Electric Bike Club of San Diego—Meet-up Excitement.
If you have been looking for a fun way to enjoy your E-bike, this is it. Even if you don’t own one yet, on most rides there is a way to rent one for the day. (In fact, friends have come on the rides with non E-bikes and seem to have a great time.) With electric bikes getting more popular everyday, our group rides seem to expand and flourish. Our year-round riding weather and great places to tour make this club one of the best, if not the best, way to have some safe and fun excitement.
Started as a Meet-up group by Ike and Megan from San Diego Fly Rides, it has blossomed in many ways. There are a few pages on Facebook that cover the action too. A couple other local shops have joined in on occasion to make this group increase in size and diversity. Check below for the links to find out how you can become involved. We have monthly rides and quite often others are added between those.
Our largest group of E-bike riders has been 29. Last weekend we had 21 bikes and people join in. One ride we did there were just the three of us. So you never know what you will get, other than the fact it will be cool, and in a very ridable and scenic location. All kinds of coastline rides have taken place and the ones on Coronado are especially enjoyable.
The history of this club jumps around a little. Ike and Megan are so busy with their shop (E-bike tours, sales and service—plus Megan’s Pilates teaching) that they don’t often get to join in. The club waned a bit, and then one member gave it new life by calling it the “San Diego Kilowatt Hour“. He took that idea from a Vancouver Meet-up group that has a monthly get-together and then ride. They don’t concentrate on just E-bikes, but on any type of electric vehicle.
Before that Barbara and I joined a friend’s Facebook group that included E-bike rides. That group joined gas-powered bicycles and mopeds to organize get-togethers and group rides. It wasn’t too much longer after that the name was changed to the “Lavender Banshees All-Inclusive Moped Gang”. They now concentrate on mopeds with a LGBT theme. We are still members, yet don’t have mopeds or fit the theme criteria. We have attended an event or two and enjoy the buzz they generate.
On any given ride you will see a cross-section of bikes that looks like a Wikipedia page about E-bikes. Basic ones, high-end ones and home-made ones fill the bike lane as we go. There is always much to discuss and that is a big part of the day. Some rides include a sit-down lunch or brunch, while others just a beverage stop. We generally take it pretty easy, with rides that aren’t really epic. Every now and then we will do a long one or choose a major obstacle, like a recent ride to the Mt. Soledad Memorial Park. The ride description is always mentioned in the notification.
I have talked about making this riding club a little more like a real club with monthly sit-down meetings. So far that hasn’t happened, but many would like to see it go that way. There is much info that can be shared about E-bikes in such a setting. Different subjects I would like to cover include basic maintenance and heavier repairs. We could spend a lot of time on E-bike conversions. The location I use for my twice-a-year E-bike seminars would be perfect and could work.
For now we are all content to come to the rides when they fit into our schedules. Unlike many clubs there are no dues or commitments to make. I guess the only requirement is to have fun and meet new friends. So far that is just how it always works and we like it that way. If you haven’t done any group bicycle rides these are the perfect opportunity. Maybe you can see that already, if not I’ll try to explain it better.
For one, when you are riding in a group you are seen by all so much better. The safety factor when we are on the road is much increased. Two, much of our riding is done on bike specific paths or roads with wide bike lanes. That can make many more confident as we ride. Also it can be so much better to do an activity with a group of like-minded people. You meet new friends that you only had one thing in common to start with and go from there.
Way back Barbara and I started doing group rides after seeing a post in a local hand-out paper. That group, the “San Diego Urban Bike and Social Club” is a great assemblage of people. It is amazing how many friends we have now from getting involved. This E-bike club works the same way. That and you get to learn so much about the bikes. If you do have an issue during the ride they are there to help, always a reassuring thought.
Well anyway, I think you get the idea. No matter what kind of bike you have or riding you like to do, there is most likely a local group that fits your wants. The Electric Bike Club of San Diego is just one of many near to us, although the only one that caters just to E-bikes. We do ride electric bikes with other groups, as well as riding or regular bikes and folding bikes too.
If you can’t find a group ride near you consider starting one of your own. Between Facebook and the local media, there are many ways to get the word out. You might be surprised how many others will join in and make each ride a day to remember.
Saddle up and ride, Turbo Bob.
“My two favourite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything. The perfect day: riding a bike to the library.”— Peter Golkin
Links to the Electric Bike Club of San Diego and other sites that support it.
Some of the local shops that support the club
Videos of the rides—There are so many on my U-Tube channel. This will link to the latest, and you can find the rest in one of two sections—E-bike General Interest & Local Bike Rides.