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Dirt Girl
06-11-2005, 05:06 PM
Today I took a group of six friends to a local rail trail, the Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes in Idaho. These ladies range from having no bike for several years to having a new bike but never riding it to a 56-year-old gal who primarily runs for exercise and started riding casually last year. I'll never forget what one friend said when I first mentioned the trip. "Even amateurs can go?!" she said. I had to laugh as my friends think of me as a "pro" rider. If they only knew how far down I really am in the pecking order! It's all a matter of perspective, though, so I relished my day of being the big fish in the little pond instead of the gasping fish chasing the rest of the school.

This has been planned for two months, and everyone was so excited. Hubby saw one gal in the shop over a month ago getting a tune up! She said she had trouble sleeping because she was so excited about the day. The one who borrowed one of my bikes asked if I wanted to sell it to her "since you have so many bikes" and she's really liking it. Ah, the uninitiated who don't understand the NEED for more than one bike. :D

The trail goddess was kind and despite the downpour we drove through to get to the trail, the rain stopped. But it was enough to scare most folks away for much of the morning; we practically had the trail to ourselves. I told them I had placed an early reservation. ;) (Thank you trail goddess!) It was mostly cloudy, but not too hot-- which was just fine with everyone.

After pumping up tires on three bikes (one bike was at 20 psi!), we took off and headed to the bridge, the only "hill" on the route. We stopped at both restrooms stops along the way and made our destination within an hour. We had another break at the park taking in the views while two people indulged in ice cream from the local treat shop. Then we headed back. Although most people said it was harder coming back because of the wind, we returned quicker than we went out (I think it's because they knew food was at the end).

Here's the group at the trailhead (I'm taking the photo but my mountain bike is there to represent us). These ladies have true potential to be "pro" riders as they understand the need for the bike/food connection. We had a yummy potluck lunch afterwards!

A good time was had by all, and they want to go again. How cool is that?!

Dirt "sharing the love of riding" Girl

Technotart
06-11-2005, 06:04 PM
Isn't it wonderful to see people get so excited about biking? Awesome Job and great pics - looks like everyone had a great time!

SadieKate
06-11-2005, 08:45 PM
Bikes, friends and food - great combo! And, you got them all back safe, sound and happy!

JanT
06-11-2005, 11:05 PM
That's what is so great about biking--it brings people together. Young, old, and in between; small bodies, big bodies, all kinds of bodies. We all can ride and enjoy nature. Awesome!

CorsairMac
06-14-2005, 11:18 AM
Way to go.....how fun is that? And thanks for the inspiration - I'm trying to get a womens true "no-drop" ride together here, all ages, types of bikes and riders welcome even to - like you - loaning a bike if someone wants to give it a try. You've given me the confidence it will work and we'll have fun!

KSH
06-14-2005, 08:11 PM
That rocks... and it looks like it was TONS of fun!

It's always nice to ENJOY a ride with friends... and to eat afterwards!

Dirt Girl
07-25-2005, 08:26 PM
I took a larger group (word is getting out!) to a different section of this trail yesterday. Sunny and low 80s, friends, bikes and food. Ah, what a nice day. And they did 3 miles more than last time! We'll make regular riders out of a few of these gals yet! It was a great recovery ride for me after a hard day of mountain bike climbing on Saturday. Three hours of up and an hour of down.

I talked to one of the ladies this evening. She wants to know if we can do it again next month. I'm tickled pink. :D

DirtDiva
07-26-2005, 03:32 AM
Nice work. :D

Grog
07-26-2005, 04:06 AM
How inspirational! Good idea!

I wish I could start something like that (for the road though... - I'll try to find a group like yours for mountain in my new city!!) here in Montreal but I'm moving in... hum, four weeks now! so it won't be happening. I wished we had a women's club, I see so many riding alone and so many more NOT riding.

Thanks for your story and for your investment in your co-rider's self-confidence and... appetite!!!