Better Than New   by mark on Apr 07, 2015

All of us here at Planet Bike are huge fans of Patagonia; our brands really mesh well together. This is definitely next level and super awesome!

What's a flat kit and why should I have one?   by mark on Mar 31, 2015

Our spring newsletter was released yesterday. In case you missed it, our Learn Stuff article focused on flat kits.

Inevitably, it won't cross your mind until you're standing on the side of the road 5 miles from home with a flat tire and no way to repair it. Seasoned commuters and riders across the land have embarrassingly dialed their significant other, coworker or neighbor to pick them up after forgetting to grab their flat kit before heading out on their bike. Building a simple kit to throw in your bike bag will give you peace of mind and keep you self-sufficient. Visit the more >>>

Super Commuter Preview   by mark on Mar 17, 2015

Here's a preview on our Spring Super Commuter, David Pulsipher. David had so much useful knowledge on commuting that we couldn't fit it all into our profile. I wanted to share this bit that didn't make it in. Enjoy!

"What I would say to 1st timers - don't feel like you have to have everything figured out at first. Acknowledge, and be comfortable with the fact that you will learn as you go. You will learn what types of clothing work for you. You will learn what type of bike is comfortable, convenient. You will learn how to fix what you need to fix, and also what you can't. The internet has so many communities out there for bicyclists. Overall I would say we are a very kind/welcoming group willing to share experience and information. Basically, don't be afraid of being new."

Shifting Gears: A Cyclical History of Badger Bicycling Opens Soon   by mark on Feb 17, 2015

In this new exhibit at the Wisconsin Historical Museum, you'll travel through 130 years of Wisconsin cycling history. Showcasing the crucial role that Wisconsin has played in two national bicycling eras, the "Shifting Gears: A Cyclical History of Badger Bicycling" exhibit features historic bicycles and artifacts, intriguing images, and virtual interactive experiences. Discover how the long, colorful, and sometimes contentious story of the growth and development of cycling in Wisconsin in the late 1800s is once again playing out today.

Dates: Feb 27 - Oct 15, 2015

Times: Tuesday—Saturday: 9 am—4 pm
Closed Sunday and Monday

Visit the Wisconsin Historical Museum online for more info.

World Winter Bike to Work Day   by mark on Feb 13, 2015

Today is World Winter Bike to Work Day and Planet Bike celebrated the occasion with our now annual WINTER Bacon on the Bike Path. We were joined by the good folks of Madison B-Cycle and cooked up several pounds of Nueske's bacon along with a couple dozen doughnuts from local Greenbush Bakery and EVP coffee! Thanks to all that came out and thanks to all the bike commuters out there! Check out the full photo set on our Facebook page.

Action Alert - Wisconsin   by mark on Feb 05, 2015

Repost from the Wisconsin Bike Fed:

Governor Scott Walker has introduced a two-year state budget that has tremendous negative implications for cyclists and for biking safety.

The Governor’s budget (Senate Bill 21) would:

-Repeal Wisconsin’s successful Complete Streets law. The law requires that bicyclists and pedestrians be taken into account whenever a road is built or reconstructed with state or federal funds. There are all manner of ways to get an exception if the project would be too expensive or if use by bikes and pedestrians is projected to be too light. The law works well in practice. Yet, the governor chose to eliminate it altogether. This would mean many fewer safe places to bike.

-Cut the Transportation Alternatives Program by $2 million. The governor would eliminate all state support for this program, leaving only federal dollars. TAP is used for a variety of pro-biking initiatives, including bike plans and facilities.

-Fund (named for iconic Republican Governor Warren Knowles and Democratic Governor and Senator Gaylord Nelson) works to purchase and protect land for future generations. Funds for state trail purchases are included in the program. The governor would stop all purchases for over a decade.

Just ten days ago the Bike Fed had been assured by the governor’s office in a face-to-face meeting with one of his aides that he would not propose the repeal of Complete Streets in his budget. A week and a half later the governor did just that. We were also led to believe that there would be no cuts in TAP. The Stewardship Fund repeal came without any warning whatsoever.

The Bike Fed will be working hard to fight each of these changes.

You can help by contacting the governor and your legislator to call for a reversal on these three items. The message is clear:

Restore Complete Streets.
Replace the $2 million in TAP.
Restore the Stewardship Fund.

Find your State Legislator

Contact the Governor

The budget will now be taken up by the Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee, which will be holding hearings around the state. We will get you the list of times and places for hearings when we have them. The budget won’t likely come up for final votes until June.

The Bike Fed is hard at work with coalition partners and friendly legislators to overturn these horrible decisions. But we can’t do it without your support.

Please contact the governor and your legislators as soon as you can.

Winter Bacon on the Bike Path, reminder #1   by mark on Jan 27, 2015

Madison's Bike Winter Week, formerly known as Winter Bike To Work Week, has been set for February 9-13. The agenda for the week is still being finalized, but anticipate commuter stations at least 1 of the days with other events throughout the week.

Friday, Feb 13, is the official International Winter Bike to Work Day. Planet Bike and Madison B-Cycle will once again be setting up on Crazylegs Ln, across from Camp Randall, to serve up Nueske's bacon and some hot coffee. We're hoping for warmer temperatures than last year's sub-zero event!

Embracing Winter   by mark on Jan 20, 2015

In a perfect world I’d never have to spend more than 2 minutes getting dressed for a bike ride; getting frostbite on exposed skin would never cross my mind and the thought of road salt corroding my precious ride would be laughable. But living in Wisconsin these are all things I’ve learned to deal with. Contrary to what warm climate dwellers may think, Midwest winters are extraordinary.

I haven’t always been in love with winter. The cold for days on end can really play with your emotions. I’ve spent many days wishing for warmer weather; questioning my choice to live in Wisconsin. A few years ago I made a conscious effort to make the most of winter. I bought a set of nordic skis and started hitting the corduroy. I dusted off my running shoes for some frosty morning runs. I pulled out my snowshoes and started exploring the wooded areas surrounding my home with my wife. Not only has it made winter bearable but I actually look forward to the snow and cold as fall draws to an end. I love setting out and finding something new (below is a hot spring fed creek I came upon while snowshoeing).

The key for me is to stay active and keep things interesting. Wisconsin winters offer no routine, especially these days. You never know if it’s going to be -5 degrees with sun blazing or 30 degrees and rain. Today is a perfect example. I check the weather this morning to see that the mercury was topping at 31. Too warm to ride my fat bike on trails so I quickly set my road bike up for a morning ride through the countryside. Within the first 5 minutes I nearly crashed two times. 31 degrees and a light drizzle created some hidden ice patches. It was enough to convince me to cut it short and head to work. Rolling with the punches is necessary on days like today. I’m harboring hope that I can squeeze in a ride on the way home but I’ve learned to never count on it.


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