Ride Recap: Critical Lass Rides to The Bikery Bash

The Bikery Bash was a blast!

See photos from the Bikery Bash Photo Booth on their Facebook page.

Our route to the the event via Capitol Hill was great, but probably wouldn’t have worked as nicely in the opposite direction. Taking the lane on Boren and Rainier as a group of five (and even alone) worked fine in the downhill direction, but it wouldn’t have been so pleasant heading back up. While it’s legal to take to the sidewalk in Seattle, much of the east sidewalk of Boren was missing.

So heading back, some of us followed a knowledgeable group back to North Seattle using this flattish route through downtown. We’ll have to try it in the reverse direction to see how it feels for reaching The Bikery. Parts utilizing one-way streets will have to change, such as the very cool bus cut-through between Washington and Yesler.

Please read more about The Bikery and if you’re so moved, support their Indiegogo campaign: Building a Better Bikery.

Critical Lass Rides to The Bikery Bash

Our friends at non-profit community bike kitchen The Bikery are having an all-ages fundraising party, with tons of fun for a $5 entry fee. The party runs 7-10 and if you want to ride from North Seattle, head down with Critical Lass.

Meet at Fremont Brewing (1050 N 34th St, Seattle, WA 98103)
Saturday, October 24, 2015 at 5:30 p.m., we’ll depart at 6:15 p.m.
Facebook event for this Critical Lass ride
Facebook event for the Bikery Bash

Fremont Brewing has pretzels and apples, but you can bring food in with you if you’d like to eat a bit while we meet up and socialize before the ride.

Here’s our route. We’re excited to ride Broadway again. Remember when Critical Lass checked out the Broadway Cycletrack two years ago and was thwarted by a parked car? LOL. We expect this time to be smooth sailing. The Rainier Ave portion may be on the sidewalk depending on the size of our group and mood of traffic.

This is officially a one-way ride as our ride leader will stay until at least 10pm to help out at the event, but we can help coordinate groups heading back and give route advice to various parts of the city for after the event.

More Bikery Bash details from The Bikery:

What: FUNdraising party for The Bikery with music, food, beer, and fun!
When: Saturday, Oct 24th 7-10pm
Where: 843 Hiawatha Pl S, Seattle, WA, 98144 (Next door to The Bikery)
Why: Help us keep the doors open and keep serving the Seattle bike community

We are having a FUNdraising party and you’re invited! Saturday, October 24th from 7-10pm, please join us for music, bike fun, and refreshments at the Art Space Hiawatha Lofts (843 Hiawatha Pl S, Seattle, WA 98144). We’re proudly serving Peddler Brewing beer, Seattle Cider, and food from the Central Co-op. We’ll be rocking out with live music from Tape Stacks, Shredding, and perhaps a surprise guest. We’ll also raffle off exciting prizes, including a Raleigh bicycle, Bern helmets, Detours panniers, Zipcar memberships, Pronto Cycle Share passes, and more! Join us for this all-ages event (21+ to drink) and in the meantime, check out our IndieGogo fall fundraising campaign, Facebook event, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram @BikerySeattle for updates!

Additional activities may include:

  • Track standing competition (byo bike)
  • Bike art station
  • Discount used bike parts for sale

So bring your friends, your bikes, your dancing shoes, and your giving spirit! Let’s party and help The Bikery continue to serve the needs of Seattle’s bicycling community. See you on the 24th!

Three rides with She Bikes and friends bike to OSP for SAM Bike Night

Critical Lass regulars Madi, Robin, and Merlin are each leading rides for She Bikes Cascade to Thursday night’s BIKE NIGHT!

“BIKE NIGHT​​​: Beat the traffic, save the planet, improve your health, explore your community, rock some helmet hair, whatever your reasons, grab your friends and pedal on over for a night that celebrates bicycling in Seattle.”

This is a She Bikes and friends (everyone welcome!) event to Seattle Art Museum’s Bike Night at the Olympic Sculpture Park.

Bring your friends–the more the merrier–to this evening of music (Pony Time and the Wimps), craft (Bicycle inner tube art w/Janet Fagan, art tours, food trucks–Nosh, Raney Bros BBQ, and drinks from Taste at SAM.

Cycle Scouts, on hand from 6 to 8, look particularly awesome: “The Cycle Scouts are a legion of bicycle savvy mavens whose mission is to kindly encourage good bicycle behavior on the street. You might just be rewarded, if you behave!”

