Thursday, August 13, 2020
Bike Sales, Rentals Surge with Pandemic
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John Clauson and Andrew McGeachin is keeping busy tending to bikes at Sturtevants this summer.
   
Tuesday, July 14, 2020
 

STORY AND PHOTO BY LUIS ALBERTO LECANDA

 Olin Glenne has been selling and renting bicycles for 20 years. But he has never seen a demand for bicycles like he is this summer.

 His Sturtevants is having trouble keeping both new bikes and bikes for rent in stock in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

 According to Sturtevants shop technician Jeff Taylor, demand is so widespread that bike shops in Boise have called to inquire about Sturtevants’ inventory. 

 It’s a problem—or blessing—that others like the Elephant’s Perch and Backwoods Mountain Sports share. At the Elephants Perch, sales have been through the roof. Bike mechanic Beckett Nasvik-Dykhouse says their May 2020 sales surpassed the entire 2019 total sales.

And the vast majority of those purchased were e-bikes. 

 The local experience is consistent with the trend rocking the overall bike industry, which is seeing an unprecedented surge in demand.

 ““The boom has been global, for the most part,” said Trek’s director of product marketing Michael Mayer in an article in “Bike Magazine.”

 The reason has been referred as “the perfect storm:” An increase in demand and a reduction in supply:

 People are trying to find a good way to exercise when they don’t feel comfortable exercising in a gym.

  • At the same time, overseas bicycle production has slowed

 Says Hailey resident Kirsten Ritzau, who recently purchased a new bike at the Elephants Perch: “I prefer exercising outdoor for the time being.” 

 People are looking for alternatives before tip-toeing into their indoor gym. They would normally be exercising at the gym. Instead, they’re working their lungs by taking up outdoor recreation.

 At the same time, the wide-scale increase in demand has met head on with an impacted supply chain of parts and assembly sites as COVID-19 has limited production.

 “If you feel like purchasing a bike, call us ahead of time for the best customer experience,” said Olin Glenne. “Although bike demand has increased, we are still able to source bicycles.” 

 Overall, bicycling offers a great way to social distance while recreating and exercising. And it doesn’t get much better than on the local trails surrounding Sun Valley.

 For those who will be out there bicycling, Sturtevants offers some safety tips:

 Pick your route--plan your route ahead of time. This ensures that you find the safes routes available to your destination. Make sure to utilize bike paths and side streets when available to avoid high traffic situations. Also look for local news on closures or any other construction activity that may cause obstacles and high traffic.

  • Act like a car OR act like a pedestrian. In other words, choose one or the other when cycling. If you choose to act like a car while bicycling, make sure to follow all traffic laws and adhere to the traffic flow that a vehicle does. If deciding to act like a pedestrian, unmount your bike and walk it while crossing the street. 

    Many accidents occur because drivers don't recognize bicycle behavior that that fluctuate between the two.  The confusion may lead to serious accidents. 

     Lastly, be aware of your surroundings and have fun!

 

 

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