Any interest in a Flock-style ride on a Sunday?

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ejwme
Participant
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Wayfinder and I were talking last night about how it would be nice to have a ride on a Sunday afternoon, maybe pick up some of the people who work on Friday evenings or super early Saturday mornings (like you RF?). By afternoon, I mean any time starting about 10AM or later – I don’t imagine there are a lot of people itching to gather before then.

Some route ideas are the Bridges ride, a Cemetary ride, Citiparks ride, anything. I’m not too particular about which Sunday, either, except not this Sunday (for me personally, majority rules of course). I know the Oliver Pool ride got postponed due to key absence, maybe the 2nd there could still be a ride of some sort.

If there’s enough interest, maybe it could be a monthly suppliment to the Flock and flock all night.

Whaddaya think guys?


untameable2
Participant
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sound good 2 me. The evening rides make it difficult 2 manage what the chillun will do, but Sunday daylight rides would allow me to drag em along


rosielo
Participant
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I’m interested. Sunday day/afternoon would be a lot easier for me to make happen.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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Just let me know where and when!


Marko82
Participant
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I’ll join a ride on a Sunday afternoon.


Erica
Participant
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I’m off sundays! This sunday I should be in ohio, but in the future, I should be ready to go.


stefb
Participant
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i would be down this weekend except i am out of town! good idea. have fun if you do it.


stefb
Participant
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on a side note: i was working in the OR yesterday and one of the nurses said he said a bunch of people riding their bikes on carson the friday before last. i said it was us and he said it was too cold and that we were crazy. i said that the exercise kept us warm. he said he gives us credit for riding in the cold.


Nick D
Participant
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ejwme, I sent you a PM


wayfinder
Participant
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Yes, I’m interested on the 2nd (a New Year ride!) or thereafter.

I’m a little unsure about winter riding if it gets really icy or slushy, but so far I’ve enjoyed it, and have even riden when it was snowing.

I’m fond of warm places with cocktails after a Sunday ride. :)


Erica
Participant
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the 2nd works for me!


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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This might be an ideal time to bring a friend who’s wanted to go riding but didn’t know how to get started.

@stefb, the nurse you mentioned, is that the same one you mentioned who’s talked dirt about cyclists in the past? Sounds like grudging respect this time, maybe?


stefb
Participant
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no it is a different nurse. the one that actually had respect for us owned a motorcycle until recently.


RickyTickyTac
Participant
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I’m down for any Sunday at all, sounds fun!

We should try to hit areas where we don’t usually go on Flock rides. It might be kinda cool (if you’re all up for some climbing, that is) to go through the Hill District and Polish Hill. I don’t think we’ve ever Flocked there before and they’re very close to the starting point. Perhaps we could even go out of the city, its pretty easy to get over to Millvale.

I’m getting a little tired of the typical route. Anybody with me?


edmonds59
Participant
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stefb, Wow, I can only imagine the flack someone in the medical profession would get about riding a motorcycle, it would be endless. Flack about being a bicyclist would pale in comparison.


Noah Mustion
Participant
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Flack of Cycles (both kinds)?


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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I’d say it depends on how many newbies we get and how up to doing hills they are. I rather like Centre all the way from Downtown to Neville & beyond, both directions. One of my best memories was unicycling from Neville into Downtown at dusk one time. Lots of positive interactions with the natives.


Nick D
Participant
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Since most of the Flock rides (with the exception of MM) are designed to be welcoming to the most inexperienced beginner rider, they never touch those areas (we did do Polish Hill once).

I find that when we do have long/hard hill climbs, the first time riders on that ride almost never return. When the ride is slow, flat, and easy, they almost always return.

I think a moderate ride would be a great addition to the regular Flock rides, as long is it is advertised that will not be as beginner friendly as the party ride/f.a.n.

