While you are with us at Spyderquest we offer both guided and unguided rides. Please use the below safety tips while with us and while you are home doing your own rides,
When riding with us, in our group(guided) rides, you will be experiencing both breath taking views and beautiful roads. Enjoying the beautiful scenery and history is why so many people travel miles to ride with us at spyderquest. Riding with others is another reason we love our spyder/rykers. We can be out the road all by ourselves, then we can meet up with others and enjoy group riding while meeting and making new acquaintances and riding new roads.
A word of caution when we are riding in a group, it is very different than riding alone.
We must keep our eyes on the road and the road conditions at all times. Only looking off the road for brief moments at a time. Knowing at all times what is happening on the road in front and behind us. This means we are responsible for the rider in front and behind us as well as ourselves. Checking the mirrors every couple of seconds allows us to be aware what is going on in front, on the sides and behind us at all times.
Don’t ride like we drive our cars, only a car or two ahead. We should be looking ahead at the road conditions 10 to 20 seconds ahead so we are aware of a potential problem, before we are on top of it. We can train ourselves to look up while riding. If you take notice, you might only be looking one or two car lengths in front of yourself. We need to pick up our eyes and head and look several seconds ahead of ourselves on motorcycles. When we are traveling 65mph we are whizzing by 95.3 feet per second.
As we get older our reflexes slow down. It takes longer for us to react to changes. We have to SEE it COMPUTE it and RESPOND quickly to it.
Do I have a way out?
Whether riding alone or especially in groups, we must ride while asking ourselves, What if? What should I do swerve left, swerve right or brake if a car brakes hard in front of me or if an animal darts out in front of me? Do i have a way out? We must always have a way out on our trikes; it’s not enclosed like a car and not as agile as our two wheel friends who also use this technique, What if?
Motorcycles take up one track while we use three tracks on spyder/rykers. In each lane on a street or highway they are broken into tracks A,B,C or 1,2,3 left to right. This is why we can’t use the one second rule like two wheelers do while riding staggered formation.
We will ride in traffic, beautiful lonely farmland and on super slab(thruways) as well. Please be prepared to ride all types of rides. We do not encourage speeding although there might be times when we are riding at 65 to 70 mph, the legal speed limit on the super slab.
When riding a spyder/ryker keep those hands firmly on the grips, don’t use a death grip on the handgrips.
Spyders/Rykers have good braking but that doesn’t mean we should rely on panic stops. Maybe all we had to do is slow down and move right or left around the problem. Know your surroundings at ALL TIMES.
When riding in a group we should only be in a left lane(passing lane) for the time it takes to pass a slower vehicle in the middle lane. We should not stay in the left lane for long periods of time, especially with a group. The MSF(motorcycle safety foundation) prefers smaller groups with under ten motorcycles. You are eventually going to get buzzed by someone who wants go go faster than you and they might not be so nice about it. Let them go, be nice and get you and your group out of harm’s way. The tail gunner controls the group and the ride captain controls leading the ride. The tail gunner will put their blinker on and move to the secured lane. The rest of the group follows after signaling and making sure a vehicle is not in the lane. When done correctly you will experience a wow moment nothing looks better than a group that rides like one unit.
When riding behind a tractor trailer do not follow so close that you do not have time to react to a piece of tire or a deer carcass in the road. Do not ride next to a tractor trailer for long periods of time either pass them or stay way behind them so you can see the roadway.
Rubber banding is when we are riding in a group, we don’t keep a similar pace as the person in front of us. When riding in a group a guideline to use is the “two second rule”. Since we don’t ride staggered like our two wheeled friends we need to pick a stationary spot on the side of the road a pole or sign and start counting one-one thousand, two-one thousand and keep behind the person in front of us with a two second cushion. A motorcycle that only uses one track has enough space to go around the motorcycle in front of them. in an emergency we can lock front wheels and that doesn’t end well for anyone. So stay behind keep your eyes up and keep at a minimum of a two second cushion.
Riding Alone or a Group
Don’t be the first one through an intersection after the light turns green, always look left and right before you take off. This is in case of a driver trying to beat the red light.
Don’t roll through stops signs, in your car you lose a door or a fender. On your spyder you can lose your leg.
SEE stands for Search, Evaluate and Execute. Search means to look for potential risk scan and identify things that could cause a problem. Evaluate means to consider potential problems. Execute refers to the physical motor skills used to prevent or avoid the resulting hazard.
If possible, take the shock impact with the larger tire in the rear not your front tires. You can also use your legs as shock absorbers when going over an unavoidable bump in the road. When taking on a pot hole, bump or deceased animal in the road. Place your spyder in a position where the object is under your knee so both front tires don’t hit the object
Wear proper riding gear at the least be dressed for the weather and have extra clothing for drops in temperature. ATGATT All the Gear All the Time. There are groups that want their people to have proper riding attire all the time. Boots, gloves, helmet, face shield, protective jacket and pants.
Ride Etiquette for Riding in a Group Ride
- Have a pre-ride meeting with the group. Use great communication skills.
- Show up with an empty bladder and a full tank of gas, no exceptions.
- Pre-ride check your spyder, tires, controls, lights, oil, fluid levels, etc…
- Wear proper clothing for the weather i.e. Rain gear, extra sweatshirt, or a cooling vest.
- Ride with a group of people with similar rider skills. Let the ride leader know of any of your deficiencies or talents. Example “this is my first group ride” or “I have been riding and have attended motorcycle safety courses for years”
- Know the most common hand signals.
- You never leave the group without telling the tail gunner or ride captain. The ride captain and tail gunner should never leave with the group until everyone is present and accounted for. This does not mean they will wait for you another ten minutes while you wander off from the group. If the ride captain tells everyone to be ready to leave the gas stop in twenty minutes, be ready to go.
- If you are experiencing an emergency let your co riders know. Communication is the key
You can feel more secure on your spyder/ryker riding through curves if you utilize this method on curves. When taking on a right curve, pull on your right handgrip while pushing on your left handgrip. You lean to the right toward the mirror have your feet firmly on the floorboards or foot pegs of your spdyer/ryker. Taking a left turn push on the right hand while pulling with your left hand. Shift your weight leaning left this keeps you flowing with the curve you wont get the feeling you are flying off the seat.
The organization GWRRA(gold wing road riders association) called the passengers co-riders so they can play a roll in the riding of the motorcycle. The co-rider can help navigate traffic and use hand signals with the blinkers on too. Alert the rider of many things. The co-rider can point out road hazards to the rider behind and so on. Even without a co-rider all riders in the group should point out road hazards (for example rocks, pot holes, dead animals etc.) to the people behind them and this should continue down the line.