Another sunny Friday afternoon featured our yellow jersey-clad class cruising down the Pacific Electric Trail and maneuvering hectic streets towards our final destination of the Pitzer in Ontario’s new headquarters in downtown Ontario. While a beautiful ride, there were distinct differences to some of the other cities we have visited throughout the semester. In all of Ontario, we saw no bike lanes. Cars whizzed past us (including one that called out “sexy bike boys,” providing the inspiration for this post’s title), making me very glad to be riding with a large group of brightly appareled classmates, and not on my own. The Pitzer in Ontario building was the headquarters for Wheelhouse, an organization that aims to provide resources to Ontario community members looking to learn more about biking. From offering access to tools to repair bikes to safety classes to a Build-a-Bike program for area youth, Wheelhouse is working to be a biking hub for the community. One of our very own, Cade, will actually be running this program as a full-time job beginning in June!
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 day began by meeting at the Linde Activities Center (LAC) to grab a quick bite to eat; we then biked down to Claremont’s Metrolink station. While we waited for the train, we coincidentally ran into John Trendler of the Pomona Valley Bicycle Coalition! We brought our bikes into the “Bicycle Car,” noted with a big yellow sign. After about half an hour on the train, we got off at El Monte, where we were met by John Lloyd, a history professor and bike activist from Cal Poly Pomona, Amy Wong from Bike San Gabriel Valley and Dan Strich a Mudd Alumni who generously gave a gift to HMC to help sponsor our class. We were also met by Peter Weinberger, the Editor-in-Chief of the Claremont Courier, who agreed to operate a drone with a video camera that would follow us throughout the day while we biked. After our introductions, Amy and Dan explained where we would be riding, and we were off!
Setting the Stage
The Citrus Bikeway is an island in the midst of the car-dominated Inland Empire. It runs through 4 cities, connecting with the PG&E bike trail at its eastern edge. This week we hopped on and headed to La Verne, lead by Doug Strange of Cycling around La Verne.