Grafitti in northwest Portland rages against blinking bike lights

Posted by on July 8th, 2014 at 11:32 am

At NW Raleigh and 20th via @abaraff on Twitter.

The blinking bike lights debate has taken a new turn in Portland.

Two readers have contacted us this week about a message painted in large red letters across roads in northwest Portland that reads: “Fuck you and your epileptic bike lights.”


‘Rolling coal’, deemed illegal by the EPA, enjoys 15 minutes of fame

Posted by on July 8th, 2014 at 10:14 am

If that’s how someone feels about
a Prius owner, I can only imagine what
they think of bicycle riders.
(Photo from Rollin Coal & Raisin Hell
Facebook page)

Prepare to be depressed about the current state of civic relations here in America…

Remember our two recent reports about “rolling coal”? That’s when someone who owns a truck drives it close to another road user and then purposely spews a huge cloud of black exhaust fumes at them. We first reported about it after a man claimed he was a victim of it while riding near Mt. Tabor back in February. Rolling coal made our front page again last month when a truck driver did the same thing to a group of people riding bikes in Beaverton. In that case, one of the people on bikes turned out to be an off-duty Washington County Sheriff deputy who then pulled the driver over. (Note, we initially reported that it was a member of the Beaverton Bicycle Patrol Unit and have since learned that was incorrect.)

Fast-forward a few weeks and it seems “rolling coal” has broken through beyond YouTube videos and truck enthusiast forums and onto the major online news media. Stories this week on Talking Points Memo, Slate, Huffington Post, and other outlets have brought the behavior out of the shadows.


Leading the march: 10 questions for Noel Mickelberry of Oregon Walks

Posted by on July 7th, 2014 at 5:16 pm

noel 320
Oregon Walks Executive Director Noel Mickelberry.
(Photo courtesy Oregon Walks)

Few local nonprofits have changed more in the last few years than Oregon’s main walking advocacy group.

Since 2010, Oregon Walks has renamed itself, relocated its tiny office, passed most of its board seats to new volunteers and shifted its strategy away from direct oversight of local government and toward grant-funded partnerships with other community organizations.

When Executive Director Noel Mickelberry took the reins Monday morning, the group’s transition was complete. We caught up with Mickelberry, 26, as she prepared to start the 24-hour-a-week job to talk about the differences between walking and biking advocacy and the new vision she’s been hired to execute.


Portland Short Track series celebrates 10th anniversary tonight (photos)

Posted by on July 7th, 2014 at 1:01 pm

Short Track MTB Racing -27
The Portland Short Track Series has become a mainstay in the local racing scene.
Tonight marks its 10th year.
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

This evening out at Portland International Raceway, hundreds of people will converge for a special night of racing that marks the 10th anniversary of the Portland Short Track off-road racing series.


The Monday Roundup: Selfies, BOD, anti-cycling psychology and more

Posted by on July 7th, 2014 at 11:01 am

The “cycle snake” in Copenhagen was made
to replace a few flights of stairs.
(Image: Dissing+Weitling Architecture)

This week’s news roundup is sponsored by Western Bikeworks who hopes to see you at the Seattle-to-Portland finish line on Saturday where you can pick up a souvenir t-shirt or score other deals.

Welcome back! We hope everyone enjoyed the long holiday weekend.

Check out the best bike links and news we came across this week:

Explaining bike brain: Portland Carl Alviani is making waves on the web this morning thanks to his thoughtful deconstruction of “why bikes make smart people say dumb things.”

Gas tax increase as our savior: As the federal transportation funding bill showdown gets more and more serious, there are hints that a gas tax increase might be on the table.

Build it and they ride: Speaking of running out of federal funding for transportation, a paltry $28 million in federal funds had a massive impact on bicycling conditions and mode share in Marin.


Fire-biking the Fourth

Posted by on July 5th, 2014 at 9:56 pm

Fourth of July party-13
Ethan Jewett in a blaze of glory.
(Photo J. Maus/BikePortland)

We hope you’re enjoying the long weekend. And how was the Fourth of July for everyone?


