Tuesday, March 15, 2011

welcome new folks to biking

West Chester Cycling Club has a brand new webpage and Biker Chicks has a direct link. So I thought I would make a nice information page for those looking to try biking for the first time with a club.

To those clicking to this blog for the first time and looking for information on the Biker Chicks, read below for tips.

1. Biker Chicks is run by Libby and I post rides on the WCCC ride page. Rides are posted as C level rides. This means that our average speed is around 12 mph. That is the speed of the entire ride including hill climbing and the riding the flats. Other folks post C level rides as well and all leaders follow the same rules that the club encourages us to use. This will be covered further down.

2. C level rides stay together or regroup often. No one is left behind unless some unforeseen circumstance prevents the group from staying together. Always be prepared for this by bringing the cue sheet and having a cell phone with you.

3. Club rides are best done on road bikes. These are bikes with the curved handlebars and pedals with cleats. Hybrid bikes or mountain bikes are good bikes but not for riding in Chester County. They are too heavy and make for a very difficult ride when you have to climb a hill. The WCCC also has a ride leader posting D level rides and the hybrid bike would be fine for these rides. These are shorter rides with few hills.

4. Group rides require those participating to follow some basic riding etiquette. We ride single file when needed. We obey all road rules and use hand signals for turns. Group riding, despite its name, does require EACH rider to make his or her own decisions when turning or crossing a lane etc. Never just blindly follow the person in front of you.

5. Come to the ride prepared. Have the cue sheet (links are provided for the cue sheets on the ride page, download it and print it up, PLEASE). Have food and water with you on your bike. Carry a cell phone and carry a bike tube and a system for inflating your tire.

6. Download the non-member waiver if you are not a club member and bring it with you.

7. Check ride page frequently to see updates to posted rides. Weather, illness or emergencies can cancel a ride at the last minute. SO CHECK the page before heading out.

8. Finally, if you want to ride, DO IT. Don't wake up Saturday morning and chicken out. Get on that bike and do it. Don't wait till July. By then, the C riders are all riding and getting better. The time for newbies to ride is NOW.

9. See you on the road.

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