Restarting Group Rides -Portland Bicycling Club

Restarting Group Rides

In the June Top Talk, I discussed the difficulties in planning club rides that would minimize exposure to a virus that lacks effective treatment or can be prevented. Oregon and Washington are loosening restrictions, so the question is – is the Club also ready to loosen and ride again?

Ann Morrow was approached to meet with leaders from several cycling groups in the Portland area in order to determine a consensus regarding restarting of group rides. She presented that group’s decision to the Board and the Board has voted its approval of the letter below for distribution. Essentially, there are still many cautions, restrictions, and uncertainties in the early phases of reopening, and we will not be restarting rides or club meetings while any part of Oregon remains in phase 1.

Pat McManus, President

Joint Letter from Area Bicycle Clubs

Dear Member,

As we all know, we are facing a “new normal” and are not likely to return to pre-COVID ways any time soon. For this reason, as leaders of six Metro area cycling groups that have a lot of membership overlap we have met to develop a common strategy for how and when to resume group rides. It is our hope is that we will make smarter decisions by doing it collectively. One thing is clear. We are in unanimous agreement that we are not comfortable resuming group rides during Phase 1 re-opening. As we learn more about Phase 2/3 developments we will assess whether or not to resume group rides.

This leadership team is comprised of the following clubs/leaders:

Go the Distance Jan Westfall & Ed Lanton
Ladies Let’s Ride Debra Rhea
NW Butts on Bikes Paul Johnston
Portland Bicycling Club Ann Morrow
Ride Like A Girl Cycling Carolyn Jen
Vancouver Bicycle Club Jan Verrinder

Things that influenced our decision:

  • Too many cyclists putting fellow riders at risk by not observing social distancing protocols.
  • Our ride leaders are volunteers who should not have their health put at risk, or made to act as an enforcer of the rules.
  • Difficulty of maintaining social distancing when off-bike, at traffic stops, and signals.
  • We have many members in our groups who are in high-risk categories.

While some individuals are organizing group rides on their own, they are not official club rides and do not represent our groups. But, considering many of us want to be on our bikes, here are some guidelines to help keep it safe.

USA Cycling

Cascade Bicycle Club and COVID19 Resources