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Just wondering what people's thoughts are on this. I commute to work by bike every day and use a couple of cycle paths. When there's another cyclist coming the other way I always stay left as it seems to make sense as we drive/ride on the left in the UK. However there often seems to be a bit of a stand off when someone coming the other way sticks to their right, and eventually someone has to move over. What do other people do? Does it make sense to stay left or am I getting this wrong?

24 comments

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skwarczek [16 posts] 1 week ago
4 likes

Stick to the left hand wall. Works for me on cycle paths, parkruns and also in a maze. 

I do keep a look out behind in case of faster riders, so i'd move to the right for them if i have enough time. But I try to always pass on the left. 

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pockstone [108 posts] 1 week ago
5 likes
skwarczek wrote:

Stick to the left hand wall. Works for me on cycle paths, parkruns and also in a maze. 

I do keep a look out behind in case of faster riders, so i'd move to the right for them if i have enough time. But I try to always pass on the left. 

 

I'm seriously confused by your suggestion. Keep left , yes, but why move right when someone wants to pass you? And why pass on the left? I assume you're writing from the UK. (Except most of what you said suggests you're not!)

Just use the same convention you would on the road.

Keep left, overtake on the right.

I regularly commute along a canal, but am amazed how many people can't get their heads around this.

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The Gavalier [34 posts] 1 week ago
1 like
pockstone wrote:
skwarczek wrote:

Stick to the left hand wall. Works for me on cycle paths, parkruns and also in a maze. 

I do keep a look out behind in case of faster riders, so i'd move to the right for them if i have enough time. But I try to always pass on the left. 

 

I'm seriously confused by your suggestion. Keep left , yes, but why move right when someone wants to pass you? And why pass on the left? I assume you're writing from the UK. (Except most of what you said suggests you're not!)

Just use the same convention you would on the road.

Keep left, overtake on the right.

I regularly commute along a canal, but am amazed how many people can't get their heads around this.

Yes, I'm a little confused as to why you'd move to the right to allow a faster rider to pass on the inside. Like you say, same rules as you would in the road. 

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FluffyKittenofT... [1612 posts] 1 week ago
5 likes

Seems obvious to me that you behave as on the road and keep to the left. But its odd how often a rider coming the other way will stubbornly remain on their right. Perhaps many of those on cycle paths never actually ride on the road so aren't aware of that rule?

Seems like such rules all fall apart entirely if its a path shared with pedestrians though.

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hawkinspeter [732 posts] 1 week ago
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Pass on the left and overtake on the right (except when a newbie goes the wrong way).

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The Gavalier [34 posts] 1 week ago
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Maybe some people get confused if the cycle side of a shared use path they're riding on is in the right. 

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brooksby [2306 posts] 1 week ago
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FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

Seems like such rules all fall apart entirely if its a path shared with pedestrians though.

True. Some will keep right (I'd guess, following instructions about walking on a road with no footway). Others keep left. And others will somehow spread out across the entire path while plugged into an iPod and walking a dog.., Grrr.

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dottigirl [633 posts] 1 week ago
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Just a quick note: I often ride my bike when I 'walk' the dogs, and I'll often be on the side which gives the dogs most protection, or where I know they'll pop out of the brush.

Please think ahead and don't have a go at someone if they're doing similar - it's for your sakes. I had one guy have a right go the other day - he was busy shouting from yards away. Idiot.

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The Gavalier [34 posts] 1 week ago
3 likes
dottigirl wrote:

Just a quick note: I often ride my bike when I 'walk' the dogs, and I'll often be on the side which gives the dogs most protection, or where I know they'll pop out of the brush.

Please think ahead and don't have a go at someone if they're doing similar - it's for your sakes. I had one guy have a right go the other day - he was busy shouting from yards away. Idiot.

If you're walking them on a shared cycle path how can you have control of them if you're also riding your bike?