Facebook event pages and Cascade calendar links, both with full ride info:
From Urban Surf/Gas Works Park:

From NAAM:

From Hugo House:

More about She Bikes Cascade:

Time’s they are a-changin’

Two weeks ago, the founders of Seattle Critical Lass had a farewell brunch for one of our founders, Jennifer Litowski (second from the left) who is soon moving away from the Emerald City.

Before bringing Critical Lass to Seattle, Jennifer was part of Critical Lass Edmonton and the associated Loop-Frame Love blog. Without her passion for #womenbike and prior Critical Lass experience, Seattle Critical Lass would not exist. Thank you, Jennifer!

It occurs to me we’ve never formally introduced ourselves, so let’s do that now!

From left to right:
(And, by the way, we’re showing off our newly-applied CycloFemme temporary tattoos in the photo.)

But there’s more changin’ times to share!

Have you heard about Cascade Bicycle Club’s new She Bikes Cascade program? Now there are even more opportunities for women to get acquainted with bicycling in Seattle:

With a vision of bicycling for all, Cascade wants everyone to discover the joys, the empowerment, the practicality and the community of bicycling. And that’s why we’re excited to introduce She Bikes Cascade, a series of inclusive rides, classes, clinics and social events to encourage more women to discover the joys and benefits of biking.

There’s a She Bikes Cascade Facebook Group, too. Join up!

Does this mean Seattle Critical Lass is going away or getting swallowed up by She Bikes? No way! We’re all sister in cycling here; there’s room for countless women biking groups and events. There’s a bit of overlap between Seattle Critical Lass and She Bikes Cascade–and please let us know if you find any of this or anything else confusing. Seattle Critical Lass ride leaders are volunteer Cascade Bicycle Club Ride Leaders which means that in addition to posting our rides here, we post them to the Cascade Bicycle Club Free Group Rides calendar and Meetup too. We also tweet and post to Facebook all She Bike events in an effort to help them reach more #womenbike eyeballs. Ohmigosh, like the upcoming She Bikes–Camping Trip to Fay Bainbridge Park, June 20-21…how fun does that sound?!

So in a nutshell:
Jen, you’ll miss you!
Seattle Critical Lass–yay!
She Bikes Cascade–yay!
Hope to see you all out on a bike ride soon!
– Madi

Critical Lass rides Ballard-Seattle Center-Ballard Loop (from coffee to ice cream to beer garden)

Saturday, June 27, 2015
Bergen Place Park
(5420 22nd Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107)
Facebook event page

Grab yourself a coffee before we ride: arrive early and pop across the street to Ballard Coffee Works or Cupcake Royale (we recommend the Cupcake Royale Hot Salty Mess for a dose of espresso and ice cream…though remember this is a social-paced ride and your legs might spin a little faster than normal if you consume something so magical).

Our route will take us along the Ballard Greenway, where we’ll point out the spot where for first time, two neighborhood greenways will connect later this year, then the Missing Link two-way bikeway, Burke-Gilman Trail, Fremont Bridge bike counter, Lake Union Park (where we can ride or run through the spray park if it’s too hot out), and the new Mercer green bike lanes.

We’ll take a short break at the Seattle Center for photos and hopefully find an outside ice cream vendor.

The second half of our loop will take us over the West Thomas Street Overpass and down the the beautiful waterfront and Elliott Bay Trail. We’ll walk our bikes through the Ballard Locks and our timing will probably be such that we’ll see and hear the concert of the dayEastside Modern Jazz Orchestra starts performing at 2pm.

Then onward to Peddler Brewing Company to hang in their NEW BEER GARDEN. It’s so lovely out back with seating, games, beer, and food trucks.

This is our full route, about 13 miles all together.

About Critical Lass
Critical Lass is an easy-paced, social bike ride for women.

Our aim is to get more Seattle women biking and we encourage both new and experienced riders to come along. We don’t want to create any barriers to your getting out there so if you need to bring kids or friend who does not qualify as a “lass” along, please do so! We ask that children be bike-ily attached to parent or guardian (trailer, bike seat, trail-a-bike, tandem bike, you get the drift…).

Critical Lass rides are Cascade Bicycle Club Free Group Rides and all participants are required to wear a bicycle helmet and sign a waiver.

CycloFemme is May 10!


CycloFemme is coming up, as always on Mother’s Day! It’s also Seattle Critical Lass’ birthday; we held our first ride on the first CycloFemme three terrific years ago.

