The Aiken Bicycle Membership is not only for the intense cyclists within the space.
“Now we have all the pieces from full-fledged rivals to electrical bikes,” stated Kai Fernandez, the membership’s president.
The membership, which has been energetic because the late Eighties, is a gaggle of cyclists in Aiken County who’ve joined the membership for a wide range of causes.
Fernandez stated that many members joined for coaching, camaraderie and since there’s security in numbers whereas using a bicycle.
Fernandez and his spouse, Tracie, have all the time preferred preferred mountain biking. They determined to get highway bikes a couple of years in the past and department out, which is after they came upon concerning the membership.
“We saved seeing this group of cyclists whereas we had been using,” stated Fernandez. “Someday, one among them rode by us and approached us about becoming a member of the membership. We checked it out and determined to affix.”
The membership has completely different weekly rides. There are Saturday and Sunday rides year-round. The Saturday experience is named a “membership experience” and is usually an extended distance experience. The Sunday experience is a “no-drop experience” the place no rider is left behind. If a rider begins to lag or decelerate, one other member drops again to be beside them. That is to encourage new riders and assist them get entangled.
Throughout the summers, the membership provides Tuesday and Thursday night time membership rides. These rides typically break up up into a couple of completely different teams, permitting riders to experience at a tempo that most closely fits them.
The membership additionally operates a Fb web page the place any member can put up about rides, good trails or about different upcoming occasions. Members additionally put up about their bikes or in the event that they’re trying to promote or purchase tools.
Fernandez stated that whereas the group was primarily highway bikers, it is morphed right into a extra wide-ranging group of riders.
“We even have individuals who do mountain using and gravel roads,” stated Fernandez.
The coronavirus pandemic has had an impact on membership members, nevertheless it hasn’t stopped them completely.
“Over the previous few months, we have had extra folks using solo and a few nonetheless do,” stated Fred Adams, a member of the membership. “Now, we’re being extra socially distant and attempt to area out whereas we’re using and never be in as tight of a pack. We even have been extra cautious when coughing or clearing our noses whereas using.”
There’s a membership charge to affix, which Fernandez stated is principally to cowl insurance coverage prices if a rider is injured whereas using with the membership. The charge is $20 per particular person, or $30 for a household.
Riders should put on a helmet whereas biking with the membership, and youngsters underneath the age of 16 have to be with an grownup.
Adams stated that the group has some members who do races and different occasions. One of many group’s members, Jamie Babcock, positioned 64 out of 1,300 riders on the Leadville 100 in Leadville, Colorado, which was a 104-mile experience.
Some members of the group will experience 80, 90 and even 100 miles in a day, in keeping with Adams. He additionally stated that there are some “very sturdy women, as properly.”
“I feel that the membership is in an excellent place,” Adams stated. “Over the past 10 years, it is actually been introduced again to life.”