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New to cycling; Looking for great people to cycle with! (White rock area)

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New to cycling; Looking for great people to cycle with! (White rock area)

Old 09-13-12, 10:07 PM
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Talking New to cycling; Looking for great people to cycle with! (White rock area)

Hey fellow Texans!

So I just recently swapped my old, used, beat-up, flat-barred Trek bike for a brand new Cannondale synapse Road bike! Having ridden my new bike recently, I've decided to go out and find new people to cycle with. (Problem is, I'm not very good at it!)

I've lurked for awhile on the forums and have finally decided to get serious about cycling. I've read a few group rides posted here and there online, but I've really wanted to find people personally who would enjoy showing a new cyclist a few trails and other routes around Garland or North Dallas. (I'm not in any way particular about the place, just as long as it's less than an hour away from my location in Mesquite.) I say Garland/North Dallas area because I've really only cycled around Whiterock..

Even better if there are any group rides or what have you this weekend! (Bonus points if you also play Tennis!)
Thanks in advanced to though

-Swa
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Old 09-14-12, 03:31 PM
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Hey, welcome. There are lots of beginner friendly groups around. I'd suggest the Plano Bicycle Assoc (PBA), the Greater Dallas Bicyclists (GDB) and the Leukemia Society's Team in Training (TNT)... they each have a really long history of bringing newer riders "up to speed" very well.

The PBA has many weekly rides, Saturday morning the best attended from NW Plano start point, broken into groups based on speed / ability:
https://www.planobicycle.org/

The GDB also, different start locations and routes:
https://www.greaterdallasbicyclists.c...ies/index.html

TNT of course focuses on fundraising and fundraiser events, but has a great support network to help you train and learn:
https://www.teamintraining.org/ntx/

Finally, I encourage all roadies to take one of several traffic skills courses offered by groups like League of American Bicyclists:
https://www.bikeleague.org/programs/e...on/courses.php

When you're ready for bigger rides, check the various statewide calendars; there are "rallies" every weekend within a few hours of DFW:
https://www.wheelbrothers.com/calendar-of-events/

Have fun, see you on the road!
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Old 09-14-12, 05:36 PM
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I first started riding with the Don Johle's Bike World Saturday morning ride. That starts at their shop in Garland, off Broadway. They head out East Fork Road, see the maps below. Speed averages maybe 13-14 mph, excellent if you're a beginner, and it is a "non-drop" ride, meaning they won't ride off and leave you fending for yourself. Time changes during the year, always check their website or note on the door for current riding time (earlier in hot weather, later in cold weather). https://djsbikeworld.com/

The ride I've been doing during the summer is the Greater Dallas Bicyclists Tuesday-Thursday ride at Poteet High School, off Gallaway in Mesquite. It only runs during daylight savings time. I think they are currently starting at 5:30 or so. If you're slow, someone might ride with you, or they might just all ride off and leave you, it depends. Best to take a map with you.

I thought they had maps on the GDB site, but I don't see the link I remembered. Here's a GPS link from one of the rides, though:
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/1115998
Note that some of the route is just to get to and from Poteet, and if you start elsewhere, should be modified accordingly.

Between points 10 and 11, you can cross the overpass and skip going all the way down to Collins if you like.

On the south loop, you can shortcut it several places to adjust the length- at Scyene, for example, at Berry Road, at Clay Mathis. You can also go farther down to McKenzie, or take the I-20 access and Lasater. You can go across 20 and connect up to routes on the Mesquite Rodeo Ride (they should have maps on their website).

The GDB Tuesday-Thursday Mesquite Poteet Ride is not well organized. Or I should say, there's a disconnect between the club/forum and the actual people riding, and I'm not sure if more than two or three of us are actually club members. Anyway, they're currently riding at 5:40 or 5:30 or some time different from what is shown on the website. I should be out there at 6:00 next Tuesday, but may be the only one riding at 6:00.

On these routes- BEWARE. There are some big ugly cracks in the road (from settlement and stuff, not joints). All the riders know they're there, they've been there since last summer, and maybe nobody will point them out- if you're new, be on the watch!
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Old 09-14-12, 06:39 PM
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Hey thanks Creaky and Stephen for the posts!

I recently found the GDB website, along with the Mesquite rides. It's fascinating to me, because I take Galloway on my way home from work some days, and I usually see the cyclists here and there. I often wondered about how they formed, and about joining them. I guess now I know how.

I'll definitely join the next group ride Tuesday and Thursday around the time they form, so I can learn riding with a group, although I'd be happy to join you on one of those days aswell. Thanks for the info though. I see a few lists for saturday morning on the GDB website, so I'll definitely try to show up to one tomorrow and see how that goes.

