Boise is both a dog- and bike-friendly sort of place, but the two don't necessarily mix well (many a biker can share stories about going over their handlebars when a dog suddenly ran across their path).
But a Boise couple used that sort of oil-and-water relationship as inspiration to create a canine cycling product, the Puprunners.
"We just made one for ourselves and people would literally stop us," said Anna Carter, who along with her husband, Ben, started selling their creation in late 2011.
The contraption looks like a bike caboose for kids; but rather than safety harnesses, the cart features a fold-away floor and a bar where leashes can be attached. The idea is to follow city leash laws while still being able to ride your bike without risking your life (and those of others) by trying to hold a leash and pedal at the same time.
When a dog wants to run, the floor is folded up and the dog follows behind the bike within the confines of the cart. When Spot gets tired, the floor folds down and the dog can ride in the cart. Different models accommodate different sized dogs, and some models offer split floors so one dog can ride while the other runs. The whole cart is collapsible for storage.
Puprunners are built in Boise and sold online only at puprunners.com. The carts cost between $350-$500, and the company offers a line of accessories like removable sun mesh so you can trick out your dog's ride.
Of course, ongoing construction along the Greenbelt might make finding an area to ride more challenging. The good news is that two projects are due to wrap up in early August: the Pioneer Corridor and the section across from the Boise State University campus. The bad news is a new project is about to close a mile-long section of the pathway.
The Lander Street to Willow Lane project will close the Greenbelt on the north side of the Boise River from Veterans Memorial Parkway, west to Willow Lane, beginning Thursday, Aug. 1.
Amy Stahl, community relations coordinator for the Boise Parks and Recreation Department, said the $300,000 project will replace the existing asphalt with concrete. But because of the location, there are few detour options for Greenbelt users.
Stahl said officials are recommending that the public use the pathway on the south side of the river, through Garden City, to avoid State Street. Bikers and walkers can cross the river at the Boise River Recreation Park pedestrian bridge or by using the Veterans Memorial Parkway bridge.
The entire project is scheduled to be completed by early October.