Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Bus Racing

About freezing, overcast and minimal wind this afternoon. It was a terrific day to bike home. The roads were relatively dry and I seemed to get all green lights down Roosevelt Road.

The Lakefront Path was pretty clear but frequently wet. From around Chicago Avenue to Oak Street there was about an inch of slushy snow that made biking kind of treacherous. I initially fishtailed and took this as a strong suggestion I slow it down a bit. Once I got to the Oak Street Curve the snow cleared and I just had wet pavement again. When I bike back to work tomorrow morning I'll have a tougher time as I'm sure most of the puddles will be frozen. I moved at a good clip today; between 16 and 19 mph. After leaving the Lakefront Trail I seemed to get mostly green lights again.

On Clark Street just north of Devon I was passed by a shuttle bus operated by the Robinson Bus Company. It was kind of a tight squeeze between the bus and parked cars. But soon thereafter I passed him when he was caught at a light and there began our see-saw battle through traffic. The lead must have changed four or five times all the way to Evanston. On two occasions when we both waited out the light I did my best to swing out wide so he could pass me without worry. But eventually the congestion enabled me to catch up again and zip by. Just north of Howard he passed me with a warning toot. There he gained a huge advantage because there are no traffic lights for the half mile stretch to South Boulevard. I saw he was delayed by a red light but not long enough for me to catch up. I kept him in sight and hoped to reach him at Main Street but I ended up the one delayed at a red light. Once I got going again I saw that traffic continued to slow his progress and I was able to reel him in eventually retaking the lead at Dempster. The lights were now all green but he must have gotten bogged down. Traffic began to lighten up so I really hammered in order to stay out front. Just as I was approaching my left turn on Clark I saw he was on my tail. I signaled my intentions and he graciously allowed me to take the lane leading up to my victory turn. He must have been glad to see me go.

Distance Traveled: 24.3 miles
Distance to date: 1994.2 miles
Price of gas: $2.59


Fritz said...

Racing the bus is my favorite game :-)

Anonymous said...

Our bus system here (Boise, ID) is rather embryonic, but I do relish my morning commute, the first leg of which involves me flying past gridlocked traffic. It's a giddy delight thinking of them cursing their misfortune, even as they hold their own gun to their head...

Steve said...

I would have taken much more satisfaction from the experience if it wasn't a hauling a load of people as opposed to a passenger free SUV. Until I get my blood doped, buses and 18 wheelers are the only vehicles I can consistently keep up with in traffic.