Cool riders, hot runners

Midnight Marathon ride

Mikesssss photographed the annual midnight bike ride along the Marathon route. Later, Photographynatalia photographed some of the survivors runners:

Hot runner

Historygradguy also photographed runners.

Copyright Mikesssss and Photographynatalia, respectively. Posted in the Universal Hub pool on Flickr.



Free tagging: 


a big shout-out to Framingham police

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So, the rain made for super-slippery train tracks in Framingham, and multiple people wiped out.

Hi, Framingham police! Thanks for:

a)Refusing to dispatch EMS and police when we called and said we had injured riders and a major safety hazard

b)Telling callers that "it can't be that bad"

c)Showing up and parking in the middle of the street and flipping on your emergency lights, blinding people so they couldn't see the tracks (one woman fell a second or two after the cop switched on his lights, and he nearly hit her in the head opening his door)

d)Angrily chewing me out when I pointed out the lights were blinding people and that wasn't helping. "We don't want to get hit" - by what? It's 2 in the morning on a lit street. It's really fucking relevant that "you guys are running red lights all over the place" when there's a woman lying in the road in pain because your stupid ass blinded her. How many people out of 600 or so riders were injured running red lights? NONE. How many people were injured by train tracks? More than a dozen.

But, glad to see that after you personally witnessed people crashing on the tracks and saw the people with damaged bicycles and scrapes, you finally agreed there was actually a problem, and sent an ambulance.

Douchebags. Southborough police were pretty nice...

I could scarcely see the road

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through the blinding blues at night. I almost rear-ended another rider while we were both blinded by police lights.

I saw a rider fall on the tracks, but I didn't realize the police weren't helping them. That's pretty terrible of them.

Southboro police?

Just curious. Where would there have been Southboro police?

If you took the train out to the Southboro station, you would end up riding in Southboro for about 50 yards before being in Hopkinton. After going to the start and following the marathon route, you'd never be in Southboro again.

Thinking about the crashes, I bet I know what tracks people crashed on. There's a set that cross 135 at an angle right around where the Framingham train station is. That would do it.

Midnight is probably the only time the marathon route would be worth riding. It's a pretty crappy bike ride, otherwise.

1) Southborough Police

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1) Southborough Police assisted at the intersection near the train station as hundreds and hundreds of people disembarked the train and gathered. Disembarking was somewhat complex because the 10?-car train was longer than the platform. The train stopped to let the front cars unload and then pulled forward to allow the rest to get off.
2) The route crosses two diagonal rail crossings in Framingham. The one that caused the worst crashes was the one near The Chicken Bone. There were more frequent crashes after the officer arrived with the blindingly bright lights. I was stopped there for a while helping the injured.
3) From Framingham all the way to the bridge over 128, the marathon route has a wide and smooth shoulder. It’s a good direct way to access the nicer quiet roads in MetroWest.

I don't believe you.

I've been around a lot do dispatch centers and a 911 operator is never going to refuse sending ems, police or fire if someone calls and says they fell off their bike and got injured. That just never happens.

Emergency vehicles are required by policy to leave lights on if there is a medical in the street. Your illegal bike ride is not a priority after someone goes down and is hurt. Emergency lights should tell you to slow the #!?% down and be extra careful.

Let's hope a Framingham taxpayer didn't die of a heart attack that night because the entire emergency staff was tied up assisting bikers who were risking their own safety by riding at night in the rain.

I would like to see a real bike race start on the morning of marathon day on the real track. Start them off at 830 and make sure all bikes are off the track by 930.


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We would all love to hear why riding a bike is illegal but we don't need another one of those threads.

Nothing seriously illegal

But a bunch of red lights run, several times where 5-7 bikes ran abreast, and other times where bikes rode on the wrong side of the street.

Nothing too dangerous at 1am, but don't complain when emergency vehicles have to follow policy and you still want to continue to do these illegal things and have the City of Framingham to protect you.

Rain Sunday night?

Just curious -- when and where was the rain? (Here in Somerville, we didn't see any rain at all.)

