Social Cycling Austin – See The City, Meet Locals & Ride
Jason’s family is very outgoing and active (crazy fun), which is why I love them so much. The only thing is you never really know what you’re getting yourself into with this bunch.
So when Lauren (Jason’s sister who lives in Austin, Texas) invited us to join in on their Thursday Night Social Ride I should have known this wasn’t going to be a leisurely bike ride around town.
Plus, this is Austin; where nothing is average or normal.
We’ve been on social rides and bike pub crawls in the past that were all pretty leisurely. This was real city riding (probably more than 10 miles) with beautiful downtown Austin glimmering in the background against the night sky. We began the ride at Lady Bird Lake and rode all over the south-side of town, can’t tell you exactly where but the pace was swift (in a casual way, you don’t have to be Lance to keep up), the crew was full of energy and there were dozens of ‘leaders’ who helped with traffic and safety throughout the ride. It was cool seeing the city from a new perspective, stopping at random parks for “hydration” breaks, hitting up a few gourmet food trucks we wouldn’t have found otherwise and getting the chance to meet some interesting people.
Oh yeah, and FREE BEER!
The ride ended at the Break Point at the Boardwalk Food Truck area with several food vendors waiting to welcome us and a warm fire to hang out and swap stories by. We stopped at one cool food truck where the pizza is hand crafted to order and super yummy, but the best part is the FREE BEER! Can’t think of a better way to end a good ride.
Social Cycling Austin is a group that has been “Putting Butts on Bikes since 2009”. If you love riding your bike, hangin’ with locals, getting great deals from food trucks and pubs, and seeing a city by bike, then this is THE event to participate in! The best part is there is something fun to join in on no matter what day of the week it is.
Social Cycling Austin Rides
Here is a list of their rides which you can find information about and ask questions on their group Facebook Page.
Sundays: Bike Curious is an art-viewing social ride every Sunday night. We ride around, viewing art in public places, cruising along routes with great views of Austin’s night skyline, and stopping for a photo or two. The routes are typically 10-15 miles long, and occasionally contains a hill or two, but this is a no-drop ride, meaning everyone stays together and no one gets left behind. We like to conclude the ride with food and drinks and more hanging out.
Mondays: Bikin’ Betties is a ladies-only, beginner friendly bike ride that meets every Monday night for a fun cruise around town that ends with drinks and social time, karaoke, bike maintenance workshops, and more!
Lend Your Legs: We have partnered with the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired to take students on a social ride on tandem bicycle so they can experience something most of us take for granted.
Tuesdays: The Yoga Ride is yoga instructors donating their time to build a healthier and happier cycling community through the transmission of yoga. We achieve this mission by hosting a free, hour-long yoga class and no-drop bike ride every Tuesday evening. During the warm seasons we take a dip in Barton Springs to cool off.
Wednesdays: The Hump Day Nooner Ride meet on the Lamar pedestrian bridge every Wednesday and leaves around noon. The ride covers 10-15 miles over varied urban routes. It is a no-drop ride and concludes with lunch and coffee at a different establishment each week.
The Heavy Breather Ride meets Wednesday evenings. It’s a fairly quick-paced ride that typically covers a 25-mile route.
Thursdays: The Thursday Night Social Ride is a very casual cruise around town with around 300 cyclists attending every week! The pace is social (easy). Typically, we ride to various locations where we socialize, swim, play games or just hang out. We then ride some more before arriving at one of our many generous host bars that supply our riders with hospitality and good times.
Saturdays: The Saturday Caffeine Cruise meets at a coffee shop then we ride and stop at a few places for food, drinks, and swimming (during summer). We also ride to farmers’ markets, swap meets, parades, awesome Austin landmarks, and other cool things that make Saturdays more fun. The pace is social and the group size is fairly small, which makes this a great ride for beginners and for meeting people.
Stuff to Know
- Ride locations, destinations and routes vary. Check Social Cycling Austin’s Facebook page for details.
- The rides are lengthy and the destinations are geared towards adults but if you have kids willing to keep up the pace, we did see a few 10-16 year olds loving it.
- Helmets and lights are encouraged.
- Be prepared to invest about 3 hours for a Thursday Night Social Ride.
- Bring cash because you never know where the ride will stop and you definitely work up an appetite.
Have you been on a social ride we all need to know about? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!