Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Arlington Flasher Update

Subject: ARLINGTON COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT NEWS RELEASE: Arlington Police Advise Bike Trail SafetyFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEMarch 23, 2010MEDIA CONTACT: Det. Crystal Nosal, 703 228-4331; 571 221-1492Arlington Police Advise Bike Trail Safety;Indecent exposure suspect still at largeARLINGTON, Va. - The Arlington County Police Department's Special Victim's Unit is investigating eleven incidents of indecent exposure that have occurred periodically since mid-January 2010, on the Washington and Old Dominion bike trail. A white male subject has been exposing himself to woman at various sections along the bike trail. Detectives are looking for more information from the public regarding these exposures.Anyone who uses the W & OD Bike trail and observes any suspicious activity is asked to contact police. Police have significantly increased patrols on the bike paths. They also urge people who frequently spend time on bike trails and other secluded areas to be cautious and aware of their surroundings. Women should avoid walking or running alone, and they are encouraged not to use devices such as headphones that prevent hearing someone approach. Police recommend that bike trail users carry cell phones so that they can call police as soon as incidents occur. People should report anyone observed acting in a manner not consistent with other bike trail users, such as loitering in the wooded areas, as suspicious behavior.Anyone with any information about this case is asked to contact Detective Comer at (703) 228-4243 or Detective Austin at (703) 228-4241.Detective Crystal L. Nosal #1187Media Relations/Legislative AffairsArlington County Police Department1425 N. Courthouse RoadArlington, VA

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Phoenix Bikes 2010 Bike Show

This doesn't really have anything to do with the W&OD Trail but its a fun bike-related event for a good cause. Also, the Phoenix Bikes shop is right off the W&OD trail at 4200 S Four Mile Run Dr, so it's kinda related.  (Full Disclosure: I am a volunteer with Phoenix Bikes and am on the 2010 Bike Show marketing committee)

Phoenix Bikes, a non-profit bike shop in Arlington, is holding their third annual Bike Show on April 8th, 2010 and they would like to invite you, your friends, and your family to come out and take part.

The event will include an art show, a silent auction, a raffle for awesome swag (like free bikes donated by local shops and other goodies), and speeches by local movers and shakers in the bike world. Plus, there will be plenty of free food and libations to go around. 

The Bike Show is a celebration of bikes and bike culture and every year Phoenix Bikes chooses a theme as the focus of their celebration. This year the show will highlight “Extraordinary Rides” experienced by riders from the DC Metropolitan area.

There will be seven rides featured.  In one, a cyclist biked across Southern Sudan to help treat the crippling effects caused by the Guinea worm. In another, three women biked from DC to Montreal to learn about community gardens and to make a documentary film on the issue. As part of the event, local artists will display artwork inspired by these and other Extraordinary Rides.

Tickets are $20 per person and two raffle tickets are included with the purchase.

You can buy tickets or find out more about the show here.

And if the promise of free booze, food, and prizes isn't enough entice you, here are some more highlights:

Special guests at the show will include: Chris Eatough, a six-time 24-hour Solo world champion mountain biker and the Director of Bike Arlington; Eric Gilliland, outgoing Executive Director of the Washington Area Bicycle Association and newly appointed Executive Director of the National Association of City Transportation Officials; and Jay Fisette, Chairman of the Arlington County Board and passionate cycling supporter. Jay will serve as Master of Ceremonies for the show.

Some items up for auction include: an R.E.Load Bag, jackets from Patagonia, Swobo cycling apparel, free admission to Madame Toussands, a One-year free membership at Arlington County fitness centers, a family package bike tour of Mount Vernon from Bike and Roll, and dozens of gift certificates from local and national companies. And there is still have more stuff coming in!

So if you're interested, make sure to buy your tickets early.

More info on Phoenix Bikes can be found here.

Event Details
WHO: You, your friends, family, and Phoenix Bikes
WHAT: The Bike Show featuring - Extraordinary Rides
WHERE: NRECA (National Rural Electric Cooperative Association) 4301 Wilson Blvd, Arlington VA
WHEN: APRIL 8, 2010 from 7-9pm
HOW: Get here by Bike, Metro, Foot or Auto (bike parking available)

