The following are some recommendations to help make participating in Chapter Ride events as enjoyable as possible:
• Make sure your motorcycle is in good, safe operating condition. Arrive at the ride starting location with a FULL tank of gas.
• Liability releases must be signed by everyone participating on a ride. Members don’t need to fill them out each time they participate on a ride, because the Enrollment Form covers you as long as your membership is current. You may invite guests to join a ride event, but non-members must sign a waiver form before the ride starts. Also, a waiver form is required for all minors, signed by a legal guardian, regardless whether the parent is a current member or not.
• Drinking alcoholic beverages and driving never mix, but especially don’t when participating in a group ride. Do not participate if you drink before a ride. Do not drink during any of the break or meal stops during the course of a ride. You can enjoy that after you’ve returned home in the same condition you left in the morning.
• Use of our recommended hand signals is mandatory when riding in groups (see the last page for a complete description). If you see a road hazard, use the hand signals to point to hazard. This will enable the rider behind you to also avoid it.
• A group of motorcycles is not considered a “single” vehicle. Be courteous and allow cars to enter/exit a highway or change lanes. Be sure to signal those behind you to slow down. Don’t ever bunch up or try to block another vehicle from entering the lane used by the group. Generally any car driver will not want to drive in the middle of a group of motorcycles and will get out of the group’s lane as quickly as possible. Try to maintain a constant speed and try not to “rubber band” (i.e. speed up and slow down)
• Keep a safe distance behind the bike in front of you, and know the stopping power of your motorcycle. When in staggered formation, keep at least two (2) seconds behind the bike directly in front of you, and one (1) second behind the bike to the side in front of you.
• Try to keep the pack tight without crowding each other. Stay close through intersections and traffic lights so that the group doesn’t get separated.
• When in a tight curve, the rider on the outside of the curve should give room to the rider on the inside, in case a curve is too tight to negotiate.
• Be aware of openings around you at all times as you ride so that you will have an “escape route” to maneuver towards in case of emergency. Be aware of the riders around you, especially the one to your side, and give each other as much room to maneuver as possible in any situation.
• Never ride in someone’s blind spot.
• In warm weather, remember to drink plenty of water at the rest stops to prevent dehydration. It’s a good idea to pack a bottle of water.
• Being too hot or too cold can also affect how alert you are. Be sure to pack appropriate protective clothing such as long sleeve cotton shirts to protect you from the sun in very hot weather. You will need gloves, jacket, chaps and a sweatshirt for cold weather. And it does rain in Southern California, so pack rain gear when the forecast calls for rain.
• If you need to leave the group in the middle of a ride, either to go home or make an unscheduled rest stop, give the group the “thumbs up” signal and let your friends know you are okay and there’s no reason for any of the Road Captain’s to follow you and offer you assistance.
• Leave the group and pull over to a safe location off of the road as quickly and safely as you can, if you or your motorcycle becomes disabled in any way. If possible, give the “thumbs down” signal as you leave the group, so a Road Captain will pull over and assist you with the problem. There will be a number of Road Captains situated among the group and it is their job to assist you. The whole group DOES NOT PULL OVER in these situations, for the safety of the group.
• Always use your own best judgment and common sense when riding. We like to say “You’re your Own Ride!” Don’t try to ride faster than you are comfortable given the road conditions, and don’t try to compete with other riders. Group riding is expected to be fun and safe, not a death-defying experience. Novice riders are encouraged to ride in the back of the group, where there are extra Road Captains who will keep an eye on you and stick beside you, even if the rest of the group pulls away at a higher speed.
• The above suggestions are offered only as an aid to enhancing your group riding experience. If you have any questions, ask your Chapter Safety Officer or any of the Road Captains. You can identify them by the “Road Captain” rocker patch and the “Captain’s Bars” on their jacket or vest, or by the high-visibility vests they wear during each ride.
Ride Departure Locations
The departure location noted in ride details shown on our Events Calendar. The most common departure points are as follows:
Harley-Davidson of Glendale
3717 San Fernando Rd.
Glendale, CA 91204-2918
Ralph's - Sunland off the 210
10455 Sunland Blvd
Sunland, CA 91040
12861 Encinitas Ave
Sylmar, CA 91342
(Exit onto Roxford from I-5 North)