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Old 10-11-10, 03:56 PM   #1
missyburd
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Default Riding in cities/large towns

Just wondering how people find they cope with it? Obviously if you've ridden/driven in cities for many years then it will become second nature but I find there is sometimes too much going on in cities to take in all at once and things can so easily get missed. When I was out on the road with an instructor I was occasionally missing the odd important thing, mainly because I didn't either see the appropriate sign in time or just didn't recognize it to take heed in time if that makes sense. Going from living in the country where road riding is a lot more straightforward and its the hazards you need to concentrate more on, I find it a tad stressful when in cities where more concentration has to be given to what the signs tell you. Makes me feel that important hazards could get overlooked.

Having spoken to a few people about this it seems its a common thing, too much information overload in cities with signs just being plonked in places you'd not expect to normally find them and generally poor road layout. My instructor seemed a little put out that I'd not noticed a couple of things but to tell the truth I'm not sure I would have completely understood what the sign was telling me even if I had seen it. I'm not talking about your normal signs as listed in the Highway Code, just variations that catch me out occasionally.

Please discuss!
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Old 10-11-10, 04:04 PM   #2
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

I ride in London mostly. Sometimes there is too much going on, but the most important hazards are the big cans of death trap around me.

Stick to modest speeds, and watch out for every single tool of a car driver. That's the main concern in towns, so don't get bogged down trying to clock every single sign on your route.

Urban riding is naff, it's like playing frogger.
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Old 10-11-10, 04:23 PM   #3
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

When I'm riding in town or on the occasions I'm on the bike in Edinburgh or Glasgow etc, my head's twisting and turning all over the place like my neck's made of rubber, trying to keep an eye on everything that's going on.

It's not fun, riding in towns (although it does beat sitting in traffic in the car) but it does become easier. I had it described to me once as it just being risk assessment, i.e. what's the nearest / biggest potential hazard I need to deal with, deal with it then keep working back, which kinda made sense to me.
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Old 10-11-10, 04:31 PM   #4
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

dont throw yourself in the deep end. if its a particular route you use everyday try riding it sunday morning to get familiar with it. in time things generaly fall into place and you find theres suddenly plenty of time to take it all in.
keep truckin myc.
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Old 10-11-10, 04:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

cheers for the replies guys

Gene genie: I do find myself deliberately riding into town centres and strange areas to encourage different road layouts and unfamiliarity and I'm usually fine, but as usual, as soon as you go out with an instructor you just start over-analyzing your riding and generally thinking about stuff more.
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Old 10-11-10, 05:05 PM   #6
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

I just spent a month working as a courier in London.

The riding itself I found I got used to very quickly and was able to make good progress, dart through gaps, filter just about anything. The bike they gave me to use helped, it was a CBF600 which had a good upright riding position and is easy to duck and dive on - only gripe was that you have to work the gearbox quite a bit.

Totally see what you mean about the signs and information overload though, especially in London. Many times I'd move away from some lights or make a turn, and then as I proceeded down the road think "****, was I allowed to do that?". Normally I was ok, but the myriad of information on signs in London about what sort of vehicles can or cannot make what sort of manouveres at what times of the day and night did mess with my mind.
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Old 10-11-10, 05:14 PM   #7
timwilky
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

I hardly ever ride in a town/city. I have my bike for fun not to torture me.
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Old 10-11-10, 05:20 PM   #8
thulfi
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

Quote:
Originally Posted by timwilky View Post
I hardly ever ride in a town/city. I have my bike for fun not to torture me.
Still more fun than driving in a town/city though?
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Old 10-11-10, 05:36 PM   #9
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

Quote:
Originally Posted by timwilky View Post
I hardly ever ride in a town/city. I have my bike for fun not to torture me.
Unfortunately I have no choice, I'd rather ride my 125 than get on a bus I have no qualms about riding in towns but cities scare me a little, probably because I'm on a small bike so my presence on the road is reduced, makes it all a bit more intimidating. I can filter no problem in a normal town, then I hit a city and I just get the feeling there must be a higher ratio of idiots to eejits so I don't filter as much...although saying that I don't go to many cities hence my problem!!
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Old 10-11-10, 06:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: Riding in cities/large towns

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Originally Posted by missyorkie_chris View Post
as soon as you go out with an instructor you just start over-analyzing your riding and generally thinking about stuff more.
not just me then.
i find that i am also very critical of my ridng when under the microscope. i suppose you never stop learning.
i get very annoyed with myself if a car has managed to sneak up on me or one has turned off without me registering it.
sounds like your still enjoying it myc which is why we all do it. just accept it, you've got the bug big style and you'll never be able to kick your habit.
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