Trail work west of route 28

PACIFIC BOULEVARD EXTENSION ACROSS W&OD TRAILBEGINNING TUESDAY, APRIL 6, 2010WEATHER PERMITTING• From 9:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. April 6th – 8th, trail traffic can expect flagging operations and intermittent stoppages (30 minutes or less) as crews erect bridge beams for the Pacific Boulevard Extension over the Washington & Old Dominion Trail. The future overpass and trail connection for Pacific Boulevard is about 1/8 mile west of the W&OD trail bridge over Route 28.• On weekdays throughout the months of April, May and June, trail traffic should expect flagging operations and intermittent stoppages (no longer than 10 minutes) for construction on the bridge deck. • During construction of the bridge, no access will be provided between the W&OD Trail and existing Pacific Boulevard to the south.• In observance of Bike-to-Work Day on Friday, May 21, 2010, no construction will be performed that would interrupt trail traffic.On behalf of the project team, we appreciate your cooperation during construction and look forward to a major improvement in traffic congestion and public safety once the project is complete.For more project information, visit

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Oh what a great day to cycle

I started at route 28 and headed west. I wanted to experience the "horrible" bypass that was put in just west of Leesburg to accommodate work by Dominion Power. Well, the bypass is probably as hilly and twisty as you have heard BUT, I liked it. It made cycling that section more interesting and fun. I suppose if you want to pound out the miles on your drops you will not like the bypass; but that is not me. Anyway the trail is in good shape all the way to Paeonian Springs where I turned around.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Flasher Incident on W&OD near Bluemont Junction

From Arlington Now:
A man exposed himself to a jogger on a section of the W&OD trail near Ashlawn Elementary School Sunday morning. Arlington police are investigating whether this incident is related to a series of five indecent exposures that occurred in January.
In this latest incident, a woman was running on the trail around 9:15 a.m. when a man exposed himself, according to police. The man was wear a ski mask over his face at the time. He’s described as a white male, between 5′8″ and 5′10″ with a slim build.
Police are asking anyone with any information about the case to call Detective Comer at (703) 228-4243 or Detective Austin at (703) 228-4241.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Trail Conditions

Got out today on trike for first ride of year on trail between Gallows and Hunter Mill- looked pretty good- one or two narrow spots because of piles of snow, but with the next few days weather forecast that won't be a problem. It was interesting feeling the temp. drop a few degrees when next to the snow. Very few people out today- more runners than bikers. Daffodils near Hunter Mill up about 7" and budded, heard first Towhee of the year calling.


Saturday, March 6, 2010

Falls Church/ North Arlington Update

I guess somebody with a plow reads this blog:

All trail obstructions I discussed on Monday, including lingering ice/ snow patches, downed trees, etc, have been cleared. The trail between Gallows Rd in Vienna and S. Walter Reed Dr. in Arlington is completely clear and ready to use.  Thanks to whoever took it upon themselves to plow/ clear that stretch.

Also, the last of the construction equipment on the east end of the Rt. 7 bridge has been cleared and the bridge at Little Falls Rd has also been refurbished and is back in action.

The temp is going to get up to a down-right balmy 50 today and (dare I say it?) might even reach 60 tomorrow.  Light winds expected all weekend.  Welcome to Spring folks, now get out there and ride!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Route 7 overpass in Falls Church

The resurfacing has been completed and both the east and west bound lanes are open . However, some of the construction equipments still needs to be removed--most importantly is the dumpster that blocks part of the trail on the east side of the bridge.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Public Map of Icy Patches on W&OD

To put the following updates in context, there is a publicly editable map on google maps. Please feel free to update.

View Greater DC Trail Snow Conditions (2010) in a larger map

Monday, March 1, 2010

Falls Church/ North Arlington Update

The trail is starting to clear up but there are still some patches where shade has stymied the melting process.

Working east from Gallows Rd, the significant trouble areas are as follows:

 There's a tree down on the section of the trail between Idylwood Park and I-66 but it only covers about half the trail and there's more than enough room to get around.

The trail parallel to Virginia Ln is still essentially impassable with large mounds of snow still piled on the trail.  For cyclists, I would suggest just hopping on the road until the County Rd 703 intersection.

The paved section for about 100 yards past Chestnut St is covered to about 4 inches, there's a dirt path next to it that is clear.

It's pretty dicey between Great Falls St and Little Falls St.  It's only about 2-4 inches, but there are ice patches mixed in with the slush that can be hazardous.  If you're on your bike and feeling very adventurous, have fun.  People on foot shouldn't have too much trouble so long as they don't mind getting their feet a little wet.

After Little Falls St. the trail clears up significantly until just past Falls Church park.  The hill going up Brandymore Castle has a cleared path about a foot wide.  If you're on a bike, I would suggest walking the hill, especially if there are others there.  The chance for collision is just too great.

After Brandymore, the trail clears up at least as far as the Custis intersection where I turn off. 

All in all, the trail is in pretty good shape along this section.  I'd say another week of above-freezing temperatures should clear away most of the rest of the hold-outs.