I rode on the sidewalk the other day.
I know, it’s terrible. Real bikers just don’t do that. You might run the risk of being hit by a driver who isn’t expecting to see a biker on a sidewalk. Bikes have the same rights and responsibilities on the road as motorists. Take the lane.
All of which I agree with, except for one case: Slaughter Lane in southwest Austin. I’ve ridden on Slaughter in the past, as part of a club ride where we form a “bus” and are treated as such by the cars on the road. But Slaughter is a different animal for a solitary biker. It is a four-lane, divided road with no shoulders. The speed limit is 45 mph, but most drivers do at least 50. It just feels dangerous.
Slaughter Lane. Picture taken on a Sunday morning when traffic was relatively light.
So, the other day when I was on the last leg of our club ride to Kyle, I had a decision to make: Do I ride on Slaughter by myself, or do I take the sidewalk for the last mile and a half?
I thought back to the Road I course I took in April. The instructors told us that if we were uncomfortable doing something out on the road, don’t do it.
So I took the sidewalk. I make no apologies.