Group Rides


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Uptwobucks
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Group Rides

Post by Uptwobucks » Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:27 pm



How do you feel about group rides? Personally I’m not one to lead, follow or wait one anyone. I just can’t do it. I rather you just tell me to meet you at a certain destination so I can ride the way I can enjoy it.



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AZgl1800
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Re: Group Rides

Post by AZgl1800 » Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:20 pm

my limit is 5 or 6 bikes.

I don't trust folks whom I have not ridden with.

with 10 bikes, you can't get thru intersections w/o the front losing the back half.
takes an experienced leader who will hold a Safety Session before the ride,
watch for problems, and use a radio to stay in contact with the Tail End Charlie rider.

When the group gets broken up, the leader should find a safe zone to stop and let everyone get back together again.

The route needs to be known in advance, and stopping points need to be specified in advance. it is helpful for copies of the route to be mapped out, so all know where they are going....
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Re: Group Rides

Post by Viking » Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:50 am

AZgl1800 wrote:
Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:20 pm
my limit is 5 or 6 bikes.

I don't trust folks whom I have not ridden with.

with 10 bikes, you can't get thru intersections w/o the front losing the back half.
takes an experienced leader who will hold a Safety Session before the ride,
watch for problems, and use a radio to stay in contact with the Tail End Charlie rider.

When the group gets broken up, the leader should find a safe zone to stop and let everyone get back together again.

The route needs to be known in advance, and stopping points need to be specified in advance. it is helpful for copies of the route to be mapped out, so all know where they are going....
Absolutely agree, but like the OP, I am not one to like it if I have to wait for the slow arrivals. Standing around in a parking lot waiting to start a ride is not riding..... I tried it a couple of times with a GWRRA Chapter here in my home town, but left them for the convenience of not having to keep track of a bunch of people I did not know, nor did I know how they rode. One of them wiped out my buddies bike in a parking lot. Nobody hurt, but he did not offer to make good for the parts. He had to be reminded. He has since gone to a Spyder. Riding alone, I am always happy with my companions, :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: Group Rides

Post by C-dub » Thu Jul 11, 2019 10:11 am

The only group I’ve ridden in so far has been the PGR. Safety brief before every mission and procession with debrief afterwards. After a procession, if there was an unsafe rider, depending on how unsafe, that rider may be advised if their mistakes so that they can be corrected or if it was too bad will just be told they are not allowed to ride in processions any longer and should just meet at the destination ahead to help set up there.

AFAIK, there is no communication between the lead rider, mission/ride captains and the “tail gunner” safety rider bringing up the rear in case anyone falls out for mechanical or other reason.

It might be nice to have comm with a few of these riders. If nothing else, just to see how it goes a few times.
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Re: Group Rides

Post by CrystalPistol » Thu Jul 11, 2019 2:06 pm

I like group rides when they are with people I like being around. I know that in my early years of riding, some others bent over backwards to help me better enjoy the ride experience. Those who tend to arrive late often miss coffee. We have a AIS time set and at 5 minutes, the alarm is sounded. At AIS time, we are off like a heard. Stragglers straggle.

Once on the road, we chat. We tell jokes, we talk about things we see, and I have never yet had a problem getting important info broadcast or get in touch with drag. If a problem occurs, a flat, etc. …. it's a help to have company. No one likes breakdowns or accidents holding all up … until it's them. I have seen members leave the ride and go home to get a car or pickup & trailer to help.

If I want to ride alone, then wife and I just get up and go. If I want to go on … or lead … a group ride we have a schedule from which I can choose it. If I lead, I have a plan for the route, gas, food, times, miles, potty stops, ice cream stop at the end often as not.

It's just how I roll.


