Life in the Bike Lane – Ingrid Granda
Engineer Ingrid Granda regularly rides her road bike along Grafton Gully from Kingsland, and loves Auckland’s growing bike network. She tells us more about her life in the bike lane.
When did you start riding a bike as a way to get around?
I am originally from Bogotá, Colombia. It is a large city with a lot of traffic. I started riding to go to my office to avoid the traffic and then I became a bike lover. I came to Auckland last year, and one of the reasons for choosing this city in New Zealand was the bike path network.
Why do you choose to ride a bike as a way to get around?
Well, if you enjoy riding a bike, firstly you feel so happy. It doesn’t matter how the day is going on, you feel less stress and more energy to start the day, and you can see people smiling all the time when they are riding.
Secondly, if you have your bike with you, you are able to move wherever you want, and you don’t get stuck in the traffic. You improve your health, and most importantly you are contributing to improve environment, you really are doing something to reduce your carbon footprint.
Tell us what you like most about the Grafton Gully ride?
I like it because the ride is surrounded by trees and birds all the time, you feel protected from the noisy traffic. The path is perfect to start riding because it starts flat and then it’s a little bit hilly, that gives you time to warm up. Then the downhills are such a nice sensation.
Do you ever stop along the way? If so, where and why?
At the beginning I used to stop in the hilly parts, because I couldn’t ride on it, then I became better and now I can ride on those parts. When I have time, I like the view when you turn right on to the Newton Road over-bridge.
Where else do you like to ride in Auckland?
I love to ride to Mission Bay from Britomart.
For anyone considering biking in Auckland for the first time, what would you say to encourage them to start?
Let them have a chance to try it, they won’t regret. Pick your bike or rent one and enjoy another way to experience the city. You can start with one ride per week and then you will contribute to your happiness and health, and making a difference with the environment. And don’t worry about looking like a professional, choose your favourite comfortable clothes and shoes.
Any final thoughts?
Riding a bike is one the best experiences when you are child. I encourage parents to teach their kids to use a bike and with this we will have happier adults in the future.