E-Bikes: Friend or Foe?

By Randy Redmon

I grew up in the 1970s. As I reflect on my younger years, I often think of my 1974 Schwinn Sting Ray, neon green (actually called “flamboyant lime”) with gearshift in the middle, yeah a little dangerous for boys. I loved that thing – banana seat, sissy bar, you know the one! It was the worst riding and pedaling bicycle in the world, but I loved it.

After that I moved onto my BMX bike, and I was on top of the world! We’d get up every day, and if it was a weekday, we’d ride our bikes to school and ride back from school. If it was a weekend we’d ride our bikes as far as we could, which was probably only about three miles away to some friend’s house and dump our bikes in the front lawn and hang out. It was a different time then, we didn’t have video games or any other indoor game (besides spin the bottle, lol). We went out jumping trash cans and crashing our bikes – we found our limits.

Flash forward forty years, visiting my hometown, Newport Beach, CA. Seeing every surf kid riding a $3000 E-bike down the boardwalk at 30 miles an hour, I began to wonder – does anybody pedal anymore? Are we doomed for the most unhealthy people in the future? I was dead set against the E-bike.

Then I started noticing that these kids were also with their families as a family unit! They were biking farther than anyone could actually pedal a bike casually, and they were laughing and they were having a blast! That made me rethink my opinion of E-bikes. Anything that can get a kid out of the house away from violent video games is OK with me.

Looking around Huatulco, I noticed this is the only resort town in all of Mexico that really had no E-bike presence! It’s as if they hadn’t been invented yet, lol. But it’s starting – there are one or two companies in Tangolunda that provide E-bike rentals. And I do believe the “sleeping monster” is about to wake here in Huatulco, and soon we will be barraged with these beautiful silent E-bikes. They make it so easy to enjoy the scenery and wildlife, and as more and more families move here, the E-bike will happily carry families out together as warm beach breezes fill the streets of our beautiful beach town!

You might ask, how are we going to charge these bikes? Actually, charging an E-bike is no more expensive, on average, than leaving one light on all night. I have noticed lately quite a few posts on Facebook from folks saying that they wanted to fly their E-bikes here, but airlines refuse to fly the batteries because they might explode and cause a fire on the plane. So … what to do? I guess you’re just going to have to buy or rent your E-bike right here in Huatulco. (Shameless plug for Huatulco E-Bikes, the newest venture of the Huatulco Surf Co., conveniently located in the shops of Punta 1 in Tangolunda.) Some E-bike facts: average speed is 47 km/h (you don’t have to go that fast!), average battery time is 70 km before you need to recharge. These latest E-bikes are more comfortable and easier to ride than ever.

Remember this little article, remember the days when there wasn’t a single E-bike to be found in Huatulco, when you soon find the streets of Huatulco filled with smiling happy people rolling quietly along – way better than the motorcycles with broken tail pipes roaring through town!

Ride on, people!!!