By Alan Snel of LVSportsBiz.com
This morning I wore Bill Fox’s cycling jersey to remind myself of how fragile and fleeting life can be.
June 1 will mark 20 years since Fox died in a bicycle accident in the Hudson Valley north of New York. He was my pedaling alter ego and I created personal bike rides in New York and Florida to honor Bill’s legacy.
I treasure this jersey because Bill’s lovely wife, Margaret, gave it to me after I rode a 158-mile day’s bike ride from New York to Albany along the Hudson River to remember Bill.
I wear it with honor and with the responsibility to ride the bike with Bill’s joy. I have a chapter with several Bill Fox stories in my book, Bike Man. The thing is, cycling is vital, but every bike ride I take is also an exercise in risk management.
This morning I took a 37 mile bike ride to remember Bill. This was my Summerlin-Allegiant Stadium/T-Mobile Arena-Las Vegas Strip-Downtown-Alta Drive bike ride.
The bike ride has a bit of everything – a paved trail, the suburbs, an NFL stadium, an NHL arena, the famous Las Vegas Strip, downtown, and a straight, uphill road to my neighborhood in Summerling.
This Bill Fox Remembrance Ride includes a three-mile ride on the Strip, so I’m here early this Saturday morning to ride my bike when there’s only a small number of motorists on the road.
But first, I hiked about six miles on West Trail 215 to start the ride.
This first segment of the drive east on Hacienda Avenue to the Raiders’ NFL stadium, Allegiant Stadium, is one I’ve done many times when reporting on site construction during the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19 in 2020 and 2021.
The stadium is an essential source of information for this site.
A short bike ride away is the T-Mobile Arena, where there are bike racks near the building. I credit Rick Arpin for the forward-thinking approach to transportation by looking at different ways to get to the arena where the NHL Vegas Golden Knights and UFC are tenants.
The Strip is quiet. Later today it will be frantic with tourists and motorists looking for their casino hotels.
But now it’s literally serene by Strip standards.
My lane position on the strip – in the middle of the right lane and I wave all motorists to change lanes to pass me to comply with Nevada state law. Yes, state law requires motorists to change lanes to pass a cyclist if there is a second passing lane.
Las Vegas Boulevard leads to downtown Las Vegas.
And the welcome sign.
Bill would love this bike ride. Cycling is about sponging up life and seeing it up close. I feel sorry for the people in the cars. There is no connection with the outside and the environment. It’s like living a life in cellophane.
As I head north on Las Vegas Boulevard toward downtown, I sense the local backdrop is orange construction cones and wedding chapels.
I’m heading to Container Park on Fremont Street. It was Tony Hsieh’s baby and to this day Hsieh’s death is still a haunting reminder of how a life that touched so many can spiral out of control.
I head for Alta Drive, the best possible road from downtown to Summerlin.
Metro Las Vegas does not have a network of paved pathways like other cities. Alta is wide with a bike path and is off-limits to utility vehicles.
About five miles west of downtown, just west of the Rainbow Boulevard intersection, I stop to see Mariane’s Roses. I first met her husband while scamming on Alta 10 years ago and remained friends with his lovely wife after his death.
I aim to stop and smell the roses.
Alta is the main route to Summerlin from downtown.
There was even this Navy vet who came up the hill and passed me on an electric trike.
Enjoy life. Bill Fox did.
You never know if you’ll cycle out of your house and never walk out the door again.
Message of public interest