Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Preparing for a Group Ride and the Ride Leader Bags

When out on a group bike ride, it's important to be prepared for any problems that may arise. Injuries or illness, though usually minor, are always possibilities (especially with younger, less experienced riders), and the bikes themselves often need to be tweaked on-the-fly.

The CBC has three packs (two rack-top bags, one fanny-pack) with supplies and tools for group rides. Since the extra weight can throw off a cyclist's balance, usually it's best for an adult chaperone to attach it to their bike.

Included in each pack are:

-Emergency contacts list (double check to make sure emergency info is logged for each rider, and all have submitted permission forms)
-Non-rider emergency backup contact phone numbers
-Cell phone with In Case of Emergency(ICE) numbers programmed
-Accident/incident report forms
-Emergency whistle
-Snack money and/or energy bars
-First Aid Kit
-Bike repair tools, including: multi-tool with chain rivet, tire levers, 15mm wrench, pump and/or CO2 cartridges & dispenser, spare tubes: 26x1.50 and 700ccx23c and 24x1.50, patch kit with glue and patches, rag, duct tape

Before each ride, it is important to:

-Plan route & anticipated stops (bring a map if possible)
-Identify number of bikes & number of riders
-Assign point person & rear person
-Review Rules of the Road with the group, including: Safe road riding; hand turning, slowing, stopping, and hazard signals; and verbal signals: “Passing on your left” &” car back”
-Check to see if anyone needs to use the bathroom before the start of ride

We have cameras and extra batteries available for use on rides, also extra cable locks. Depending on the weather, rain gear and a dry bag can also be good to bring:) Each rider needs to have a bottle of water and a helmet (we have extras), and must be dressed appropriately. If anybody needs to borrow a jacket, gloves, or a hat, we have those too.

Most importantly, enjoy the sunshine and the fresh air!

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