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brooksby [2306 posts] 1 week ago
1 like
The Gavalier wrote:
dottigirl wrote:

Just a quick note: I often ride my bike when I 'walk' the dogs, and I'll often be on the side which gives the dogs most protection, or where I know they'll pop out of the brush.

Please think ahead and don't have a go at someone if they're doing similar - it's for your sakes. I had one guy have a right go the other day - he was busy shouting from yards away. Idiot.

If you're walking them on a shared cycle path how can you have control of them if you're also riding your bike?

I'm sorry, dottigirl: I know you've said that you have mobility issues but I'm with the gavalier on this. If you're riding your bike then I really don't see how you can be in complete control of your dogs, no matter how well behaved they are.

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dottigirl [633 posts] 1 week ago
1 like
brooksby wrote:
The Gavalier wrote:
dottigirl wrote:

Just a quick note: I often ride my bike when I 'walk' the dogs, and I'll often be on the side which gives the dogs most protection, or where I know they'll pop out of the brush.

Please think ahead and don't have a go at someone if they're doing similar - it's for your sakes. I had one guy have a right go the other day - he was busy shouting from yards away. Idiot.

If you're walking them on a shared cycle path how can you have control of them if you're also riding your bike?

I'm sorry, dottigirl: I know you've said that you have mobility issues but I'm with the gavalier on this. If you're riding your bike then I really don't see how you can be in complete control of your dogs, no matter how well behaved they are.

Not sure what your point is.

It's a wide, shared-use gravel path, with no specific cycle facility. There are faster roads available to cycle on if you're in a rush.

They run alongside me, on or off lead. They sometimes stop for a sniff or shit. They return to me when I call. They are visible, with flashing, reflective collars from dusk. Sometimes they prefer to run on the river side as there's more interesting distractions, or I prefer to ride on that side. 

They are easy enough to avoid, and I'm not going to stick to the left side when it's not the best place for us.

Clear?

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BehindTheBikesheds [443 posts] 1 week ago
3 likes

Shared path you shouldn't be going more than 12-13mph so coming across another (slower/static) user doing whatever it is they're doing shouldn't be a problem for you to slow down further. if someone is walking a dog, pushing a wide pram, pushing a pram and has kids with them, in a wheelchair, handcycle or whatever and you're coming from behind/toward then simply slow right down. Why the MGIF/moton attitude to those that are a bit slower or taking a bit more of the path than you. Some people are just selfish moronic no matter what mode the transport!!

Why do people think they have more right on any given way than others, if you're presenting more harm by going 'fast/er' (comparatively) to others then it's your responsibility to ensure those around you are safe. Don't be a selfish git and if you want to go that fast that people walking dogs whilst cycling or pushing a pram with kids etc and you think they're getting in you're way, bog off onto the road until you adjust your attitude!

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davel [1369 posts] 1 week ago
1 like
dottigirl wrote:
brooksby wrote:
The Gavalier wrote:
dottigirl wrote:

Just a quick note: I often ride my bike when I 'walk' the dogs, and I'll often be on the side which gives the dogs most protection, or where I know they'll pop out of the brush.

Please think ahead and don't have a go at someone if they're doing similar - it's for your sakes. I had one guy have a right go the other day - he was busy shouting from yards away. Idiot.

If you're walking them on a shared cycle path how can you have control of them if you're also riding your bike?

I'm sorry, dottigirl: I know you've said that you have mobility issues but I'm with the gavalier on this. If you're riding your bike then I really don't see how you can be in complete control of your dogs, no matter how well behaved they are.

Not sure what your point is.

It's a wide, shared-use gravel path, with no specific cycle facility. There are faster roads available to cycle on if you're in a rush.

They run alongside me, on or off lead. They sometimes stop for a sniff or shit. They return to me when I call. They are visible, with flashing, reflective collars from dusk. Sometimes they prefer to run on the river side as there's more interesting distractions, or I prefer to ride on that side. 

They are easy enough to avoid, and I'm not going to stick to the left side when it's not the best place for us.

Clear?

I think so.

