Have you tried cycling at night? Many cyclists are intimidated by the thought of cycling at night. While the experience is different than cycling during the daytime, it does not have to be something you fear. If you take proper precautions, you can safely cycle at night.
Cycling at Night
How is cycling at night different than during the day? While you will see the same sites, they will look completely different. The mood can be more reflective and serene during the day as fewer vehicles or cyclists are out. Riding in the moonlight can be relaxing and reduce your stress level. Cycling at night may not be the time to do intense cycling training. It is probably better to plan for your nighttime ride to be for enjoyment. How can you keep your ride safe at night?
Take a Cell Phone
As with any ride, it is important to take a cell phone with you. You need a way to contact someone if you would happen to get hurt. In addition, at night, it is more likely that you could get lost and have a way to contact someone to help you navigate your way out or use your GPS to find your way.
The most important factor to consider when cycling at night is making sure you can be observed by others. At night, you should not wear dark clothing. All your clothing should be white or neon bright. In addition, you should wear reflective patches on all your clothing and on your bicycle.
Go with a Friend
During the night, you may want to choose to ride with a friend to have the additional backup if something would happen to go wrong. In addition to safety, riding with a friend would make you more visible as twice the number of reflectors would be twice as likely to be seen by motorists.
Ride the Correct Way
It is especially important to ride the correct direction when cycling at night if you are riding on a road or highway. If you are riding the wrong direction, then the lights of the oncoming vehicles will cause you to be momentarily blinded. Not being able to see when people are coming towards you is dangerous.
At night, it is safer to ride on a bike trail rather than on a road or highway. There are even some bike trails that are lit at night. If you are depending on the trail to be lit up, make sure you verify that the lights stay on during the time that you are going to be riding.
You should invest in lights for your bicycle if you are going to ride at night. It is best to have a light that blinks to get more attention from other riders or motorists. The more reflective you are, the safer you are.
Plan Your Route in Advance
It is especially important to plan your route in advance when you are cycling at night. You don’t want to get lost and having a plan for where your destination will be and how you are going to get there. As an added safety measure, let a friend or loved one know your intended route and when you expect to be home. That way they can be alerted if you don’t show up at the anticipated time.
It can be fun to cycle at night. Don’t let intimidation keep you from the experience. If you are concerned about cycling at night, ask a friend to join you. Better yet, ask several friends to go along.