Sydney - Fixed!

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  • I don't think Paris is any 'worse' than London

    I'll take your word for it. My experience of Paris cycling wasn't great, but it was also very short, so it could well have just been coincidence.

    I still think Sydney cycling is noticeably worse than London though.

  • Are drivers generally aggressive or fairly passive?

    The drivers are fine, generally. Perhaps a little less confident around cyclists as there a far fewer than in London.

    The problems are the freeways and other main roads that go through the centre of town: the traffic is fast and there often aren't bus lanes to protect you.

    Don't worry about it too much though. The worst places explicitly ban bikes, and anywhere else you find yourself becoming uncomfortable you can just jump onto the pavement and sit that one out.

  • First experience, it's not so bad. Roads are pretty quiet but it was a Sunday, the police are bastards! I mainly saw people on the pavements, I stuck to bike lanes and shared paths today. It's a bit odd, it's a lot like the uk/London only very different, was a bit dubious as to whether I was pissing people off or just being over cautious. Are the roads alright apart from the main ones to ride on? Don't think being severely jet lagged helped my cycling experience.

  • Where are you in Sydney? In and around the CBD there's bike lanes - So places like Randwick and Alexandria through to Surrey Hills, Paddington and the city centre have quite good routes. Even out over Anzac bridge to Balmain there's really good paths that allow you to explore the waterside around the area.

    There's hills everywhere and even on smaller roads the traffic moves fast so you have to watch out for that. When I was there last people seemed to accept riding on the pavement when the roads were too crazy/busy.

    I'm from Sydney and go back every year and have noticed great improvements but drivers attitudes are still the same. Riding up the coast from Manly to Bobbin Head or West head is a popular road cyclist route and drivers are generally are more accepting on those roads. Northern beaches in general has a lot more people on bikes.

  • Strangely, cycling on motorways is allowed here. I cycled along the M4 today and while it didn't feel great, it was better than parts of Parramatta road.

    Most bike shops have free maps of the cycle routes around Sydney, btw.

  • I'm in Zetland, all of those spots don't seem far. It felt weird cycling on the pavement but as you say, most people seemed cool with it. Might get a bell whilst I'm here, seems like a handy thing to have when you have to hop onto the pavement. I'm right next to the M1 so a lot of the roads near by are quite large/busy, need to get my bearings and I think I'll find ways around. I get what you're saying about drivers, some dude stopped right on top of a crossing when there was loads of space. Started giving grief when I cycled around, wasn't bad though. Not what I needed when my body was still working on uk time.

  • I checked out Woolys bike shop, they seemed pretty sound. Sorted me out with a new pinch bolt for my seat post, mine must have rattled loose on the plane and gone wandering.

    What's the deal with riding fixed over here? Just want to be sure I got it right, I read on the Oz gov site that as long as you can lock up the rear wheel in the dry then that's fine? Rode past some cops and they looked my bike up and down but didn't say anything.

    If you're about and fancy going for a coffee run or something drop me a message, I'm around for a while until I head to Brisbane.

  • I'm not sure about the laws on riding fixed. I just assumed it was the same as the UK. I ride fixed with a front brake and never had any trouble.

  • Been cruising around a bit, seen a few guys brakeless. Cops don't seem to mind either, if they say anything i'll just pull the brit abroad card. First experiences, i'd say Sydney is at least 10-15 years behind Europe and North America in terms of attitudes to bikes. It's fine if you're happy just cruising about on little bike paths and not in any great hurry, riding in London although way more hectic and more cabbies actively trying to kill you. Its was better, it just works. It seems that they want to view bikes as cars but still say "ride a bike, but you will be marginalised". It isn't encouraging people to ride at all, I see loads of folk with bikes loaded on cars taking them out the city.

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Sydney - Fixed!

Posted by Avatar for brett @brett