Indy cyclists hit the road for Bike to Work Day

Heidi Herbst joined a group riding from Fishers.
Published: .
Updated: .

Rush hour was a bit different Friday morning. Chances are you saw a lot more "two-wheeled" vehicles sharing the road, and we don't mean motorcycles.

Friday was national Bike to Work Day, an event that's grown considerably in popularity.

Many cyclists took the Monon Trail from the north side downtown.

Dan Stoner was among the first-timers.

"I love it. I get to get off my butt, get some exercise and save some money," Stoner said.

Joe Fischer, who tries to commute on a regular basis, said it's become a lot easier.

"Now with the Cultural Trail finished, I can literally ride all the way to my office," he said.

Heidi Herbst joined a group riding from Fishers. Herbst, who recently moved back to Indiana from Charlotte, said, "I don't know what happened but I came back and saw cycling had grown so much. It's really blossomed. It's great."

Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard also biked to work, as he has done for the past several years on Bike to Work Day. He was among those who stopped for breakfast outside City Market.

"I like the fact a lot of bikes are heading downtown, even right now. I like the fact the [cycling] culture is becoming stronger and more visible, so people understand this is a great way to get to work and get around," said the mayor.

The city now has 74 bike lane miles, 60 miles of greenway trails, plus the eight-mile Cultural Trail.

"I just think we have so more connectivity," the mayor said. "We keep connecting the bike lanes and trails and putting pieces together."

Jay Hardcastle, who's been commuting for 30 years, said the changes bring challenges too.

"The biggest challenge now is we're so visible and there's so much confusion about what we should and shouldn't be doing," Hardcastle said.

He said both cyclists and motorists need to follow the rules of the road and "pay attention," especially since Bike to Work Day is every day for a growing number of people.

Beth Seelbach said she's hooked.

"It's not always easy, but I get my 'me time.' I get to enjoy the scenery, see the city, get to work and not pump gas. It's a fun time," she said.