BTWD 2017 Member Profile Bill Lescohier – I Like to Ride My Bicycle 2017
“I like to ride my bicycle!” continues! So, “Let’s Ride” on the 2017 Bike To Work Day!
MCBC members continue to show how much the original idea of bicycling “to work” has evolved in recent years. With many people working from home or local offices, using a bicycle means more than just a morning and evening commute. Often, it’s quicker to use a bicycle for local errands than to choose a car. As many MCBC members have learned, it’s much simpler to roll up to where you need to be and lock your bike than to fight traffic and circle a crowded parking lot.
As everyone gears up for the 2017 Bay Area Bike to Work Day on Thursday, May 11 – part of National Bike Month – we are again speaking with a variety of MCBC members who use the bicycle as an integral part of their everyday life…
Another MCBC Member who “Likes to Ride Their Bicycle”:
- Name: Bill Lescohier
- Occupation: Teacher
- Years Riding: 48 (out of 53 total)
- General Location in Marin where you tend to ride most frequently: Fairfax
What bicycle do you like the best?
My favorite bike is my Ellsworth Evolve mountain bike. It’s getting a bit long in the tooth, but I built it up myself and I continue to experiment with and tweak it. Then again I also love my Spot Sprawl commuter – it has a belt drive and is almost silent.
What part of your ride do you like the best?
My regular commute includes the Concrete Pipe fire road. In the mornings I’m glad to be on it because the climb (Bolinas-Fairfax Road) is over. I’ve seen coyotes, deer, skunks and a dogsled team (really!). On the way home it is nice to be out with the runners and other riders…
What do you like best about the benefits of riding your bike?
I like the exercise – I feel great when I get to work, and when I string together a lot of consecutive days it feels really good. I don’t miss the traffic at all. There is also something fun about just being on a bike… we all had that feeling when we were kids and would ride in circles in front of the house for hours and hours. Once in awhile I recollect that feeling. Last year I rode 5,300 miles (more or less) and commuted to work at least 3 (and usually 5) days a week. I was having a friendly competition with my wife’s cousin, and as we one-upped each other I pushed out to doing longer and longer rides… I went on rides of over 50 miles, which I had never done before. I rode for many many consecutive days in stretches. Prior to that I would ride Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday… and not much more. Through riding I was able to push my limits, get in better shape, and see tons of places from the seat of a bike, which is way more immersive than the seat of a car. It’s just… great.
What would you have liked someone to tell you when you started?
Stretch! Everything works so much better when I stick to a stretching routine.
Where do you most like to ride your bike?
I am fortunate to live in western Fairfax. I almost never drive my bike anywhere; I leave my house and hit a trail within a mile in any direction. I can do Mount Tam, Loma Alta, White’s Hill… out to the lakes… amazing.
Why would others like to ride in Marin?
They wouldn’t. They should stay away; it isn’t beautiful or fun or terrific at all – there aren’t commutes that allow to bypass all the traffic or wonderful bike shops or miles and miles of bike paths and trails to enjoy 😉
(ed. note – it is possible that Bill may be trying to keep our amazing resources to himself…)
What is your favorite ride/route?
For fun I generally ride trails on my mountain bike. I love the 680 Trail and the Loma Alta climb. Another great ride is up Eldridge to the top of Mount Tam. A fun road ride is up over Fawn Ridge and around China Camp, through the tunnel to Larkspur and home through Ross – spectacular views and lots of wildlife.
What part of riding would you most like to improve?
There can be a lot of tension between cars and bikes and bikes and horses. And there isn’t as much off road access to trails as the number of mountain bikers would seem to warrant.
What is your favorite vision of the bicycling in the future?
My daughter is a student up in Portland, Oregon and their bike infrastructure seems really solid – clear, safe routes for bikes. Hopefully we can develop similar solutions here in the Bay Area.
Finally, if there’s a further message you would like to share with the people who ride bikes in Marin County what would that be?
If you don’t ride, give it a try… there must be an errand you can run or a ride you can try. Try mountain, try road… any of our local bike shops can set you up or get a used bike from Trips for Kids to get started. Then keep at it… you will reach a place where you grab a bike to run out for milk instead of jumping in the car.
If you already ride, ride more!
If you have wanted to be a part of the Bike to Work movement – running errands, ferrying kids or simply commuting to and from your office – it’s easy to start! You Can Bike There provides a number of resources, and we have Employer Toolkits to help others in your office or workplace leave their car behind. On Thursday, May 11, we’ll be out in force, with Energizer Stations on routes throughout Marin County.
Look for more profiles of MCBC members who Like to Ride Their Bicycle!
Editor’s Note: These interviews represent the words and opinions of the featured rider. As such, the views expressed in this profile do not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of the Marin County Bicycle Coalition.