Friday, April 28, 2006

Group Riding Skills

One of my favorite sites, Bike Forums, has a great post on rules and etiquette for group riding.

Click here to read the full discussion.

The full list is pretty long, but I want to highlight a couple of the "rules":
  • Do NOT cross/overlap wheels with the guy in front of you.
  • Carry enough gear so that you don't have to ask for help when you have problems. (A future post will cover what I carry on a normal commute, and on a long training ride.)
  • Wear a helmet - this one isn't in the Bike Forums list, but I lead rides for youth groups, scouts, and a lot of novices. In some cases the rules of the sponsoring group requires that all participants wear a helmet. It's easier on the ride leader if everyone wears one.
  • If you get a flat in the middle of a pack, call out "Flat!". Raise your hand, if it is safe to do so, so other riders can spot you and not run over you.
  • Always assume that there is a rider behind you, and on your left, and on your right, until you can prove otherwise.
  • Have fun and encourage the new riders.
That last rule is the most important. I remember my first real group ride. I was (still am) pretty out of shape. The ride leader told me I was doing great, even though I was obviously struggling to hang on, and drifted back to check on me several times. All the riders in the group were great.

Those were just a few of the "rules" - so if you get a chance, jump on over and read the full thread.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Close Call

Luckily I wasn't directly involved...

Yesterday on my commute home I was stopped at a rural stoplight facing west waiting to turn to the left. Two teenagers on BMX bikes were riding to the south when the light changed. While the southbound cars stopped, these kids both ran the light, passing right in front of an accelerating FORD F-250. I entirely expected one of them to get hit, but by some good fortune the driver of the truck had seen them coming and slowed down.

As I caught them, I told them how lucky they really were, and gave them the "Same Roads, Same Rules, Same Rights" lecture. I'm sure it went in one ear and out the other.

Ride like a car folks - Ride safe.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

4/15 Group Ride - International Center

Well - my son and I were the only two who went on this ride, but I can't say that I blame anyone for not showing. The weather report was sketchy at best, but other than the roads being a little wet the ride was fine.

We hope that some of the other Blakemore team riders come out to join us. The routes are relatively flat (unless the group wants to ride the few big hills I know about). The roads generally have wide sholders and are low traffic, with a few exceptions.

If you are new to the MS-150 or to road biking, I highly recommend that you participate in some of the group rides. Riding in a group takes a little getting used too, and the group in Logan will be huge...