Dozens of bikers from the California Bicycle Coalition (CalBike) arrived at the Santa Clarita Metrolink Station on Thursday to start their tour of the Santa Clarita trail systems as a part of a three-day Bicycle Summit.
Cyclists came from all over the country and many came with bikes in hand. However, the city of Santa Clarita provided bikes to those who were not able to bring their own. There was an array of different cyclists. While some had side mirrors embedded into their helmets, one cyclist had a seat for his daughter to ride along with him.
Once the bikers settled in, Mayor Pro Tem Cameron Smyth said some welcoming remarks.
Smyth talked about Santa Clarita’s award-winning bike trails that span hundreds of miles within the city. In addition, he mentioned the biking-specific events in Santa Clarita such as Bike to Work, Hit the Trail, and Santa Clarita Gran Fondo.
Suzy Stone, a CalBike attendee, has been biking in the Santa Clarita area for the past 10 years. She began biking once she participated in a bike ride for an arthritis foundation. “I just finished a 550-mile ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles for my ninth year,” said Stone. Once she began annually participating in the race, she began cycling year-round to stay in shape.
Just like Stone, Tom Reilly used cycling as a way to stay healthy, but biking has always been an integral part of his life. “I’ve been a cyclist almost all my life since I was about 7 or 8,” said Tom Reilly, CalBike employee and cyclist. “Every place I’ve lived, I’ve explored the area by bike.”
Reilly enjoys touring the city’s bike trails to see what he could learn from them. Currently, he is working to update their trails master plan. A consultant who is helping them with that process was also in attendance.
“I am fortunate that my passion is also my job,” said Reilly.
The tour ended at Jan Heidt Newhall Metrolink Station, where the delegation from CalBike rode a train to downtown Los Angeles.