Sunday, July 26, 2009

Week 16 Carfree Stats and Costco has Bike Racks?

Before I get to my weekly carfree stats, I fgured I would share how I carry quantities of stuff on my bike.

Usually, for small trips downtown or to the Safeway that is only five blocks away, all I need is either my messenger bag and maybe my set of panniers. But when it comes to grabbing larger quantity of things - usually from the box stores out on North Reserve - it requires the use of the Burley Nomad trailer.

Getting out to North Reserve on a bike or as a pedestrian can be a hazardous thing. First you have to find a place to cross Broadway, a big five lane expressway with speeds of 45mph. Luckily there is a new light on one of the cross streets that makes it a bit easier.

The other day I made this trip and first stopped at Target to pick up the large tub you see in the picture below.

North Reserve is not a friendly place for bicyclists - another one of those five land high speed expressways. In fact Reserve has 6 of the 10 worst intersections for wrecks in Missoula, and yet an 89 year-old man still crosses. Luckily I don't actually have to cross Reserve to get to Target and Costco. Along Box Store Row there aren't too many places to actually park your bike. Target has a rack as does Lowes and there is one in front of BestBuy, but the next set of Box stores holding Pet Smart and Michaels doesn't have one.

Heading out to Costco, I expected to find no place to lock up my bike. Riding slowly through the parking lot - I was a little scared of all the big SUVs not seeing me - I was surprised to find a rack, but less than thrilled with how Costco employees treat it. How the hell are people supposed to get to it with all those carts in front.
Luckily, all it took was one mention to the guy at the door and the mess in front of the racks was cleaned up. And when going through check out, I didn't even need any boxes, since everything fit pretty nicely into the giant tub, as you can see in the next photo.
All-in-all, a successful and efficient shopping trip. I even got a wave and thumbs up from a passenger in a car that passed me all while yelling that she liked what I was doing, which was a first.
Week 16 Carfree Stats
Miles Biked: 97.92
Gallons Saved: 6.12
CO2 Not Emitted: 38.43 Ibs


James said...

we love how useful our kid's trailer is. (wrote about it a bit here: )

keep doing what you're doing - the world changes slowly, but it does change...

Mark Kirschner said...

Did the folks at Costco move the rack someplace more appropriate? From the photo, it looks like it's right up against the building (no room to slide a wheel through it) and too close to the fire lane. Very poor placement.

Nice use of the Burley. I like it!

CarFree Stupidity said...

Costco didn't move the racks, but they at least moved all the carts from in front of it.

Hey, I consider that Costco even has a bike rack as a win. If people actually start using it on a regulaer basis, they will get the message and make it more convinient for people to get to.

Anonymous said...

I like the trailer. I bought a pre-owned kiddy hauler trailer from Ebay. Because kids grow up so fast, there are tons of barely used $300 trailers going for $25.

Since my trailer is a kid trailer, I think cars give more space because they think a toddler is in there, not my groceries or Good Will load.

J. Brody

lisaloveslife said...

You have a great sense of the ridiculous as you're writing. Makes me chuckle..thanks. lisa

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