Everything sucks right now. Hang in there!

Everything sucks right now. Hang in there!

A rider on the Eastbank Esplanade a few hours ago.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

In a typical year, early September is one of the best times for riding. The heat of summer is behind us, the cold of winter is yet to come. Cycle Oregon usually holds their annual “Classic” ride the second week of this month precisely for this reason. (The ride was cancelled this year due to Covid-19 and it’s crazy to think it would have been cancelled due to the fires even if the virus didn’t exist.)

But obviously this is no typical year.




First the pandemic squashed group riding completely. And now the smoke from dozens of fires throughout our state has pushed air quality into unhealthy levels. Nearly all the great places just beyond Portland city limits where we love to ride are either closed or have been burned. That makes me incredibly sad. But if you only ride bikes for fun consider yourself very lucky. Some don’t have a choice. Their bike is the only way to get around.

We know some of you who read this have lost your homes and/or businesses. Others have had to flee fast-moving flames. My heart goes out to everyone struggling in this moment. Hang in there. Things will get better. I hear there’s rain in the forecast for early next week.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org
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