20 people came out to explore Mad Campus at University of Washington and I discovered there’s nothing better than a long bike rack for a group shot–kids climbed the rack and parents stood behind them. Photo taken with the TimerCam app by my iPhone wedged in my helmet vent, by the way. This is one of my least crooked results.
We gathered at installation number one, Sentinel, which worked fairly well, but in hindsight, hanging out at a non-climbable piece for a good half hour while waiting for everyone to arrive wasn’t ideal. If we’re in a similar situation for a future ride, I’ll choose a spot around the corner with climbable rocks and running-around space.
I wasn’t sure all the kids would want to hit all 12 installations, but they did! Sadly, number three, Lone Stranger was missing (popped? blown away?).
Also a bummer was the DO NOT CLIMB sign at Wave Sine that was new since the Seattle’s Child article that gave me the idea to ride through the event and mentioned climbing the waves.
The Legend of Jerry Roundtree in Red Square was my favorite because the kids could truly interact with it. They all clustered in the pyramid and explored the cool (as in cool to the touch, but also cool as in kewl, of course!) marble pieces.
An interesting thing happened while heading home. We took the two-way protected bike lane that leaves campus on NE 40th Street. Side note: I think this lane is permanent, but it’s also part of a big Burke-Gilman Trail detour for the time being. While we rode down the bike lane, four faster people took the main lane to the right. I really like having options. Of course I’m biased and think bicycle facilities should be built for all ages and abilities so I can comfortably ride them with my slow, heavy bike or let my kids ride on their own bikes, but having a parallel route for people who don’t want to ride on a bikeway attractive to people of my caliber is important, too. I’d also like if all these new protected bike lanes were twice as wide to allow passing, but just having them is such a great start!
For the record, I suspect many faster riders would still avoid double-wide protected bike lanes in favor of taking the lane on a regular street, but having space for parents to ride alongside children or medium-speed people passing slow-speed people would be terrific.
There are lots of people who avoid the Burke-Gilman multiuse trail–some because it’s too slow and full of inexperienced bike riders (those might be the people in the right lane in the photo above) and some because it’s too fast and full of impatient experienced bike riders (hopefully these people would use this protected two-way bike lane, but they might be holding out for protected one-way double-wide bike lanes).