You eschew shared-use path etiquette in order to keep your non-human shitmachines happy.

amirite?

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brooksby [2306 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes
BehindTheBikesheds wrote:

Shared path you shouldn't be going more than 12-13mph so coming across another (slower/static) user doing whatever it is they're doing shouldn't be a problem for you to slow down further. if someone is walking a dog, pushing a wide pram, pushing a pram and has kids with them, in a wheelchair, handcycle or whatever and you're coming from behind/toward then simply slow right down. Why the MGIF/moton attitude to those that are a bit slower or taking a bit more of the path than you. Some people are just selfish moronic no matter what mode the transport!!

Why do people think they have more right on any given way than others, if you're presenting more harm by going 'fast/er' (comparatively) to others then it's your responsibility to ensure those around you are safe. Don't be a selfish git and if you want to go that fast that people walking dogs whilst cycling or pushing a pram with kids etc and you think they're getting in you're way, bog off onto the road until you adjust your attitude!

I'm generally not going faster than that anyway, but that's still faster than a pedestrian isn't it?

On the second point, the shared use path I use most, and where the whole left/right thing rears its head, is alongside a 50mph speed limit road which is a dual carriageway for much of its length. So, I should ride in the road because I'm the bad guy...?

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brooksby [2306 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes
dottigirl wrote:
brooksby wrote:
The Gavalier wrote:
dottigirl wrote:

Just a quick note: I often ride my bike when I 'walk' the dogs, and I'll often be on the side which gives the dogs most protection, or where I know they'll pop out of the brush.

Please think ahead and don't have a go at someone if they're doing similar - it's for your sakes. I had one guy have a right go the other day - he was busy shouting from yards away. Idiot.

If you're walking them on a shared cycle path how can you have control of them if you're also riding your bike?

I'm sorry, dottigirl: I know you've said that you have mobility issues but I'm with the gavalier on this. If you're riding your bike then I really don't see how you can be in complete control of your dogs, no matter how well behaved they are.

Not sure what your point is.

It's a wide, shared-use gravel path, with no specific cycle facility. There are faster roads available to cycle on if you're in a rush.

They run alongside me, on or off lead. They sometimes stop for a sniff or shit. They return to me when I call. They are visible, with flashing, reflective collars from dusk. Sometimes they prefer to run on the river side as there's more interesting distractions, or I prefer to ride on that side. 

They are easy enough to avoid, and I'm not going to stick to the left side when it's not the best place for us.

Clear?

My point was that you find riding a bike more comfortable than walking at times, as per other posts you've made, and I get that, but that very few dogs are so well trained to verbal commands that being on a bike isn't going to seriously hamper your ability to control them.

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Yorkshire wallet [1183 posts] 1 week ago
5 likes
dottigirl wrote:

Clear?

I'm guessing people rarely say no to you.

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Mungecrundle [774 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes
dottigirl wrote:
brooksby wrote:
The Gavalier wrote:
dottigirl wrote:

Just a quick note: I often ride my bike when I 'walk' the dogs, and I'll often be on the side which gives the dogs most protection, or where I know they'll pop out of the brush.

Please think ahead and don't have a go at someone if they're doing similar - it's for your sakes. I had one guy have a right go the other day - he was busy shouting from yards away. Idiot.

If you're walking them on a shared cycle path how can you have control of them if you're also riding your bike?

I'm sorry, dottigirl: I know you've said that you have mobility issues but I'm with the gavalier on this. If you're riding your bike then I really don't see how you can be in complete control of your dogs, no matter how well behaved they are.

Not sure what your point is.

It's a wide, shared-use gravel path, with no specific cycle facility. There are faster roads available to cycle on if you're in a rush.

They run alongside me, on or off lead. They sometimes stop for a sniff or shit. They return to me when I call. They are visible, with flashing, reflective collars from dusk. Sometimes they prefer to run on the river side as there's more interesting distractions, or I prefer to ride on that side. 

