Last Friday evening the team took to the streets at night to test our riding-in-the-dark skills. Decked out with flashing lights and warm clothes, we met up with members of the Claremont Meetup group Adventure Cycling near the Metro station. It was a bit of a change of pace, so to speak, to gather with other cyclists without policymakers or activists or anyone involved representing the city. It was a casual 20-mile out-and-back trip along the Pacific Electric Trail, to Rancho Cucamonga.
Our partners on this ride shared some instructions for our ride, including tips for upcoming tricky intersections as well as avoiding hazards in the dark. With business was dealt with, we shot off into the night, and immediately relaxed into a good rhythm. The trail was great for a night ride, fairly flat and smooth and free of debris, and while there were a lot of intersections for the first few miles, soon it was smooth sailing on the PET.
Our hosts are a fun-loving group constantly bombarding each other with jokes and playful banter—rumor has it they even raced off to an ‘after party’ after our ride! Someone brought a bluetooth speaker to put in their back pocket so we could listen to hip music while we rode, and when we stopped at our halfway mark, we shared around M&Ms, beef jerky, mints, energy bars, etc. Another nice element of this ride was that everyone was able to stay at their desired pace, with some people racing ahead, others hanging back to talk and exchange stories, and some having their own quiet time in the peaceful atmosphere. With great nighttime weather and a cheery ambiance (and no accidents or lost students!) it was a casual and relaxed way to introduce ourselves to night riding.
— Coco Coyle