As a Sagger (SAG = Support and Gear), you will join approximately 200 others to support the riders throughout the event. We have a wide range of needs that require different interests and abilities. If you would like to sag you must be at least 18 years of age and be willing to help care for the riders for at least one 8-hour shift. Most saggers come for the entire event (10:00 a.m. Friday through 2:00 p.m. Saturday) and take short, scheduled breaks as needed. (Riders may not bring their own personal saggers.)
Transporters are responsible for moving riders' gear bags as well as water, ice, food, and equipment from one SAG station to another. We need a team of 12 drivers to cover three 8-hour shifts. (Night-time shifts may be divided into 4 hours.) Transporters must be at least 21 years of age and must bring their own vehicle--preferably a small car with a bike rack or a small pickup--to use throughout the ride. CEM will pay for gas used during the ride.
Motorcycle rovers provide a safety net for bicycle riders out on the road. We need 36 folks to ride motorcycles along the route. Each motorcyclist is assigned one or two 4-hour shifts, making sure they are rested enough to be safe while driving. Motorcycle rovers must be at least 25 years old and must sleep at least six hours during the event.
Stationary SAG meetings at Beckwourth and Vinton start at 10:30 a.m. on Friday. Loyalton saggers will meet directly following the start of the ride at 1:00 p.m.. Saggers, please check in by 10:15 a.m. at your assigned SAG station at Vinton, Loyalton, or Beckwourth, where you will receive instructions and assignments and will help set up the SAG station.
Transporter meeting starts at 11:45. Transport Saggers check in at the Loyalton Elementary School before 11:30 a.m. You will be given essential safety information, gear, and your specific assignment for the ride.
Motorcycle Roving SAG meeting starts at 11:45. Motorcycle Roving Saggers check in at the Loyalton Elementary School before 11:30 a.m. You will be given essential safety information, gear, and your specific assignment for the ride.
Stationary Saggers will be assigned tasks: helping in the kitchen, checking riders in and out, serving riders food and drink, giving muscle rubs, working the rider tracker computer, fixing bikes, supervising medical needs, handling riders' bags, etc. Expect to work steadily throughout the entire ride with just one six-hour break for sleep. Motorcycle Roving Saggers will be assigned a section of road to check on bicyclists. Bag Transporters will be assigned a section of road to transport bags and other gear, and will be asked to help out as stationary saggers when not needed for transporting.
SAG leaders will assign each sagger a 6-hour sleeping time. These will be subject to change depending upon the needs and number of riders at your SAG at any particular time. Motorcycle Roving Saggers, Bag Transporters and anyone who will be driving home must get at least six hours of sleep. Sleeping accommodations vary at the SAGs. In Loyalton and Vinton you may sleep on the floor at the school or Grange in designated sleeping rooms, or you may bring a tent or RV, or sleep in your vehicle. At Beckwourth the only options are RV, car/truck, or tent sleeping. Bring your own if possible. For all SAGs, bring your own, well-marked sleeping bag if you have one. CEM will have some mattresses, sleeping bags and blankets, but bicycle riders have priority for those.
We recommend that you eat a good breakfast the day of the ride. Food is provided during the ride—soup, sandwiches, snacks, breakfast on Saturday, etc. If you are at Loyalton, there are a couple of restaurants where you may eat if you have time and your SAG leader approves. A post-ride celebration meal is provided for all riders and saggers at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday in Loyalton.
The ride takes place in the Sierra Valley, in and between the towns of Vinton, Loyalton, and Beckwourth. These are tight-knit communities whose primary economy is ranching. They have had bad experiences with other biking events in the past. We have worked hard to establish good relationships with these communities. The good attitudes and actions of saggers enhance these good relationships.
Temperatures may range from 90˚F in the day to 20˚F at night. The elevation is 5,000 ft., and it can rain any day of the year; it is often very windy. You may be outside a lot, even at night, so bring appropriate clothing!
Check with your SAG leader as to where you are to park your vehicle. Space is limited to certain areas that have been set aside for us to use.
Responsible to: the Sag Leader
Responsible for: Meeting immediate needs of riders as they enter the sag station. Be helpful and encouraging to riders and other saggers. If you don't know what to do, ask questions of your Sag Leader or Greeter Leader until you understand.
Transporters will drive their own vehicles for one or two eight-hour shifts (or possibly 4-hour shifts at night).
Shifts are: Fri. 1 PM to Fri. 9 PM, Fri. 9 PM to Sat. 5 AM, Sat. 5 AM to Sat. 1 PM Two drivers will be assigned as partners to each of the three legs of the route (total six drivers per shift). The partners will start at opposite ends of their assigned leg (e.g. Loyalton & Vinton). They will change places every 30 minutes or as rider bags or other gear (food, ice, water, etc.) needs to be moved. Drivers will communicate with one another via cell phone when leaving their SAG station or on the 30-minute mark to see if either has anything to transport. They will also check out with the map table before leaving.
