Your Connection To the Outdoors

Bicycling

Welcome to the AMC Western MA Bicycling Committee!

Your connection to recreational group bicycling on the roads and byways of the bucolic Connecticut River Valley and Berkshires

Bicycling Committee Chair: Janine Papesh (bicycling@amc-wma.org)

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We are experienced cyclists who enjoy social, recreational rides in the range of 15-50 miles, speeds averaging between 10-14 mph, with rest stops and optional post-ride socials. We keep the group moving, but we're not racers. All our trip leaders are volunteers, trained by the AMC in group management, and trained by the Bicycling Committee leaders to have the skills needed to plan and run safe, enjoyable group bicycling trips.

General Group Ride Policies

  • All AMC rides require advance registration. We pre-screen all riders to ensure comfort and safety.
  • You must have a bicycle in good working order. Road, touring, or hybrid bikes are acceptable. Mountain bikes are not permitted.
  • You must wear a properly-fitting bicycle helmet at all times while riding.
  • You must carry an adequate supply of water with you (one or two water bottles is typical).
  • At a minimum you must have a spare tube that fits your tires. It is strongly recommended that you carry a full fix-flat kit that includes tire levers, a patch kit, and a portable air pump or CO2 inflator.
  • For rides of an hour or longer, we encourage you to bring a light snack with you. There may or may not be opportunities along the route to purchase drinks and snacks.
  • You do not have to be a member of the AMC to participate in our trips. (Though we do encourage membership! Join here!)

COVID-19 Policies

During the COVID-19 pandemic, all riders must acknowledge these expectations as a condition of participating in any AMC-led group activity:

  1. Group size shall be limited to 10 persons including the Activity Leader(s).
  2. All participants must follow state and local COVID-19 guidance and cancel their participation if such guidance changes before the date of the event.
  3. All participants must maintain appropriate social distancing and follow the guidance of the Activity Leader(s).
  4. All participants must bring and wear face coverings as required, and agree to follow the guidance in place in the state where the event takes place as well as follow the directions of the Leader(s).
  5. All participants must wear face coverings at gathering points and when safe social distances cannot be reliably maintained.
  6. All participants must bring their own water bottles, food, eating utensils, and hand sanitizer with 60% or greater alcohol content.
  7. Participants must contact AMC if they test positive for COVID- 19 within 14 days of the event, to enable contact tracing.

Intro to Recreational Riding Series

In 2021, we are introducing a new type of bicycle riding activity intended for people who are new to recreational outdoor group cycling and would like to learn basic rider safety and simple bike maintenance skills. Trips will be up to 15 miles in length on scenic rural roads that are mostly flat. The riding pace will be relaxed (9-11 mph average), there will be regular rest breaks, and the AMC-trained bike trip leaders will keep the group together. This ride series is suitable for adults comfortable with being continuously active in the outdoors for 90 minutes.

All of our group ride policies apply and we will be observing COVID-19 safety protocols (see above). Before riding, an AMC trip leader will present a 45-minute group safety talk followed by basic instruction including a bike operation and helmet fit check, and a review of efficient pedaling and gear shifting techniques. After the ride you will have an opportunity to ask the leaders any questions you might have. The goal for the training is to build your confidence, ensure you can maintain your bicycle in good working order, and prepare you for more challenging rides later in the season.

Advance registration is required. Trips in the series can be found in our ride calendar below and are titled “Intro to Recreational Road Cycling.”

2021 Ride Calendar

May 2021

Check back regularly as we will be updating this page as new activities are added.

Resources

Page Steward: bicycling@amc-wma.org

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