Appalachian Mountain Club

Bicycling


The Bicycle Committee organizes rides which are most typically at a leisurely pace of 12 mph, slower than other bicycle clubs. Our Chapter bike rides are generally designed with plenty of stops for photos and bathroom breaks and snacks. They’re usually along protected bicycle lanes and dedicated bicycle paths and trails, although on almost every ride there will be times when we’ll need to share the road with cars and trucks; there’s just no avoiding it in our area.

Most of the time we’ll be riding on relatively flat roads, although on every trip they’ll be segments where you’ll be working to get up a hill, and your heart will be pumping, for sure. If you’re on the fence about whether or not you’re sufficiently ‘in shape’ to join a ride, try riding a single loop around Central Park (6.1 miles) and time yourself. If you can get around in under 45 minutes without walking your bike up any hills, then you’re definitely fit enough to join one of our rides.

The leader will be clear as to pace, mileage and terrain in the trip write-up. While these are our most popular rides, from time to time a leader will post a ride at an average moving pace of 16 mph.

Helmets are required for all rides, without exception. Our priorities are safety first, fun second, and achieving our goals third.

The club uses the “human arrow” system when necessary. On large group rides, organizers will use chalk to mark large turn direction arrows on the street to show cyclists where to turn. On smaller organized rides, where there is even the slightest risk of a rider taking a wrong turn, the leader will ask one of the riders behind to “drop” at the intersection and point the following riders in the right direction. When the sweep approaches the human arrow, the rider who dropped at the location re-joins the group.

Before a ride, check your equipment: tires should be properly inflated, brakes tested, shifting crisp, seat height comfortable and efficient, and broken spokes should be replaced. Besides being prepared with ample food and fluids, provide for contingencies: clothes for a change in weather (especially a windbreaker) and spare tube and patch kit.

Bicycling Trip Rating System

Biking Codes: Our rides are rated on the basis of pace, terrain, and mileage. Pace: Average mph while riding. Terrain: Road / Hybrid – ranging from “A” for flat and paved to “F” for mountainous. Mountain – “A” beginner, “C” intermediate, “E” expert. Mileage: Total distance of the ride. Check the ride description for the type of bikes suitable for the ride (road, hybrid, mountain) and for the duration of a ride. 10C50 would cover 50 miles at an average riding speed of 10 mph in five hours, but with 2 hours of stops would be a 7 hour ride. Transportation: Bikes are permitted at all times on the NYC subway system, and almost always on the Metro North and Long Island Rail Road. A bicycle pass is required for Metro North, which costs $5 and is available by mail, or can be purchased at the ticket counter at Grand Central Station. Download and complete the application first to save time if you’ll be buying a pass at the ticket counter. Become a ride leader; new routes are always welcome. Both day trips and overnights are appreciated. Contact bicycle@amc-ny.org.

Safety for bicyclist

Snell or ANSI approved helmets required for all trips (cycling & in-line skating) and eye protection for some trips. Protective gear for knees, elbows and wrists are recommended for in-line skaters. Experience level must be comparable to trip level. Riders are also required to carry spare tube to fit their bike, tire irons, patch kit, pump, tools, filled water bottle and rain gear. Confirm ride start with leader. Become a ride leader. Share your favorite routes and contribute to Club cycling. Bicycling Photo GalleriesBicycling Galleries