My cycling mentor got back from his UK assignment a little over a month ago, and it’s great to have someone at work who likes to talk about bikes and can give me some practical advice. He rode in yesterday and invited me down to where he had his bike stashed in an empty cube near his desk so I could see his light set-up. He’s all about “being seen” rather than using the lights to see. Now I’m lusting after the headlight he’s got, which I can’t afford.
Watch their sales if you want it. I should have just gone for it yesterday, it was an extra 20% off. ARGH. In addition to that Mentor has a Cat Eye LED light (much smaller than the NiteRider. I have a nearly identical one, made by PlanetBike, 5-LED Beamer). Then he has two taillights (don’t recall the makes) plus one of the blue Supernova flashers from RoadID that he wears on his arm (I think he uses the wrist strap, but it fits on his upper arm). I have only one taillight, the Planet Bike Blinky 1/2 Watt Blaze :
and on the front the already mentioned Planet Bike Beamer, plus a 6-LED light from Trek which does light up the ground, but doesn’t seem to perform too well in the cold. Or maybe the batteries needed replacing. (Note to self: start carrying extra batteries).
What I should do now, maybe will this evening is take photo outside after dark so you can see how bright the Trek headlight is. It does light up the ground, which was really helpful the first time I rode to work after it was dark in the morning. Going through such a rural area with no streetlights, this is crucial to be able to see the ground AT ALL.
What astonishes me, though, is how many people I still see riding after dusk with NO lights, front or rear, in dark clothes. These are people who appear to do more cycling than the average person, serious road bikes, helmets, the spandex arsenal, but NO LIGHTS. What’s up with that?? Not even reflectors, reflective clothes, reflective tape. Zip. Nada. Newflash, people: YOU DO NOT PHOSPHORESCE. Think of how hard it is to see a car in the dark, on a dark road, with no lights on. You’d probably think, “What a tool, why doesn’t he put his lights on?” Duh. Let’s look – and stay – alive out there.