Weekly Club Rides

       Welcome to the Community Cycling Club of Portland Rides guide. We hope you will join us for one or more of our fun, friendly and inclusive weekly rides. Though there are different levels of speed and challenge on our various rides there are always several Regroup stops on each ride for you to rejoin the main group and to meet and socialize with other riders.

    All weekly rides leave from parking lot behind 15 Baxter Boulevard (At the base of radio antenna near Hannaford's Supermarket on Forest Ave. Please park at rear of parking lot.MAP)

   Helmets are required and front and rear lights strongly recommended on all  Monday and Thursday evening rides. Road bikes only, please. (No fixed gear, time trial or tri bikes. If your bike has aero bars attached, do not use them during group rides. No headphones) If it is your first time on a ride, be sure to  introduce yourself to the ride leader. If you are not a club member, you must sign a CCCP Waiver and Release Form. Please read and follow the Riding Etiquette and Safety  and Group Ride Guidelines at bottom of this page. Ride safety is always paramount on all CCCP Rides.

   CCCP's official ride season runs for 7 months from April 1st through Oct. 31st. Weather depending, we often start some rides in March and often continue some of the rides until Thanksgiving. Please note that designated routes and distances may change slightly depending on road construction, weather and remaining light. If you decide to drop out early, please tell ride leader or another rider so that the group doesn't wait for you at next stop. There is free parking on the LEFT side and down at the end of Bank Road but please do not park in spaces on side of the building or directly behind building as they are reserved for upstairs residents and for retail customers.

   For most up-to-date info on weekly rides, Special Event Rides, time changes, social events and for last-minute-spur-of-the-moment rides please join the CCCP E-Mailing list by clicking on CCCP /NEWSLETTERAdd Me To Mailing List at  lower right corner on the Homepage.FMI or questions about our club or Speciall Event rides e-mail kris@gwi.net.  You can also get updates on the  Saturday morning ride time and route  by going to CCCP blogsite: Rides



Monday Ride

Moderate to fast loop to Cousins Island, approximately 30 miles.

The Monday ride leaves the shop at 6pm from mid May to late  August. and covers a mostly flat course at a moderate to moderate-quick pace. There are sevaral groups;  A Plus group (22-24), A-Group (20-22mph), B group (17-20mph) and sometimes a moderate C group (14-16mph). There are several stopping points for people to regroup in all ride groups so no one gets permanently dropped. If the ride is too fast, you can slow down and join the next group down. There is a range of riders speeds on Mondays, from 16-24 mph so there is almost always someone to ride with.

Member Richard Hutchins leads the A + group.  Email Richard

John Tabb leads A-group  : tabbtech@maine.rr.com

Kris leads B Group :  kris@gwi.net

B-Group Route map go to: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/81329475/

A- Group Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/1012335799

From the shop we head around Baxter Boulevard to Payson Park, left through the park then right onto Ocean Avenue.  Once across Washington Avenue we continue straight on route 9 all the way to Lunt Road 4-way stop sign in Falmouth where we regroup. 

   After next traffic light, bear right off of Route 9 at fork onto Middle road, After bearing right at the fork there is no stop until just before the intersection with Tuttle Road where we stop for second Regroup. Please stop at fire hydrant 100 meters before Tuttle stop sign and not at intersection.
   After regroup, take right right onto Tuttle Rd, cross bridge over Rte 1, then left at Stop sign onto Rte 88. Take right at Cousins Island sign onto Gilman Rd. Straight at first stop sign,with short neutral speed to regroup, then cross causeway onto Cousins Island then take left at Chebeague Ferry sign onto Wharf Road. Stop and regroup at Town Ferry Landing.

   Retrace route back to Rte 88 then take left onto 88, pass Tuttle Rd and regroup at top of steep hill. Ride all the way back to Rte 1 where we stop for the last regroup just after taking left onto Rte 1. Then take  Rte 1 over the bridge to Portland, bear right onto Veranda Street, cross Washington Ave onto Baxter Boulevard which takes us back to Back Bay Bike shop.

   Please note that in B group that we reverse the direction of this loop every week. When riding the counter-clockwise B group loop our 1st Regroup is at Falmouth Fire Station just past Falmouth Landing Store on Rte 88. The 2nd Regroup stop is still Chebeague Island Ferry Landing and the third regroup spot is on Middle Road, right after we turn left onto Middle from Tuttle.

