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Another cycling thread.

(22 Posts)
Backinthebox Sun 21-Oct-12 14:02:47

I've had a read of the 'cyclists have a deathwish' thread, and also the 'car drivers are out to get cyclists' thread. And now I'm completely confused as to what the best way for me to get about is! Maybe someone can point me in the right direction.

We live in a rural area, just under a mile from school. Half the journey is green lanes and forest tracks, a quarter is the little side road the school is down, and a quarter is very busy main road (60mph zone.) I have to get DC1 (just turned 5) to school, and take DC2 (2y 1m) with me.

We could walk, and have done in the past. DC1 got tired though, and it took about 40mins round trip. DC2 went in a big off-roader pram. We have also driven in the past, in my big, apparently ridiculous 4x4 (see above re. forest tracks and green lanes though!) It seems a little silly to drive a one mile each way journey, and it's a right bother parking near the school. Recently DC1's stabilisers came off her bike, and we cycle to school (with DC2 on a seat on the back of my bike.) We have great fun atm splashing our bikes through the puddles on the tracks, but as she is still a little wobbly on the bike I make her ride on the pavement for the quarter mile main road section. I follow behind her as I don't think it safe for me to be on the road while not paying full attention to it as I am keeping my eye on a wobbly child. I ride on the road all the way back though. It saves me loads of time above walking, and makes me feel very virtuous for leaving the car at home.

Having read the other threads, apparently a mother who follows her darling to school on their bikes on the pavement is a despicable thing, (and a law-breaker to boot!) But so are mothers who cycle on busy main roads with their toddler on the back of the bike. And drivers of 4x4s who make short journeys they don't need to are beyond the pale.

AIBU not be able to figure out how to get my child to school without breaking the law/wearing her out/putting DC2 in danger/making an unnecessary car journey? It's a bloody minefield, this school thing, and that's before we've even got there!

HeinousHecate Sun 21-Oct-12 14:21:06

launch a hang glider from the roof of your house and glide in? grin

Yokel Sun 21-Oct-12 14:26:38

Just under a mile? Do what you do - or go back to walking - DC1 should find it less tiring as s/he gets older. Does the school have a 'walking bus'? could you start one?

Anything but drive. Taking a 4x4 for such a short journey would be ridic.

charlottehere Sun 21-Oct-12 14:30:03

Home educate.

charlottehere Sun 21-Oct-12 14:30:18

wink helpful

lljkk Sun 21-Oct-12 14:35:01

Fuck what MN says & just follow your own common sense.

cumfy Sun 21-Oct-12 14:56:20

Cycle to the main road, then walk main road.

ChaoticismyLife Sun 21-Oct-12 15:08:24

I like Hecate's idea, either that or a catapult with a hamock type thingy to catch her in at the school, just practice with a teddy at first to make sure you aim right wink

Seriously though I'd say either cycle and walk the main road bit or at least get off when you see pedestrians and push bikes passed them. My pet hate as a pedestrian is cyclists who come whizzing passed me, I never hear them until about one second before they pass me and they make me jump.

HeinousHecate Sun 21-Oct-12 15:23:38

or a zipwire from your chimney to theirs grin

Seriously though, do what is right for you, what feels safest for you and bugger what everyone else thinks.

aquashiv Sun 21-Oct-12 15:33:10

Cycle to school and back which ever way is safest and less hassle.

VivaLeBeaver Sun 21-Oct-12 15:36:40

I would do as you do but if there is a pedestrian coming towards you stop cycling and let them pass. If there are pedestrians going the same way as you get off and push once you get up to them.

maybenow Sun 21-Oct-12 15:36:41

The pavement bit depends on the pavement, if there were ANY pedestrians around then i'd all get off the bikes and wheel them on that section.

But what do i know, I am a cyclist and a driver so i'm clearly a double fuckwit sad

Trills Sun 21-Oct-12 15:38:24

YABU to be making such a big deal of a one mile journey.

GoSakuramachi Sun 21-Oct-12 15:38:54

Just walk. If your 5 year old can't walk less than a mile, they certainly should be practising! My 3 year old can walk twice that far.

maddening Sun 21-Oct-12 16:03:56

Walk the bikes along the quarter of a mile pavement?

overmydeadbody Sun 21-Oct-12 16:10:46

Do what you do but either walk your bike along the busy road section on the pavement or just get off your bike and walk if you see a pedestrian. If it's an empty pavement and you're safer there than on the road then use it. I'm sure you're careful and give way to pedestrians already.

I know it is breaking the law to cycle on the pavement, but there are times when your safety is more important than the law. The law is there to keep pedestrians safe. If there are no pedestrians cycle carefully or walk your bike along the pavement behind your DD.

Cycling is great. But whatever you do as a cyclist, you can't win.

maybenow Sun 21-Oct-12 16:13:39

yes, i would cycle on a pavement alongside an out of town 60mph road where nobody ever walks.

but if i see a pedestrian i'd stop and let them past and if more than one get off and walk.

however, i'm surprised that the last bit of your journey to a school is a 60mph road - is there not a 30 or even 20 zone around the school?

PrincessSymbian Sun 21-Oct-12 16:21:00

What your doing with the bikes sounds fine to me.

Backinthebox Sun 21-Oct-12 19:35:05

It's the middle bit that is the busy road. The school is down a side road. A couple of you seem to be on the same wavelength as me - ie, it doesn't matter what you say you do, you are doing wrong in someone's eyes. Personally, I think Hecate's zipwire suggestion is inspired, and will be off to the shops to get one first thing tomorrow!

inabeautifulplace Sun 21-Oct-12 20:02:55

If you're going slowly on the pavement and giving way to pedestrians as required, I don't think there's a real issue other than inside the minds of the self righteous.

Fakebook Sun 21-Oct-12 20:08:52

Don't let them cycle on the bloody pavement and follow them on the road. That's not fair to pedestrians. Either walk or take the car. I cannot stand cyclists.

Joiningthegang Sun 21-Oct-12 20:53:36

Your journey sounds lovely (when its not raining) and whether riding on the pavement is ok depends on how many people are walking on the pavement . I think you probably know best - and i think a mile is a long way after school everyday - surely she has only just started school so will be really tired.

Trust your own judgement - you know best x

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