Post by Angela Brown
Summer time brings the excitement of planning evening or weekend rides. I know that I try to plan a few rides a week, and most of the time, my husband and I ride together. There are times when he isn’t able to go, and I still want to use my time to hit the trails. Some women don’t think about it and just go ride, but I always have a bit of reservation in the back of my head because not everyone that is out on the forest trails are there for the sheer enjoyment of the forest.
I am not trying to say that there are Charlie Manson’s lingering behind every other tree, but as women, we need to be more cautious. Unfortunately, last year we had a older couple that was hiking near the Brevard area that were kidnapped and killed. It took months to find their bodies, and their killer, hopefully, has been caught. Gary Hilton, who also kidnapped and killed a female hiker in Northern Georgia, is believed to be their killer. So not to advertise a dark subject, but we need to be mindful and careful when heading out to the trails.
- I ride with others and never ride alone. I joined a local Women’s Cycling Club, and there always seem to be someone that can go ride. You just have to plan ahead and send out an email to the group ahead of time to get everyone together.
- Always tell someone that you are riding, including where you are going, how long, and when you will be back. Carry a cell phone so you can reach help if needed. I always call when I am back in my car and headed home.
- Carry a first aid kit. You never know when you might need it, and it will be priceless if you do.
- Carry an extra tube, pump, and some duct tape. If you have a puncture in a tire, you can place the duct tape over the puncture on the inside of the tire which will help hold you until you get off the mountain.
- Carry some nutrition, a GU, a granola bar.. something just in case your ride goes longer than you plan.
Keep these points in mind, while heading out or on the trail, and you will stay safer and feel more relaxed while on a ride.