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Re: Group Rides

Post by Solina Dave » Thu Jul 11, 2019 11:00 pm

I don't like riding in groups, and I never have liked it, in over 40 years of riding. I ride alone, but I'm always meeting interesting people while on the road. I meet people who most often have a common interest with me, and that's usually motorcycles and motorcycling. And conversations about other things in our lives branch out from there. The encounters are generally short lived, and then we're gone. That's how I like it.
I don't have a navigation system, or a stereo, or an inter-com. Strictly old school with a clumsy road map. I love the solitude, but I will admit that there are times when I wish someone was there to bounce comments off. My ex and I rode many miles together, and that was good. But that was also many years ago.
I made a few group rides back in the day but I invariably found them far to confining. "Anyone hungry?"...."Yeh!"....."No"....."Want to grab a burger?"...."Nah! I'd rather have pizza"....."What to stop?"...."No, let's keep going."........"Well maybe." and on and on and on......But that's just grumpy old Dave. :lol:

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Re: Group Rides

Post by C-dub » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:57 am

Dave,

My group consists mostly of two people, my wife and me and she’s on the seat right behind me. We do have an intercom from helmet to helmet. However arguments like what you describe are nonexistent. If I want to stop we stop. If she wants to stop we stop. Fortunately, neither of us need to stop very often when the other doesn’t also.
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Solina Dave
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Re: Group Rides

Post by Solina Dave » Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:11 am

C-dub wrote:
Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:57 am
Dave,

My group consists mostly of two people, my wife and me and she’s on the seat right behind me. We do have an intercom from helmet to helmet. However arguments like what you describe are nonexistent. If I want to stop we stop. If she wants to stop we stop. Fortunately, neither of us need to stop very often when the other doesn’t also.
I too rarely had arguments when simply riding two up. I thought that the OP was mainly interested in group rides, with multiple bikes. That's mainly what doesn't appeal to me in any way.
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Mzomaxrph
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Re: Group Rides

Post by Mzomaxrph » Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:51 am

I bought my 2009 in Nov 2008 and joined my local GWRRA chapter a couple of months after. I remember my first ride with the group. I had all kinds of emotions that day. I was nervous and excited at the same time. I was put up front right behind our chapter leader who lead the group. I thought it was so cool to see the whole group, about 10 bikes, make lane changes together and hand signals for communication. I have a CB but am severely hearing impaired, yet I could still make out the group commands back and forth from the lead to the tail. It made me feel really special to be part of a group. I think that if a group ride is organized correctly and when everyone knows each other and what their skill levels are, then riding in groups can give you a sense of camaraderie that you just don’t get from other group affiliations. I am still riding with my chapter whenever I get the chance. I have over 120K miles on my 2009 most of them riding by myself but always looking forward to riding with the group.

Conleymm
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Re: Group Rides

Post by Conleymm » Thu Aug 01, 2019 6:13 am

We are a club of senior riders in north Texas that rides as a group. We take dinner, lunch or breakfast rides (temperature drives our decision), overnight rides and longer rides. We have a Ride Captain and Sweep for every ride. We preplan our routes and conduct safety training for our group a couple of times a year. There is always a safety briefing prior to each ride. We encourage all of our riders to have comms (CB or Sena devices) so everyone knows what is going on. The idea is to have fun riding, but more importantly to make friends.

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Re: Group Rides

Post by lewiric » Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:09 am

I think the best way to sum up riding in a group is "Lead, Follow, or get the F--- out of the Way!" If you're the ride captain, take charge of the group, do the proper ride prep to set the ride up for success and do your best to keep everyone safe. If you're not the ride captain, know your role, do your job, and let the ride captain do their thing. If your not willing to do either, STAY HOME!

Lastly don't let the bush-league stuff go. If you see it call it out and fix the problem. If the offending party doesn't comply don't let them ride with your group anymore. It becomes a cancer that only gets worse.

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Re: Group Rides

Post by Big Bird » Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:45 am

AZgl1800 wrote:
Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:20 pm
my limit is 5 or 6 bikes.

I don't trust folks whom I have not ridden with.

with 10 bikes, you can't get thru intersections w/o the front losing the back half.
takes an experienced leader who will hold a Safety Session before the ride,
watch for problems, and use a radio to stay in contact with the Tail End Charlie rider.

When the group gets broken up, the leader should find a safe zone to stop and let everyone get back together again.

