Category Archives: family cycling

Winter: A time for Planning Summer Family Bike Tours

What sort of winter hibernation do you enjoy? The Car Free Days family tried to escape the cold and dark by hunkering down at home; reading, drinking gallons of hot tea, cuddling up around the fire, and occasionally getting out-of-town to ski in the Cascade range.

But a few winters ago we started doing something even better with the short, sucky days: dreaming about and planning epic summer bike tours.

Coping with Winter Blahs

With just over 8 hours of daylight during the winter months, Pacific Northwesterners (and Scandinavians, and Russians, and ….) must come up with some way to preserve our sanity day after dark sodden day from November through March. Residents of these northen climes rely on many different methods for coping with winter dreariness. Some use light therapy, others make regular pilgrimages to day spas; soaking in hot pools and sweating away sorrows in saunas. Still others escape altogether with vacations to warm sunny climates. For some reason the historic, go-to strategy of heavy drinking has fallen out of favor. At least in our circles.

A new twist on beating dreary days came from family biking media darling Emily Finch this past December. I spent a good part of my early Christmas vacation living vicariously through her highly entertaining winter indoor-painting-therapy-program:  Continue reading

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2012 Xtracycle Tree Haulin (6th Annual)

The Tree HaulerYear Six is D O N E.

We all pedaled up to our local tree lot the other evening, chose a 8′ Noble fir and headed home. Simple, straightforward and almost no drama. Continue reading

Cargo Bike Old Farts

how we rolled in 2003, san francisco

I really enjoyed reading Todd’s latest post. Especially the retrospective and the Clever Cycles back story.

Todd and Martina have been riding Xtracycles since 2001. I knew they were cargo bike early adopters, but I hadn’t thought about the chronology or the details until I read the post. Continue reading

Day 1: Starting off on the wrong foot, but at least starting

bolt bus tandem loading

photo by David Clifton

If you’re bored with trip stories, you’ll just have to sit tight and wait a little longer for our excitement to pass. Because here at carfreedays HQ we’re not done talking about our Pacific Coast Bike tour.

Bike touring is one of those life changing experiences: you’re not quite the same after returning from an extended tour. But it takes a few weeks and months for those lessons to reveal themselves. Even though we’ve been home for 51 days, we’re definitely still processing the experience. And finding meaning and life lessons in the most mundane parts of the tour. Continue reading

We’re back: “I miss our trip”

Pacific Coast Bike Tour Day 6
Our Pacific Coast Bike tour is O V E R . We’ve been back for a while now but it’s taken me this long to process the trip and figure out what I wanted to say about the amazing experience of riding 946 miles in 22 days with 2 tandems and 2 kids under 12.

Can I just say Wow and leave it at that? Continue reading

Check out Davey’s Blog

IMG_3301One of our favorite bikers in Seattle has become a family biker and he now has a new blog. And I must say, he’s on fire. Davey is single-handedly putting us old and lazy bloggers to shame. I love his writing and his playful humor, be sure to start at the beginning.

We always enjoy running into Davey on the road. He takes the time to stop, say hello, chat for a bit and share funny stories. I leave these impromptu meet-ups with a smile on my face and just a little more hope for humanity. Davey is good people. Continue reading

Xtracycle Reader (the video)

Xtracycle readerBy now you know that the Car Free Days family isn’t always prompt about posting to our blog. We have the very best intentions to keep it from getting old and moldy, but often life gets in the way and we push those blog updates aside.

We’ve officially taken procrastination to new heights. I’m more than a little bit ashamed to admit that this video edit is almost 4-years in the making: we’ve been saving this un-edited footage since August 2008. I started to edit it a few times but I just never got around to finishing it (kinda like Tim’s plan to finish his kid bike series). Continue reading

Bike to School Day

2012 Bike to School Day128 kid bikes, add some parent bikes, 8 dozen doughnuts, much-needed coffee for the parents who don’t like to get up earlier than necessary, police escorts riding with the kids and blocking intersections with patrol cars = successful Bike to School Day.

We hope you enjoyed Bike to School Day and Bike to Work Day!

more photos here

 – Anne and Tim

2012 Bike to School Day

Motivating the Stoker

The airplane stoker The Silly StokerThe Serene stoker  We’ve been busy this spring getting ready for our Pacific Coast bike tour in July (even though we’d love to do the whole thing, we only have time for Seattle to SFO).  We’re buying light weight camping gear, planning our route, getting the bikes set up and doing lots of tandem riding on the weekends. The whole family goes for at least one long ride every week – usually between 20 and 35 miles. We’ll slowly build up to 50 miles by the time we’re ready to roll out-of-town in July. Continue reading

Talk about Walk & Bike to School programs Thurs!

Walk.Bike.Schools!
Walk.Bike.Schools! is a blog,  meeting (7pm Thursday @ Bryant Elementary library) and (hopefully) a movement to support and encourage parents and kids walking and biking to school.

Our mission (though calling it such seems a little grand right now) is to build a network of parents, neighbors, members of school communities, and yes, students, who can share ideas and energy around the goal of encouraging more kids and families to bike to school—at least some of the time.

Our loose group of ~6-8 parents has been reasonably successful—Bryant won SDOT’s Golden Shoe award for the largest number of students regularly arriving on foot or bike last year. But we know things could be so much better if we could tap into the collective intelligence of other bike and walk programs in our city and learn what as worked (and not worked) elsewhere. Continue reading