Location: KCMO

Experiencing KC’s Critical Mass

KCFreePress.com offers up a look at Kansas City’s Critical Mass ride, which takes place the last Friday of each month on KC streets:

When people hear the words “critical mass,” they probably imagine a motley crew of cyclists drinking beer, slowing down traffic and generally getting in everyone’s way.

While that assessment wouldn’t be entirely inaccurate, it’s tough to get the whole story until you actually take part in the monthly bike parade and experience Kansas City from a cyclist’s perspective.

The ride moves at a pace that slower riders can keep up with, and red lights do not necessarily equal “stop.” Outlying riders, or “corkers,” post up at intersections to make sure cars don’t disrupt the peloton, usually by waving thanks to the drivers and wishing them a “Happy Friday.”

While disregarding traffic signals might seem like a dubious method of promoting safe biking, the movement certainly succeeds in making drivers reconsider who owns the roads. Critical Mass turns the traffic hierarchy on its head, as streets that might otherwise be dangerous for a lone biker become grand bicycling thoroughfares for a larger group. As cyclist Matt Lavigne states, “The mass is what’s critical.”

“It’s just a bunch of friendly folk riding around, having a good time,” said Ryan Jones. Cyclist Chris Lee called Critical Mass “a real spirit-lifter.”

Read more: Critical Mass a ‘spirit-lifter’ for KC cycling community

Click the images below for videos from March 26th’s KC Critical Mass:

Experiencing KC's Critical Mass

Experiencing KC's Critical Mass

See also: KC Critical Mass on Facebook

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About The Author

By Randy Rasa, editor/webmaster at Kansas Cyclist, the web’s premier Kansas cycling information site, featuring authoritative guides to Kansas cycling clubs, bike shops, organized bike rides, touring, trails, and much more. [learn more]

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