Seattle was gorgeous today! Hottest day since last October, high of 71F and 52–and clear!–already at 8:40 a.m. [I still can’t believe I think 52 is warm. This weather-wimpy Southern Californian has totally adapted!] Blue-sky view from the Burke-Gilman Trail on the way to preschool:
This guy was soaking in the sun while smoking a cigarette in front of one of our favorite Henry murals. He had a computer bag nearby so I think he was also waiting for the bus.
One kid down, one to go. Here we are waiting for the light to turn left off Nickerson. Five lanes at this spot, four lanes in most, all pretty unfriendly. Full disclosure: I normally take the sidewalk for Nickerson because I can’t keep up with the fast-moving traffic–there’s a sharrow in the right lane, alongside parked cars. But if there’s a big opening in traffic I’ll take to the road because crossing the long way around in the crosswalks adds over five minutes to our rushed commute.
After preschool we hit the library, but just a quick visit so as not to waste the sunshine.
Since we were just a couple blocks from the Fremont Troll, it seemed like a good day to get dusty. It’s sooooo dusty at the Troll.
Heading past Gas Works Park I yelled at a woman who ran the stop sign from Meridian. There’s something I neglected to mention about yesterday’s Kidical Mass: as we headed out of Gas Works Park along the gravel path to the west of the parking lot, we came across a crash scene. It looked like a car had struck a pedestrian or bicyclist and I quickly turned the group around, I think before any kids realized what had happened. We were able to cut through the parking lot and continue onto the trail. So I lost my cool watching this woman ignore the stop sign at this same intersection one day later. The passenger had his window down so they must have heard me shout, “Nice stop!” a couple feet from their car. Incidents like this always leave me with a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach–mad yelling never feels right afterwards. Maybe I should have said something loud enough, but not angry. I dunno.
To raise my spirits we continued along to UW to check out the new two-way protected bike lanes/cycle track on 40th…but The Ellen Show was on campus and I couldn’t get through with my usual route. Hard to see in my small picture, but it’s solid people beyond the fountain.
Lovely view of Mount Rainier in the other direction…also impossible to see in my small picture.
A nice volunteer directed me around the mayhem and we came across one of the UW self-service bicycle repair stations, situated next to a covered bike corral. While admiring it I heard my name–it was Henry of Liontail Cycles! He was en route to his parked Xtracycle to carry his visiting brother to a sail boat. Just a two-hour tour so he should be back for his new job at G&O Family Cyclery this and every Saturday–what an exciting pairing!
The cycle track looks nice. It’s two blocks long, running along NE 40th Street from the edge of UW at 15th Ave NE to Brooklyn Ave NE. There are currently four-way stops at The Ave and Brooklyn, but it looks like stop lights will be added. I’m curious to see if there will be a push-to-cross button accessible by bike, but that doesn’t seem feasible with a two-way cycle track (well, not for both directions, anyway).
And one last lovely view of Mount Rainier on the way home. It’s right above the. The SUV in front of the red truck, that is. Talk about a lot of big cars. The stop sign runner was in a station wagon, by the way. Carrrrrrrrs!
Today’s miles: 13.3 miles
April cumulative: 82.7 miles
Bikes ridden: 1
April cumulative: 5
April cumulative: 8
I rode home through 40th in the u district last night, and also found those lanes a bit confusing. (On the morning way in, they were totally blocked by trucks still constructing them.) It’s always nice to be protected, though the in and out of the 2 block section was slightly awkward. It’ll probably start making more sense soon. I noticed the traffic lights and crosswalk signals at 40th & 15th have recently been changed–I wonder if there’s a bike signal in the works!
It was awkward getting in heading west for me, too. The Ballard and NE Greenways have intersection crossing markings which would be so nice to have for the diagonal-ish entrance to the lanes. But since the Magnuson Park cycle track doesn’t have that (so confusing to exit that one!), I think it’s not in the “recipe”. But anything new is pretty exciting. Boo for trucks parking there. It’s impossible to know when something is ready for use around here!