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Bicycle Riding Etiquette

Send me your thoughts so I can add them in.  The "word police" are welcome also.

This is directed to cyclists who throw their trash on the road. How much trouble can it be to use a pocket for trash instead of littering the countryside with gel packs and candy wrappers? After all, we are guests at these events. The organizers have enough to do without having to send a trash crew around to pick up after inconsiderate cyclists.

Some riders need to be reminded that it is not decent when they pee in public places. Our bike club got permission to use excess parking at a local church as a starting point for weekly rides.
Our embarrassed president later circulated an urgent email from the pastor telling how several church members had seen a brightly-clad male rider who was peeing on the parking lot.
The pastor, thankfully, was forgiving enough to ask us to be more discreet when choosing a place to potty.
I have also seen riders at events crouched in an exposed corner of the building instead of waiting like everyone else in line at the provided facilities.
If you gotta go and can't wait, be discreet and find a bush or less public place.

When you are relinquishing the lead of a pace line, indicate by voice or hand signal that you are coming out of the lead and (generally) pull out to the left permitting the line to continue without serving around you. It is the lead rider's obligation to ensure that others are not put in a position of reading your mind as to your intentions. 

A pace line runs smoother and faster when everyone takes relatively short (no longer than one minute) pulls. Try it: you'll like it! 

When you jump on the end of a passing pace line and you are tucked in, announcing "On your wheel" lets the rider in front of you know that he is no longer the last man in line. 

In a long pace line, if you are the last man in line, inform a rider dropping to the rear that you are the "last man." Since the line is moving faster than the rider coming off of the front, the warning enables the rider to start picking up their speed to match that of the line.

When riders have to stop on the road, raise an arm high as an alert to other cyclists and motorists.

Basic hand signals help other riders and motorists (especially in conjunction with verbal warnings). Left, Right and Slow should be known and used by all of us.

Pointing to objects such as glass, rocks bottles, etc. as you announce them assists close riders.

Pointing to your intended change, as you shift position left or right in a group, can help riders back to make room or to increase effort to catch a wheel you may be leaving.

Not exactly group riding etiquette, but trails are shared resources. Hammering past pedestrians is intimidating. Announcing "passing" and slowing slightly will improve their attitude toward cyclists and your fitness (you will have to accelerate back to pace, right?)

Help a stranded cyclist. Asking a person if they have what they need for repairs can be done on the roll. If a person isn't head down doing repairs, chances are they need something. Who hasn't had a spare fail, forgotten to replace a spare, or just been unprepared for a problem? Loaning tools or experience costs a few minutes, tubes are cheap enough to give one to a stranger. It's usually a long walk home, and we all hope someone would stop for us. Consider helping others insurance that improves your odds of getting help when you need it. Thankfully, most cyclists are very generous toward fellows in need.

If you've chosen to ride with a group, it shouldn't be with the intention of trying to drop everyone. The whole philosophy behind joining a group is realizing that faster riders sometime have to ride slower than they'd like and slower riders sometime have to ride faster than they'd like. Stick together! If you're too fast for that group to hang with, join a faster group!

If you must pass on the right be sure the "passe" gets plenty of notice.

When riding in a group, communicate with other riders. Let everybody know your intentions and what's going on around you:   Yell, "BRAKING" when brakes are applied. Yell, "HARD BRAKING" when brakes are applied hard.  When coming up behind someone, say or yell "ON YOUR LEFT" or "ON YOUR RIGHT". Yell "CAR UP" or "CAR BACK" when cars are approaching.

If you see something in the road, let everybody know behind you, yell: "BOTTLE DOWN",  "PUMP DOWN", "RIDER DOWN", "BUMP", "ROCKS", etc...

ALWAYS: Hold your line. Pull your own weight, whenever possible.

Look behind you when you pull out (or around) others; there's always a chance that someone will be rapidly approaching from behind. 

If you have to stop while riding in a rally, get off the road!!!!!  On coming bikers are not expecting any manmade obstacles like you or your bike. 

Ride single file on tight shoulders! When cars want to go around you, and you're riding 3-4 side by side, fall back into one line and let the car pass.  Even if the cars cannot pass, you will have least made an effort, they may not be as mad.

When riding with a group on a narrow road and the cars pile up behind. Think of all the good will you will generate if the group pulls into a wide spot or a driveway to let the cars pass.  OR think of your self being dead when the last hothead in line decides to pass everybody.