They are easy enough to avoid, and I'm not going to stick to the left side when it's not the best place for us.

Clear?

 

The only person responsible for ensuring that your dogs do not cause a nuisance or hazard to others  in a public space (even those who may be cycling too fast on a shared use path, or who are not looking where they are going due to smart phone zombie syndrome or who are too young to understand what a dog might unexpectedly do) is you and you alone.

Clear?

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freespirit1 [250 posts] 1 week ago
3 likes

Highway Code Rule 56

Dogs. Do not let a dog out on the road on its own. Keep it on a short lead when walking on the pavement, road or path shared with cyclists or horse riders.

 

Seems fairly clear to me

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BarryBianchi [178 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes
freespirit1 wrote:

Highway Code Rule 56

Dogs. Do not let a dog out on the road on its own. Keep it on a short lead when walking on the pavement, road or path shared with cyclists or horse riders.

 

Hardly a day goes by when I don't see a dog owner refreshing their Highway Code knowledge with a good read of the latest edition.

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FluffyKittenofT... [1612 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes

Depends largely on how well behaved the dogs are. Do they bark like maniacs at anyone who comes along, or attempt to leap at them? That, along with the use of stupid stretchy leads that you can't see, is my problem with dogs and their walkers.

If they don't have leads stretched across the path, and they aren't the canine equivalent of snarling aggressive yobs then I don't have a problem.

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melliott [17 posts] 1 week ago
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I try to stick to the left hand side of any footpath or bike path. However, towards the end of my commute there is a shared path with a white line and a kerb stone separating it from the roadway where cars are doing 60mph. The path is used a lot by kids (nearby village school) and casual cyclists. I try to plan ahead and if I think the person coming the other way is less confident or proficient, I take the right hand side, nearest the road. I make sure I have their attention and signal my intentions though. Not had any problems yet, and although I'm sure nobody has noticed, if I can do anything to make their cycling less stressful, then that's a good thing, isn't it?

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Awavey [303 posts] 1 week ago
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depends on the path, and I know Im on my own on this  1 but theres no way Im sticking to the left side of a path just because people mistake it for a road and believe theres some weird you can only ride on the left etiquette, we arent boats only allowed to pass each other one way, if it means my site lines of potential hazards on the path is compromised and Im cycling over bumps caused by tree roots, yeah Im one of those awkard people who youll often find riding on the right side instead, and if the path is wide enough whats the real problem. canal paths slightly different kettle of fish though I prefer to gap away from the water side as much as I can

what I dont get though when you do encounter another rider insistent on passing starboard to starboard so to speak, instead of like in boats where you always steer away from each other, they force you to steer  across their path, which is fine if nothing happens, but if my mech or chain  breaks and I grind to an instant halt,the rider coming towards me is now going to ride straight into me, which is why boats do steer away from each other.

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The Gavalier [34 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes

It's not about riding on the left all the time, but when 2 riders are approaching one another on the same side, it should be the one on the right hand side of the path who yields. Obviously if both are riding on the 'wrong' side i.e. the right you can both just continue in your way, no harm done. 

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don simon [1026 posts] 1 week ago
1 like

For me, we more or less follow the rules of the road, there's no need to change them after all.

Ride on the left, overtake on the right.

Ovbiously there are going to be exceptions, but as you're on a path you're never going to be riding that fast when there are other users around anyway.

There are obviously going to be problems. So I say, ride on the left.

Yield if there is an obstacle (people) on your side to oncoming cyclists.

I always (mostly) call out to pedestrians the side I'm coming.

Expect the person to go to the dog and not for them to call the dog across the oncoming bike.

If a lycra wearing cyclist is on the wrong side, give them a warning and hand signal to move left.

If a dude or dudette in civvies, I'll often move over for them ( no great loss, is it?).

I'll often give a shout to other cyclists as I pass them.

I'll take a deep breath and pass weekend warriors with a cheery "alright?" as I hoon it past them. smiley

If it's a shared path, share it.