To think that some cyclists ignore cycle lanes to prove a point?

(83 Posts)
Thepursuitofhappiness Sat 31-Aug-13 16:57:14

I enjoy cycling and go a couple of times a week, I'm currently on maternity leave but often cycled to work before that.

I understand that some cycle lanes are dreadful and avoid accordingly - full of potholes, rubbish shrewn, requiring you to stop at each small road turn off etc...

However, I live in Cheshire and there are some brilliant cycle lanes running parallel (ie not just on the kerb) of some major A roads near where I live. Uninterrupted cycle lanes for miles, beautifully maintained and wide. Most cyclists use these. But there are always some who are still determined to use the major A road. Despite holding up traffic. Surely it's a more pleasant experience for everyone if the cycle lanes are used.

AIBU to believe that they are only avoiding the (good) cycle lanes to prove a point, that they have as much right to the road as the cars? I think it's pretty daft to be honest.

Pan Mon 02-Sep-13 21:11:23

Aaaaw don't spoil it for us!! We are being badass speak freak bandits....

VivaLeBeaver Mon 02-Sep-13 22:06:10

Oh I go above 30mph where possible and safe to do so! grin

TiredFeet Tue 03-Sep-13 18:40:06

EmmaBemma I had read the posts. I still don't get it. But then my first boyfriend was knocked down by a car and killed so I guess I don't have the luxury of complacency. If there is a dedicated, separate cycle path it seems madness not to use it.

lljkk Tue 03-Sep-13 20:04:39

I might be able to agree with OP except that I just don't believe that any cycle path in the UK gives cyclists as much priority over road traffic as the parallel road does, not for miles and miles and miles at a time. For me, the faff of having to give way at every sodding cross road or even Driveways is just too tooth gritting, sometimes.

And I'm a slow cyclist.

DH can do 17.5 miles in 45 minutes so that's what.... 23mph? Allowing for give ways & uphills & traffic lights, he must touch 30mph fairly often.

LessMissAbs Tue 03-Sep-13 21:17:13

There is one cycle path round here, in that it is separated from the road. Well mostly. Its about 4 miles long. There are bits where you have to cross road junctions and they haven't dropped the kerb so you have a long detour to the bit where the kerb merges into the road. Then there is a narrow bit where a sign says "Cyclists dismount". At the end it brings you out on the wrong side of the road and abandons you in this position to a busy roundabout. I think its possibly more dangerous in many places than using the road itself.

Good time trialists do 25 miles in well under an hour, 10 miles in about 21 minutes or less are not rare. Clearly for any form of training, the average UK cycle path isn't suitable, and to use them would condemn UK cyclist fitness levels to miserable levels. In the case of my only cycle path, it would get rather boring to endlessly cycle up and down it and not ever reach my destination. I suppose I would eventually expire of either exhaustion or starvation!

TheFuzz Wed 04-Sep-13 11:10:56

There are a lot of very car centric people on this thread who obviously don't cycle very much and think the car is king.

All road users should treat each other with respect. As for not using cycle lanes, have any of you actually ridden on them, and seen the poor design - they often start and finish abruptly and actually place a cyclist in more danger at the end of them.

The common guidance is that if you are cycling in excess of 18mph then you should be using the road. That is 100% of the time for me.

I cycle to work every day covering 20 to 30 miles, and it's quicker for me to cycle double the distance that I would drive to work. I don't use any of the cycle lanes, as they are badly designed, or put me in close contact with pedestrians, which is dangerous.

Cycle paths are very suitable for novice cyclists, or the young, but are inappropriate for a fit, trained cyclist - we are going way to quickly to safely use one of these facilities, and generally I am actually moving faster than cars on the roads.

We all share the road, there are bad cyclists, just as there are bad drivers. Drivers just so happened to be protected by a big metal cage.

Think of it this way. For every cyclist you see, there is one less car sat in front of you in the traffic queue. I leave my car at home on the drive. We are also, one less person in the doctors queue in front of you too.

As a Cheshire cyclist, refering to the OP, I can only think of one place where there is a decent cycle path, the Alderley Edge Bypass ? I haven't found one elsewhere. I don't use the cycle path on the bypass as it's full of large stones which will damage my 23mm racing tyres.

prettybird Wed 04-Sep-13 16:02:20

Agree with all the people who have pointed out that there are many valid reasons for choosing not to go on the cycle lanes.

Speed is one of them: my 12 year old ds now consistently cycles at over 20mph on the flat, so for fit adults it is easy to be higher than that - too fast for more cycle paths. He can easily get to above 30mph on downhills (in fact, when he cycled over the Sychnant Pass with me following him the car, I think he was getting close to 50mph on the way down into Conwy heart in mouth time for me )

And until you yourself have cycled what appear to be good cycle paths, there may well be other reasons for them not to be suitable which aren't immediately apparent. Give-ways, for example, barriers at the entrance, non dropped kerbs, dogs, driveways.....

Pan Wed 04-Sep-13 18:34:48

Yes to all of the points being made, to nail the OP's assumption that we do it 'just to prove a point'. I have school children, being, well, school children in a group on the way to school joshing and playing, and wandering into the lane. Few weeks ago I had a shopper scooter there at 5miles per hour. Ranting about his right to be there. hmm

Of course the fact we are one car less seems to sail gracefully over many poster's heads. Esp given that for (this is worth emphasising) every adult who rides twice per week or more the majority of them are also car owners and have every right to clog up the roads even more. For this fact alone drivers should be feting us with flowers.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now