Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Sunday Parade by Bear Cut Bridge

Sunday is our day to ride the Rickenbacker. Sometimes we make it part of a longer ride. Sometimes we just meander about the keys the causeway connects to the mainland. Sunday on the Rickenbacker is a parade of bicycles. Mainly road bikes with a sprinkling of mountain bikes.

Close to Key Biscayne repairs are in progress on an important link: Bear Cut Bridge. And every single cyclist that rides the Rickenbacker seems to have strong opinions about the way bike and pedestrian traffic is being treated during the repairs.

Today we pedaled over Bear Cut Bridge in the low post dawn light. There on the Key Biscayne side of the bridge was something new: a long line of concrete traffic barriers. There was an awkward gate opening perhaps four feet wide. There were now two lanes of traffic over the bridge, one east bound and one west bound, and the concrete traffic barrier with it's opening onto the other side of the bridge. Not an opening amenable to peletons or fast moving cyclists. A bit further down the highway towards Key Biscayne, on the east bound side of the road, a group of sleepy-looking policemen stood around their police cruisers sipping coffee. An electric traffic sign above their head read "right lane for cars only." It was going to be an unhappy morning for a whole lot of group rides out on the Rickenbacker.

We did a few loops of Key Biscayne and the state park before heading back toward the mainland. The police were now in deep discussion with a score of cyclists at the electric sign. No one looked happy, but no one looked angry either.

As we passed over Bear Cut Bridge I signaled Al to stop. I wanted to take a picture. A storm hung just to our northeast, the sun was rising behind it, and a northbound boat was trying to outrun it. A bit of beauty amid the drama of this Sunday morning.