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Riding in Groups

klaviator

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Don't do it!!
Group rides suck!!!
You will die!!!

That's the type of thing I see when group rides are discussed.

One of the major issues is that there are different ideas of what a group ride is. Many think of a big "herd" of riders trying to ride in formation and making a lot of noise. As far as I'm concerned, 3 or more riders is a group. There are many different kinds of group rides. I do group rides all the time but I stay away from "herd" rides. Generally the group rides I go on are set up so that everyone rides their own pace and then everyone re-groups at turns. Faster rider up front and slower riders in the back. I have been on a few rides where they wanted the slower riders in the front but that just means the faster riders in the back will get bored. I guess this works OK if you want to ride in a parade or just want the group to stick together but I'll never set up a ride this way.

My experience with group rides has been 99%+ positive.

I went on a group ride last Saturday. It was a dual sport/adventure ride and we had 13 riders show up at the start.

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We had a real mix of bikes and riders. 13 is a bit bigger of a group than I prefer so we would have to see how this would work out because I knew that some riders were much faster than others. I have been on some rides where everyone rode at about the same pace and we all stuck together. That would not be the case on this ride.
 

klaviator

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So we took off starting on a fairly twisty paved road.

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When we got to a stop sign we stopped and waited for maybe a minute and everyone showed up.

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The stop gave me a chance to take some pics. A little later the ride leader had something fly out of his tankbag. Instead of stopping in a bad place and risking a pileup he waited until the next intersection and then he went back to recover the item. It gave me the chance to take more pics.

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klaviator

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We ended up riding over 150 miles of back roads, paved and unpaved. We had a great ride with no incidents. It turned out that having 13 riders worked out just fine. We picked up a 14th rider at lunch and a few took off for home after lunch but it was a great ride. A few more pics of the ride.

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Riding in a group gives me the chance to do my Killboy impersonation and take some action shots.

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klaviator

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There are several advantages to going on group rides. In this case I got to ride a bunch of roads I might have never found on my own. I would never have seen the camel.

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The place we had lunch at was a real hole in the wall that I would never have found on my own but it was pretty good.

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The social part of the rides are also important to me and this was a great group of people with common interests.

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klaviator

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Getting groups together may take a little work at first. Most people today are on Face Book, not forums. I'm on FB but I'm not a big fan. FB is set up for people with short attention spans and designed to sell advertising and track users. Forums are a much better format for organizing rides and events and Much Much better for doing a ride report afterwards. I will often post some ride pics on the local FB groups. For example after this last ride I posted a few pics on the local DS FB group page and I had people asking why I didn't post the ride there. I gave them links to the forums used to organize the ride. The thing is that we have no trouble getting a bunch of people together for a ride here because we have a lot of regulars. If I was starting from scratch I'd use FB at first then try to get people on the forum. In my case I use both ADVrider as well as a local forum. I have also started posting rides here as well to try to help this forum grow. I use the regional forum for that. Starting a thread in your regional forum is a good idea even if you don't have a ride to post at this time. It allows riders in the area to connect.
 
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JimVonBaden

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I've done a lot of group rides. Dep[ending on the group, it can be a lot of fun, or just plain scary. If the expectations are set in advance, people ride their own pace, and there are specific planned stops to regroup, it can be very good.

On the other hand, I did a "group ride" from Bob's many years ago. 400 riders of widely different experience levels and blocking intersections, and people acting stupid. Never again!
 

klaviator

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I've done a lot of group rides. Dep[ending on the group, it can be a lot of fun, or just plain scary. If the expectations are set in advance, people ride their own pace, and there are specific planned stops to regroup, it can be very good.

On the other hand, I did a "group ride" from Bob's many years ago. 400 riders of widely different experience levels and blocking intersections, and people acting stupid. Never again!
400 riders is just way too many for one group. It might have worked if they split into 40 groups of 10 and did different routes.
 

Alan F.

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I've got a maybe a dozen strangers on Vintagehondatwins.com that are within 50 miles or so. I'm hoping we can pick a central spot to meet up and maybe ride from there. I'll prolly just figure out my own scheduling and post it in that forum,
if anyone shows up I'll ride with them. Vintage bikes, especially project bikes can be finicky needing lots of shakedown miles and maybe some tweekage.
 

JimVonBaden

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400 riders is just way too many for one group. It might have worked if they split into 40 groups of 10 and did different routes.
Agreed. My general rule is no more than 6 these days, but I prefer 2-4, just because I can usually find that many with similar riding styles.
 

woods

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Kickstands up at 8.

