Group rides are a great way to be introduced to both new trails and new riding friends. There was a time when the thought of group rides were less than appealing to me, but after a stint working for a mountain bike non-profit, my point of view has come a long way. Almost every group I’ve encountered has been made up of great people that all enjoy the same thing we do- riding our bikes. Oh- and beer.
Living in the East Bay Area, our local bike club is the Bicycle Trails Council of the East Bay. Every month they put on two big group rides; one is their Gala Ride, which is open to riders of all levels. The other is strictly for the ladies, and is called “Ride Like a Girl.” I’ve come to enjoy these rides so much that I’ve become a regular, and often end up leading the group of more skilled ladies.
Every so often, the BTCEB Ride Like a Girl ride is split into 2 separate days – an intermediate + ride on the typical first Saturday of the month and then a beginner ride the following day. These tend to be my favorite RLAG rides because it gives the more advanced riders an opportunity to socialize on an even more challenging ride.
This month, we met at Skeggs Point – also known as El de Corte Madera Creek, in San Mateo County. (click here for our previous Bermstyle post on Skeggs) Karen Lynaugh, our ride leader mapped out a really fun route (which also happens to be my favorite route). It included plenty of fun descents and lots of long challenging climbs – 14 miles in all, with about 2,700 feet of climbing. Skeggs can be a tricky place to ride, and if you don’t know your way, you can easily end up riding up the good stuff (single track) and losing all that hard earned elevation quickly on the steep fire road sections.
11 ladies gathered at the Skeggs Point parking lot off of Hwy 92 at 9:30am, with smiles and excitement. It was really neat to see a number of us sporting the new BTCEB RLAG jerseys- it feels good to be part of something fun. Most of us have already ridden at Skeggs Point and were excited for the trail conditions – we finally received a little rain, and the trails were tacky.
There were a few muddy spots on Giant Salamander, but overall the trails were in perfect condition. As usual, everyone was in great spirits, pushing themselves, chatting and enjoying the fantastic ride and gorgeous weather. Till next time — Inga