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Half Dome, Yosemite National Park

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Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...

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Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 13, 2009 05:44PM
Anyone else seeing this? We left the valley via 120 and we saw 2 sets of people bicycling out or into the park on this very narrow road with no shoulders. One guy was zooming downhill with a number of cars held up behind him. Another couple, loaded down with their gear, were heading uphill. I don't understand why they are allowed to use this road; it's dangerous for all concerned.
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 13, 2009 06:01PM
Alternatives exist

FYI to avoid this sort of situation
Biking in Glacier National Park is restricted to certain hours each day:

http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/bicycling.htm



The cure for a fallacious argument is a better argument, not the suppression of ideas.
-- Carl Sagan
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 13, 2009 06:09PM
It's legal. About the only place bicycles aren't legal are on freeways. If a bicycle is there and it's unsafe to pass, the motorists are required to wait for a safe opportunity to pass.

One NPS restriction I've heard of on bicycles on regular roads is at Haleakala NP. The top is just over 10,000 ft and a full ride down is about 20 miles and completely downhill. They had three fatalities in less than one year and instituted a ban on commercial tour companies starting rides from inside the park. People can rent equipment and launch themselves, but a commercial tour company can't get permits to launch from inside. They can bring people up to the top for sightseeing before the launch outside the park. When I went a couple of months ago, my family saw lots of people launching from just outside the park boundary (about 7000 ft).

http://www.nps.gov/hale/parknews/downhill-bicycle-tour-moratorium-continues-at-haleakala-national-park.htm

This must be an old photo before the ban:

avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 14, 2009 01:04PM
you see this all the time going up Mt. Diablo in the bay area... every turn you make, there are tons of bicylists.
Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 16, 2009 08:42AM
As an avid cyclist, I've ridden lots of different places. Several years ago, I rode from Yosemite Valley up to Glacier Point. What a fun, challenging, and scenic ride! I also rode up and down Haleakala in Maui, and agree that organized tours for tourists on bikes (as opposed to experienced cyclists) present risks to the participants and others. I'd love to ride the Tioga Road, but haven't yet had the chance.

A few points:

1. When riding down a twisty mountain road, cyclists often go as fast/faster than cars.

2. While there may be some delays before a motorist can safely pass a cyclist, in most cases such delays are minor. It's hard to sympathize that a motorist had to wait an extra 30 seconds - and I have often been that motorist, too.

3. Yes, it is risky, but the largest risk is from inattentive, selfish motorists. The cyclist is taking that risk (unfortunately, bad drivers are not going away) in order to enjoy a beautiful area, similar to the way others enjoy hiking, camping, backpacking, etc. A large number of motorists are careful and considerate drivers, but many are not.

Live and let live!
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 16, 2009 09:00AM
3 words: Share The Road
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 16, 2009 10:20AM
Quote
bill-e-g
3 words: Share The Road

4 words: Follow the traffic laws.

As a driver and a former avid cyclist, it drives me nuts to see both those who don't treat cyclists like they belong on the road, or cyclists who flaunt traffic laws. It doesn't do cyclists any favors to blow through stop signs or fail to signal; that only makes drivers angry. As a cyclist I remember being cut off by drivers who didn't signal. And of course wear a helmet. They can fix almost everything except the brain.
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 16, 2009 01:31PM
Quote
cholla
1. When riding down a twisty mountain road, cyclists often go as fast/faster than cars.

I have also seen them on the wrong side of the road when cornering. A bike on my grill is not something I'd enjoy.
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 16, 2009 01:46PM
Quote
eeek
Quote
cholla
1. When riding down a twisty mountain road, cyclists often go as fast/faster than cars.

I have also seen them on the wrong side of the road when cornering.

Like RVs straddling the centerline?
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 16, 2009 02:10PM
Quote
szalkowski
Quote
eeek
Quote
cholla
1. When riding down a twisty mountain road, cyclists often go as fast/faster than cars.

I have also seen them on the wrong side of the road when cornering.

Like RVs straddling the centerline?

That too!
Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 17, 2009 03:34PM
Interesting postings. I have no problem with people who love to bike...and that includes me( wishing I lived in Davis, CA).
What I find crazy is riding on a road like the part of 120 that has NO shoulders and a dramatic drop off on one side of it as you descend or ascend the valley.
Nuff said.
Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 17, 2009 07:30PM
I've seen multiple bikers going throughout the 120. The last time I was up in the area I saw a guy riding his bike around Tenya Lake heading towards Tuolumne Meadows. After several stops to fish just outside the park, we passed him again as he was ready to go down Tioga Pass. I'm guessing he came from the valley and would probably head back after he went down to Lee Vining. All I can think is how hard that must be to go up Tioga Pass, probably a great workout but I would be dead after that. So more power to them. Plus there are turnoffs for slower vehicles and why not enjoy the scenery that is Tioga Pass.
avatar Re: Bikes on the 120 descent into the valley...
July 17, 2009 08:13PM
Apologies in advance.


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