 A-group   goes straight  out on  Rte 88. After regroup at Ferry landing on Chebeague,t hey head into Yarmouth after Cousins Island, then return on Middle Rd to Tuttle, then take left on Tuttle , then right on Rte 88 all the way back to Rte 1.

Early and late season we sometimes shorten or modify ride for remaining light and for variety such as adding Cousins and Littlejohn Islands in for variety.

  For those interested, we always have a post-ride recoverysocial hour at,Forest Gardens pub, just a block down from back Bay Bike at 371 Forest Ave. Lycra bike shorts and your precious bike are always welcome at Forest Gardens.

Thursday Ride

 This is our harder and hillier weekly ride. 30 - 40 miles long, depending on time of year and remaining light. 6 hills over 1 mile including 2 hills that are 2 miles and one that hits 14%   1834 vertical feet of climbing.


A PlusGroup, led by Richard Hutchins, leaves at scheduled time and averages 19 - 22 mph with 2 regroup points. (21-23mph)

A Group led by John Tabb  (20-21mph)

 B Group , led by Kris Clark, 17-19 mph 

     For those interested, there is a post-ride social hour at Forest Gardens, 2 blocks down from Bank Street at 371 Forest Ave . Sweaty bodies, lycra and your precious bicycle are always welcome inside Forest Gardens.


B-Group route: New Thursday route: 
A-Group route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/6800747/#


Saturday Ride

The Saturday morning ride leaves every Saturday at 8am (sometimes earlier in early Spring and late Fall depending on mornig temperature).

The Saturday ride is an inclusive, moderate paced (15-18mph), no-drop ride. 

This ride is an excellent introduction to group riding and great training for charity rides. The Saturday ride is also an opportunity for veterans to add a recovery ride to their week while lending their group experience to newer riders. Routes purposely vary to introduce cyclists to the variety of rides in the Portland area.

   The Saturday rides leave the shop every Saturday just generally after 8:00am, but always check the blog (http://cccportland.blogspot.com/) which is updated every week (usually by Thursday night or Friday) with departure time, weather updates and map of that Saturdays ride. Though there is just one group leaving the shop, generally you have the option of riding the first half of the loop (20-30 miles) or the full loop for that day (40-60 miles)

If you're looking to get in some additional miles before the ride on Memorial Day or just want to add a longer ride to your weekly schedule, come on out and join us.


     All CCCP rides strive to be friendly and  inclusive “no-drop” rides.  We ask that people please come prepared. A road bike and a helmet are required and at least one, if not two, full bottles of water or sports drink are strongly encouraged as well as a spare tube and flat repair tools. Riders generally find that they travel faster in a group than they do alone, so add about 1-2 mph to your average solo speed when judging your ability to join this ride so don't sell yourself short and miss out! 


Sunday Rides

    Make sure your join the CCCP Mailing List on the Home Page to hear about Special Event rides (Like our Memorial Day White Mountain Classic, Four Notches Ride,  Merrymeeting Bay Metric Century, the Barista/Bike/Beer/Brunch Ride and the Black Friday Ride) as well as some last minute Sunday rides.

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       Riding Etiquette and Safety

    CCCP  strives to make all rides to be a fun but above all safe for everyone , so please respect other riders space and safety. Remember that how safely you ride affects the safety of the whole group not just yourself.

Always watch the wheel in front of you to avoid overlapping a wheel as well as keeping an eye up the road for upcoming hazards. 

   Hold your line and never make any sudden lane changes, accelerations or decelerations in the pack. If you need to pull out or move back into your lane always look back and signal to to others before making the move. Smooth and Predictable are the keys to safe group riding. 

  • NEVER cross the yellow line, don't pass on high speed descents, always look behind you and signal before pulling out to pass on hills and always keep to the right as much as is practicable. Riding single file is what we always stri ve for except for when we are doing a paceline when there can be 2 columns or riders. (Pacline Basics)Never ride more than 2 abreast. Obey all stop and yield signs and traffic lights and always keep a sharp eye on the traffic. If in back of the back yell "Car Back" when vehicles approach from behind. If in the front of the group communicate back to to the group when hazards or changes are about to occur. For example Slowing, Stopping, Turning (with hand signal), Runner/Walker Up, Car Left, Car Right, Sand. Other riders in the group should then relay messages back (or forward in the case of Car Back) through rest of the group. The rider at the front of the group at the time has the responsibility of making safety decisions for the whole group. For example, If the light is about to turn red or an oncoming car is approaching as the group is about to turn left and  there is not enough time for the whole group to make it through safely  yell Slowing! or Stopping! rather than try to speed through. Others might follow your lead and risk an accident or at the very least a pissed off driver.

