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Cycling Merit Badge

posted Apr 13, 2012, 4:33 AM by Scott Lovell
Cycling Merit Badge Opportunity

Scouts of Troop 433:

I would like to offer the possibility for members of troops 433 & 435 the chance to obtain the Cycling Merit Badge.  This is not an easy merit badge to obtain; it takes a lot of work and commitment. You will impress fellows scouts wearing this badge; many will realize how much work you did to achieve it.  An overview of requirements are:
1. Completing two rides of 10 miles, 15 miles & 25 miles each and reporting on the rides as well.
2. Demonstrating proper & safe riding skills
3. Demonstrate various bicycle maintenance skills
4. Be knowledgeable on GA state bicycle laws & compare them to motor vehicle laws
5. Plan, map out & complete a 50 mile bicycle ride.  Ride must be completed in 8 hours or less
I would like to have the 1st ride on Sunday, 4/29  at 3 pm at the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area on Johnson Ferry Road and Columns Drive.  There is ample parking (for a fee...) and we will be able to have a meeting then as well to discuss logistics of coming months.
This ride will be 10 miles and it will give all the scouts a chance to see if this is or isn't for them.
Columns Drive is pancake-flat and you can bail out after 5 miles should the need arise. 
I want to stress that a 50 mile bike ride is very strenuous and should not be taken lightly. Scouts should be honest with themselves after the 10 mile ride an consider that the 50 mile ride will take at least 5 times and quite probably 7 times as long on the bike as the 10 mile ride does and few if any scouts will be able to ride 50 miles without having done more than just the minimum required rides.
Please email your scout's intent to undertake this merit badge. I suppose a written parental permission may also be required, not knowing all the BSA rules for such endeavors.  
 We will need to complete the riding requirements before the really cold weather returns. Riding in the cold is not at all pleasant.
Thanks and looking forward to hearing from you.
Bill Dyer

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Update September 2012 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
From Bill Dyer:

Here is a schedule of upcoming rides. I didn't like suspending things over the summer but with Philmont, summer camp, Helen's soccer & other sports conflicts we needed to wait for school to begin to have more luck getting scouts together. I will need to hear from each scout planning to attend a scheduled ride. There are enough make up rides to assure each scout has the opportunity to complete the required rides by mid November. 

I have decided to just send out a schedule of rides. Trying to schedule around when everyone is available is too difficult & hasn't worked well. It is my thinking  that those who really want the badge will endeavor to make it to the rides. Daylight savings ends 11/4/12 so it will be important to try to get as many rides done as possible before then. The academic parts of the badge can be done in the fall/winter when riding is not a lot of fun.

I am going to schedule the rides sequentially 10, 15 & 25 milers, then the remainder of the available dates can be used as makeup rides. Some or all of the makeup rides will be at least 15 miles and possibly 25 miles, no matter how many miles the rider actually still needs. I am scheduling around Ian's sister Helen's soccer schedule, which is considerable. 

Sat 9/8:  10 a.m.           available anyone wants to ride. I know it's soon, so let me know if you are available & want to ride this date. 
Sun 9/23         2pm at the Roswell/Alpharetta Greenway  1600 Old Alabama Road, Roswell
                      (Paved trail & parking for same are at the bottom of the hill & to the right.)
                      Final 10 mile ride.
Sat 9/29          2pm @ the Greenway  1st 15 mile ride 
Sun 9/30         2pm @ the Greenway  2d 15 mile ride
Sun 10/7         2pm @ Silver Comet Trail: Mavell Road trailhead on Mavell Road, Smyrna 
                      (Same road as Nickajack Elementary School) 
                      first 25 mile ride.
Sat 10/13        10 am @ Silver Comet Trail: Mavell Road trailhead. 2d  25 mile ride. 
Sun 10/14       2 pm Make-up ride: Silver Comet trail
Sat  10/20       Bonus day: Ian can't ride but I am available if others want to ride this day
                      Please communicate with me time & distance if anyone wants to ride.
Sun  10/28      2 pm  Make-up ride Silver Comet
Sun 11/11       2 pm  Final make up ride Silver Comet
Sat 11/17        11 am     Tentative date for 50 mile ride.  This will be +/- 5 hour ride with
                       rest stops. Boys have to plan this: I recommend the Silver Comet.

                      Please check your schedules & see if it works. Ian is having foot surgery around Thanksgiving time & won't be able to ride after for some time,  so either we get the ride in before that or we will probably have to wait until Spring.

Bill Dyer