As bike tourism takes off in Oregon, so do transit options

Posted by on July 3rd, 2014 at 3:17 pm

For just $30 you can get 7 days of
bus service between Portland and several
destinations along the Oregon Coast.
(Photo: Tillamook Breeze)

As bike tourism matures throughout Oregon, its economic ripple effects are being felt in many interesting ways.

With more people seeking out the growing number of bike adventures being developed by both the public and private sector, transit providers are responding to meet a growing demand for car-free tourism. This demand is growing because for many people, having to drive a car to their riding destination is a major buzzkill, if not a deal-breaker altogether.

Fortunately, we’ve noticed a growing number of developments in bike/transit options that allow people to access destinations they could never (or don’t want to) reach by leg-power alone.


ODOT shares details on big changes coming to Denver Ave near Kenton

Posted by on July 3rd, 2014 at 1:49 pm

ODOT cross-section drawing of what’s coming to N Denver between Victory and Schmeer.

Back in October we shared an early look at the Oregon Department of Transportation’s plans to revamp several paths and roads just north of downtown Kenton. That project, what ODOT calls the OR 99W: N. Victory Boulevard to N. Argyle Street Improvement Project, is now fully designed and is set to begin construction this fall.


Voodoo’s new ‘bike doughnut’ honors CCC’s 20th year

Posted by on July 3rd, 2014 at 12:23 pm

The Community Cycling Center’s commemoration if their 20th year just went to a whole new level. The beloved bike advocacy group announced today that Portland’s iconic Voodoo Doughnuts has created a special menu item in their honor: the bike doughnut.


Weekend Event Guide: America!, parades, racing, and more

Posted by on July 3rd, 2014 at 11:44 am

4th of July bikes on fire-2
This young lady is demonstrating proper bicycle decoration and riding technique for this weekend.
(Photo J. Maus/BikePortland)

Welcome to your menu of weekend rides and events, lovingly brought to you by our friends at Hopworks Urban Brewery.

What better way to celebrate America and freedom than riding bikes? And as luck would have it the weather is poised for perfection.

While many folks are still recovering from Pedalpalooza, there are some great organized rides on the schedule that will beckon you back out into the streets for more. Whether you just want to cruise with your American flag flying high or want to create some fireworks on the race course, check out the rides below before making your weekend plans…

Thursday July 3rd

‘Merica Portland Cruiser Ride — 7:00 pm at Apex (1216 SE Division)


David Rosen looks for success with Sage Cycles brand

Posted by on July 3rd, 2014 at 9:53 am

Riding with David Rosen of Sage Cycles-1
Sage’s new PDXCX model is made in Tennessee.
(Photos J. Maus/BikePortland)

From a garage and a small storage space in Beaverton, David Rosen has launched a new bike company: Sage Cycles.

Rosen, 41, created the brand in 2012 after he saw a niche in the market for bikes made out of titanium. “Ti”, as it’s known in the industry, is a great material for bikes because it’s light, very durable, and offers a ride that can be the perfect blend of stiffness and compliance. The vast majority of bikes you see around town or at the races are carbon, aluminum, or steel. But ti, mostly because of its higher cost, is relatively rare.


MTB news roundup: Arrests and a new trail at Sandy Ridge, new shop in Portland, & more

Posted by on July 2nd, 2014 at 2:28 pm

Sandy Ridge is getting more beginner-friendly
with a new section of trail set to open this
(Photo by Adam Milnor/BLM)

From where I sit it appears 2014 is poised to be a huge year for mountain biking in Oregon. There’s exciting growth and news to report from all over the state. There are many factors for the surge — from a growing momentum for bike tourism development to a successful approach to off-road advocacy that includes collaboration with land managers and a huge amount of volunteer hours and sweat equity.

While high-quality off-road riding options are lacking here in the Portland metro area, advocates have helped create several excellent destinations in Mt. Hood, the Gorge, Vernonia, and beyond.

I’ve let a few stories pile up in my inbox in the past few months, so now it’s time to catch up with all the action in news roundup below…

Mace-toting Couple Arrested for Repeated Harassment of Trail Users at Sandy Ridge


Why are they so angry? (A guest essay)

Posted by on July 2nd, 2014 at 1:15 pm

Sarah Gilbert

This essay was written by local writer and bike tour guide Sarah Gilbert. Her last piece for us was Two moms, two cargo bikes, one big adventure.