Remember, we are representing our club and the sport of cycling  so we should minimize driver aggravation by keeping to the right and single (no more than) double file as much as possible and by obeying all traffic laws.  

We ALL must be PROACTIVE on a ride because, when it comes to safety, we are all ride co-leaders, not just the official ride leaders.





s a f e .  c o ur t e o us .  l e ga l .

Don’t be a Jerk 
Being courteous and obeying traffic laws will set a good example for new group riders and will improve how the public views group rides and cyclists in general. 

This is YOUR Group!

If you see a person behaving inappropriately, you have the right and responsibility to speak up and talk to that person!  If we don’t police ourselves, the Police will! 

Ride Smart 
Be alert. Be aware of riders around. Avoid overlapping wheels. TT, triathlon and fixed gear bikes are unsafe in group rides and should not be used. Riding with hands on aerobars is prohibited. Helmets are required. 

Be Predictable 
Look before you make a move. Riders and motorists expect you to ride in a straight line and at a consistent speed. Avoid sudden changes in speed or lane position. Scan behind and to the side before changing position. 

Be Visible 
Wear bright colors. Maine law requires cyclists to use lights in darkness, and lights are recommended in reduced visibility conditions. 

Clearly communicate to other riders changes in speed or direction, road hazards, pedestrians and vehicles. Call out “car back,” “slowing,” or “stopping” as needed. Communicate calls throughout the group. Coordinate group turns and moves. Ear buds interfere with group communication and should not be used. 

Choose Proper Lane Positioning 
A rider is permitted to use the entire travel lane when setting up for a left turn, where hazards exist, or where it is unsafe for a car and bike to travel side by side with at least three feet of space between them. Maine law permits bikes to ride in the travel lane, as far right as is practicable. Never cross yellow center lines. Use paved shoulders when it is safe to do so.

Avoid Riding More than Two Abreast 
Ride single or double file as appropriate to the roadway and traffic conditions. While riding two abreast is not illegal in Maine, please exercise your rights with courtesy. 

Don’t Pass on Right 

 Gather behind the last car in line at an intersections. Although Maine law permits a cyclist to pass cars on the right at an intersection, such behavior is discouraged in group rides as a courtesy to motorists

Be Courteous at Intersections 
Respect traffic sigs and signals. At stop sighns, consider moving as a single unit through intersections if all riders feel it is safe to do so. Slow and stop at yellow lights. Consider adopting a policy of stopping or slowing after intersections when the group is split. 

Don’t Block Traffic at Regroups 
Plan regroup points at locations away from intersections and move as far off the travel lane as possible when stopped and waiting.


    These Group Ride Guidelines are for all group rides, including both training and recreational rides. These guidelines were created by a committee of Maine cycling clubs and group riders  and the Bicycle Coalition of Maine and are endorsed by CCCP and other Maine clubs.
         For more information, visit BikeMaine.org






Although cycling has its benefits and is relaxing and fun, it’s always more pleasurable to ride with someone than to ride alone. However, riding with someone or riding in a group requires adherence to certain rules. It also requires skills that may take a little practice before mixing it up with the local club. No one likes a squirrel in the pack so I thought I’d outline several common sense "rules" of etiquette to follow when we are out there enjoying the scenery with a group of friends. These "rules" will increase your enjoyment and safety whether you are just putzing along or if you are hammering in a fast paced training ride. You surely don’t want to peel yourself off the pavement or cause someone else to be seriously injured by displaying poor riding habits. With this in mind, lets discuss some important issues!

1. Be Predictable—This may be the most important rule (even for solo riding) and it involves every aspect of riding from changing positions in the group to following the traffic rules. You might say that all the other rules support this one. Smooth predictable riding isn’t just a matter of style...here the word survival comes to mind! If unpredictability is the only predictable part of your riding style, you are a hazard to yourself and everyone else who has the misfortune to ride with you. When riding in a peloton always hold your line and don't make sudden moves, including changing lanes, hard braking or rapid acceleration.

     Have you ever been on a ride where the group stops at an intersection and people scatter all over the lane? Some going through on the wrong side of the road and others turning left from the right side? Some running the stop sign and others doing it right? It’s confusing and irritating to drivers of vehicles as they approach a situation where cyclists are going in all different directions or just blowing through stops! Part of being predictable is riding within the rules of the road as a vehicle. Groups should maintain integrity when approaching intersections. That means staying in the correct lane, stopping together, and starting together as traffic allows. It goes without saying that if we demand the right to ride on the road, then we must be willing to ride responsibly...especially as a group.

