The motorcycle riding season is in full swing. Along with the warmer weather, the motorcyclist will find frequent opportunities to participate in formal or informal group rides.
Whether one is riding with a few friends or joining a mega-group charity poker run, common courtesies will make for a more enjoyable outing for everyone. The super organized charity runs will have specific guidelines spelled out; other, more informal runs, will rely on common sense.
Below are a few suggestions to make the best of riding with others.
- Be on time. If you want to be called for future rides, don’t make a habit of always showing up late.
- Gas up before meeting to ride. You don’t want to have to signal for a gas stop just 20 miles into the ride or take a chance on finding a gas station in the middle of nowhere. The ride organizers will probably have scouted out gas stops ahead of time to maximize stoppages.
- Take advantage of those gas stops and top off your tank even if you don’t believe you are ready for more gas. (See above suggestion.) These gas stops can also be useful for getting refreshments and using “facilities” if available.
- Be mindful of lane positions and try to hold them. Don’t confuse the riders behind you by moving back and forth within your lane.
- Know and use hand signals. Point out road hazards and signal for turns, slowdowns, and one-lane roads.
- If the ride is an informal gathering of friends to cruise to a restaurant or other destination and if asked for suggestions, come prepared with addresses, phone numbers, and possible routes. If you don’t contribute, don’t complain about the suggestions of those who do contribute.
- Finally, ask questions. If unsure about any detail of the ride, ask.
Keeping fellow riders in mind and treating all riders with courtesy and respect will enhance everyone’s riding experience.