October 2022 Top Talk -Portland Bicycling Club

October 2022 Top Talk

What about e-bikes? This is a question that is becoming more pertinent to our club as technology advances. Motors are becoming lighter, ranges are extending, and the newer e-bikes are almost unperceptively different than high-end road bikes. People interested in joining our club have asked if e-bikes are allowed.

The answer is “yes.” This should not be a surprise to our current members, as many already are riding e-bikes. However, there are some special considerations.

Our club’s insurance policy covers only pedal assist e-bikes. Riders of bikes with throttles (bikes that can run on their motor alone) have no club insurance if they get into an accident. (In addition, the insurance also does not cover off road biking, although gravel rides are covered.)

Another issue of concern is e-bike etiquette. E-bikes are wonderful for riders who need extra help to keep up with their riding friends, but they are not appreciated when they are used to push the pace beyond the comfort level or ability of the other riders in their group. You can take your turn at pulling the group, but always be aware and considerate of others.

And as everyone, with the help of technology, can be faster riders, remember that we need members to lead slower rides to maintain the diversity of our rides and riders. So don’t be in a hurry to dispose of your faithful old mechanical bike!

Doug Myers, President