This is the latest in a series of flags flown on the back of my bike during long rides.
Like the license plate [￼link] it is a conversation starter. No two ways about that. Last year’s flag had just the “DC2KC” logo on it and I was approached several times by people who had no idea what that meant. Tired of explaining, I resolved to be more specific this year. Now I’ll probably get asked in places like Wolf Point, Montana and Elyria, Ohio what continent I’m riding across. But that’s OK, it’s all good.
This is most assuredly, though, not merely a conceit. It is part of my overall safety system, which includes mirrors on both bar ends, a helmet rear view mirror, reflective tape on the back of the helmet, a Garmin “Varia” RTL510 rear-looking radar unit [link￼] with tail light, a second rack-mounted tail light and high visibility cycling clothing. I want to be able to “see” to the greatest extent what is behind me and I want drivers approaching me from the rear to be able to see me. Other cyclists I ride with and friends who have passed me in their vehicles tell me that the flag is the first thing they notice when I’m ahead on my bike. So that’s a good thing.
It is, though, big ticket bling. I have the flags, which are marine pennant-quality screen printed on both sides on heavy acrylic canvas, made by NorthStar Flag & Flagpole [link] and they cost right around $80 plus shipping. The flag staff is shock corded fiberglass and I bought it, the attachments and the rack mount parts
from the Hostel Shoppe [link], a great recumbent bike shop in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.
I’m headed out to a last breakfast in Portland, and will be on the road to Seaside right after that. The Prom Bike Shop apparently didn’t run into any major glitches putting the Surly back together, otherwise I’m sure I would have heard. See you from there shortly!
3 thoughts on “…and a flag.”
No… not a conceit. Stay safe out there.
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You are clearly a Planner. That is awesome. It reminds me of what a very good friend who hiked the Appalachian Trail at age 68 told me, we all do our own journey. We all have our own reasons. I am very impressed by your blog and your planning. Keep going, I am cheering you on.
BTW, I do bike trips totally the opposite, I make up my trips as I go along. See my blog of almost 200 trips http://www.citybiketrips.com.
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I’m with you, Paco. On a good day, I will happily ride into the dark and then find somewhere to hide. Other days, I’m done (in) by early afternoon and looking for a proper campsite or motel. I don’t want a schedule I have to stick to, generally just an idea of a destination a month, or a week or a day, or so ahead. And if I run out of time before I get to wherever it was that I thought I would get to, then so be it. David has quite a different approach. But that’s one of the special things about touring: we can make up our own rules. 🙂
There is one rule that binds us all, hopefully: Have fun! (Not every hour of every day, but most of it!)