This year we’ll host multiple rides from North Seattle and South Seattle to meet at Lake Union Park for a picnic. Just bring yourself, we’ll bring the food! Rides will start between 2pm and 3pm to convene at the park at 4pm.


Kidical Mass to Seattle CycloFemme (North)
from Ballard Library @ 2:30pm
Facebook event page

Kidical Mass to Seattle CycloFemme (South)
from Mount Baker Park @ 2:00pm
Facebook event page

SLOW Ride to Seattle CycloFemme
from Northwest African American Museum @ 2:30pm
Facebook event page
Cascade Bicycle Club ride calendar link

She Bikes to CycloFemme
from Cal Anderson Park Pronto Station @ 3:15pm
Cascade Bicycle Club ride calendar link

SHE BIKES – Renee’s Ride Series: #3 from Greenlake to South Lake Union Park Mother’s Day Picnic
from PCC Greenlake Village @ 2:00pm
Cascade Bicycle Club ride calendar link

And Facebook event page for the overall event.

Do you want to lead a separate ride to the event?
Email us and we’ll add your info to this page!

From CycloFemme:

CycloFemme is a Global Women’s Cycling Day created TO HONOR THE PAST and the emancipation of our grandmothers and great-grandmothers, for the freedom to choose and the chance to wear pants. TO CELEBRATE THE PRESENT and the riders who keep it rolling, bringing women’s racing to the forefront, pushing the limits, breaking down barriers and sharing the love of the bike with everyone along the way. TO EMPOWER THE FUTURE of women in cycling and the opportunity for positive social change.

Critical Lass “Women’s Bike Month” Ride

We had a great Women’s Bike Month ride! Check out the Flickr album here.

Pronto Cycle Share has declared March as Seattle’s first Women’s Bike Month and we couldn’t be happier!

There are a bunch of great events all month long, including our ride on the 21st.


Saturday, March 21, 2015
10:30 a.m.
Meet at Solsticio (1100 N Northlake Way, Seattle, WA 98103)
RSVP on the Facebook event page

We’ll meet outside Solsticio, along the Burke-Gilman Trail, at the bottom of Stone Way. Head over early if you need coffee, smoothie, or breakfast burrito before we hit the trail.

Our ride will take us along a bit of the Burke-Gilman Trail, across the Fremont Bridge (and past the bike counter!), along the Ship Canal Trail, through the scenic Westlake parking lots/soonish to have bike facilities, with a stop in Lake Union Park where we’ll all take quick spins on a Pronto Bike Share bike (fun!), and then we’ll ride along the AMAZING new improvements to Mercer Street to reach the Seattle Center.

Then it’s picnic time! Bring food or grab something to go from one of the many eateries in the Armory and we’ll sit on the lawn by the International Fountain.

As always, we PROMISE it won’t rain…but if it does, we’ll have an indoor picnic in the Armory. Also as always, we ride rain or shine!

Here’s our route:

If some people need to leave earlier than others, we’ll arrange for small groups heading back using a reverse of our route over. And feel free to ask for route advice to reach other parts of town after the ride…or for help getting to our starting point by bike.

For women driving to the start, there is a pay parking lot by Solsticio and free parking half a mile east at Gas Works Park (four-hour time limit).

About Critical Lass
Critical Lass is an easy-paced, social bike ride for women.

Our aim is to get more Seattle women biking and we encourage both new and experienced riders to come along. We don’t want to create any barriers to your getting out there so if you need to bring kids or friend who does not qualify as a “lass” along, please do so! We ask that children be bike-ily attached to parent or guardian (trailer, bike seat, trail-a-bike, tandem bike, you get the drift…).

Critical Lass rides are Cascade Bicycle Club Free Group Rides and all participants are required to wear a bicycle helmet and sign a waiver.

Upcoming: Critical Lass tour of new NE Seattle bike facilities, then Bike and Pike

Saturday, February 21, 2015
11:00 a.m.
Cowen Park Grocery
Facebook RSVP

Bike and Pike

Gather up outside Cowen Park Grocery (1217 NE Ravenna Blvd, Seattle, WA 98105) at 11 a.m. They open at 9:00 a.m. and serve brunch on weekends so go early if you plan to eat before our ride.