2. Don’t Overlap Wheels—This habit will get you in real trouble. This is a good way to test your ability to do cartwheels if you don't adhere to this rule. Some people do it from lack of concentration, others may just not know any better, but sooner or later they'll crash. There is no recovery from a front wheel deflection.  All it takes is for the person in front to move sideways a few inches...if someone is overlapping his wheel, that someone will go down along with practically everyone who is behind him.  Many times the person in front can recover, but not the people behind. Always keep an eye on the wheel in front of you as well as the group and the road ahead.

3.  Be Steady—This includes speed and line. If the person behind you fails to adhere to #2, you will contribute to a crash if you wallow around all over the road. When everyone is working for the group, maintain a steady speed as you go to the front. Ever notice how easy it is to ride behind some folks? If you take note of their riding style you’ll probably notice they don’t yo-yo around in the pack. They are rock steady. When they take the lead, they don't accelerate.  When they are leading, they ride a straight line and their speed will be constant with the conditions. What a joy to ride with someone like this. Sometimes steady doesn’t just mean speed. It means steady pressure on the pedals…uphill or downhill, headwind or tailwind. When you are following someone like this, life is good! When they are following, they don’t make sudden moves or they know how to control their spacing by using their body position instead of using the brakes. Sudden braking will set off general alarms from everyone in the rear and make you very unpopular. If you do use the brakes, feather the front brake only and keep pedaling against the resistance. This allows you to moderate your speed without disturbing trailing riders. Hold your line and never make sudden lane changes. If you need to  pass  look  before pulling out. If you need to get back in the line,  signal with your hand first so rider behind can let you in.  

4. Announce Hazards—When you are in the lead, you are responsible for the safety of everyone behind you. You will become very unpopular very quickly if people behind you keep bouncing off of potholes, running over rocks, or reacting to unsafe traffic situations that you fail to point out. You need to be very vocal when approaching intersections, slowing, stopping, or turning and all actions should be smooth and deliberate.  Sudden, unannounced actions will throw terror into any peloton.  Riders in the pack should relay these warnings to the rear. When you are following, announce oncoming traffic from the rear…in this case others should relay this info toward the front.

5. Signal—Signaling lets everyone (vehicles and riders) know your intentions…remember #1? This makes you predictable. Also, it’s a good idea to make eye contact with oncoming traffic at intersections. If you are at front of group at stop sign or when about to make a left turn across traffic, do not proceed with either until there is a sufficient gap for the whole group to proceed safely. If there is not,announce  Slowing or Stopping, then slow or stop until there is sufficient room.  If you shoot through because there is enough time for you to get through, others may and often will follow your lead and endanger theirs and everyone elses safety. As the front rider it is your responsibility to consider the whole groups safety.

6. Don’t Fixate—If you are staring at something (i.e., the wheel in front of you), eventually you’ll hit it! When you walk in a crowd, you don’t stare at the back of the person in front of you…so you shouldn’t ride like that either. Learn to be comfortable looking around or through the riders ahead of you. This will allow you to see things that are developing in front of the group. With a little practice you will be able to "sense" how far you are off the wheel in front of you.

7.  Stay Off Aero Bars—This shouldn’t require much discussion. They are much too unstable to be used in a group ride as you can't steer or brake  quickly with them. Plus, you don't need to be on aero bars if you are in a pack as you will receive more aerodynamic effect from the other riders anyway.  Plus, it really tics off those behind you when you go down in a pack! Use aero bars for what they are meant for...solo fast riding.

8.  Don’t Leave Stragglers— If you get separated at intersections, as a matter of courtesy, the lead group should soft pedal until the rest have rejoined. Another note here is that if you are the one who will be caught by the light, don't run the red light to maintain contact.