Please obey all posted speed limits. Do not stop or slow to check on riders unless there is a clear urgent need. Motorcycle rovers will be checking on riders.
Always start your shift(s) at the Loyalton Elementary School on A-24. Get your assignment(s) and equipment there.
There are six 4-hour shifts
If you are on the first shift (Friday 1p.m.-5p.m.) Motorcycle Rover Meeting starts Friday at 11:45am. If you start with a later shift, arrive at least 15-20 minutes early for instructions and equipment.
PURPOSE: To provide safety for each bicyclist by observing them during the entire event.
At night, we will ride behind, not in front of as many groups of bicyclists as possible to provide them more light and thus escort from Sag to Sag. If they signal you to pass them, go ahead to the next group.
Slow way down and visually check on every bicyclist or group of bicyclists (no matter which direction they are going).
Observe if they are riding safely. See that they have the required equipment: helmet, gloves, vest, reflector (front, side and rear) and, (at night) headlight and taillight. They need to ride SINGLE FILE; however, it is okay for them to draft each other [front wheel beside and behind the rear wheel of a riding partner.] It is not okay for them to ride side-by-side (except to pass another bicyclist). Please kindly remind them to abide by the rules.
Watch for problems such as heat exhaustion in the daytime and hypothermia at night. If you are concerned about the rider's health and safety, stay with him/her and find someone to notify the medical person (or the SAG Leader) at the closest SAG station. At a serious accident, protect the scene to prevent more accidents. Have someone at the scene (or at a SAG station) call 911. Request our EMT’s assistance, too.
Leaving the SAG Stations
Always check out at the map table before leaving a SAG station. Check with the BAG HANDLERS to see if they need you to take a bicyclist's bag with you.
Wear Your Reflective Roving-Sag harness
Be sure the harness is on top of your jacket. When you stop, the harness will identify you to the bicyclists since we are not the only motorcycle riders in the area. Also, the reflective webbing is a safety factor if you get off your bike to help a bicyclist.
(1) A bicyclist may need a special tool or part. (2) At night, we do not allow bicyclists to ride by themselves. If you come upon a lone bicyclist, ride behind him to the next SAG station. (3) You may receive a special request from an Agony Official to assist a cyclist.
Bicyclists get tired, especially as the event continues. Give them lots of room to maneuver, especially as they enter and leave the SAG stations. Throughout the event, watch the road for potential hazards so they can be removed or well marked.
Please take a Rover Bag with you; they contain several things (a list is on the bag) helpful to the riders. Be sure the water bottle is filled before you start your shift.
Thank you for being on the Motorcycle Roving-Sag Team; thank you for your willingness to be flexible, doing whatever is needed to take care of all the bicyclists. By helping them raise funds for Christian Encounter Ministries, you make it possible for young people to get the help they need and deserve.
9:55 a.m. If you are transporting riders, drop them off at the Loyalton Elementary School.
10:15 a.m. Stationary saggers check in at your assigned SAG station. See the Housing and Transportation page for directions. If you are unassigned, go to the Loyalton SAG station.
10:30 a.m. Important Stationary Sagger meeting at your SAG station. Please be on time. You will be given instructions and assignments, and you'll get the SAG station ready for the riders. (Loyalton meeting will take place after the ride starts at 1:00 p.m. Be ready to help with SAG set-up at 10:30.)
11:30 a.m. Transporters and Motorcycle Roving Saggers check in at the Loyalton Elementary School.
11:45 a.m. Important Transporter and Motorcycle Roving SAG meetings. Please be on time. You will be given essential safety information, gear, and your specific assignments.
1:00 p.m. The ride starts promptly from the Loyalton Elementary School.
1:00 p.m. The ride ends. Riders will be picked up on the roadside wherever they stop and transported back to the Loyalton Elementary School.
2:00 p.m. CEM will provide a complimentary Victory Meal for all riders and saggers at the Loyalton Elementary School. Plan to stay for this meal to find out how far people rode and how much money was raised. Awards will be given; it is a time to celebrate and rejoice!
9:30 a.m. All are invited to join CEM for church in Angels' Meadow at Christian Encounter Ranch. We'll have a great time sharing how God worked in our lives during the Agony Ride.
We may be able to provide housing (rustic cabins with no mattresses) for you at Christian Encounter Ranch both the night before and the night after the ride if you need it. CEM is about two hours from the starting point of the ride at the Loyalton Elementary School. Call us at 530-268-0877 no later than July 15 to make arrangements. (We recommend making hotel arrangements early June or sooner. For rooms in Loyalton we recommend The Golden West Motel, 711 Main St., Loyalton, CA, 96118; 530-993-4467.) We may also be able to help you carpool from the Ranch to the ride and back.
