Monday, September 12, 2011

Bike Lights & Reflective Wear

On the NYC Bike Path: CatEye's latest & brightest tail light, the TL-LD 1100 & Portland Design Work's Danger Zones both clip onto bikes, backpacks, panniers and jackets for optimum day & night visibility.

Danger Zones clip on easily to your gear or bike
Fall outdoor activities mean cooler weather but also less light due to rainy conditions and shorter days.  You really want to make sure to be seen on the roadways when you take your morning jog or bicycle ride/commute.

One of the best ways to do that is to mount very bright lights on yourself if you're walking or your bicycle if you're riding.  The two that I showed in the film were some of the best and brightest I've found.  CatEye's TD-LD 1100 Tail Light and the Danger Zone lights from Portland Design Works.  Each offers a choice of three operating modes which include flashing and steady but the PDW Danger Zone has this crazy "A-Ha!" sequence that is just soooo cool!  Better still they are both rain resistant and these LED's are SUPER bright even during the day.

CatEye's TD-LD 1100 LED Tail Light
PDW's Danger Zones on a Basil Basket

The toe & heel of the Synchro Guide has reflective details.

Needless to say, clothing and bags with built in reflective strips are going to be very important in low light situations. Terry Precision Cycling has a clothing line with pieces that have reflective accents on them.  Terry's new Signal Hoodie has reflective right & left sleeves and is a bright red.

I like to make sure that my performance shoes have light reflectors as well and my Pearl Izumi Synchro Guide and Sperry Topsider SB-1070 running shoes both have large light sensitive panels for high visibility.

NEW!  Terry's Signal Hoodie is bright and easy to spot on the road.  Plus the left and right sleeves are reflective. Reflective Backpacks are available from

Really, there's no excuse to go out without proper lights either on yourself or your bike.  New York City law requires a bike to have both a working head and tail light when riding at night. You'll find most other cities have the same restrictions.

I've found one website operated by Bright Ideas that offers very affordable lights for walking, running and cycling.  Below is their Planet Bike dupe, a really great 3 watt Rechargeable LED Bicycle Headlight.  It has high & low beam plus flashing that can be seen for over a mile away even during the daytime. At night, you will feel safe on even the darkest roads.  You can also add extra visibility by wearing a reflective vest, backpack or shoulder straps found at Don't Get Hit.

We're all trying to stay healthy.  If we use lights and reflective wear, we can extend our cross training time into the night.  That, for many of us is precious since our days are often packed with other responsibilities that eat up our time.  This is one way to be safer out there so you can come home. 

Rechargeable LED Headlight from Bright Ideas


  1. Many cyclists seem to think of bicycle lights as an optional extra; something else to carry around on the bike, adding weight to lug around for no good reason.

    1. That may be true Hayley but in most states, you are required to have front and back lights PLUS reflectors to ride at night. I didn't see any bicycle lights at your website link there.

      The newer styles I've shown such as the CatEye UNO is very small and lightweight. Perfect for commuters or cyclists who don't want a big headlight to slow them down.


      Dr. M