Nite Rider

IMG_0889We’re into some of the shortest days of the year right now, and that means commuting home in the dark. Last week I had a close call with an oncoming vehicle turning into me. My little safety light just wasn’t cutting it at the speed I was taking into the corner on my road bike. In addition to the visibility to others problem, I couldn’t see the road very well either. I just had to have faith in my memory of the road that there were no potholes on the route home. It was time for a night time illumination solution.

As it turns out, I already had the solution at home, but hadn’t had time to open the box and read the directions. My friend Jeff F up in Reno hooked me up with some Nite Rider lights! Had I known how easy they were to mount and charge, I would’ve used them much sooner. Even on the lowest setting, I can ride at full speed with high confidence. I don’t use the full bright setting that often, because I feel it might be too bright for oncoming traffic! I’m looking forward to trying the lights off road. A big thank you to Jeff F! You’ve probably saved my life!

Night RiderWe’ve been living in Carson City for just over a month now, and I’ve commuted to work by bicycle for most of those days. Enough time has passed now that it just seems routine. There are some days when I get tired, and I grow weary of changing into my riding clothes so many times per day. I’m quickly snapped out of these feelings though when I think of the alternatives. Trips to the gas station, scraping the frost of the windows, letting the car warm up, finding parking, trips out to the car to get something I forgot… Any time I spend doing extra preparation for cycling pales in comparison to the time wasted preparing the car!

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11 thoughts on “Nite Rider

  1. And you’re saving our planet! I’ve tried conjuring up a bazillion ways to commute here in 417-land, but 15 miles one way on highway makes it difficult. That, coupled with any adverse weather and “adverse” drivers just make it dangerous. Unfortunately, we don’t have bike friendly roads…the signs are up, but drivers generally ignore them. I’d like to “high beam” some of them.

  2. I totally understand. Before I moved into Carson, we lived in the town just to the south…about 16 miles one way from work. I was only able to do the commute about 3 or 4 times this year, and gave up after experiencing the same things you describe. Dangerous traffic, high winds, temps in the high 90’s… It was just miserable in the afternoons. Plus I couldn’t expect my family to wait so long for me to return home.

    After years of contemplating how to make the long commute more practical, we decided to just move to Carson! Problem resolved. Moving is a drastic solution, but it all depends on how bad you want something. It’s been a good move for us!

  3. You forgot not requiring your fellow citizens risk life and limb in a foreign land to secure oil rights so you are comfy while getting to work and back. It’s one of my top reasons to not drive.

    Just wait until you go night-riding with that set-up. It’s a blast. You can’t see all the dangerous spots, so you often zip right past not knowing you almost died. This means two things. Either you are a better rider than you thought, or you’re lucky to not crash. I’d suggest adding an inexpensive helmet mounted light if you find you like riding at night. It gives illumination where you are looking (whereas the bar mount can’t always) and lets you run the bar mount for great depth perception. Full-moon rides are especially awesome. You can kill the lights for the climb because you only need them for the descents.

    Oh, and blast the highs while commuting. It won’t be an issue for motorists, but you’ll be noticed easier.

  4. I have found what Smudge said to be absolutely true! I ride the trails so much cleaner at night because of the lack of distraction. Use the helmet light to spotlight your line and the bar mount to see what’s directly in front of the tire. You don’t see the stuff that normally makes you a bit nervous. Good times!

  5. Jeff P was talking about doing some night rides out at Centennial this winter. I was thinking it’d be too cold, but he reminded me it’s probably not as cold as my morning commute. So I guess I’ll have to give it a try. Are your lights operational yet, Brent?

  6. Need new mounts and the battery pack for the helmet light needs a rebuild. I still have Mike’s mounts and battery, but should prolly return them soon. Planning on getting some after Christmas. Let me know. Mike might be in too.

  7. I was riding home last night, and I saw a person approaching me on the bike path. As I got closer, I saw that he was looking down fiddling with something, and it looked like he had an iPod on. He didn’t see me until I was 6 feet in front of him. With the bright Nite Riders, he must’ve thought that a car was bearing down on him, because he jumped 3 feet in the air and cried out. I couldn’t tell in the dark for sure, but I thought I saw poop leave his body! I yelled back in apology. And of course my bell was on my other bike…

  8. perhaps you need a sierra cup and a few other tin cooking items hanging from your bike and person, vis a vis, mr. pither on his cycling tour of north cornwall. he was very audible from a ways off.

    Pither: (voice over) August 18th. Fell off near Bovey Tracey. The pump caught in my trouser leg.
    Cut to interior of a transport cafe. A rather surly proprietor with fag in mouth is operating an Espresso coffee machine. Pither, a fussy bespectacled little man, in sweater, trousers, is leaning over the counter, talking chattily.
    Pither: The pump caught in my trouser leg, and my sandwiches were badly crushed.
    Proprietor: 35p please.
    He goes back to working the machine.
    Pither: These sandwiches, however, were an excellent substitute.
    Enormous lorry driver comes up to counter.
    Driver: Give us ten woods, Barney.
    Pither: Hello! (the lorry driver looks at him without interest) It’s funny how one can go through life, as I have, disliking bananas and being indifferent to cheese, and then be able to eat, and enjoy, a banana and cheese sandwich like this. (the driver goes off with his cigarettes)
    Proprietor: 35p please.
    Pither Ah! I have only a fifty. Do you have change?
    Proprietor: (with heavy sarcasm) Well I’ll have a look, but I may have to go to the bank.
    Pither: I’m most awfully sorry.
    Proprietor: (handing him change) 15p.
    Pither Oh, what a stroke of luck. Well, all the very best. (Pither proffers his hand, the proprietor ignores it) And thank you again for the excellent banana and cheese delicacy.

  9. Presenter: Ah, well ‘I’m afraid we have to stop the film there, as some of the scenes which followed were of a violent nature which might have proved distressing to some of our viewers. Though not to me, I can tell you. (cut to another camera; the presenter turns to face it,) In Nova Scotia today, Mr Roy Bent of North Walsham in Norfolk became the first man to cross the Atlantic on a tricycle. His tricycle, specially adapted for the crossing, was ninety feet long, with a protective steel hull, three funnels, seventeen first-class cabins and a radar scanner. (A head and shoulders picture of Roy Bent comes up on the screen behind him) Mr Bent is in our Durham studios, which is rather unfortunate as we’re all down here in London. And in London I have with me Mr Ludovic Grayson, the man who scored all six goals in Arsenal’s 1-0 victory over the Turkish Champions FC Botty.

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