Texas Bicycling News October 20th 2016

Austin’s cycling infrastructure still needs work

By Laura Hallas


A few days ago I was checking out at the Central Market on North Lamar Boulevard when a man dressed in a bike jersey and shorts turned in my direction. Nice, he said, noticing my helmet. Its terrible out there, he cautioned, nodding towards the street outside. Good luck.
I would need it.
A visitor to Austin might assume that we are an …

Memorial Park – Work Party


Event category: General
Trail: Memorial Park
Saturday, October 29, 2016 – 8:00am
Work Party – Saturday, October 29 – 8am-12pm
Meet at the Rugby Field parking lot.
https://goo.gl/maps/eEnK7g8Dq1u (link is external)
If you do not see anyone at the parking lot by 8:15am then please meet us at the work location which will be at the larger bridge on the Orange Trail.
We will be repairing the bridge on the Orange Trail. We have some on site …

2nd Ward – A Bicycle Opera: Ride a Sonic Bike, Hear Crazy Amazing Sounds

By Steve Jansen


The Kaffe Matthews-produced bicycle opera in 2014 the first of its kind in Houston that allowed folks to ride sonic bicycles that create path-dependent musical compositions via speakers, a digitally programmed score, a computer and GPS receiver coaxed some interesting responses from participants.
Some comments in the guestbook included: …

Weekly Rides

Shawnee Trail Cycling Club


7:30am TRec, Hangover, Recovery
6:30pm FIT
6:30pm D.R.o.P.
6:30pm Cranky Tuesday
6:30pm Wednesday Night Special
6:30pm Thursday Night Rider
7:30am Express
7:30am CPS B & C
7:30am CPS C Extended
7:30am Bridge
7:30am 3 Cities Novice
Wimps and Weenies
FREE Group Riding Class …

Southern Tier Part II

By Ann Metcalfe


Punkin to Thicket, Texas: Steaming Ride through the Big Thicket
Wednesday October 19, 2016, 51 miles (82 km) – Total so far: 258 miles (415 km)
We woke up at 5 am to dense fog, so heavy all of our gear was damp. The clubhouse was our retreat to dry out and pack, which was so welcome. Again, we had it all to ourselves.
We are battling both bugs and sun. It is too hot to zip the tent fully closed, so we load up on bug dope at night and hope for the best. Mac and I are both sporting polka-dot ankles from the bites. Sleeping in a two-man tent when it only cools down to around 75 makes for a hot night’s sleep – we wake up stickier than when we went to sleep. I am still nursing my leaky sleeping pad, so that means blowing it up every 3 hours or I am flat on the ground. We pick up the replacement in Merryville, Louisana on Saturday morning, after which I hope to sleep all night long!
Just as we hit the road this morning, I disturbed a huge nasty wasp who bit me hard on the finger when I swatted him away from my head. I ran back into the clubhouse to escape the brute, who appeared to be regrouping for another assault, leaving Mac to wonder what happened. It hurt badly for several hours, but …

Thicket to Silisbee, Texas: Whataburger!
Thursday October 20, 2016, 30 miles (48 km) – Total so far: 288 miles (463 km)
Awakened at 5 by lightning in the sky to the east. No thunder, just a light show, but it was fun to watch.
After downing canned Starbucks mochas and half a sweet roll each, we packed up the tent and at daybreak (around 7:30 is safe enough to ride) pedaled a flat, straight 14 miles accompanied by constant logging trucks, over to Honey Island, which reportedly had a restaurant. It actually now has two restaurants, because Cynthia Pittman opened up a little deli, store, and grill on the west end of the small town. We rolled up and she was smoking a cigarette on her front porch, and said, sure she could cook us some food even though she didn’t officially open until …

Bike Austin to host pedal to the polls event Oct. 27

Pam LeBlanc


Want to pedal to the polls?
Bike Austin officials will lead a parade of bicyclists on a mile-long ride to an early voting site where they will cast ballots on Oct. 27.
The group will meet at 7:45 a.m. at the Bike Austin offices, 1000 Brazos Street, for coffee and breakfast tacos. From there, they’ll bike to City Hall at 301 W. Second Street.
“I think it’ll be a fun thing to do to encourage people to come out, ride a bike and show power in numbers,” says Mercedes Feris, executive director of Bike Austin. “It shows that people do ride bikes. It shows we have …