I probably won’t make it, but I already offered my stereo to ejwme. If she can’t pick it up, and someone else wants to get it, let me know.


ejwme
Participant
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how’s the bridge ride? has anybody done that and can attest to it’s newbie-friendliness? I’m really itching to do that and it might be a good way to start the new year.

Other than that, exploring new areas is something I’d love to do – I’ll scope out a topo map and see if there’s any places we don’t usually hit that are flat-ish. Seems to me it’s mostly flat to some of the eastern ‘burbs, highland park, maybe cruising down through Allegheny Cemetary and around via trail back where it’s flatter is doable. Big climbs scare people away, but maybe some nice descents aren’t too bad (though in winter, a big climb might get the blood moving enough to make it more fun)


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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I’d love to throw a staircase into the ride, just to mix things up a bit. Not a monster staircase like SecondAve/S.10th/Armstrong up to DuqUniv, or Rising Main Avenue, just a little 20-step one. Just to give people the experience of changing elevations without having to pedal it.

One example, Alpena off of Bigelow up by the Residence Inn hotel. Top. Bottom. A nice little back way up into the Upper Hill. (Coming down via Bryn Mawr is not for first-time Flockers, however!)


cburch
Participant
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Stairs on baker up to morningside would be good too. They end in the little back part of the neighborhood that almost no one who doesn’t live there ever sees.


RickyTickyTac
Participant
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who says you can’t pedal over a staircase?


Marko82
Participant
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The bridge ride was newbie friendly from a hills perspective, but bridges are scarry if you are not use to traffic. Bridges get even worse with snow and slush too. :(


wayfinder
Participant
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I’d probably have plenty of suggestions if I knew what the typical “flock” ride has been, and what people expect.

Do they stick strictly to pavement?

Do they include one major climb? (yes, the river level to the East End plateau is a major climb, just one that’s accomplished routinely by people who ride all the time).

Are “beginners” going to come out on the second of January? – that’s hard for me to picture (though I’d still come to a ride tailered to beginners, and probably enjoy it, though perhaps less so in cold weather when it’s best to keep moving).

Does the “flock” meet at Dippy the Dinosaur (or is that Critical Mass)?

How long are cold weather flock rides?

Personally, I cross all major bridges (except Birmingham) on the sidewalk, often stopping to enjoy the magnificent views. I’d be down for the roadway with a group though, if that’s what everyone does.

Love to incorporate stairways in rides (always prefer stairs up, riding down). Alpena’s cool, and Herron Hill Park’s a great destination (aside from the ridiculous “no bicycles” sign), but Upper Hill’s a beast of a climb.

Elevation adverse? Lots can be done with Oakland – Shadyside – Pt. Breeze – Regent Square – Wilkinsburg – Homewood – East Liberty – Highland Park – Morningside – Bloomfield – Friendship.

I have a fabulous Sunday ride all planned, but it involves considerable off-road.

Does anyone else love Downtown on a Sunday, without all the traffic?

I’m gone through Monday, but will check this thread when I get back. I’m down for whatever anyone decides (or can make suggestions if undecided).

I’m really not even sure how group rides work. Doesn’t someone pretty much have to lead it? I’ve only ever ridden with one other person and it’s like “ok, follow me”, or “ok, you lead”.


stefb
Participant
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We stay on the road. I think the only time we weren’t technically on a street is when we rode at the Point. When we go across the bridges, we take the road. We meet at Dippy. The last Flock All night was about an hour and a half I think. When we flocked to ice skating, the ride was 45 mins- an hour I think. We do climb hills occasionally. I think Nick tries to keep it flat, but sometimes you HAVE to climb a hill like Liberty to get back to Oakland from Downtown. We climb hills slowly and wait for everyone at the top. I never really rode in a group before Flock either, but it’s pretty simple. Just don’t swerve all over the place, stay off to the ride side of the road, and warn others/you will be warned by others about potholes and whatnot to avoid.


edmonds59
Participant
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Also, one of the experienced riders always stays at the back to keep an eye on things, no one gets left behind.