The route needs to be known in advance, and stopping points need to be specified in advance. it is helpful for copies of the route to be mapped out, so all know where they are going....
OK, but here's the thing. If the route is known in advance, and/or people have some communications or know some rally points along the way, then why do you need to stop to reassemble?

I hate the mother goose approach to group rides and the focus on staying together and getting back together quickly.

I enjoy a group ride of good riders who all have their big girl panties on.

I think there is a largely un-tapped middle ground between formation runs and RTEs. That's where I like to roll.

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Re: Group Rides

Post by David Fang » Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:24 am

In truth I have never been in a group ride. I've been riding street bikes for over 20 years and other then having a group on bikes come up on me and riding becides me for a few miles I have no idea what a group ride is about.

So I guess I just don't see the big deal with it.

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Coop19742
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Re: Group Rides

Post by Coop19742 » Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:23 pm

Only thing I enjoy about a group ride is the conversion at lunch when we stop. Not having to know the exact route is nice also but instead of concentrating on the route I'm concentrating on potential hazards with the other unknown riders and conditions in general. I like riding alone most but those lunch conversations are nice also once in awhile.

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rachester67
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Re: Group Rides

Post by rachester67 » Thu Aug 01, 2019 2:12 pm

I belong to the Blue Knights TX 1 www.blueknightstx1.org we are often riding in groups either to a meal a couple of times a month or more lengthy rides to a set destination. We meet at various locations and have a KSU (Kick Stands Up) time. We leave at that time and if you aren't there you know where we are going and can catch up. I am the Road Captain so I always lead the group and I always provide a safety briefing before the ride. If it is a ride over 100 miles I will always stop at around 100 miles butts get sore and some ride older bikes or more fuel hungry bikes than my Goldwing. Speaking of that the meet up locations are always at a gas station and everyone fills the tank to start a ride. I appoint a tail gunner depending on who shows up for the ride and I have multiple good ones to choose from. If the group is more than ten we will split the group into two and will leave at least 5 minutes apart. We have a set speed for freeways may be a little slow for some but you will survive. If we encounter a break down one person with a CB will stop with the trouble bike and the rest will take the next exit within CB range so we can get updates. If it is a longer ride we always seem to have someone in a cage that will stop with them as well. Once we are stopped we always have the cell phones if we need to communicate and can't get through on the CB for what ever reason. If its not a quick fix then the group will continue to our destination. The Blue Knights is a brotherhood and there always seems to be someone close that come help the stranded biker. The tail gunner will gain lanes left or right when I tell them which makes lane changes safer and much more easy. As the group leader I will set the cruise and announce exits as we get close. Hand signals are also used just in case something happens to you communications or you don't have any and each rider passes those back to the rear. I enjoy the group rides but I have a good group of people.

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Re: Group Rides

Post by offcenter » Thu Aug 01, 2019 2:23 pm

rachester67 wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 2:12 pm
I belong to the Blue Knights TX 1 www.blueknightstx1.org we are often riding in groups either to a meal a couple of times a month or more lengthy rides to a set destination. We meet at various locations and have a KSU (Kick Stands Up) time. We leave at that time and if you aren't there you know where we are going and can catch up. I am the Road Captain so I always lead the group and I always provide a safety briefing before the ride. If it is a ride over 100 miles I will always stop at around 100 miles butts get sore and some ride older bikes or more fuel hungry bikes than my Goldwing. Speaking of that the meet up locations are always at a gas station and everyone fills the tank to start a ride. I appoint a tail gunner depending on who shows up for the ride and I have multiple good ones to choose from. If the group is more than ten we will split the group into two and will leave at least 5 minutes apart. We have a set speed for freeways may be a little slow for some but you will survive. If we encounter a break down one person with a CB will stop with the trouble bike and the rest will take the next exit within CB range so we can get updates. If it is a longer ride we always seem to have someone in a cage that will stop with them as well. Once we are stopped we always have the cell phones if we need to communicate and can't get through on the CB for what ever reason. If its not a quick fix then the group will continue to our destination. The Blue Knights is a brotherhood and there always seems to be someone close that come help the stranded biker. The tail gunner will gain lanes left or right when I tell them which makes lane changes safer and much more easy. As the group leader I will set the cruise and announce exits as we get close. Hand signals are also used just in case something happens to you communications or you don't have any and each rider passes those back to the rear. I enjoy the group rides but I have a good group of people.
You sound like you're talking about the Star Touring group that I ride with.
Like you, we always start at a gas station and when they say KSU at 8 am or whatever, they mean 8, not
8:35 or 8:40. And almost everyone has a CB.
And best of all, they move right along, not driving like a bunch of 'ol ladies. LOL!!!
Oh yeah....Most rides (and I mean MOST) are over 200 miles. They don't ride 30 miles
and then stop for a two hour breakfast. LOL!!
George in Jersey.
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Re: Group Rides

