Pack Mentality

Aug 11, 2012 View Comments by

Packs, gangs, groups, or clubs are anything but a new idea. Since Ogg got together with Mog, Zoe, and Igg to hunt down a Saber Tooth Chipmunk there have been clubs, in their case a “hunting club.” Which on many levels is/was a good idea, in this case numbers were an advantage, even if the Saber got one of you, there were still three left to get him and enough to carry you home. On the other hand, I am not so sure it works as well for riding.

Recently I rode with my local H.O.G. chapter to a summer camp for kids, I would estimate about 150 bikes on a 30-mile ride in good weather. No problems, except for those inherent with this kind of ride. We rode in a staggered pattern and had road guards to keep things safe and moving, all very good, but I never could relax and enjoy the ride, much less the companionship. Consistently my eyes, and attention, were on a dozen things at once; at the head of the line for upcoming problems, on the bike in front of me for any stops, on the bike next to me for any kind of swerve, on the road for tar snakes and holes, on the bike behind me; can he stop if I do? All of these in addition to oncoming and cross traffic; and you don’t want to do anything stupid in front of everybody either.

I was a nervous wreck by the time we reached the camp, and yes I know all of the things I was paying attention to in the pack are the same things we watch out for on a solo ride!

Only thing is, everybody is within several feet of you and the probability of a “chain reaction” accident is multiplied by each bike in the line, which makes for a real teeth clincher.

I guess when it comes to packs, I am just a lone wolf, more comfortable doing my own thing, thinking for myself, and in control of my own destiny (and road). All things considered, I would rather ride at my own pace and meet everyone else at the destination to enjoy their companionship and company, than “flock together.” Ride on.









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About the author

A Wisconsin farm boy, I learned how to ride a cow, before a horse and way before a motorcycle. I first started riding on my 16th birthday and I took my first real ride at my party: I pulled a wheelie and dug a trench in the lawn, which sent the bike in one direction and me in another. I was irrevocably hooked!