On a side note; how bad would it be to cycle 40-60 miles without clip-ins? I forgot to stop in today to buy the shoes for the spd pedals that came with my bike, so there's that...

edit: Although that dj'sbike world ride also seems like a great thing to do instead..

Last edited by TheSwa; 09-14-12 at 06:43 PM.
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Old 09-14-12, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by TheSwa
...how bad would it be to cycle 40-60 miles without clip-ins?
Pedals? That's pretty ambitious unless you're used to those distances. Lots of people have done rides that far on flat pedals, it's just can turn into no fun if you're not ready for the miles and saddle time. Not impossible, just unpleasant...
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Old 09-14-12, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by TheSwa
Hey fellow Texans!

So I just recently swapped my old, used, beat-up, flat-barred Trek bike for a brand new Cannondale synapse Road bike! Having ridden my new bike recently, I've decided to go out and find new people to cycle with. (Problem is, I'm not very good at it!)

I've lurked for awhile on the forums and have finally decided to get serious about cycling. I've read a few group rides posted here and there online, but I've really wanted to find people personally who would enjoy showing a new cyclist a few trails and other routes around Garland or North Dallas. (I'm not in any way particular about the place, just as long as it's less than an hour away from my location in Mesquite.) I say Garland/North Dallas area because I've really only cycled around Whiterock..

Even better if there are any group rides or what have you this weekend! (Bonus points if you also play Tennis!)
Thanks in advanced to though

-Swa
Glad to have you join the cycling life. There are many clubs and groups to help you get started. Bike shops are a good resource to find other bicyclists as well as learn some of the techniques. Richardson Bike mart may be a resource for you as well as the clubs the other commenter listed.

Last edited by Jandro; 04-24-13 at 04:10 PM. Reason: no blog links for non-paying memebers
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Old 09-15-12, 05:13 PM
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When I bought my current bike, I had never used clipless pedals, and I just used the platform pedals that came with the bike for the first 6 months or so. That worked reasonably well, and I did some 200k's like that. One issue is not the pedals themselves, but the shoes, as cycling shoes have much stiffer soles and spread the pedal force over a wider area. If you're not noticing any problem from that, then it's not a problem. If you start having pain or numbness at the pedal spot, then upgrading may help. Clipless pedals and shoes are actually handier if you're riding very far between stops (which normal club rides do). Or, if you were riding around downtown Dallas and stopping every block, platform pedals may be handier. Most clipless pedal users eventually have a fall or two or three from not getting unclipped in time, by the way.

GDB has Saturday and Sunday rides, and I don't get involved in those, and can't really comment on them, as I'm doing different rides on Saturday, and have church activities on Sunday. I'm usually riding somewhere locally Sunday afternoon, though. GDB also has some easy-pace rides, and I'm not sure just how fast they go or how far.

There should be an e-mail link on the GDB website if you don't find enough information on the schedules or speeds, etc.
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Last edited by StephenH; 09-18-12 at 08:39 PM.
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Old 09-15-12, 05:38 PM
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Originally Posted by TheSwa
Hey thanks Creaky and Stephen for the posts!

I recently found the GDB website, along with the Mesquite rides. It's fascinating to me, because I take Galloway on my way home from work some days, and I usually see the cyclists here and there. I often wondered about how they formed, and about joining them. I guess now I know how.

I'll definitely join the next group ride Tuesday and Thursday around the time they form, so I can learn riding with a group, although I'd be happy to join you on one of those days aswell. Thanks for the info though. I see a few lists for saturday morning on the GDB website, so I'll definitely try to show up to one tomorrow and see how that goes.

On a side note; how bad would it be to cycle 40-60 miles without clip-ins? I forgot to stop in today to buy the shoes for the spd pedals that came with my bike, so there's that...

edit: Although that dj'sbike world ride also seems like a great thing to do instead..
I have ridden 115 miles in one day on platform pedals. I ride everywhere on platform pedals. If you can ride 40-60 miles clipped in, you can probably ride the same, or almost the same, on platforms. Not to say there is no subtle advantage to being clipped in, but I don't think the lack of it should stop you.

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Old 09-17-12, 03:24 PM
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Not sure if they are still doing it but earlier in the summer I was in Dallas Bike Works and they were talking about a weekly ride they do on Friday evenings around White Rock. They said they were doing it at a leisurely pace and were going to be stopping a few times to regroup in case things got spread out. Afterwards they said lots of them head over to Jakes for an after ride get-together. I think it was Fridays at 7pm.
A call would yield more reliable information. . .
If they are truly going slow I might try to hit this one since I ride so slowly myself. I frequent White Rock and could use someone to ride with that might push me along at a little more brisk pace. . .
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