Texas Bicycling from Twitter

New Event Added to Texbiker.net Calendar

Texas Bicycling News October 19th 2016

Bike to the Beach


Houston Ride
We are creating a community of cyclists, autism advocates, fitnhowess junkies, and beach lovers to make an impact in Houston and cycle for the 1 in 68 diagnosed with autism.
Saturday, October 22, 2016
Start Time: 6:00 AM
Start: 100+ Mile ride: Judson Robinson, Jr. Community Center, Houston, TX [Map]
Finish: Beach Park #2, Galveston, TX
In 2016, Bike to the Beach is hosting its first Charity ride in the Lone Star State. On October 22, 2016, we are biking from Houston to Galveston, TX to raise funds and awareness for autism.
Bike to the Beach is here to empower our community to achieve their goals, surpass their personal challenges, and to raise funds for autism awareness. We are inviting riders who are interested in joining us as we pioneer a new ride. B2B is looking for experienced riders, as we will not provide our usual …

2016 Enchilada Buffet – Saturday, October 22nd


Fill your plate with Austin trail goodness!
The Enchilada Buffet is the annual measuring stick for Austin mountain biking. The EB is a self supported ride covering five local trails and ~85 miles of awesome Austin biking badassness.
Enchilada Buffet 2016 – October 22, 2016
[Rain Dates:October 29, 2016 – November 5, 2016]
Start Time: 6:30AM Rollout
Where: Walnut Creek Parking Lot
You will want to get to the Walnut parking lot early because it will fill up, plus we will have some race details to go over. There isn’t an entry fee because this IS NOT a Race it’s just a great RIDE with great people through some great trails. In the event …

Real Talk Review | Kask Protone Helmet



Video: Jack Brooks MTB Trails south of Houston



I moved to the Houston area back in July and sold my SC Heckler before coming here, thinking I’d have no need for a 6″ bike in Houston. Shortly after moving I was pleasantly surprised to find out about a local trail system at Jack Brooks Park in Hitchcock. I ended up ordering myself a 2017 Whyte 905 and so far have ridden the Jack Brooks trails 5 times.
If you hit all the loops the total distance is just shy of 6 miles without having to repeat any 2 sections twice. That 6 miles will definitely test your endurance though. There are no long climbs or descents, however there are a ton of …

About 1,000 Longview residents walk, bike to work

By Jimmy Isaac


This time of year, when Dewayne Wages hops on his bicycle and rides to his job each morning, the sun barely peeks over the eastern horizon.
His commute takes him about a half hour from his home near Pinecrest Country Club to the city’s public works complex, where he works in the sanitation department.
It’s a distance of nearly eight miles using …

Bike share service seeks funds to set wheels in motion

By Samantha Douty


As bike share programs become a national trend for cities and colleges, UTA officials look to bring opportunity and mobility to campus.
Bike share programs have cruised onto college campuses such as UT-Dallas, UT-Austin and UT-San Antonio. UTA officials sent out requests for bike share sponsorships in June in an effort to bring the program to campus.
Other campuses require students to have a bike share app to reserve a bicycle. The student enters in the bike’s code into the app, uses the bike for as long as they need, then they return the bike to any of several …

Trek and Specialized re-price some 2017 bikes

by Marc Sani


The 2017 season has hardly begun and the industry’s two biggest suppliers — Trek and Specialized — are already re-pricing their bicycles. Specialized prices went up; Trek’s prices went down.
Bicycle Sport Shop’s Hill Abell, who sells both Trek and Specialized bikes, said the pricing changes are modest. “So the playing field is basically back to level as it has been for a decade leading into this model year,” he said in an email.
Specialized, in a letter sent to its dealers, said it will increase wholesale and retail prices across 55 models effective Nov. 1. Most of the …