Parking in Vinton and Loyalton is limited. Carpool if you can. If you know any riders, see if you can provide transportation for them. All drivers must plan to sleep 6 hours during the event.
Truckee, CA, is located on Interstate 80 near Lake Tahoe. Hwy. 89 leaves Truckee, crosses Interstate 80, and goes north to Sierraville and Loyalton. Sierraville is located 25 miles north of Truckee where Hwy. 89 and Hwy. 49 intersect. Turn right at the stoplight in Sierraville (onto Hwy. 49) and continue about 14 miles to Loyalton.
The Loyalton Sag Station is located at the Loyalton City Park. To go to the Loyalton City Park, turn left on 4th street, continue straight to the high school. Go left around the school to the dirt/grass field. Park nose-in to the fence and walk to the park, right next door.
The Vinton Sag Station is at the Vinton Grange. From Loyalton, continue on Hwy. 49 to Vinton. Turn right on Hwy 70. The Grange is on the right.
The Beckwourth Sag is on A-24. From the Loyalton Elementary School continue north on A24 (Beckwith Street) for about 14 miles until you see RVs and tents on the left-hand side of the road. This is the Beckwourth SAG station. If you are going directly to the Beckwourth Sag, you can turn left off of Hwy. 49 on Heriot Ln., then left on A24.
One duffel bag or day pack for extra clothes and toiletries. Please make sure your name is on your bag. (We recommend that you put your name on everything you bring!)
Clothing Bring layers for all temperatures. The days can be hot and nights can be cold. A rain jacket or poncho is also a good idea, especially if you are at Beckwourth.
Flashlight and extra batteries.
Sleeping bag or blanket, pillow. If you have a small tent, you may want to bring it for more private and quiet sleeping time.
What is a “sagger"?
A sagger is a volunteer at a SAG (Support and Gear) station.
Is there an age requirement for saggers?
Yes. Saggers must be at least 18 years old.
Is there a place for my kids to play while I volunteer?
No. For their safety and the safety of the riders, please do not bring anyone under age 18 (except 16 and 17 year olds who are riding) to the event.
Can I raise money as a sagger?
Certainly. Since the focus of the Agony is on the riders, we don’t have any formal fundraising efforts in place for saggers. You are welcome, though, to raise funds on your own.
What percent of the donations actually goes to CEM?
We do not use an outside fundraising organization, so 100% goes to CEM. We spend about 10-12% on the cost of the event (permits, food, gear, gas, etc.).
Do I have to work for the entire 24 hours?
No. We do ask most folks to work for all but 6 hours. If this is too much for you, please let us know how much you can do. We still want your help!
Is there a place to sleep?
Yes. Mattresses and blankets/sleeping bags will be provided at all three SAG stations. Riders will have first priority, but there is usually enough for everyone. You may want to bring your own sleeping bag just to be sure. At Loyalton the beds are in classrooms in the school, at Vinton they are in the large meeting room of the Grange Hall, and at Beckwourth they are in tents. You may also sleep in your vehicle or your own tent at any SAG station.
Can I bring my RV?
There is limited room for RVs. Please let us know if you wish to bring yours. If you are helping at Beckwourth, we may ask to use your RV as part of our SAG set up.
Is food provided?
Yes. A few items will be for riders only, but there will be plenty of food for all. There will be a variety of fresh fruit, sandwiches made to order (turkey, ham, cheese, PB&J), soups, chips, and cookies. In addition there may be pancakes, eggs, waffles, biscuits and gravy, and other varied items. Food will be provided at the pre-ride meal, throughout the ride, and at the post-ride meal.
Is there any provision for people with food allergies/sensitivities?
There will be some gluten-free food available. Let us know what specific issues you have and we will try to be accommodating. Despite our best efforts, we cannot guarantee that cross-contamination will not occur; therefore it may be a good idea to have some of your own food.
I can’t stand for long periods of time. Is there a job for me?
Most jobs require a fair amount of standing and walking, but there are a limited number of more sedentary jobs available. Please let us know your limitations.
I’ve never done anything like this before. Can I still help?
Absolutely. We will teach you everything you need to know.
Are there particular skills needed?
Most tasks require no special skills. We do, however, need medical people, bike mechanics, and cooks.
What is a transport sagger?
A sagger is a volunteer at a SAG (Support and Gear) station. A transport sagger moves rider gear and other items (such as ice and water) from one station to another.
Is there an age requirement for transport saggers?
Yes. Transport saggers must be at least 21 years old.
Can my child ride with me in my vehicle?
No. For their safety and the safety of the riders, please do not bring anyone under age 18 (except 16 and 17 year olds who are riding) to the event.
What is a motorcycle rover?
Motorcycle rovers ride their motorcycles between SAG (Support and Gear) stations checking on the bicycle riders.
Is there an age requirement for motorcycle rovers?
Yes. Motorcycle rovers must be at least 25 years old.