Never Again Will I Coker In Traffic!

Bad Judgement on my part was to blame. I had a learning experience. Learning experiences are to be avoided.
I had the day off of work, and I talked my teenage son into going jogging in the National Park near where we live. I loaded him and the Coker into the family station wagon and took a nap while he drove to Moses Cone on the Blueridge Parkway. He hopped out, drank some of my water , and trotted off on the old carriage trails. I hopped on the Coker and headed for the road. I rolled downhill in the direction of Price lake, dismounting whenever there was an obstruction that would prevent me from getting out of the way in a hurry. I rode about two or three miles downhill, watched tadpoles in the lake and read the tourist signs at the campgrounds. Traffic was pretty heavy and fast, and the exhaust was bothering me. It was time to go back.
“Why did I wear tight blue jeans? I know better! I have a nice loose pair of shorts in the station wagon; next time I will take the time to sneak into the woods and change. Gosh, my legs hurt, these hills didn’t seem this steep coming down. I’m tough, here goes…”
Lots of bicyclists use the Parkway for road rides, and we locals are used to seeing cars backed up waiting for a chance to pass, I figured this would happen, and it did. I had about twenty behind me going up a long grade when some fool going downhill decided to come to a dead stop and watch the guy on the big unicycle. This was nothing but an accident waiting to happen, I jumped off the Coker and started walking in the ditch. I cussed.
I walked until I had a flat spot for a freemount, then rode up to an overlook where I rested a bit and got away from the exhaust all the tourists were belching out. I met my Son at the Cone house and we told each other how far we had gone.
Why did that fool stop on a busy mountain road? Don’t these people ever go to the circus? I swear, no more riding in traffic, ever!
Today My son wanted to go to a friend’s house, he dropped himself off, and I found a nice gravel road. I was grateful.

I’m not surprised that your Coker ride on the Blue Ridge
Parkway was stressful. As part of a 1000K bike ride
over July 4th weekend I spent about 200 miles on the
Parkway. During the late evening and early morning hours
it was great. By the time I got near Boone, however,
traffic had picked up and the ride was quite scary.
Cars would squeeze beside me at 50-60 mph with
oncoming traffic. :angry:


Re: Never Again Will I Coker In Traffic!

Leaning is good. Learning experiences that get called “learning experiences” are not good.

Many people don’t ever go to the circus. I’ve yet to see a Coker being ridden uphill in a circus. But on the roads, fools abound. Sounds like you were already leading a parade (20 cars), so it must have been a sight of sorts. Many people drive through live never giving a thought to what’s behind them.

Hopefully your main learning experiences on that ride were to not wear tight jeans for unicycling, and be aware that when it’s downhill, it’s going to be a lot harder riding back up! I prefer starting at the bottom, so I can finish with a downhill ride.

Rush hour traffic comes to a complete halt when I cross main intersections near my house. I’d say keep riding, keeping up your appearance will dull the “shock” of seeing a unicyclist.