Friday, July 31

Maybe I Saw a Wild One

I've been carefully watching since I started the commute to Alliance Airport back in mid April, hoping to catch a view of "cycliaris vehicularis" in the wild. I thought I'd seen such a beast a couple of times, only to have my hopes dashed when the specimen turned out to one of the common "bicyclis vulgaris gutteria" types.

But hope continues. My daughters tell me they saw one on Cheek Sparger near our home, though he did skitter off to the right whenever a motorist approached him from behind. I wasn't along, so all I can do for now is plan on staking out the territory.

I had high hopes for this vacation. Simply by sheer numbers of people on bikes, one of the "vehicularis" might be hidden amongst the large numbers of "gutteria" and "sidewalkis." And maybe I saw one today. It was just a brief sighting, but the guy, headed south on 40th Ave NE in Seattle at NE 75th St, actually stopped at the four way stop, near the middle of the lane. He then headed south, moving off to the right just a bit. I did notice that the lane was shareable since nobody was parked anywhere in sight, and he may have been treating the street as a boulevard. Certainly, he was not on an ever-popular storm drain cover tour. It was a brief sighting, and far from definitive, but wild "vehicularis" may not be akin to bigfoot.

As PM Summer notes on Cycle*Dallas, vehicular cycling has not been tried and found difficult, it has been presumed difficult and not tried. I will keep an eye out, but there's a little extra bounce in my step this afternoon.

And no, none of the local motorists appeared the least bit disturbed by the guy...


Rantwick said...

I too would be pretty excited to see a true VC. I'm about as VC as anybody I've seen in this city, but I still queue jump sometimes and stuff... hope springs eternal!

Your command of latin leaves me green with envy.

Chandra said...

I have ridden to this airport from Irving. I have to admit, I happened upon it by accidentally though. That neighborhood looked somewhat deserted but I had fun riding through the area. May be you will catch me on my ride sometime :)

Steve A said...

Any cyclist I recognize would not qualify as "wild." A true sighting must involve a previously unknown subject. Thus, if I ran across Chandra, I'd recognize him from two miles off in that vest of his; the hunt would be over, though observing him would still be good practice & interesting to boot.

Keri said...

LOL! Andrew has been reporting rare vehicular cyclist sightings on our forum.

One day last fall I spotted 2 (on different roads) that I didn't know. One was on Orange Ave after my first lane position video shot on Orange (don't know if it was related, but it was the first I'd ever seen). The glow of excitement for days!

There are also devastating mirages, like the cyclist who appears from a distance to be in a good lane position, then turns out to be riding against traffic. Or the one riding outside the door zone, who then blows a red light.

Cycliaris vehicularis is still uncommon, but occasional sightings are giving me hope.

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