Thursday, October 18, 2012

How to Know When Your Headlight is too Bright #bikedc

Your headlight is too bright if, when on the trail, you become indistinguishable from the hate-feeding alien in Star Trek Day of the Dove.

Notice the car on the GW; his headlights cause less of an amorphous white glow than this cyclist's.

If your headlight is so bright that you cant be seen behind your headlight - its too bright.  It's unnecessary on the trails - other cyclists can see you without the light.  But with the light, other cyclists cant see you.  Had this been at night, the cyclist coming towards the high beam would be blinded and not be able to see anything.

Do your fellow cyclists a favor:
  • No high beam lights on the trails;
  • No high beam strobe lights on the trails (this is even worse);
  • If you must use a high beam, point it down (at this point this fellow's high beam is pointed straight at me)
  • If you must use a high beam, put your hand over it when you come upon oncoming traffic.
On the road, car lights are designed not to blind.  They are pointed slightly down, at the road (not in the opposing drivers eyes).  High beams are optional, but it is the etiquette - if not the law - to turn high beams off for oncoming traffic.  Maybe this is one small tiny area cyclists can learn from car drivers.

1 comment:

  1. While I agree with what you're saying, comparing the headlights of the car -- which is not coming at you -- to the bike's light is not exactly apples to apples. Too many cyclists don't have their lights properly aimed.