Everybody says that cycling in Portland is easy and safe for the most part.
But sometimes you get reminded that you are still just riding two wheels with no bodily protection while the other road users are rushing around surrounded by a metal roll-cage and sometimes they don’t give a damn about you.
Seth and I were out for a ride with our new baby seat attached to the back of my bike, and it was Marin’s first time riding in it. We had a nice enjoyable trip out, but on our way back we, no kidding, nearly died. With our road going straight through and the side road having a stop sign, fortunately we naturally slowed down a little bit, because a fellow in a black pickup truck flying high as a kite gunned his machine of terror through the stop sign and straight into our lane, missing us by mere inches. He swerved away into his proper lane without slowing, careening down the street to the next intersection where he ran another stop sign, narrowly missing getting broadsided by a thankfully more attentive driver who had the right of way but braked just in time to save himself. Even after the crazy dude was out of sight, while we were standing in shock trying to catch our breaths and calm down, we could still hear his tires squeal around corners as he drove like hell was on his tail, around an elementary school and it’s quiet neighbourhoods.
Is Portland good for cycling in? Yes. Just keep your eyes out for the crazies and use common sense, ’cause you’re the only one protecting yourself from the cold metal terrors of the road.