Letter: Don’t reject e-bikes
I, like Mr. John Bryant, am also astonished that even considering not allowing e-bikes on the Rio Grande Trail would be an issue.
Shame on Pitkin County. They are so shortsighted and have not considered all of the points to the issue. Two years ago, I too was a cycling snob and bristled at the thought of people being on our trails on cycles that gave an advantage with an electrical assist motor. I have totally changed my mind this year. Here are the reasons:
This year where I live a portion of the year, in Traverse City, Michigan, I became aware that three of my friends had purchased and were using e-bikes on our major bike path, the Traverse City to Suttons Bay TART path of 18 miles. Well, these cyclists of many years had knee, leg and hip problems. Without the e-bikes they would have been prevented from continuing to be a part of the cycling club’s rides and riding and socializing with friends as they have done for years.
It hit me just like that — why would I want my friends to retire from cycling and sit at home on the couch and not see them on rides? I then realized my viewpoint from two years ago was selfish and snobbish. Come on folks, these people are us. Don’t turn them away.
Lastly, while riding on a trail behind a friend on an e-bike, we had been going fast and after a few miles we slowed down. Well, my friend was out of breath, too, because you have to peddle on an e-bike to receive the assist. So he was getting a healthy workout as well.
To the cycling community: Do not let regulations be adopted that separate us.