Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Colorado Bike Summit

The Titan stands alone on Capitol Hill.
I was fortunate to be able to attend Colorado's first ever bike summit, which finished up a two day run today. It coincided with some chilly weather hovering around 0F, and a blizzard that began last night and continued into the morning. The summit attracted many of the most enthusiastic and connected bike people from around the state and the region. A lot is happening with a variety of bicycle related efforts throughout Colorado, and it was enlightening to gain a better view of the big picture.
Denver Mayor Bill Vidal was the lead-off speaker on Monday.
The first day of the summit featured several speakers including Mayor Bill Vidal of Denver, Dan Grunig of Bicycle Colorado, Tim Blumenthal of Bikes Belong, John Burke of Trek, and Randy Neufeld of SRAM Cycling Fund. Later in the day, breakout sessions focused on complete streets, safe routes to school and the power of mountain biking in your community.

Overall the content was thought provoking and the opportunity to discuss issues with new and different people contributed to a solidly positive experience. At the end of the first day I left convinced that frequent communication within the state's bicycling community would probably do much to identify common goals and facilitate projects.
A wind driven snow storm began as I returned home on Monday night.
I should take a moment to mention that I finished reassembling my Titan on Sunday evening just prior to the bike summit, with the help of my ever eager shop assistant. The Titan had dependably performed for several years during an extended period between service intervals, and is now ready for many more.
Shop assistant / bike fairy using her magnetic wand to identify objects made of ferrous materials. This grin signifies a positive discovery.
On Tuesday, the Colorado Bike Summit continued with a trip to the state capitol for constituents to meet elected officials and to ask for support of bi-partisan house bill 1092. The bill would ensure road rights for bicycles on public thoroughfares or require the necessity to provide alternative routes. The goal is to resolve Blackhawk's unreasonable bike ban, and to stem potential similar actions which might deny bicyclists from access to public roads elsewhere.

Representative Andy Kerr (D) and Senator Greg Brophy (R) are co-sponsors of the bill. After a press conference, Rep. Kerr took a spin on his bike for a photo op in front of the capitol building. It turns out he forgot his helmet, and I happened to be the only person around with one, so I loaned him mine.
Rep. Kerr sporting my trusty old helmet, still featuring the team 290 sticker.
Making sure the moment is adequately recorded for posterity.
Rep. Kerr and Sen. Brophy did a great job talking about how bicycling tourism, industries and activities are important contributors to Colorado's economy, and that arbitrary bike bans such as in Blackhawk create a negative image for the state. Kerr is a regular bike commuter and noted that although bicycling is possible here for nearly every day of the year, today was one of the few exceptions. I won't argue his point of view, except to say that I had a nice ride anyway.
Regardless of weather-related challenges, reduced traffic volume and much slower car speeds equals good riding in my book.


  1. Glad you got pics. I wanted to go but was fighting off a cold. Thanks for the post!

  2. Chris- The summit was a good event and I think accomplished a lot in the way of bringing the Colorado bicycling community together. Let me know if you want to know anything specific. bigdummydaddy gmail com

    Good call with taking care of your cold. It was chilly enough that it would not have been a great time being sick while out and about.