A small storm passed through

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A small storm passed through Southborough/Hopkinton between 1:30AM to 1:50AM. No rain after that but the roads were wet along most of the route.

Few tail lamps?

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As cyclists, these folks are either: 1) far more brave than I; or 2) have way more faith in late-night MA drivers than I, given the conspicuous lack of tail lamps in the pictures.

Is this an illusion of the photos (the head lamps shine through pretty clearly)?

I'll diagram it for you

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Bike light blink pattern of four riders:

Photo taken here^


The number of cars was virtually nill, and a crowd of 600 people on bicycles is pretty hard to not notice. 95% of people on the ride had lights, front and rear.

In fact, it's pretty hard to miss bicyclists in the first place; the streets are lit just about everywhere, car headlights are superb, and much general outdoor clothing, and especially cycling clothing, has reflective bits. There's this persistent myth that bicyclists are somehow very difficult to see, yet drivers routinely have no issues seeing potholes, debris, parked cars, curbs, median islands, etc - none of which bear resemblance to day-glo blinking circus clowns. Yet you can be dressed like a day-glo blinking circus clown, get creamed by a driver, and they'll tell the cops "I didn't see him", that's what will be put in the crash report, and they'll get off scott free for what was negligent operation.

Methinks you overreact

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Chill a little bit--isaacg's post doesn't read to me like a crazy anti-bike rant. I was on the sunset ride and was shocked by how many people didn't have lights. From what we overheard at the start, a lot of people thought that the whole course would be closed to cars so they hadn't considered good lighting, even though the organizers did emphasize bringing good lights, extra tubes, tools, etc. And sorry, but reflectors just don't cut it. Hard to see until you're very close to a bike, especially at those speeds. Not to mention a good headlight is helpful on roads like that to help YOU see the potholes, debris, etc. while you're riding. You wouldn't drive a car at night with no headlights or rear lights, would you?

That all said, the ride was unbelievably fun--wish I'd been able to do the midnight ride but had to be at work too early.

Was that you guys?

Hey Sally, on Sunday early evening, we saw a ton of cyclists right near the Southboro T station. Big group, lots of fixies, and a number without helmets, I figured it was a group that came out on the train or were going to the train. I couldn't quite figure out where they were going - and it looked like they couldn't either. ;-)
Gorgeous evening for a ride, glad you had a ball.


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That was us! Lots of fixies, a bunch of Urban Adventour bikes though I didn't see any Hubways,lots of college kids and a handful of older folks like myself. And yes--we took a spectacularly wrong turn down a big hill (wheeeee!!) and then had to pedal back up (uggghh!) I felt kind of wiped out by the time we got to the starting line. But I recovered quickly--it was a beautiful night.

The Hill

I'm pretty sure that hill is the one I saw you on. There's no reason you should have been there unless you were lost. ;-)

You are correct.

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I took five photos in one burst as we crossed into Natick. The others were more blurry so I only uploaded the one above. This morning, I looked at the other photos. Together, they show 5 of the 6 people in the foreground have visible rear lights. The person who doesn't have a visible rear light has a large reflective vest.

Reflectors work

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They're pretty universally using rear reflectors that I can see from the sampling of the group in the photo. When a car headlight shines on those they work really well. They're just not going to light up much from the flashlight or whatever the photographer had.


Reflectors - meh

I'd much rather have a bright red blinking tail light (or several) than depend on a reflector.

There were 600 bikes

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If you weren't part of a fast-paced lead group, you were traveling with at least 40 or 50 other bikes within a few hundred yards maybe. With enough other folks running lights, some with extremely bright halogens, and some with custom flashy effect lighting, everyone in the group stayed pretty visible, and the bike traffic took their lanes.

Also riders call out to warn the group of cars, so it's even easier to see and hear them coming.

a big shout-out to MBCR/MBTA

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Thank you for accommodating about 605 participants and their bikes on the Sunday night Worcester train (in addition to the normal ridership). Your employees were patient, polite and helpful. I heard you coupled more cars to the train at a moment’s notice - thanks!