Post by hearseman » Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:21 pm

First of all, I'd like to point out that not everyone is an "experienced rider". I'm not (only been riding maybe 4 years seasonal).
Most of the group (chapter) rides I've been on start with "... ride your own ride..." and little else as far as trip information goes. Then, when I do ".. ride my own ride.." (i.e a little slower around sharp corners, etc.) I get "advised" that I'm holding the rest of the group up, and need to (speed up, get closer to the bike in front, pull out sooner on corners), which makes me really uncomfortable. I end up concentrating so much on WHAT I'm doing (in relation to the group) that I don't enjoy the "riding experience".
Not everyone likes hairpin turns, steep hills, combinations, and "follow the leader" turn-signal only directions. I'd like to see trip planners keep in mind the experience levels of the group and take that into account. By letting riders know ahead of time "this is a twisty, hilly run today." "This is a distance run, fairly simple." would make it easier to decide whether I'm going or not, depending on my abilities, and physical condition that day.
Also, being told "you can't meet the group somewhere along the route, you must start with us' just makes me angry. Many times, I've had to ride 20 miles to the "start point", only to ride right back PAST my house (by a mile or 2) Same at the end - if I want to break off and go home (nearby), why am I being told that I "...need to finish the run at (blank) before leaving.." As long as I communicate my intentions - it's MY ride, correct?
Basically, I've given up on group rides

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Re: Group Rides

Post by Big Bird » Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:28 pm

^ I like much of your style there, @rachester67 and @offcenter. There are always compromises in every group and I've made bigger ones in the past for groups that are probably less worthy than yours.

But just for sake of discussion on some of the little things --

I hate hate hate meeting up at a gas station. I always pick something like a coffee shop or even a McD's for the early arrivers to mingle about comfortably. IMHO it's as good and sometimes even better than the lunch stop. But gas up before you pull in, because we aren't stopping for a while. And like you, 8:02 KSU means 8:02.

The good CB group I rode with dissolved. The few times I've used it since, a tendency toward too many chatterboxes. But it can be a Godsend.

+1 (or 100) to not leaving anyone in distress. But once they're safe, with appropriate support, maybe...


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Re: Group Rides

Post by Big Bird » Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:39 pm

hearseman wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:21 pm
First of all, I'd like to point out that not everyone is an "experienced rider". I'm not (only been riding maybe 4 years seasonal).
Most of the group (chapter) rides I've been on start with "... ride your own ride..." and little else as far as trip information goes. Then, when I do ".. ride my own ride.." (i.e a little slower around sharp corners, etc.) I get "advised" that I'm holding the rest of the group up, and need to (speed up, get closer to the bike in front, pull out sooner on corners), which makes me really uncomfortable. I end up concentrating so much on WHAT I'm doing (in relation to the group) that I don't enjoy the "riding experience".
Not everyone likes hairpin turns, steep hills, combinations, and "follow the leader" turn-signal only directions. I'd like to see trip planners keep in mind the experience levels of the group and take that into account. By letting riders know ahead of time "this is a twisty, hilly run today." "This is a distance run, fairly simple." would make it easier to decide whether I'm going or not, depending on my abilities, and physical condition that day.
Also, being told "you can't meet the group somewhere along the route, you must start with us' just makes me angry. Many times, I've had to ride 20 miles to the "start point", only to ride right back PAST my house (by a mile or 2) Same at the end - if I want to break off and go home (nearby), why am I being told that I "...need to finish the run at (blank) before leaving.." As long as I communicate my intentions - it's MY ride, correct?
Basically, I've given up on group rides
Heard that!

