I know my way around the north shore pretty well, can estimate mileage on the fly and would love to lead more rides but….
Two weeks ago, parking lot full of “B” riders and none of the regular leaders. There were some new faces, at least they were new to me. So I conferred with my pal John and we offered to lead and sweep to Locust Valley. I said it would be about 35 miles, an approximate idea of where we were going and “if you pass me and miss a turn I am not changing the route to find you” Off we go. Not too bad, we made it to Piping Rock Rd as a group mostly, regrouped at the light on Chicken Valley and had a nice break at the Gazebo.
Several people approached me about adding on some extra miles. It was a group of 12, I could have easily added another 5 or so by doing Stillwell/Washington Ave but there were a few that wanted to get back and I didn’t think it would be too nice to change routes without everyone in agreement. Someone else said if I got them almost to Stillwell they could find the way from there. This would all be well and good…….if everyone but two riders hadn’t gotten ahead of me and missed the turn on School House including a new member whose bike and tires weren’t really up to the task. True to my word, the 3 of us took the School House-Renee-past the high school route. Lo and behold as we are passing the light before the golf course I see most of the group coming. Of course it’s too late for them to go down Stillwell. All but 3 were with them and I know they know how to get back. Happily the new guy was also there, the 3 of us kept the pace down to his level while the rest of them went back at their own pace (with no concern whatsoever for keeping the group together)
Would it be so horrible for someone to have said on Split Rock, where is the next turn? We will meet you there. Or on Kristi, we know the way back from here and we have somewhere to be, we are going to go on ahead. You are supposed to follow the ride leader, not the lead rider people!
So the next time y’all are looking for someone to lead, and I don’t offer don’t be surprised.