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Using Trails

Seven Things That Can Go Wrong on a Bike—And How to Fix ‘Em!

By: Katie Harris
May 11, 2015

Photo by Mark Wilkinson
Photo by Mark Wilkinson

Este contenido también está disponible en español.

We’ve all had those days where things just didn’t go as planned. Your water heater failed mid-shower, your roommate drank the last of your milk, and you can’t find a pair of socks that match. And that was before you even left the house.

Unfortunately, these unlucky instances can strike when you’re on your bike, too. But while some things are simply up to fate to resolve, others are under our control! Here are (unlucky number) seven things that can go wrong on a bike ride—and some ways to cope with them.

1. Getting a Flat Tire

Yeah, we know. They suck. But they’re a rite of passage, and you shouldn’t let the risk of getting a flat keep you from getting on your bike.

2. Running Out of “Gas”

You’re on a long ride, cruising along…on top of the world. Then suddenly, you hit a wall. Bad news; you “bonked.” This is the term that athletes use for a blood sugar crash, and they can hit—HARD.

3. Getting Lost

Photo by Dave Crosby
Photo by Dave Crosby

“Trust me, I know where we’re going! I just don’t know where we ARE…”  

4. Having Your Bike Stolen

Anyone who has fallen victim to a bike snatching can verify: A little piece of your heart is lost when your favorite two-wheeled ride disappears.

5. Losing Daylight

You can have too much of a good thing, and a great ride can turn south pretty fast if the sun sets before you’re finished.

6. Getting Stuck in the Rain

Photo by Jana Kriz (beyondhue)
Photo by Jana Kriz (beyondhue)

Mother Nature doesn’t have to check with our ride schedules before she does her thing.

7. Not Knowing Where to Ride

Spring is here, your bike is tuned up, and you’re ready to hit the trail! But where do you go?

Whether it’s a flat tire or a rain storm, don’t let the threat of misfortune keep you from riding. See you on the trail!

Katie Harris

Katie Harris is a climate justice advocate, bicyclist and beekeeper who lives in Bellingham, Washington. Katie is inspired by and works on projects in the built environment that have benefits for climate + community + health, like trails, stormwater infrastructure and parks.

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