Bike safety refresher, plus upcoming rides

In case you haven’t noticed, it’s spring. So it’s time to get your bicycle out.

We’re all a bit rusty on that first ride, so why not review these bicycle safety tips before you hit the road?

These and more can be found at the Washington State Department of Transportation website, www.wsdot.wa.gov:

In Washington, bicycles are considered vehicles, so cyclists must obey all the rules of the road.

•Never ride against traffic.

Scan the road behind you and learn to look back over your shoulder without losing your balance or swerving, or use rear-view mirrors.

Wear a helmet and brightly colored clothing and don’t ride with headphones.

Use hand signals to tell motorists and pedestrians your next move.

Make eye contact with drivers; assume drivers don’t see you until you are sure that they do.

Use lights at night. By law, cyclists should have a white headlight that’s visible from at least 500 feet ahead and a rear reflector or taillight visible up to 300 feet from behind.

Take a ride

Now that you’ve got your bike out and done a few rides, there are a couple of local organized rides coming up you might want to take on.

The first ride on the horizon on May 5 is the Camano Climb.

The ride, sponsored by the Stanwood-Camano Kiwanis, is a scenic 39 miles around the perimeter of Camano Island with views of the Cascade and Olympic mountains, Skagit Bay, Port Susan, Saratoga Passage and Whidbey Island. You don’t have to get on a ferry for this ride.

If 39 miles is too much, you can choose a 24-mile route.

The ride is supported with a map, one food stop and emergency mechanical assistance.

Also, this ride provides a free spaghetti dinner for all riders at the end.

The start and finish is at the clubhouse at the Camano Country Club, 1243 Beach Drive, Camano Island.

You can find a registration form at www.arlingtonvelosport.com. You can register on ride day starting at 7:30 a.m. for $35. Course closes by 4 p.m.

The Skagit Spring Classic takes place on May 12.

This ride, put on by the Skagit Bicycle Club, is also known as the “cookie ride.” Members of the bike club bake thousands of cookies of all types and then load the rest stops with them, along with other snacks and water.

The ride also offers an all-you-can-eat, end-of-the-ride meal from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Along with food, the ride is supported by drivers stationed along the route who will pick you up if you are too tired or if your bike breaks. However, the drivers are not bike mechanics.

You have a choice of four routes:

•The 100-mile Century Ride, through the upper Skagit flats, goes north on Chuckanut Drive, south on the old Samish highway, around Samish Lake, and back to Skagit county.

The Metric Century, a challenging 62-mile route that has more than 2,400 feet in elevation gain and includes the Chuckanut Drive area.

The Rolling 45 is for the rider looking to take on longer distances. The course has a ratio that is about 40 percent flat and 60 percent rolling hills.

The No Sweat 25 Route, a mostly flat ride through northern Skagit County and around the Samish River with views of Padilla Bay and the San Juan Islands.

The rides start at 7 a.m. May 12 at Bayview Elementary School, 15241 Josh Wilson Road, Burlington.

You can register at the website at www.skagitspringclassic.org/ Download the registration form and return it postmarked by May 5 with $35. Register the day of the ride for $40 with cash or check.

Theresa Goffredo: 425-339-3424; tgoffredo@heraldnet.com

Where’s Art?

When we read about a person’s triumphs it’s usually after the fact. This time, we can watch a triumph unfold.

Dr. Art Grossman, 66, of Everett plans on riding 13,000 miles on his bike in 2013.

Every month or so, The Herald will check in on Grossman’s mileage to see if he’s on track. Grossman’s miles so far this year are 3,977.5.

Remember, these are all road miles. Though Grossman leads several cycle classes in the area, including four mornings a week at the Everett Y, he doesn’t count those indoor miles.

So come along for the ride and together we’ll cheer him on.

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