Photo by Jason Wheeler.
Originally Published: March 19, 2016 6:28 a.m.
There’s nothing like experiencing the great outdoors and one way to do so is on a bicycle. The Prescott area has plenty of bike trails and routes to satisfy any cycling enthusiast – from the biking beginner to the pedaling professional. What’s more is there’s quite a few bike shops around town to either get started, resume an old interest or just keep the enjoyment alive.
Many people begin an interest in biking because it is a non-impact sport that’s easy on the joints and is something the whole family can enjoy, High Gear Bike Shop co-owner Cindy Alward said.
When it comes to choosing a bike, it takes looking at a person’s physical abilities, Alward said. She looks at a person’s physical abilities and talks with them about it before picking out a bike. Size isn’t always the answer and there are people who can be very big, able to drop down in the aero bars and ride, she said.
“Imagine if you have somebody that could not touch their toes, but you put them on a road bike. They’re not going to enjoy it, they’re not going to continue to ride,” she said. “They could be in absolute fit shape, but have two slipped discs and a broken neck that they’ve recovered from, so you want to take all those things into consideration when selling a bike.”
Helmets, gloves and padded riding shorts all make the biking experience more enjoyable, Alward added. However, there’s also the equipment for the bike itself, such as what would allow the bicyclist to repair a flat tire, she said. After all, a mechanical mishap on the trail can mean 10 miles of walking the bike.
The Prescott area has plenty of places for biking, depending on the skill, Alward said. She spoke of a map on the City of Prescott website called the “City of Prescott Bicycling and Hiking Opportunities Map” that has all of them as well as the skill each trail requires.
The community has come a long way in terms of bicycling, Alward said.
“Getting the city to embrace the physical healthiness of riding a bicycle is huge,” she said, noting that the high school racing teams are “getting the kids involved and they’re getting their parents involved instead of reversed … on a bike, you get to see things, you get to go places.”
Find the map at www.prescott-az.gov/_d/bikemap_web_bothsides.pdf.
High Gear Bike Shop is at 505 E. Sheldon St., and is open from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Sunday.