Why are they so angry?

This was my first question. I told my story from the day a woman in a Mercedes pulled out from a side street onto Holgate, turning right, when I was riding up the sidewalk with my oldest son on the back of my longtail. But I could have told you about the man in a sports car who swung around a group of us, narrowly skirting my mama bike, as we rode laughing in the middle of a beautiful spring morning east on Everett Street. I said something like “watch it!” and I too was angry but not so much as the pedestrian walking beside us. He told us it was the law to ride single file.


The BikePortland Podcast: The surprising power of bike fun

Posted by on July 2nd, 2014 at 10:33 am

Benson Bubbler Ride - Pedalpalooza 09-10
Bike fun comes in many shapes and sizes in Portland, and it’s impact is profound. This is a scene from a 2009 ride led by our podcast producer Lily Karabaic where she shared the history of the “Benson Bubbler” fountains.
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

With the crazy month of June behind us, our latest edition of the BikePortland Podcast delves into the power of Pedalpalooza and the surprising secrets that make bike fun both a pleasant pastime and a potent pillar of cultural change.


70-mile ‘Cascading Rivers’ route becomes Oregon’s 12th scenic bikeway

Posted by on July 1st, 2014 at 3:56 pm

Faraday Road along the Clackamas River is part of the route.

Just in time for peak summer riding season, the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission has just approved the latest State Scenic Bikeway. The Cascading Rivers Scenic Bikeway is a 70-mile route that takes riders from Estacada to Detroit along the Clackamas and Breitenbush Rivers.

Here’s more about the route from its official description:


New I-84 bridge over Sandy River comes with new bike connections

Posted by on July 1st, 2014 at 1:24 pm

ODOT officials and assorted dignitaries walk across the path alongside the new I-84 bridge over the Sandy River.
(Photo: ODOT)

Things are looking up for bicycle access in Troutdale along I-84 and the Sandy River.


TriMet re-opens Esplanade path under Tilikum Bridge (photos)

Posted by on June 30th, 2014 at 5:45 pm

New Eastbank path under Tilikum Bridge -6
Some of the first riders to ever travel on the new section of path under the Tilikum Bridge on the east side of the Willamette River.
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

After a 14-month closure, TriMet re-opened the Eastbank Esplanade path (which some are calling the Eastside Greenway Trail) between OMSI and SE Caruthers Street this afternoon. The new, 14-foot wide path begins just south of OMSI, goes under the Tilikum Crossing Bridge and then back up to Caruthers just south of the Portland Opera headquarters.

I rolled over today for a closer look.


Organizers enthused about resurgent Critical Mass

Posted by on June 30th, 2014 at 2:38 pm

Critical Mass at the intersection of W Burnside and 14th on Friday.
(Photos by Hart Noecker/Rebel Metropolis)

Portland is poised to enter a new era of bike activism; and it might look a lot like the old one.

After laying dormant for over six years, Critical Mass appears to be showing real signs of life. People who were at the ride this past Friday night have expressed enthusiasm and optimism about how it went and it’s already on the calendar again next month.


Bike limbo, flatlanders, jousting & more! A 2014 Bike Fair photo gallery

Posted by on June 30th, 2014 at 12:58 pm

2014 Bike Fair-2
How low could you go? The bike limbo competition was fierce at Saturday’s Bike Fair.
(Photos by J. Maus/BikePortland)

While the Sprockettes deservedly got most of the spotlight at the Bike Fair on Saturday, there was a bunch of other great action.


The Monday Roundup: Carfree, ‘Curbee’, car abuse & more

Posted by on June 30th, 2014 at 10:15 am

The “Curbee” footrest in action.
(Photo by Steven Vance/Streetsblog Chicago)

Here are the bike links from around the world that caught our eyes this week:

Cycling and social mores: Women in Afghanistan are seeking symbolic equality by the simple act of riding their bicycles. “For us, the bicycle is a symbol of freedom… We’re riding because we want to, because we love to, because if our brothers can, so can we.”

From crooked to carfree: Famous Lombard Street in San Francisco is now carfree on the weekends. And despite howling critics, the trial run went quite smoothly. What Portland streets could be improved by being carfree on the weekends?


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