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Bike Assist to the Rescue

It can happen – getting caught out on a ride without the right gear to fix a flat or a more challenging mechanical issue that is beyond a trail or curbside repair. Whether you are an avid cyclist or just starting out, there are times when there is no way around it – help is needed. Just a call away, and available to CAA members, CAA Bike Assist® is just that.

Here are a few happy tales from cyclists we spoke to whose days have been saved, making use of CAA Bike Assist, while out on ride adventures near and far from home.

Linda

While enjoying a beautiful, sunny day ride on the Hamilton to Brantford Rail Trail, at her lunch time picnic alongside the scenic Grand River, Linda noticed that the front tire on her mountain bike was flat. After getting over the initial frustration for not carrying enough repair supplies along on the ride, she made the call and CAA Bike Assist was there within the hour. After securing her bike, the good-natured and most helpful driver took Linda and her bike back to where she started her ride and where her car was parked at the Dundas Valley Conservation Area, in the western part of Hamilton. From there she was able to get back home and fix the flat easily and was left with memories of the great service CAA Bike Assist provided.

Lisa

To make the most of a mid-November day Lisa set off on a solo ride checking out the connecting trails that are a part of the longer Pan Am Path. Starting not far from home, and parking at a Toronto Public Library close to one of the entrances to the Humber Trail, she was eager to get exploring the twists and turns of the Humber River on the paved multi-use trail. Making stops along the way at the Humber Arboretum, on the Humber College campus in Rexdale, looking at the colourful murals on bridge underpasses, and enjoying some of the last colourful leaves on the trees, her ride was off to a good start.

While the Humber River Trail has abundant signage, there are a number of trail off-shoots to neighbourhoods and several street crossings to navigate. Making a wrong turn, Lisa stopped to access her maps located in her trunk bag attached to her back rack. After figuring out where she had gone wrong, and in haste to get going again, she forgot to reattach the bungee cord she was using to secure the bag. The loose cord very soon wrapped around her rear cassette, bringing her to a sudden stop, and luckily not worse. Getting down for a look, she was able to pull part of the bungee cord out, but found the hook was wedged in too tightly between two gears to pull out with her fingers.

Having a newer vehicle, she didn’t think she would ever need to use her CAA Membership, but was pleased to activate the CAA Bike Assist service, and see the CAA truck pull up within 30 minutes, especially as the November temperatures had started to drop. Using tools the driver had in the truck, the bungee cord in full was soon removed, and Lisa was able to be on her way again having no lasting damage to her bike.
Read more on Lisa’s blog: www.lisastokes.ca

Phil 

Well prepared for his ride, and carrying all he thought he needed, Phil found himself far from home with a flat tire on a quiet stretch of Lakeshore Road, just outside of Oakville. As an experienced bike rider he was quick to start fixing the flat, only to realize that the spare inner tube he had with him had the wrong valve size and would not fit his new bike’s carbon fibre wheel rims. While a few passing riders stopped to see if they could help, Phil remembered the CAA Bike Assist option, and soon made the call after realizing he was really stuck. The dispatcher let him know when the truck was due to arrive, making the anticipated wait time pleasant. The truck picked him up, his bike and ride partner, and took them to the closest GO train station which got them back home, to Toronto. Phil reckons that this great value-added service saved him time, money and a lot of aggravation, ultimately saving the day!

Richard & Melissa

Travelling in the States with bikes in their vehicle, Richard and Melissa planned their vacation in Oregon to include riding and seeing the sights along some of the Oregon Scenic Bikeway routes. With the day’s ride set to include the 55km Sisters to Smith Rock Scenic Bikeway (110km return), they were excited to see Smith Rock and its steep walls that dramatically stick out in the high desert countryside, view the Cascade Mountains in the distance, and stop at the country and western themed town, Sisters.

Having brought three spare tubes on their travels, Melissa had already blown through two, and was on her last spare when she got a flat on the return, about 38km from their vehicle. Patching the puncture a number of times, they realized this hole was just too big to fix. Weighing the option of sending Richard onwards to get the vehicle for a pickup versus putting a call in for Bicycle Roadside Assistance, which they had seen advertised as an option with affiliate AAA clubs in the USA providing service to CAA Members, they decided to try the latter. Well situated for the wait alongside an Alpaca farm, the Alpaca’s were friendly spectators and amusing to watch back. It wasn’t long until the AAA driver showed up, a friendly and helpful military veteran, who shuttled them and their bikes back to Sisters, where they easily got to a bike store and their vehicle.

Note: If travelling to the United States and planning on cycling, confirm with the local AAA club that Bicycle Roadside Assistance is offered in area, before setting out. Not all clubs offer the same level of services in America.

CAA Member benefits go well beyond emergency roadside assistance for motor vehicles, also providing roadside assistance for bicycles*. If you run into a problem that cannot be fixed on the spot, CAA will transport you and your bicycle 24/7 to where you need to go. So, if you find yourself with a bike repair you can’t fix, call CAA Bike Assist to help you get back on your way.

For more information on CAA Bike Assist visit: www.caasco.com/bikeassist

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Sponsored Content Partner: CAA South Central Ontario

Photo credits: 2 & 3 – Lisa; 4 & 5 – Richard.

CAASCO

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Published On: April 30, 2024Categories: News

About the Author: Ontario By Bike