Vail Daily letter: Recipe for disaster
August 27, 2014
Bravo to Dennis Jones. In his letter to the editor — Page A8 of the paper on Wednesday — he voiced his justifiable outrage over the "inconsiderate and downright foolish" behavior of the pack of cyclists who tore through Singletree on Monday evening. As Mr. Jones points out, the pack paid no attention to stop signs and rode as many as four abreast, arrogantly hogging the road as they headed west along Berry Creek Road.
From Singletree, they proceeded to Cordillera Valley Club. How do I know that? Shortly after I came through the CVC back gate, I encountered the leaders of the pack. They were flying downhill, obviously exceeding the community's speed limit, taking great joy catching a bit of air on their road bikes as they flew over speed bumps.
They rode as though the road was closed to vehicles and was only for their use as they spread across the entire width of the road. As I rounded a blind, right-hand curve, I nearly converted a few of them into hood ornaments. This wasn't an anomaly in the group. Several times I had to swerve — there is no shoulder — to miss the continued onslaught of cyclists often coming head-on.
I drove to the main gatehouse and spoke with the guard on duty. He was as frustrated as I because the cyclists wouldn't heed his warnings to slow down. According to the young guard, one of the cyclists tersely informed him he lives in Cordillera (but not CVC) and therefore was within his right to cycle through the development with a large group of riders.
Like Mr. Jones, both my husband and I are avid cyclists. I worry often about the potential for serious accidents since Highway 6 west of Edwards has no shoulder and often cars make no consideration for cyclists on the road as state law mandates. When driving, I always make every attempt to give way to cyclists. But when cyclists do as this group did, it only serves to make drivers angry and less inclined to be considerate to and careful around riders. It's a recipe for disaster.
Until Eagle County has a well-protected and maintained bike path such as the Rio Grande trail along the Roaring Fork, we will continue to have near misses — and worse.
So to whomever was the leader of pack on Monday night, I recommend you find a less inhabited place to pretend you're the head of a peloton in the Tour de France.