Thursday, May 26, 2011
Misadventures on the MUP
It got their attention and a collision was avoided. But as I continued on my way, I heard a distinct "and a nice day to you, too!" from the direction of their receding forms. I felt a wave of shame wash over me. Sure, in a perfect world I would have yelled "excuse me" or "watch out" instead. But I yelled the first thing that popped into my head, and if I didn't we could have both been in the hospital right now.
Multi Use Pathways can be difficult for cyclists precisely because of situations like this. The trails are narrow and those who travel along them do not always behave predictably. Joggers wearing sound-proof earphones, rollerbladers veering from side to side, dogwalkers brandishing those terrifying invisible leashes stretched across the path, unsupervised children making spontaneous U-turns on their tricycles... It's a jungle out there. If I could easily do so, I would avoid MUPs entirely, but the alternative route out of town is 10 miles on a very busy road. So I try to be cautious, stick to a moderate pace and hope for the best. How do you deal with MUPs?