Ride FAQs

Do I have to pre-register for a club ride?

Yes, we strongly encourage you to use our online sign-up process prior to riding.

Do you offer trail and mountain bike rides?

Yes, trail rides are often scheduled on the weekends and we occasionally have mountain bike rides at Palos.

What is a show-and-go ride?

These are leaderless rides that frequently have no pre-determined distance or destination.

When are the rides scheduled?

There are usually several weekday and weekend rides scheduled throughout our outdoor riding season, April - October. It's not uncommon for ad hoc rides and other activities, e.g. skiing and hiking, to be posted to our calendar and Google Group at other times when conditions are suitable.

Can I ride any kind of bike?

We don't have any requirements but it's more likely that you'll enjoy yourself if you're on a bike that's suitable for the type of terrain you'll encounter. Whatever type of bike you choose, we strongly encourage you to ensure that it's in good working order.

What else do I need for a club ride?

We recommend carrying a spare tube, patch kit, tire lever, pump, water bottles, snacks, identification, a phone and some cash.

Do I have to wear a helmet?

Yes, a helmet is required and it makes our insurance representative happy.

Are there "No Drop" rides, where everyone stays together for the entire ride?

Yes, the Monday Night Social ride and the Sunday Slow Ride are no drop rides. Most evening and weekend rides tend to split and regroup.

I've never ridden with a group before, any suggestions?

Check out our How We Ride page for more information on our ride speeds and calendar. You can also connect with a ride ambassador to work with a ride leader on finding the best ride to fit your needs.

Where do you ride to?

Most rides travel to a coffee shop, bakery, or convenience store near the halfway point.

We were all novices once. If you're a novice rider we recommend starting with one of our 'no-drop' rides. It will also be helpful if you inform the ride leader. Need help selecting a first ride with the club? Contact our Ride Coordinator (ride@dgbikeclub.org) for suggestions.

Where do the rides start?

Most of our weekend rides start at the Downers Grove Public Library parking lot. Several of our week-day rides start at Fishel Park on Grove St. and the McCollum Park water tower.

It's raining. Is the ride canceled?

If you're unsure it's always best to contact the ride leader or look for a ride status update message via our Google Group. Typically a ride is cancelled if it is raining at the scheduled start time.

What are the route directions?

The ride description often has the ride destination and/or several of the roads we're planning to ride on.

Are you on Strava?

Members of the club are on Strava at DGBC.

Can you describe a club ride?

Many rides start at a modest pace as the group winds its way out of town. Eventually, riders start progressing at their own pace and smaller groups are formed. There will usually be a stop near the halfway point at a convenience store, market, or coffee shop with restroom facilities. Additional stops may be made depending on distance and weather.

Are these races?

No, we are recreational bike club. It's not uncommon for A group riders to increase their pace to the top of a climb or on the way into a rest stop however.

Do I need to know how to ride in a paceline?

'A group' riders should be comfortable riding in a paceline and we ask everyone to ride responsibly and predictably. You can find a copy of our Guidelines to Safe Group Riding (pdf) on our Forms page.

Can I use aero bars?

Yes, however for safety reasons we ask that you refrain from using them in a paceline.

I want to discontinue the ride, what should I do?

If you're fatigued we'd encourage you to try to continue to the next rest stop. Sometimes a short break and some food can improve one's spirits. If you've decided to discontinue the ride please inform the ride leader.

Do club members receive mileage credit for club rides?

No, we do not award club mileage credit.

Who makes the ride schedule?

The Ride Coordinator, ride@dgbikeclub.org, compiles the ride schedule. Please contact him/her with any questions or to have a ride listed on our calendar.

Is there anything else I should know before riding with the club?

If you haven't already done so, please refer to our Ride Information page for additional details and don't hesitate to contact the ride leader with specific questions.

Can I communicate with a real person?

We're happy to hear from you! Please refer to the Contact Us page for appropriate contact information.