So you like riding your bicycle but you hate to get off it to go up escalators? Well, your lazy ass can now stay right on the seat! i suppose that you actually are not riding it in the sense that you aren't powering the bicycle up the escalator at all. You will be expending considerable energy keeping you balanced on the bike on the escalator from being arrested. Or something.

Big fat disclaimer: don't do anything stupid or illegal, don't get hurt and don't hurt anyone else! Don't do this when the police or anyone else is near. Wear a condom. Close cover before striking.

Ok, so here we go. To ride a bicycle up an escalator is devilishly simple. You must have the following:

  1. a bicycle
  2. an escalator with handrails that move at the roughly the same speed as the escalator
  3. strong forearms
  4. clipless pedals or toe clips are helpful, but not necessary

Now that you've got everything you need, scope out the area. Are there any cops? Authority figures? Nice little old ladies? Does it look like anyone is going to try to use the up side of the escalator soon? Your answers should be (in order) no, no, no and no. If so, good. The coast is clear, proceed with reckless abandon. Otherwise, wait around a bit or try a different escalator.

This is much simpler than it sounds. Read this and have a go at it. Either it will all make sense and it'll work perfectly or you'll fall and hurt yourself. Next time hold on tighter (and try not to suck)!

Now then, get on the bicycle and approach the up side of the escalator slowly and carefully. Get the front wheel of the bike on the flat part of the escalator steps (the part where it's nice and flat, before it starts getting all stair-like) and grab a hold of the handrails with both hands, nice and tight. Let the moving handrails pull you and the bike onto the escalator. Hold on tightly! Your arms are going to take most of the force of pulling you up the escalator.

Now you and the bike should be on the step-like part of the escalator and should settle into some sort of equilibrium, possibly by turning the front wheel sideways - it depends on the wheelbase of your bike and the geometry of the escalator steps. Make sure the rear wheel is firmly on the flat part of a step. The bike will want to settle into this state by itself, so don't try to force it to do so. Let it do what it wants to do and just hold on to the handrails. My bike, a 2001 Gary Fisher Tassajara (my beloved Wahoo finally bit the dust), likes to have the front wheel turned completely sideways.

When you approach the top of the escalator, wait for the front wheel to be on the flat part of the escalator before you let go of the handrail with one hand and straighten out the front wheel if you had to turn it. Wait for the rear wheel to get on the flat part of the escalator, put the other hand on your handlebars and ride away!

If you still don't get it, come down to Atlanta (yes, even the The Whiz-Bang Atlanta E2 Party, if Accipiter sez you can) and i'll demonstrate it for you. i do this very act nearly every afternoon when i'm on my co-op work term. Be at the Chamblee MARTA station (south entrance) around 5ish pm. And bring me a beer. You'll be my hero.

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