This post has been updated.

You’ve heard about the road closures, the scores of people crowding Metro stations, and the unavoidable bus detours expected for Inauguration Day and the Women’s March on Washington.

So why not bike to get around during the next couple of days? It might be easier to bike downtown than  drive, especially Friday, but cyclists should keep a few things in mind if traveling into the city.

  • The expectation is that roads that are officially closed due to security reasons will also be closed to bike traffic. The closures will impact the bike lane network in some areas of downtown and the Mall.

Still, some D.C. transportation officials and bike advocates are encouraging biking as an alternative. So if you decide to ride on two wheels, here is what you need to know about your options:

Friday’s Inaugural Events

The following map shows the road closures.  Please note that bikes will not be allowed inside the Red Zone. Bicyclists may be asked for ID to enter the dotted area or may not be allowed at all.

Parking.  If you are biking on your personal bike to downtown, valet parking will be free at 16th and I streets NW.

Capital Bikeshare. Bike stations in the Mall area will be closed Friday. The system will offer two “corrals” on Inauguration Day to provide extra parking during the festivities. The corrals will be at 17th and K streets NW and at Fourth and E streets SW. Bikeshare stations in the Mall area will be closed Thursday and Friday.

Saturday’s Women’s March

This map shows the closures around the event, near the U.S. Capitol.  Riders should keep in mind that there will be rolling closures and bikes are not allowed in the rally or the march route.

Parking. If you want to ride your bike, there are bike racks across the downtown. But remember that bikes are not allowed in the rally area or the march route.

Capital Bikeshare. The bike stations that closed for Inauguration Day will open in phases Saturday. If you plan to use Capital Bikeshare, check its website or the SpotCycle app before your trip to see which stations are available. Capital Bikeshare will provide Corral Service to accommodate attendees of the Women’s March on Washington. Corral Service will run 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at 4th& E streets SW.

The main problem for people planning to ride will be parking. It will be especially troubling on Saturday when there is no option for valet parking, although that could change since event organizers have said they are still working on finding a location.

Nelle Pierson, deputy director of the Washington Area Bicyclist Association, said riders will need to be patient, budget extra time to find a good spot and bring a sturdy lock.

Even if bike parking becomes available through the organizers, she said, it may not be enough to accommodate the demand. Many march supporters in the area are organizing group rides to the event. (Check out WABA’s inauguration weekend guide)

Pierson recommends cyclists to find a secure rack, fence, barricade, or street sign to leave their bike, preferably a few blocks from the Mall area in downtown, and plan to walk the 15 to 20 minutes to the event at 3rd Street and Independence Avenue, near the National Museum of the American Indian.

“Even with a 20-minute walk, biking to the event will still be quicker and more convenient and more fun than most transportation options on Saturday!” she said. “But, then again, being in a packed bus full of energized women’s marchers sounds pretty fun, too!”