Road too dangerous for bikes
What will the price of safety be for Pemberton Meadows Road?
As a 26-year resident of the Pemberton Valley, an avid bike rider, an avid driver and a mother of five drivers I can confidently say that the bike, car situation scares the crap out of me.
Wait, before you think this is a letter of disapproval for bike traffic on our road, think again.
I am strongly in favour of sharing the road. I am in favour of sharing the view. I believe I live in heaven and I am proud to share it with everyone who finds themselves here looking up in awe of what I get to call home.
As a bike rider of Meadows Road, and mother, I can tell you my children have scarcely been allowed to ride the very road they live on. Why? Because it is a damned dangerous road.
As a driver a frightening trust happens every time you come around one of our blind corners and there is a bike in your lane and an oncoming car in the opposite lane. I only hope that one of my young sons never has to execute an unthinkable choice and then live with the consequence for the rest of their lives. As a bike rider on a road with no paved shoulder you also have to execute a blind trust.
I know personally that there is no opportunity to get out of the way of a logging truck and a school bus passing each other.
I believe the bikers are riding exactly where it is safest, (except the two abreast riders) bikers need to stay visible, they need to stay a bit out on the road and force the driver to slow down — they cannot pull into the gravel to get out of the way. Hitting that soft shoulder with skinny bike tires is a recipe for ending up right under the very tires you are trying to avoid.
My valley includes people enjoying it on bicycles. My valley will be a better place when it is safe to enjoy for all manner or traffic, including foot traffic.
I dream of turning river dikes into arteries connecting tourists, locals, and residents. How beautiful it would be to have a 70 km round trip trail system connecting farm country to local businesses and beyond.
Short of that grandiose dream I hope and trust that the influx of interest in biking in the valley will at least result in a paved shoulder wide enough to accommodate all of us safely.
I sincerely hope that it isn't the loss of a life on Meadows Road that causes us to assess the value of sharing it.
Whistler in the summer
I had forgotten how wonderful it is to be a tourist in one's own hometown, until this past Sunday, when we braved the rain showers and headed to The Den patio. We were rewarded by the sweet sounds of Suzanne Wilson on guitar and the fantastic food and staff at The Den. An enjoyable Whistler moment!