Holiday Season Events over the entire weekend rather than just Saturday allows busy people to enjoy more activities.  Please let the BBC Board know whether you prefer Sat at a different location or Sunday at Oregon Ridge.

Dec-11-11 09:20 pm
Category: Social
Forum: Advocacy

Bicyclists should click on the link and let the Park Service know that we want the Blue Ridge Parkway to continue as a full service road, open to bicyclists.  As traffic volumes increase, and more people drive large RV's, the Park Service should have the flexibility to widen the lanes and/or add paved shoulders to keep the Parkway safe for everyone.

        Designating the Parkway as a National Historic Landmark may preclude the Park Service from doing needed modernization.  Promoting the driving experience may be interpreted as  Driving receives priority over other ways to travel, like bicycling; and consequently the number of bicyclists permitted to use the Parkway should be limited to maximixe the driving experience..  It's best to include bicyclists in the planned Parkway users.  Your comments to the Park Service will be most helpful.

Nov-21-11 04:37 pm
Your ideas for next year's dinner/program?
Category: Social

On behalf of the four person committee (Jayne Parks Ridgely, Tom Fedewa, Karen Davidson, and myself) I thank everyone for coming.  Doing the logistics  planning - and thanks for all your  help  - made the committee and me  realize the tremendous dedication and hard  work performed by people like Georgia Glashauser, Gloria Epstein, Bob Carson, and Mary and Barry Meene, and countless others; along with the ride leaders, to make sure things go smoothly.  Without these wonderful people, the BBC might not exist - or else be a shadow.  I thought it most appropriate that Georgia recognize and give Awards to Event Leaders and Key Volunteers. Georgia also lent a touch of humor.  The yellow End of Season Celebration program recaps the BBC's respective Events, ride leaders, club officers, and bike shops that have donated door prizes.  I'm  grateful to LBS (local bike shops) that repair our bikes, employ people, and provide mechanical services for our rides.  In my opinion, local bicycling  businesses also help  to give bicycling visibility and  credibility with  Md's influential business community .

   I feel a key part of the evening is to give bicyclists a chance to socialize and renew old friendships.   We are scattered through a wide area and have  many different interests and riding categories.  Bringing everyone together for a night of recognition, door prizes and socializing is nice.

      New ideas are always welcome.  It's an exciting time for bicycling.  Young people moving into the city are using bikes instead of cars.  Many groups incl the BBC and LBS's  are providing instructions to new riders.  Other groups and advisory committees, from Bike Maryland to Baltimore County Bicycle Master Plan Advisory,   are trying to connect with our   elected officals,, SHA  MVA, and planners   to improve cycling.  Mountain bikers are working hard to restore access to Loch Raven Resevoir.  Racing groups sponsor exciting  Events like the Kelly Cup in Patterson Park. The Kinetic Sculpture Race  shows creativity, engineering, and humor. Insurance companies and health professionals are supporting bicycling..  Some BBC members enjoyed  a fantastic tour of the Pacific Coast a couple months ago.  There's lots  to talk about. Give your suggestions to Gloria Epstein for the winter social.



Jeffrey H. Marks

Due to a threat of thunderstorms and the approaching hurricane, I'm cancelling today's Gunpowder Ride.

Jeffrey H. Marks

Jul-17-11 10:47 pm
Category: Social
Forum: Ride Reports

GREAT PICNIC
        I thank Gloria Epstein, everyone who helped, and the ride leaders for making our picnic special.  Nice to see club members, enjoy tasty food, and great rides.  I commend Bob Wagner for his research in formulating a nice route from Baltimore to the picnic.  Besides passing a blk from my house, Bob showed us scenic shady routes like Pk Heights and the recently completed Deer Pk Bridge over Liberty Resevoir.  In the old days this Deer Park route  was a popular way to reach the Carroll Cty Farm Museum.  I admire the people who did the full 106 miles.  To save my knees for an upcoming trip and avoid the afternoon heat, I lucked out and got a ride back with Rich Burns.  Wonderful day.
Jeffrey H. Marks

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