The Boulder Bike Life
If there was ever a place to get into biking, Boulder would be it.
With some of the best cycling amenities in the world, you can do no wrong pedaling around the city that consistently enjoys top marks in health, well-being and quality of life for its citizens.
And what a wonderful city, as an indiscriminate magnet of personalities, to explore variations of bike-lovers. In such a sampling, one may just find their niche. With some of the best cycling amenities in the world, you can do no wrong pedaling around the city that consistently enjoys top marks in health, well-being and quality of life for its citizens.
From single-track to road trekking, training wheels to back flips, there’s something for all ages and abilities, a sentiment reflected through the diversity of the Valmont Bike Park, which features everything from extreme stunt features to a world-class cyclocross course, and even a track for toddlers.
Around the bustle of Boulder you can see a biker from every quirk and disposition.
With over 300 miles of bike-ways, there’s no shortage of routes to practice the bike life, whichever way you should choose to live it. The Boulder Creek Path spans the heart of the city from east to west. Mountainous trails with breathtaking views lie in wait just on the outskirts of town. Most major streets are lined with bikeways and signage. 300 days of sunshine a year doesn’t hurt either.
Two-wheeled travelers are intermittently treated to performances by the Boulder Bike Underpass Choir, who use the acoustics of Boulder’s more than 75 cemented underpasses to give cyclists some audible encouragement on their commute (To keep up to date with their performances visit their facebook page).
On any Thursday night through the summer, an eclectic and colorful gathering of hundreds of riders in themed costumes can be seen in a joyous parade, weaving their way through pathways and city streets and calling out “Happy Thursday!” to spectators.
Boulder even has a 24-hour vending machine where cyclists can get tubes and patch kits, hex tools, locks and snacks, to keep their journey going regardless of business hours.
Don’t yet have a bicycle, or visiting from out of town? No problem. You can rent one from any of the 21 B-cycle kiosk stations located around town and return it to the most convenient kiosk when you’re done.
Want to own a bike, but don’t know where to begin? Chat with Community Cycles, Boulder’s only non-profit bike shop whose mission is making cycling available to everyone. You can even volunteer at their shop and earn your very own re-purposed bike!
While Boulder sets a standard in terms of viable biking options for residents and visitors alike, it also sets the bar high in safety. Boulderites want bikers to be on the same page with biking procedures to keep everyone on the road (or path) for many happy years to come.
Traveling at night when visibility is down can be precarious. While bike light laws have been in place for over 35 years, they aren’t the same everywhere across the country. Midnight Sun, Inc., a local consumer-oriented company, is trying to change that by making a blue bike light to standardize what they call the “conspicuity” of non-car commuters.
Boulder officials and bike advocates also encourage participants to learn the correct hand signals for integrating with traffic, illuminating themselves at night and strapping on a helmet before they venture out.
The innovations of Nite Ize, another local company that specializes in easy-to-use LED gadgets, also provide all-hours bikers with travelling visibility.
With safety considered, any time is a good time to pedal out and have some fun.