Southern Tier Part II

By Ann Metcalfe


Navasota to Punkin: Early start to beat the heat, missed turns
Tuesday October 18, 2016, 55 miles (89 km) – Total so far: 207 miles (333 km)
Yesterday was a needed quiet day of rest for us: fine-tuning little annoyances on the bikes, working, laundry, and resting up for the next week. Bikers: don’t bother with any of the restaurants around the Best Western in Navasota except for Erick’s Mexican Restaurant. We had a fantastic meal here, quick and tons of food for a reasonable price.
We were packed and ready to roll this morning by sunrise, 7:30. At breakfast in the hotel lobby we met a trio of men from Florida, Don, Matt, and John, who are doing centuries every day across the country! They passed us in a blur along the road (see picture), but we got a nice shot of them in the breakfast room. They left San Diego in late September, and even supported with no gear, making 100 miles through the desert that time of year is brutal. Matt said the plastic on his arm skins melted in the heat.
We flew along this morning, with a …

This weekend’s rides: Tour das Hugel Recon (@Nelo’s)! Red Horn!

by Thomas


NOTE: remember to save the date and RSVP to our upcoming party on November 6! RSVP here: http://evite.me/ZKFEx1QdWV
Saturday SRC is co-hosting a recon/training ride for the upcoming Tour das Hugel. You don’t have to be doing the actual TdH to do this ride, so come regardless. The ride has been advertised to several ride groups around Austin and will hopefully have a respectable turnout. The route is only about 50 miles (https://www.strava.com/routes/6755415) which will visit some of the highlights of the TdH in a friendly format (likely several different …

Ladies Ride Updates



Since Daylight Savings Time change is Nov 6th, we will be riding through Nov 1st.
Our ‘Call it a Wrap’ party will change to November 15th at 6 PM at my place.
The Halloween Contest on for October 25th so start thinking about a bike friendly costume you could wear.
With it getting dark sooner, please arrive on time. We will leave promptly at 6:15 pm. If you are running late, feel free to park at the …

Texas Bicycling from Twitter

New Event Added to Texbiker.net Calendar

What I Learned About Traffic Light Sensors

Last week after the City of Houston Town Hall meeting in Kingwood I talked with the representative from Public Works, Joann Clark, about traffic light sensors not tripping the traffic lights when I was on my bike. I gave her three intersections that I frequent and my phone number. She said she would have a traffic engineer call me and we would meet at one of the intersections to see what I was talking about.

Today I got the phone call and agreed to meet the engineer at Woodridge Forest and Northpark Drive with my carbon fiber Stadalli Red Pro 14 to test the traffic light sensors. To reproduce a bie ride experience I put on my cycling apparel and met two traffic engineers. Pictures of the lane where we tested my bike and sensors.

After showing the engineers my bike and all of the carbon fiber they opened the control cabinet to see what the lane sensor was set at. To test the sensor they put an aluminum road sign at the corner of the sensor layout on the street. Next they walked my bike into the sensor area to see if the sensor saw it. It did not. We talked about the amount of metal on my bike which isn’t very much and no magnets at because I use non-magnetic sensors for my Elemnt computer. They adjusted the sensor settings and walked the bike into the area again. Still no pickup by the traffic light sensor. We did this several times with the same result. The engineers were perplexed because they had never tried the sensors with a carbon bike. They tested the sensors with metal bikes and an aluminum bike with a magnet. We moved to another sensor area at the same intersection and still no pickup of my bike. The third sensor area closest to the curb near the east bound Northpark Drive lanes did register the Stradalli this time.

They took the settings from the successful pickup and reset the first sensor. The sensor recognized my bike in the area but not strong enough to trip the sensor to change the light. The sensor could not be adjusted any stronger though to make it trip the light. The engineers were very appreciative to learn about this sensor issue. They are going to advise the City of Houston bike coordinator of what they learned. They are also going to contact the Harris County traffic engineer and TxDOT traffic to see if they have a solution or know about this problem.

What I learned:

  • A magnet could help trip the sensor. I am going to add a magnet from a Garmin cadence/speed sensor to the front wheel and try this at the same spot
  • The “sweet” spot to trip the sensor is at the corner inside the box.
  • Instead of riding on top of the groove where the wires have been buried, ride 6″ inside of the line to the corner.
  • In the City of Houston the cameras mounted above the traffic lights are being phased out because they are not reliable.
  • Some of the grids in the road use pressure (weight) to trip the sensors but those are being replaced because they are not reliable either.
  • If the sensor does not work use the pedestrian button.

