Bicycling

General Tips for Bicyclists
  1. Be Ready. That bicycle you bought 3 summers ago to ride on the bike path has gathered enough dust. Put it to work - by riding it to work or for errands!
  2. Chart Your Route. Find a good route to get where you want to go. DuPage County offers free bike maps of the county. It helps to talk with friends, family, or coworkers who ride their bikes to get good route information, too.
  3. Be Comfortable. Painful bike seats. Achy knees. Stiff back. All of these problems can be helped by correctly adjusting your bicycle to fit you. Stop by your local bike shop to ensure your bike is adjusted properly.
  4. Consider Linking with Transit. All Pace buses have racks to accommodate bikes. Itasca's Metra station and many other local Metra stations have bicycle racks. Metra allows bicycles on all trains during weekday off-peak hours and on weekends.
  5. Be There. Join thousands of your neighbors in a celebration of bicycling as a clean, fun and healthy way to get to work on Bike to Work Day!
 Safety Tips for Bicyclists
  1. Always ride with traffic and follow the rules of the road. Forget what you might have heard in the past, you are better off riding with the flow of traffic, not against it. You are much more predictable and visible to motorists, especially at intersections and driveways. Ride in a straight line, not in and out of cars, and use hand signals when turning and stopping. Obey traffic signs, signals, and lane markings and yield to traffic when appropriate, including pedestrians.
  2. Don't ride on the sidewalk. Although you might think it's a safer option, many motorists are simply not looking for bicyclists on the sidewalk, especially those riding against traffic. So at every driveway and intersection, you are at much greater risk of being hit by a motorist than if you were riding on the road with traffic. Pedestrians will thank you for riding on the road as well.
  3. Be predictable and visible. Try not to be hesitant or do things that motorists and other travelers may not be expecting. Make sure everyone can see you and knows where you are and where you are going. If riding in the dark, use headlights, taillights and reflectors, and wear reflective materials and brightly colored clothing. Do not wear headphones or talk on a cell phone while bicycling.
  4. Watch for stuff on the road or trail that might make you fall or swerve. Rocks, trash, storm grates, wet leaves, potholes, gravel, railroad tracks, and even wet pavement markings can all send you flying. Also watch for parked cars, doors opening, and cars pulling in and out of driveways.
  5. Watch for turning traffic. Perhaps rather surprisingly, the crash data tell us that getting hit from behind is extremely unlikely. Most car/bike collisions happen at intersections and driveways when motorists or bicyclists are turning. So, at every intersection and driveway, keep a careful eye out for:
      1. Motorists turning right in front of you-you may be going faster than they think.
      2. Motorists turning left across your path-drivers are looking for gaps in traffic and may not be paying attention to anything other than other motor vehicles.
Additional Resources
Documents
Maps
Links
  • Active Transportation Alliance - A non-profit advocacy organization that works to improve conditions for bicycling, walking and transit and engage people in healthy and active ways to get around in Northeastern Illinois
  • Chicago Bike Shop Database - A list of bike shops in Chicagoland (including DuPage County) with maps and comments
  • DuPage County Bikeways and Trails - Provides maps of DuPage bikeways and shared-use paths as well as information on the County's bikeway plan and other bicycling resources
  • League of Illinois Bicyclists - The statewide advocate for all Illinois bicyclists, promoting bicycle access, education, and safety