2018 Guess the Route Contest Predictions

Its time to put in what our guesses are for the “Guess the Route” contest. Since this is not a RAGRBRAI ending in a 0 like the 40th, I think they’ll stick with the northern-central-southern route rotation making this year a central route. I’m working on mine. I think this year we’ll be enjoying some of the Iowa’s slightly larger cities. Starting in Council Bluffs, going through Ames and ending in Dubuque. Let’s start putting out our full route predictions we’ll actually enter the contest with!

117 Replies

CyclingCyclone, October 27, 2017 at 8:34 am

I have RAGBRAI OCD, and I came up with this list a few weeks after this year’s ride.
Onawa (last 2004), Ida Grove(2006), Audubon(2006), Johnston(1974 aka Camp Dodge), Montezuma (new), Vinton (1978), Dyersville(2007), Bellevue(2007).


Tim Tysver, October 27, 2017 at 10:01 am

Onawa, Denison, Jefferson, Ames, Tama/Toledo, Cedar Rapids, Maquoketa, Clinton.


Mike Howe, October 27, 2017 at 12:41 pm

Mine is similar to Tim Tsyver’s but with a couple different towns in the east half of the route.

Onawa, Denison, Jefferson, Ames, Grinnell, Cedar Rapids, Maquoketa, Clinton


Ken Reed, October 27, 2017 at 1:29 pm

Early on, I think we all have similar thoughts:
Missouri Valley
Cedar Rapids


dubois35, October 27, 2017 at 6:00 pm

Thanks for the post – I need this as the cold dark days set in!

Council Bluffs


Bob Amlie, October 28, 2017 at 11:51 am

This is not a guess; this is some inside information that I got from an unreliable source. It is subject to change, between now and January. The overnight towns will be: Starting point– Onawa; then Winterset, Jefferson, Ankeny, Grinnell, Vinton, Manchester, and finally, on the way to Dubuque– your tired bodies can reprise the trip up Potter Hill! So, buy some cold weather cycling clothes, so you can getting in even better shape during the winter. I know I will.


jelly0317, October 28, 2017 at 3:13 pm

Onawa to Winterset: a 150+ mile first day!


Bob Amlie, October 28, 2017 at 4:47 pm

Yes, Jelly–150 miler through those loess hills! That will thin the herd, and result in shorter lines at Kybos, etc. But, maybe overnighting in Audubon, instead, would make for a kinder, gentler first day.


mootsman, October 28, 2017 at 5:19 pm

After several years of fairly small start and end towns, I think we are due for some larger towns especially on the ends. I drove west from the week long parking lot out of Lansing last year and the jam was over 5 miles long. I’ve entered the contest the last 2 years and have exactly 0 overnight towns to my credit though.

Council Bluffs
Guthrie Center
Cedar Rapids


Terri Calderone, October 28, 2017 at 10:52 pm

It looks to me that the eyebrows are shaped like an eagle with its wings spread. And the grey shadow across the right side of the head is a wing (sideways). Ok, reading into things is my OCD. A first guess for the ride: Le Mars Storm Lake Eagle Grove Iowa Falls..no sure…Dubuque.


T. Gap Woo, October 29, 2017 at 8:54 pm

This is a cut-and-paste from the earlier thread.

I’ve dusted off the ever-unreliable crystal ball again and obtained a partial route, based on the eagle logo.

We are riding through Philadelphia!

No that’s not right. Let me check again.

We are due for a central route, as others have suggested. 2015 was a northern-to-central route. 2017 was strictly a northern route and 2016 was strictly a southern route. 2018 will be a central-to-southern route.

The west-to-east axis of the eagle’s wings represent the central I-80 corridor and the eagle’s tail feathers represent the southernmost point of the ride.

The crystal indicates that the western end will be at Missouri Valley and the eastern end will be at Clinton. As a ferroequinologist in my younger days, I’d love to start in a railroad town like MV. As an oenologist in my older years, I’d love to visit the Wide River Winery in Clinton.

The eagle is an American symbol of great import. What native Iowan better symbolizes the spirit of America than that iconic Hollywood legend Marion Michael Morrison, whom we all know and love as John “The Duke” Wayne? Therefore, I concur with the crystal’s selection of Winterset as an overnight town.

As for the remaining towns, the crystal has gone dark.

See you along the I-O-Way in 2018.


Ken Reed, October 30, 2017 at 3:21 pm

I know a place we WON’T be going: http://www.1630kcjj.com/Sheriff-wants-RAGBRAI-to-pay-if-it-passes-through-/23161967


mootsman, November 10, 2017 at 7:17 am

I think the guess-the-route contest opens usually with registration 5 days from now. I enter just once, all in on the route I mentioned already. After 2 years of nearly all small overnight towns I think we’re in for some of Iowa’s larger (pop 10,000+) small towns. Especially the end town after last year’s traffic jams.


mootsman, November 14, 2017 at 8:46 am

Considering the Eagle symbol and one of the eagle spotting reports from the link below, an over night on my list might be correct, Monticello. I included it only as an overnight between Cedar Rapids and Dubuque but this report says 90 eagles were spotted there over a 5 hour period.


I do like the idea that the Eagle might mean getting to the river a day early and riding along it for the last day. There are lots of Eagles along the Mississippi also.


jwsknk, November 14, 2017 at 10:02 am

Going with Mo Valley-Audubon-Perry-Ames-Marshalltown (have a toast to Sop-n-Wet Timmy)-Cedar Rapides area-Maquoketa-Clinton via Sabula.


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