9.  Know Your Limitations—If you’re not strong enough or too tired to take a turn at the front, stay near the back and let the stronger cyclists pull in front of you instead of making them go to the back of the line. Unless they are a complete...well you know...they will appreciate that more than having to get past you to get back to the front. Plus, it strokes the animal's ego as you admit that he/she is the stronger rider. Another point here, don’t pull at the front faster and longer than you have energy to get back in at the rear (Remember, your "pull" isn't over until you do). I've seen this scenario many times, it comes "biker wannabe's" time to take his/her pull and the pace is getting up there.  The thoughts running through his/her mind is, "I need to show these guys that I can pull 2 mph faster than everyone else has been pulling."  They go to the front and hammer.  Legs begin to burn after a monumental pull...now it's time to pull over and let some "lesser" rider take a turn.  Well, the "lesser" biker is all refreshed after tagging on a wheel and is ready to punch it up another notch.  It's bye-bye to the first rider as he/she gets blown off the back...toast! Testosterone and ego is a volatile mix (even for you females) and it can get you dropped in a heartbeat.

10. Change Positions Correctly—A common beginner faux pas is to stop pedaling just before pulling off the front. This creates an accordion effect toward the rear. Keep a steady pressure on the pedals until you have cleared the front. After pulling off, soft pedal and let the group pull through. As the last couple riders are passing through, begin to apply more pressure to smoothly take your position at the rear. If you don’t time it correctly, you’ll create a gap and have to sprint to get back on. A technique used to reenter the line is to move your bike sideways first then your body. Try it. It will feel awkward at first, but it is the safest way to move within a group. It's just a small subtle move not an exaggerated one. If you lean your body first and misjudge the speed or the person in front of you slows down, you’ll touch wheels and be leaning the wrong way…bad situation! If you move the bike first, you will have a chance to pull it back.

11.  Climbing—Ever been behind someone when they stood up going up hill and all of a sudden you were all over them? If you need to stand, shift up a gear to compensate for the slower cadence and stand up smoothly keeping a steady pressure on the pedals. This will keep you from moving backward relative to the rider behind you. Apply the opposite technique when changing to a sitting position. Downshift and keep a steady pressure on the pedals to avoid abrupt changes in speed.  It takes a little practice, but your riding buddies will be glad you spent the time learning how to do it right. Always allow a little extra room behind the rider in front of you when ascending in case they shift and drop back a few feet. There is not much drafting benefit anyway at those slower climbing speeds.

12.  Descending—The leader must overcome a much greater wind resistance as the speed increases. If you are leading, keep pedaling. If you don’t, everyone behind you will eat your lunch. Riders to the rear will accelerate faster downhill as drafting becomes more effective at the higher speeds. If you are following, back off a couple of bike lengths to compensate for the greater affects of drafting. If you are closing on the rider in front, sit up and let the wind slow you or use light braking to maintain spacing, but in both cases you should keep pedaling against the resistance. Keeping your legs moving not only makes it easier to keep the spacing, but also helps the legs get rid of the acid build up from the previous climb.  Don't whip out and pass on high speed descents just because you have that extra momentum. It is dangerous, breaks up the paceline and you might fade when you hit the uphill on those rollers forcing everyone to have then pass you again. This forces the group to yo yo.

13  Leading ---   If you happen to be at the front of the pack, you are effectively the temporary ride leader. It is therefore your responsibility to think of the safety of the whole group. For example, If approaching a left turn and a car is coming the other direction, do not start the turn unless there is enough time for the whole group of 20 or 30 riders, not just yourself,  to turn safely without the car having to slow. Instead, yell 'Slowing! Turning!' and wait until the car has safely passed. Also, don't move into left lane for a turn before checking that there are no cars behind you and group. If approaching a traffic light and it has been green for a while, don't accelerate 'to make the light' but slow down and stop instead so that the whole group can cross the intersection at the next green. 

14.  Relax—This one is really important. It will allow you to be smooth and responsive. You can bet that if you see someone who is riding a straight line and is very steady, he/she is relaxed on the bike.  It not only saves energy, but it makes bike handling much more effective. Anytime you are riding in close proximity of other riders there's always the chance that you may come into contact. If you have tense arms and get bumped from the side, the shock will go directly to the front wheel and you will swerve, possibly lose control, and possibly cause a massive pile up. If you are relaxed, it's much easier to absorb the bump without losing control. A good exercise is to go to a grassy field (which is softer than pavement if you fall) with a friend and ride slowly side by side.  Relax your arms and lightly bump each other using your relaxed elbows to absorb the (light) impact. You will become familiar with how to safely recover from that type of contact.  It may save you some road rash someday.


Riding in a group can be fun and exhilarating. It can also be safe if everyone knows and follows the rules. Group safety is everyone’s responsibility not just the ride leaders. Please monitor your behaviour as well as others in the group at all times.  Politely point out dangerous riding to other riders at regroup stops as well as humbly accept others reminders of your own infractions.        Happy cycling!