Common Tread

Monday is Ride to Work Day: You know what to do

Jun 13, 2017

Monday is annual Ride to Work Day, with the idea being that if we all get out and ride, we'll raise visibility and maybe a few people will get the idea that there are advantages to commuting by motorcycles and our rides are not expendable toys.

Ride to Work poster
Image from
It's an idea I'm completely behind. As I've written before, I think a lot of our problems stem from the fact that we motorcyclists are too small a minority and don't ride enough. That can lead to drivers not expecting to see us and therefore running over us. It can lead to everyone from highway engineers to insurance executives to the people designing self-driving cars to think they don't need to accommodate us. Ride to Work Day won't solve that alone, but it can't hurt.

As you can see from the video, Zillans at ZLA HQ mark Ride to Work Day each year.

These days, I mostly work at home. The last time I had a normal commute was back when I worked at the American Motorcyclist Association. My trip to work was just seven miles of surface streets, until I moved, and then it became 10 miles of combined city streets and a portion of Interstate 70. I made a point of riding to work every day there wasn't snow or ice on the roads. That included a lot of pleasant summer days, but of course the commutes I remember most were the worst ones. Like the time I rode my Speed Triple with sport tires to work one winter morning. It was cold but totally dry when I left my house. At work, just seven miles away, there was an inch of snow on the ground and more falling. I still don't know how I made it down the curving driveway to the office. The coldest I ever rode to work was one seven-degree morning. The hardest part of that, really, was getting the old Honda NX250 dual-sport I used as my winter commuter to turn over and start.

But none of my stories compare to Lemmy's. The man commutes nearly 140 miles a day to get from Lemmy Mountain to RevZilla HQ, and when you're doing those kinds of miles, you're bound to have some stories to tell. In fact, one of the first articles he ever wrote for Common Tread was called Adventure commuting with Lemmy. Since that was almost precisely three years ago, and in those early days Common Tread barely had two dozen readers to rub together, you may have missed it. Go back and check it out for inspiration.

Then go ride to work.