Headphones on the bike trail?
Photo by ktylerconk, used under Creative Commons license
I’ve got a couple of weeks off of work – despite House Republicans’ best efforts, Congress has adjourned for the traditional August recess and things at the office are slow – so I hit the W&OD bike trail yesterday afternoon.
I got into riding thanks to an old roommate who was an avid outdoorsman and competitive cyclist. One of his safety tips for the W&OD trail is that you should never ride with an iPod on. Naturally, I ignored that bit of advice yesterday. I was only out for a relatively short trip – 20 miles, from my house to Reston and back – but I much prefer working out with a soundtrack.
Any of you who also read DCist will have seen some of their extensive comment threads on cycling in and around the city. This is one point, though, that I haven’t really seen addressed extensively. Is it kosher to ride/run/rollerblade with the music on while out on a bike trail?
Just about every jogger I saw yesterday had headphones on, though none of them seemed to have any problem hearing me when I passed. I’m not about to go out on the trail with tunes on a sunny Saturday afternoon when every yuppie with tight shorts in Northern Virginia will be out for a stroll, but aside from that, I say go for it. Just use your head – and, obviously, keep the volume at a reasonable level for those “on your left” calls. I can’t imagine that it’d be a good idea on the Capital Crescent trail in Bethesda, either, but maybe you Murrahlanders disagree.
And for goodness’ sake, please, stop at the stop signs!