When winter arrives, many people think it is time to put their bike away, but riding year round can be fun, easy and convenient! Our vision is that Canmore is a community in which everyone is comfortable choosing cycling as their preferred way of getting around town, and that includes during the winter months!
If you don’t want to put your bike away once the snow flies, come to our Bike All Winter Workshop (Sunday December 4, 7:00pm to 9:00pm at artsPlace) and learn from winter biking warriors Simon Ham, Jeremy White and Mandy Johnson. You’ll learn how to keep your bike working and keep yourself comfortable riding all winter long! If you already ride 12 months of the year, come out and share your tips. You may also learn a trick or two! The workshop is free for Canmore Community Cruiser members and $5 for non-members. There will be door prizes, including Buff neck warmers and two tickets to the premier of Bicicles!
Due to the shorter days, a key part of winter riding is making sure you’re visible to other road users. The Traffic Safety Act in Alberta requires cyclists to have a white front light and a red rear light on their bike when they are travelling in the dark – and with shorter days in winter everyone should have lights on their bike. Being visible just makes sense, which is why Canada, Australia, the USA and 23 European countries all have laws that require the use of bike lights when cycling at night.
Did you know?
Steady bike lights are more effective than flashing bike lights in the dark. Flashing bike lights can dazzle other cyclists, confuse drivers and alter depth perception – making drivers less aware of the distance between you and them. In fact, in Austria and the Netherlands flashing bike lights are forbidden by law.
Using your light during the day can help too! A Danish study found that cyclists with daytime lights have 32 percent less accidents.
Between December 4 and December 21, our Leading Light volunteers will be out and about on colourfully lit up bicycles giving out front and rear lights for visibility to people who aren’t lit up and rewarding those that are with Good Earth hot chocolate vouchers. This is made possible thanks to support from the Town of Canmore, the Alberta Traffic Safety Fund, and the Bicycle Café.
Look out for our volunteers at the following locations:
Main Street – December 9 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Elevation Place – December 9 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Bow River Bridge – December 12 from 6:00pm to 7:00pm; December 15 from 5:30-pm to 7:00pm
Cougar Creek – December 9 from 7:00am to 9:00am; December 16 from 5:00pm to 7:00pm
Canmore Collegiate High School – December 15 from 7:45am to 8:30am
Lawrence Grassi Middle School – December 16 from 7:45am to 8:30am
If you’re inspired by the idea of creatively lighting up your bike and are looking for a way to celebrate the shortest day of the year, come to our Light my Ride Workshop and Winter Solstice Night Ride. The December 21 event – held on the winter solstice – will be a fun, engaging event where those who attend (and bring their bike) can get creative in decorating their bikes with multicoloured LED light strings, coloured reflectors and more! Once the bikes are lit up, we will go on a fun group ride around town to celebrate the shortest day and we will have a prize for the best and brightest bike. You don’t need a fat bike or special gear to participate and the event is free for Canmore Community Cruiser members, $10 for non-members. All materials will be provided just bring your bike and your creativity!
Please share your stories, tips and photos about biking around Canmore in winter through the social media hashtag #bikeallwinter.
By helping to create leading bright lights we aim to start a trend within the town of Canmore that will make it cool and desirable to be highly visible at night and add to our exciting bike culture.