I will let them if the magnet works.

Texas Bicycling News October 18th 2016

Cross Fort Worth – Grand Prix of Texas Cyclocross


22 – 23 October 08:30 – 17:00
Buck Sansom Park
4099 Angle Ave, Fort Worth, Texas 76106
‘Cross Fort Worth returns to Buck Sansom Park as the second of three stops on the Grand Prix of Texas Cycloross calendar! It’ll be a big statewide race weekend with …

Houston Parks Board breaks ground on another Bayou Greenways 2020 project

Jack Witthaus


A new park is under construction as the Bayou Greenways 2020 project continues. The Houston Parks Board celebrated the groundbreaking of a new segment of Sims Bayou Greenway on Oct. 13.
An existing asphalt trail is expected to be replaced with a new concrete hike-and-bike trail and native wildflowers, according to a release. The 1.8-mile project is located along the bayou from Heatherbrook Drive to Hillcroft Avenue. The new park project is scheduled to wrap up around spring 2017. …

USDOT Announces Mayors’ Challenge Pedestrian and Bicycle Awards at 2016 Safer People, Safer Streets Summit


WASHINGTON – U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced 18 Mayors’ Challenge Pedestrian and Bicycle Awards at the 2016 Safer People, Safer Streets Summit today in Washington, DC.
“Mayors from all across the country met the Challenge for Safer People and Safer Streets by engaging their communities to improve pedestrian and bike safety and show results,” said Secretary Foxx. “As a former mayor, I know local leadership matters to creating a safe, seamless transportation network, and with national road deaths increasing, leadership from cities like these is especially critical.” …

… 2016 Mayors’ Challenge Ladders of Opportunity Award
Large City Winner: Austin, TX
Small City Winner: Brownsville, TX …

TranAm Southern Tier – CA to FL

By David Hui


Day 18 – Marathon to Alpine: Change of plan; taking a bus ride to San Antonio tomorrow
Tuesday October 18, 2016, 40 miles (64 km) – Total so far: 1,049 miles (1,688 km)
Elevation gain 1122
Cities: Marathon > Alpine
I was going to go to Sanderson this morning, but checking the mileage which is like 60 miles out and there is nothing in that little town. The next town is another 60 miles away. Texas is so spread out with small town and no support. I will ride one section for part of the day and will have to stop. Instead of riding through these small towns and wasting precious time. I decided to …

A Ride to Remember

By Ken Kuntz


Day 43: Fort Hancock, TX to El Paso, TX
Tuesday October 18, 2016, 56 miles (90 km) – Total so far: 2,119 miles (3,410 km)
Starting Point: Fort Hancock, TX
Ending Point: El Paso, TX
Riding Conditions: Very cold (52 degrees) in the early morning, warming to the high 70’s.
Miles Today: 56
Quote for the day: “Nothing is too much trouble if it turns out the way it should.” — Julia Child
Steve got up at 3am to catch a flight from Sarasota, FL to El Paso. So we decided we should also get an early start, and I rolled out of Fort Hancock at 6:15am. Dark. My first plan was to get back on I10, and run it most of the way to El Paso, but at the last minute I changed my mind and went with the Southern Tier route. I rode south about a mile and picked up State Road 20, a small road that parallels I10.
It was cold! I had on plenty of clothes, but got chilled anyway. I thought I would warm up if I pedaled harder, and that didn’t work, but I knocked out some miles quickly.
This route was definitely more scenic. The route goes through several small towns (Acala, Tornillo, Fabens, and Socorro), and lots of …

MTB Series Overall Results

Texas High School Cycling League


After some great racing in Waco the series overall results are tabulated and the awards have already been claimed by our top individuals and teams.
Hopefully we’ll post some pictures later but for now here is the results download: …

2016 Texas High School State Mountain Bike Championship Series

Consists of the following Fall TMBRA races:
Camp Eagle
Tyler Speedwaves
Crowning both individual and combined overall team champions!
Individuals and/or teams competing in all five (5) races will have …

Texas Bicycling from Twitter