Saturday, July 22nd at 7:00am, starting from the Bedford Depot (the end of the Minuteman Bike Path), is the next “Next Tour”. This ride takes us out in the direction of Dover and Sherborne for a 60ish mile loop, and back to the start by noon.
When I first moved to the Boston area in the early 80’s I fell in love with group riding, ’cause I didn’t have to know where I was going (I never do…). These days rides are all about GPS maps or Strava, the element of “let me show you this road I know” has gone out of it. The Next Tour is a return to how rides were back then, a ride leader showing you some of the roads he knows. No GPS files, no Strava, we don’t care about watts. Just follow the ride leader and bring some cash ’cause we’re stopping for baked goods somewhere.
Images from past Next Tours:
The Haystack Observatory in Groton Ma, at 4:00am
The real reason we do these rides…
Fall in New England – there’s no better riding anywhere.
This is Ian Carroll, saxophone teacher and route planning genius. He is also a coaching client of mine from years ago when his cycling goal was to complete the loop in the white mountains. Since then he has been creating better and more challenging routes which find the best back roads and stops for baked goods.
When I moved to the Boston area in 1982, I learned the good riding roads by going for rides with people like John Allis, Tom Judd and Chris Cooper. They seemed to know every road, the rides they took me on were magic because I didn’t have to know where I was going, I would just follow them.
Group rides today have gotten stale because everybody rides the same roads, we all know what’s around the next bend. Ride leaders have been replaced with GPS units, so rides no longer need to stick together because everybody has their own GPS. Much like migrating birds that have lost their route, cyclists have lost the art of riding in a group with one ride leader.
The “Next Tour” is a ride series dedicated to bringing back the group ride as it was 25 years ago. No cue sheets, no GPS files, just ride with the group. Ian and I spend every Thursday morning exploring roads in areas we thing the Next Tour should visit. This is our way of not just saying “you should see what we saw on the ride today”, we’ll take you there.
I hope you can join up on a Next Tour.