The Tarwheels endorse the group cycling guidelines recently developed by BikeWalkNC and representatives of cycling groups across the state.  If you have not done so recently, please review Group Bicycling Best Practices: Skills and Techniques.   We believe following these guidelines will greatly increase both the safety and enjoyment of your ride.

Harassment Policy

The Carolina Tarwheels bicycle club strives to foster an inclusive and diverse environment that is welcoming to all and one in which every single rider feels safe at all times. 

Considering as much, our club operates under a zero-tolerance policy of any behavior that is physically or verbally abusive, sexist, racist, or harassing in any way, or any behavior that includes unwanted touching. Incidents of this nature are taken very seriously, are subject to internal investigation, and may be reported to authorities. They may also result in the termination of your membership without refund and a lifetime ban from participating in any future Tarwheels rides or events. Should you ever need to report an issue, please email

All rides are weather permitting. If it is raining or the temperature is below 45 degrees, there is a good chance the ride will be cancelled. Ride leaders will announce the cancellation on the ride’s event page on Meetup. If in doubt, check the event announcement on the Tarwheels Meetup site before leaving for the ride.

If you need help with directions or have any other questions about a ride, post your questions in a message on the ride’s event page on Meetup. The ride leader is notified of postings on the event page and other riders can see and respond to your question via the event page on Meetup.

Helmets are required to be worn on all Tarwheel rides and must be worn correctly. A loose strap under the chin means you will have no protection at all from the helmet.

Proper identification shall be carried by all riders (on your helmet tag or on your person) which includes:

• Name, address, phone number
• Emergency contact name and phone number
• In Case of Emergency (ICE) on your mobile phone
• Medical issues and important medications
• Any other important ICE information

Cell Phones
Cell phones shall not be used while riding in any Tarwheels ride. Having a cell phone on a ride is a good idea, but they are not to be used while riding. If a participant needs to use a cell phone, they must:

1. Safely move to the back of the group
2. Stop and get off the road

Any electronic devices that may impede hearing in any way, such as headphones, earphones, earbuds, bicycle speakers, etc. shall not be worn or used on Tarwheel rides.


Do not use aerobars when in a pace line or following other cyclists unless several bike lengths behind the cyclist being followed.  Do not ride no-handed.  Always be ready to maneuver and brake.

Tarwheels rides are over public streets and highways and, thus, involve ordinary risk of accidents. Participants are on a private excursion and agree to hold harmless the ride leaders, the Carolina Tarwheels Inc., its officers and agents for injury or loss that might occur as a result of participating in these rides.

Dangerous Cycling
Please ride in a lawful and courteous manner and observe the Best Practices adopted by the club.   Tarwheels Ride Leaders are authorized to expel riders from the group if he/she believes that their riding is erratic, dangerous or illegal and/or their behavior is putting others around them at risk.

Before the ride listen to any announcements from the ride leader. At the scheduled departure time be ready to roll.

When possible, print your own cue sheet or download the route file to your GPS device. Cue sheets and optionally route files can be found via the ride’s event announcement on Meetup. Ride Leaders may have a few spare cue sheets in case you can’t print one or forget it.

There are three types of rides: Standard, Social and Training rides. These differ on pace, skill level, grouping (do riders stay together or spread out) and leader position (leader may ride with the slowest riders). The type of ride should be clearly indicated in the ride description. Definitions for the different types of rides are given below, along with definitions for some other important cycling terms.

Release and Waiver of Liability: Our insurance requires a liability waiver signed by each rider.  Rides should complete and submit our Electronic Ride Waiver which can be found at:

Paid members of the Tarwheels, including Lifetime members and those with membership dues exceptions for service to the club, need submit this form only once for the 2017 season.  All other participants in Tarwheels club rides must complete this form before every ride, which just might be another good reason to join the club.  You may, of course, submit the waiver before a ride from the comfort of your computer or on site using your device, but we strongly recommend completing the waiver before going to the ride.

If you are uncomfortable with filling out and submitting an electronic form, you may complete the PDF version of this waiver:

The club’s Ride Coordinator, will be the collector of all waivers, and you may email the completed PDF to, send a hard copy via surface mail to  Carolina Tarwheels, PO Box 111, Durham, NC, 27702, or give it to your Ride Leader who will in turn pass the waiver on to the Ride Coordinator.  Mike Doub is the club’s Ride Coordinator.  You may also hand the wavers to him directly.   If you are a paid Tarwheels member, you need only to do this once for this year.  All other participants in Tarwheels rides must do this before each ride.  

Riders under 18 years of age may participate in Tarwheels club rides at the discretion of, and subject to conditions stipulated by, the Ride Leader.  In all instances, individuals under 18 years of age must be accompanied to the ride by a parent or legal guardian and give a completed and signed printed copy of the club’s waiver, including the “Minor Release”, to the Ride Leader.


  • Group – Riders will stay together
  • Regroup – Riders will spread out, regroup at specific points along the route
  • Non-group – Riders will spread out with no planned regroup points along the route
  • Social rides may be any pace, but very often are slower. The group pretty much stays together or regroups from time to time.
  • Standard rides may be a single pace or a combination of ride paces, A, B, C, and D (see below).  Faster riders are welcome but the ride leader stays with the slowest person.
  • Training rides are generally faster paced. Cue sheets may or may not be provided, and the ride leader may not sweep the course.
  • Paceline:  Many faster rides, especially Training rides are ridden in a paceline. All cyclists are strongly encouraged to read the the Pacelines section of Group Bicycling Best Practices: Skills and Techniques and Riding the Paceline before attempting to ride in a Tarwheels paceline. If you are new to riding in a paceline, the document is written in Stages, so you don’t have to read and understand everything all at once.
  • Ride pace classifications
    • A 18+ mph average;
    • B 16-18 mph average;
    • C 14-16 mph average;
    • D 10-14 mph average;
    • Mtn mountain biking on trails (no pace).

If you would like to lead a Tarwheels ride: please consult our Ride Leader Information Page and contact one of our ride coordinators to set up an orientation to safety, procedures, basic guidelines. Once you have completed this, you will be able to post rides on the calendar.