Joe said his bike won't start.
Mike said he's running late.
Daryl got lost.
Mary isn't answering.
I hear Bill's bike idling a few houses down- its 830.
We leave at 915- Mike finally showed up.
1015 we stop because Daryl wants Dunks.
1110 Bill needed to stop for fuel.
1120 Mary needs to stop for fuel.
1130 Get a text from Joe saying his bike is running and wait we were are.
1230 Joe shows up and we leave.
1240 Mary needs to use the bathroom.
1255 Daryl wants Dunks.
115 Bill needs to use the bathroom.
200 Daryl wants Dunks.
230 Joe breaks down.
245 Mike has to gas up.
320 Mary is tired of riding.
330 Bill gets lost from the group.
400 We call it a day after 55 miles of riding.
 

FLrider

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^ :rofl
That's been my experience in the past. Now I ride with my brother and 2 other guys and that's it. The reason it works well is because we all use Packtalk Bolds and thus can talk to each other . This to me makes a group ride safer and more fun but YMMV
 

JimVonBaden

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Kickstands up at 8.

Joe said his bike won't start.
Mike said he's running late.
Daryl got lost.
Mary isn't answering.
I hear Bill's bike idling a few houses down- its 830.
We leave at 915- Mike finally showed up.
1015 we stop because Daryl wants Dunks.
1110 Bill needed to stop for fuel.
1120 Mary needs to stop for fuel.
1130 Get a text from Joe saying his bike is running and wait we were are.
1230 Joe shows up and we leave.
1240 Mary needs to use the bathroom.
1255 Daryl wants Dunks.
115 Bill needs to use the bathroom.
200 Daryl wants Dunks.
230 Joe breaks down.
245 Mike has to gas up.
320 Mary is tired of riding.
330 Bill gets lost from the group.
400 We call it a day after 55 miles of riding.
Sadly, while extreme, this can be the issue. This is why we set expectations up front, and have prearranged meeting places for the group to regroup. Also, less people, less issues.
 

oldschool

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I just wish my rural area had more people who wanted to ride together, especially on vintage bikes. But, the hard part for me (until I get my CB900F running right) is my 450 can't come close to keeping up with the locals I know from the Sunday morning hangout, they all have sport bikes and want to ride twisties and fast. And, my little 1.8 gallon tank is a limiting factor too, 40 mile range with maybe 8 miles of reserve.
 

klaviator

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Kickstands up at 8.

Joe said his bike won't start.
Mike said he's running late.
Daryl got lost.
Mary isn't answering.
I hear Bill's bike idling a few houses down- its 830.
We leave at 915- Mike finally showed up.
1015 we stop because Daryl wants Dunks.
1110 Bill needed to stop for fuel.
1120 Mary needs to stop for fuel.
1130 Get a text from Joe saying his bike is running and wait we were are.
1230 Joe shows up and we leave.
1240 Mary needs to use the bathroom.
1255 Daryl wants Dunks.
115 Bill needs to use the bathroom.
200 Daryl wants Dunks.
230 Joe breaks down.
245 Mike has to gas up.
320 Mary is tired of riding.
330 Bill gets lost from the group.
400 We call it a day after 55 miles of riding.
I've done hundreds of group rides and never experienced anything like this. Sure, I have had some rides that got delayed by someone being late but most of the time people show up early and we are on the road by the KSU time. Sometimes if everyone who posted they would be there is there we leave before the planned time.

We do plan ahead for those with smaller gas tanks but normally we meet at a gas station so everyone fills up at the beginning of the ride, well everyone except the KLR riders who have something like a 300 mile range:D
 

SandRdr

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I just wish my rural area had more people who wanted to ride together, especially on vintage bikes. But, the hard part for me (until I get my CB900F running right) is my 450 can't come close to keeping up with the locals I know from the Sunday morning hangout, they all have sport bikes and want to ride twisties and fast. And, my little 1.8 gallon tank is a limiting factor too, 40 mile range with maybe 8 miles of reserve.
Find some Harley folks:super
 

JimVonBaden

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I've done hundreds of group rides and never experienced anything like this. Sure, I have had some rides that got delayed by someone being late but most of the time people show up early and we are on the road by the KSU time. Sometimes if everyone who posted they would be there is there we leave before the planned time.

We do plan ahead for those with smaller gas tanks but normally we meet at a gas station so everyone fills up at the beginning of the ride, well everyone except the KLR riders who have something like a 300 mile range:D
Southern people are much more considerate!
 

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