The most important part as far as I am concerned for someone considering joining a flock ride for the first time: DO NOT WORRY ABOUT SLOWING PEOPLE DOWN. I hear people say that, and it makes me sad. This is the exact opposite of a race, it’s a rolling party, and the more people, the better. People go on a flock ride to ride with other people, fast, slow, fat, skinny, strange people, and completely average people.


racedoug
Participant
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hmmm so that makes me a slow, skinny, strange, out of shape person…hahahaha

I can’t make this one but I will make one soon. I hope Santa brings me some cold weather riding gear.


stefb
Participant
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yeah i have noticed that riding slowly makes me colder quicker. i just have to adjust my gear better for a flock ride. i’m not the fastest person in the world anymore, but my pace on my own is a little bit faster than flock and it keeps me warmer. it’s really fun. the music adds something special to it. no one is a dick. the only dicks we encounter are people yelling “fag” at us, but when you think about it, you’re having the good time and not them.


Erica
Participant
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I’m glad edmonds mentioned not worrying about holding people up – I’ve been on 2 group rides (north side ride), and I was the last person up the hill EVERY time. I think I might have asthma, or some other respiratory problem, I get winded from kneeling for too long.


Noah Mustion
Participant
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well you needn’t worry about that on a flock ride. we wait and it’s no big deal. i like waiting at the top of hills so i can catch my own breath (though i’m usually in the tail end anyway :)


edmonds59
Participant
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Keep at it, RF.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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RF, this is good info to know. While a lot of us are in tip-top shape, having folks along on rides who, for whatever reason, are not, helps us understand the issues faced by such cyclists. Thus we all learn, and the community is the better for it.


Bikelove2010
Participant
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@stu

I never thought of it that way

I, too, have asthma. Hills are not my friend. I am a somewhat in shape yet overweight person. The extra weight I have to cary up hills is enough to significantly slow me down. I am SLOWLY riding longer, and farther. A random asthma attack can also sometimes cause me to stop, usually just for a moment, take a puff and catch my breath. (It’s exercise induced) I’m just trying to work up the nerve to go over and see dippy so I know how to get to her via bike.


stefb
Participant
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Yes I have no problems with waiting at the top of hills the older I get. I also find that when I ride a single speed I have to go my own pace up a hill or I lose steam.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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The Dress Ride and the next day’s Tweed Ride both stuck to almost level routes. Mmmm, the Tweed Ride did go up a moderate slope on the NSide, but nothing really serious, Federal at Jacksonia, if memory serves. That’s about a 40-foot climb in a quarter mile. (The next cross street is Alpine, which is aptly named. And that’s the bottom of the hill.)

If we didn’t hit any grade worse than that, I don’t think we’d scare off too many.

My point about the staircases is that climbing steps uses a different set of muscles than does pedaling. You can get up a few dozen feet of hillside a lot faster and easier on steps than on street, without dealing with traffic, and without wearing yourself out. It’s a useful skill to have, knowing how to carry a bike.


Bikelove2010
Participant
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“It’s a useful skill to have, knowing how to carry a bike.”

guess I shouldnt bring the long bike on any rides that include stairs :)


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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Total change of topics, but sometime, just for shits and giggles, I’d love for a Flock ride to take in Flocker Street. It’s a little back alley about one block long off of Brighton Rd over by where California and Charles split off. It’s the sort of back alley I don’t know that I’d venture into solo, but if 15 or 50 of us went down it, I doubt anyone would give us a hard time.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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@bikelove2010, that’s an important point, too. If you have a bike that wouldn’t be possible to carry — and I guess that might include big panniers — then steps are out. We’re here to have a good time, not throw hurdles in people’s way. And that includes back allies.


jeg
Participant
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I’m in for both Sunday rides and exploring new places.


edmonds59
Participant
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“having folks along on rides who, for whatever reason, are not, helps us understand the issues faced by such cyclists. Thus we all learn, and the community is the better for it.”

+1, Stu, awesome point.

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