Too many groups say what they meant to mean and then don't mean it. And create silly rules.

OTOH, too many riders want a catered experience.

I think you're onto it with an expectation of a meaningful and accurate up front push of "we're doing X" so people can self-select in. Perhaps add to that a few things on the margin about how you can join or leave undisruptively. Or not, since they can self-select out.

A few friends love catering their rides to the lowest common denominator. It gives them a reason to live. Me, I'd rather ride my own ride and enjoy it. I actively select who I am compatible with to stay together with and I really do enjoy those rides. Others I shall part ways with and see at the next activity.

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Re: Group Rides

Post by Solina Dave » Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:18 pm

hearseman wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:21 pm
First of all, I'd like to point out that not everyone is an "experienced rider".
Most of the group rides I've been on start with... "ride your own ride."...Then, when I do ..."ride my own ride"...I get advised that I'm holding the rest of the group up. I end up concentrating so much on what I'm doing (in relation to the group) that I don't enjoy the "riding experience".
Also, being told "you can't meet the group somewhere along the route, you must start with us", just makes me angry. Same at the end. If I want to break off and go home (nearby), why am I being told that I "...need to finish the run at (blank) before leaving.. it's MY ride, correct?
Basically, I've given up on group rides.
Very well put hearseman. I hope you don't take offence to my attempt at picking out the main points in your message. Welcome to real motorcycling. I also gave up on large group rides. I do however see an attraction in smaller group rides, (2 to maybe 4 or 5 bikes) although even that is a rare occurrence for me. For me, the attraction to solo riding is great, because it frees me from a very busy world that tends to smother me with its agenda. One of course, at least while still living, will never totally escape the masses. But if you simply get on your well tuned motorcycle, take a slow ride on some gently winding roads while focusing on "riding your own ride" through this beautiful country, it'll be good for your soul.
That's just my personal opinion, and certainly to each his own when deciding how to ride. But if I wanted to be told what to do, I'd join the army. One thought I've always had is simply that, "to not ride is wrong."
Ride safely, and always be aware of your limitations. And have fun................Dave :D
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Re: Group Rides

Post by rachester67 » Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:32 pm

hearseman wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:21 pm
First of all, I'd like to point out that not everyone is an "experienced rider". I'm not (only been riding maybe 4 years seasonal).
Most of the group (chapter) rides I've been on start with "... ride your own ride..." and little else as far as trip information goes. Then, when I do ".. ride my own ride.." (i.e a little slower around sharp corners, etc.) I get "advised" that I'm holding the rest of the group up, and need to (speed up, get closer to the bike in front, pull out sooner on corners), which makes me really uncomfortable. I end up concentrating so much on WHAT I'm doing (in relation to the group) that I don't enjoy the "riding experience".
Not everyone likes hairpin turns, steep hills, combinations, and "follow the leader" turn-signal only directions. I'd like to see trip planners keep in mind the experience levels of the group and take that into account. By letting riders know ahead of time "this is a twisty, hilly run today." "This is a distance run, fairly simple." would make it easier to decide whether I'm going or not, depending on my abilities, and physical condition that day.
Also, being told "you can't meet the group somewhere along the route, you must start with us' just makes me angry. Many times, I've had to ride 20 miles to the "start point", only to ride right back PAST my house (by a mile or 2) Same at the end - if I want to break off and go home (nearby), why am I being told that I "...need to finish the run at (blank) before leaving.." As long as I communicate my intentions - it's MY ride, correct?
Basically, I've given up on group rides
That's just not right for them to do you that way sorry to hear. We have new members join from time to time and they all get a little more in depth coaching before a ride. No one I repeat No one should push you beyond your capabilities and those that do just agree not to ride with them. We have all kinds of rides in all kinds of areas with hills and twisters and the such. In places like this we just separate out a little more and let everyone enjoy the ride at their pace. Some are out front going to town, some in the middle taking in the scenery and some in the back try to do a little of all three when they feel it.

