At some point in your life you have probably been affected by Critical Mass Vancouver. Whether you were stuck in gridlock traffic, threatening the lives of the happy bikers who have messed up your commute, or whether you were one of those happy bikers who revels in pissing off all the folks stuck in their cars, you were a part of something.
Critical Mass in Vancouver is a monthly protest/bike ride/traffic jam that takes place on the last Friday of every month. (However, the summer months are much more popular thanks to sunny, warmer weather).
If you commute to or from Downtown Vancouver, you know about Critical Mass. It’s gotten smaller in the past few years as the bike lanes continue to improve (less to protest against!), but the die-hards keep it going.
Critical Mass starts at 6pm at the Vancouver Art Gallery on the last Friday of every month. When the bikes start rolling, they follow the leader in a huge… mass… and head to whichever destination. Most of the time, the route will start with Granville, continue to Burrard, and finish in an epic conclusion at the Lions Gate Bridge.
There is a police presence on bikes as well, that keeps things in line, and there are many many pissed of people in cars. Oh yeah, and there are the “Corkers”. The heros of the event who block off traffic and possibly risk the chance of being run over.
Critical Mass is a great time to feel the thrill of just how much power a large group can hold. Sitting at the midpoint of the Lions Gate Bridge is one of the best feelings ever. Just don’t crack a beer – one guy did and immediately got a ticket for drinking in public. Small price to pay for a little anarchy.