Monday, November 09, 2009

Segway Tours!

We have just returned from a wonderful vacation in Israel, during which I took a Segway Tour in Jerusalem. If you search for Segway Tours, you'll see there are a lot of them, everywhere. There are at least two companies in Jerusalem: The Green Ride (which I took and recommend), and Segway Jerusalem (which I only know from their ad). Since riding a Segway is unintuitive, I imagine that most tours work like mine: first, they train you to use the Segway; then you start the tour on simple ground; then gradually you get a chance to zip along over hills and dips.

Touring on a Segway is great. You cover a lot of ground (I rode for 100 minutes). You see well because you are up higher. And you feel safer, because you can 'outrun' anyone if you have to. (My tour covered a lot of interesting trails where we saw absolutely no one. On the Segway I felt fine, but I might have felt uncomfortable walking in such places.)

If you're curious, here's what's unintuitive: You need to move smoothly as you step on or off it, so it doesn't try to get away from you. You control your speed by leaning forward or back at the ankles, not at the waist. You turn by sliding your handle bar right or left, not by turning the handlebar. And it's hard to keep the Segway still; you are more likely to jitter slightly back and forth when trying not to move it. After a while, some of this becomes second nature, and you just enjoy the ride.

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