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Re: Group Rides

Post by rachester67 » Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:38 pm

Big Bird wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:28 pm
^ I like much of your style there, @rachester67 and @offcenter. There are always compromises in every group and I've made bigger ones in the past for groups that are probably less worthy than yours.

But just for sake of discussion on some of the little things --

I hate hate hate meeting up at a gas station. I always pick something like a coffee shop or even a McD's for the early arrivers to mingle about comfortably. IMHO it's as good and sometimes even better than the lunch stop. But gas up before you pull in, because we aren't stopping for a while. And like you, 8:02 KSU means 8:02.

The good CB group I rode with dissolved. The few times I've used it since, a tendency toward too many chatterboxes. But it can be a Godsend.

+1 (or 100) to not leaving anyone in distress. But once they're safe, with appropriate support, maybe...

Disloyalty.jpg

:D
The gas stations we start at are fully functional with coffee, all kinds of eats and the such its not just gas. I forgot to mention we live all over the DFW Area and we often have two or three meet up locations and we will either pull in and pick up who ever is there or just radio them when we get close and they fall in line as we pass by. When we come back from a ride you just pull off and wave and go home none of this hey you have to go here to be released.

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Re: Group Rides

Post by unlimited headroom » Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:50 pm

I ride with SCRC in Canada. We have been riding as a group successfully for years albeit it’s like the saying I’ve had the same hammer for years. I’ve just replaced the handle four times and the head twice.
We have had visitors ride with us on ice cream runs and they were amazed at how tight we are. It’s been like that for years as tribal knowledge gets passed down and adhered-to.
I feel safe with my riding club and have with any other SCRC I have been with on both sides of the border.
Learn the rules, follow the Road Captains, Sweepers and Wingers to the tee and you will feel and be safe as we all ride in a comfortable zone for all.

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offcenter
Posts: 620
Joined: Sat Sep 22, 2012 2:10 pm
Location: Lake Hopatcong, New Jersey
Motorcycle: 99 Gl-1500 SE
76 GL-1000
77 Honda Trail 90

Re: Group Rides

Post by offcenter » Sat Aug 03, 2019 5:59 am

rachester67 wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:38 pm
The gas stations we start at are fully functional with coffee, all kinds of eats and the such its not just gas.
Same here. We usually meet at the local Quick Check which is a gas station with a store/mini restaurant attached.
"Kick Stands Up" is usually scheduled for a half hour after the meet up time, so everyone has a chance to get coffee or even breakfast before the ride, and to shoot the breeze a little bit. But when they say "Kick Stands Up In Five Minutes", They mean five minutes, not whenever you get your lazy butt around to joining us.
George in Jersey.
99 Goldwing GL-1500 SE
76 Goldwing Gl-1000
77 Honda CT-90 "Trail 90"

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Alan_Hepburn
Posts: 265
Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2016 10:56 am
Location: San Jose, Ca, USA
Motorcycle: 1994 GL1500SE with a California Sidecar

Re: Group Rides

Post by Alan_Hepburn » Sat Aug 03, 2019 5:36 pm

unlimited headroom wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:50 pm
I ride with SCRC in Canada.
We had an SCRC chapter here for years, and we were pretty close group. But then we got a member who was a danger to himself and others: he ran into one member's brand new bike in a parking lot one day. He was constantly getting into dangerous situations and finally our First Officer told him that he was no longer allowed to ride with our group. He sent a scathing email to the SCRC brass to complain and they basically told us that we had to accept him back into the group, or lose our charter. They refused to listen to the reasons why he was dropped - their feeling was that it was a family-oriented group and everyone was welcome. So, we disbanded the Chapter and just ride as a group of friends now...


Alan Hepburn - San Jose, Ca
1994 GL1500SE with a California Sidecar

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