We’ll be riding a five-mile loop to check out some of the recent and soon-to-be bicycle facilities in the northeast:

  • NE 40th Street protected bike lanes into UW
  • The latest (though not the greatest) Burke-Gilman Trail detour through UW
  • Sign about the upcoming bicycle leaning rail at Burke-Gilman Trail/25th Avenue NE
  • Raised crosswalk currently being installed at Burke-Gilman Trail/30th Ave NE
  • Protected bike lane on Cowen Park Bridge

Then we’ll park our bikes at the big car-shaped bike corral in front of R+E Cycles (5627 University Way NE, Seattle, WA) for the 7th Annual Seattle Bike and Pike for “pizza, coffee, beer, bicycles, and a chance to converse one-on-one with some of Seattle’s cycling gurus.” Admission is free! Bike and Pike runs 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

About Critical Lass
Critical Lass is an easy-paced, social bike ride for women.

Our aim is to get more Seattle women biking and we encourage both new and experienced riders to come along. We don’t want to create any barriers to your getting out there so if you need to bring kids or friend who does not qualify as a “lass” along, please do so! We ask that children be bike-ily attached to parent or guardian (trailer, bike seat, trail-a-bike, tandem bike, you get the drift…).

Critical Lass rides are Cascade Bicycle Club Free Group Rides and all participants are required to wear a bicycle helmet and sign a waiver.

Ride Recap: #coffeeoutside with Critical Lass

Saturday, January 31st was a terrific day for #coffeeoutside at the beach! It was cold, but unlike many of our Seattle Critical Lass rides, we weren’t subjected to nonstop heavy rain.

See all the photos, including our bicycle portraits in the Flickr album.


We started at Theo Chocolate, one of our favorite participating Bicycle Benefits businesses. Theo is conveniently kitty corner to FreeRange Cycles where a couple ride participants took care of bike business before we set out in a pack of 20.


Our route from Fremont to Golden Gardens took us along the Burke-Gilman Trail and the Missing Link where we were very careful to steer clear of the train rails. We headed north to utilize the Ballard Greenway rather than ride along busy Market Street, but rather than hit the big uphill and ensuing big downhill, we suffered through one block of Market. Safety in numbers!

At the beach we set up camp stoves and enjoyed hot drink sand snacks.


Here’s our route (ignore weird jog at 58th/15th–bikes can go straight through…and we should report an error to the Google maps team to correct that!):

Our second stop was Swift Industries, local bike-touring bag makers. They have a great selection of items in their store as well as a robust heater we stood near to thaw our hands and feet. Who knew January wasn’t the best month for hanging out at the beach for a couple hours? ;)


Swift also offers clinics and other events. Here’s the schedule. Note the Human Error Sale coming up this Saturday!


#coffeeoutside with Critical Lass

Coffee Outside with Critical Lass
Facebook RSVP

First of all, there is A LOT of bikey stuff going on Saturday, January 31st. We hope to see you for #coffeeoutside, but make sure you know of these other awesome events we’ll overlap with:

Our ride will start at the Theo Factory Retail Store (3400 Phinney Ave N) at 10:30 a.m. We’ll gather outside if the weather is decent and inside if it’s horrible.
(Note: there are free chocolate samples inside and Bicycle Benefits discounts.)
FreeRange Cycles is kitty corner to Theo’s and opens at 10:30 if you need any bike supplies.

Our ride will take us west on the Burke-Gilman Trail, through the Missing Link, then pick up the Burke-Gilman Trail to its end at Golden Gardens where we’ll enjoy our #coffeeoutside on the beach. We’ll also have tea, hot chocolate, and snacks. And cups for all. If you have a favorite thing to mix with boiling water, bring it!

Feel free to share bike touring/bike camping stories and maybe we’ll plot a Critical Lass summer bike camping trip, who knows?!

Then we’ll pedal back into Ballard proper for retail hours at “Seattle’s bicycle adventure headquarters” Swift Industries. No purchase necessary, but hang out and check out their great locally-made gear and ask Martina any bicycle adventure questions you may have.

If you’re up for more adventure, we’ll switch from #coffeeoutside to #sandwichesinside and #beerinside (neither of those is “a thing” but Critical Lass don’t care). We’ll head over to Alison’s Coastal Cafe & Bakery for sandwiches and if we’re still out at 4:00 p.m., migrate to Peddler’s Brewing.

The fine print:
As always, helmets are a must for every head on our rides.
Children are welcome. We recommend they ride in trailers, bike seats, or on attached trailer bikes. Please check out Kidical Mass for free-riding kids.


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