SHARE Mountain Bike Club at the OC Parks 2015 Whiting Ranch Poker Ride
The SHARE Mountain Bike Club participated in the 2015 Orange County Parks Whiting Ranch Poker Ride by acting as the coordinator for the volunteers for the event. The Poker Ride is an annual event that encourages mountain bike riders (and unicyclists!) of all levels to come out and ride a preset course of trails, while navigating their way through checkpoints along the way. After hitting all of the checkpoints, riders are then dealt a poker hand – the strength of the poker hand determines eligibility for the amazing prizes that were donated by a variety of sponsors of the race.
SHARE had a great turnout of volunteers to help with the event. Along with Joshua Goldsmith, the Whiting Ranch Park Ranger in charge of the event, additional park rangers, and other key safety personnel from the local community, these volunteers were responsible for making sure that the event ran smoothly by assisting the riders at various stages of the ride. The volunteer assignments included parking lot management, registration, checkpoint positions, sweepers to go behind and check on the riders, and post-ride poker hand tally experts. The day of the event was extremely hot, so the volunteers also made sure that the riders had plenty to drink along the trail – extra thanks goes out to everyone for keeping all of the riders hydrated and safe.
The ride ended at the staging area in the Glenn Ranch parking lot of Whiting Ranch Park. There were many vendor booths representing mountain bike clubs, US Forest Service volunteers, bike shops, adventure racing clubs, and the Foothill High School mountain bike race team (who also helped as volunteers). After the riders got something to eat, the prize winners were announced – the grand prize was an amazing mountain bike donated by Jax Bicycles.
Despite triple-digit heat, it was a fun and successful day. The SHARE Mountain Bike Club wants to again extend their thanks to all of the volunteers who came out to help – the event could not have been put on without all of you! SHARE would also like to thank the OC Parks and their staff for providing such beautiful parks for everyone to enjoy biking, hiking, and just being in the wilderness!