Average Speed in Past RAGBRAIs??

Ok Veterans. What were your average speeds from previous RAGBRAIs?? I know the route changes every year so it will be different. I’m just looking for some speeds of the average/above average riders. No offense meant to anyone.

27 Replies

“Bicycle Bill”, June 12, 2016 at 11:16 am

“beer-flavored recovery drinks”.

I like that, and I’m going to have to remember to use that sometime.



trknight, June 12, 2016 at 2:20 pm

Over the past 7 RAGBRAI’s my average speed has always been a little over 14mph for the week which is for when the bike is moving, to include the time & distance walking with the bike in pass through towns (not to include time away from it). I pass more than pass me. I do very little pace line riding, maybe a total of 20 miles for the week. I’m guessing the actual on bike average is similar to speed on training rides, if anything perhaps a touch slower considering all the riders you need to navigate around.


Nico ZZZ, June 12, 2016 at 2:59 pm

I trained at 17mph average in suburbs with stop signs, traffic, etc.
When I got to Iowa/Ragbrai – just throw that out the window. You spend a lot of your time walking your bike. Wow, more than anyone could explain to me. Not complaining, it is as good as everything in Ragbrai. Magical. Enjoy standing in line for the KYBO, it is all part of Ragbrai!
So to say your “average” – you have to say “in the saddle.” If you do 15mph “in the saddle” you will past many more than pass you.


SFC JKL 2, June 12, 2016 at 9:38 pm

Depending on what the day brings, we’ll spend 11-12 hours to get to the end town with 4-5 hours of saddle time. One of the nice advantages of being on a team is not having to worry about getting to the next overnight/land grab to find a place to pitch your tent.


Sandaltan ., June 12, 2016 at 9:56 pm

“Beer flavored recovery drinks” and “Ragbrai Magical”….too excellent phrases worth working into a conversation or for photo captions. Thank you guys.



HeyYou, June 13, 2016 at 4:05 pm

You will probably ride faster your first year than you do in additional years, you’ll learn that it’s a lot more fun to stop and see things and who cares what time you arrive at the overnight town. The first year I hammered everyday, cursed the towns for their slowness etc etc etc. Luckily the next year I rode, I suddenly “got it” it is meandering and pastoral you are not attempting to win anything, you are enjoying the ride, the pass through towns, the event. The first year every evening it was all I could do to put up my tent, find food, shower, grumble and go to sleep. The following year I was in town having fun every night walking with the crowds and seeing everything I could. Relax, enjoy, you’ll get there. :)


LawnchairMan, June 18, 2016 at 7:18 pm

A short while ago I mentioned that I expect Ragbrai speeds to be faster than training rides. My logic was that with fewer stop lights or signs in the country I will stay at cruising speed longer than in-town training. I usually get to the pass through towns before they get congested, so I don’t have to stop. Even if I don’t, my Garmin is set not to calculate speeds less than three miles per hour.

On the other hand, I try to train harder at home so I can take it easy when I get to Iowa. So, with fewer stops, but taking it easier, perhaps I will end up with similar speeds.


Jacqui, June 19, 2016 at 11:28 pm

During my training in Colorado I’ve been averaging 13mph.


RDaryl Daryl, June 20, 2016 at 5:55 pm

Last week I logged 56 miles before 9 AM. When on RAGBRAI, our team focuses on the experience rather than on speed. Our standing record is RAGBRAI 26 when we took 14 hours to travel 46 miles as we traveled from Eldora to Cedar Falls. What a memorable fun day !


Sunflower, June 21, 2016 at 4:01 pm

Pulling my son in a double-wide Chariot was an eye opener in 2007- its like dragging tractor tires and it made me approach the ride totally differently.

I would say the ride “flows” at 16 mph give or take depending on the winds.

I’ve come to think that, unless there are weather or entertainment factors involved, that getting in before 5 means you didn’t pace yourself properly. Most of the fun is out on the road in one way or another. Its light until almost 9 and 4 hours is plenty of time to get situated each night.

I fell into conversation with a fellow supervising his daughters’ breakfast stand and my son and I ended up spending most of the day at his house shooting his collection of guns.

My son measures each RAGBRAI according to what sort of interesting things we can find along the way- wise. He still considers last year a bust because we didn’t come back with enough stories.


Houdini, June 22, 2016 at 4:49 pm

The person who shows up last and has the most good stories wins.


Sandaltan ., June 22, 2016 at 7:11 pm

Daryl and friends has truly mastered the ride, 46 miles in 14 hours is a remarkable accomplishment. A tip of the helmet today.



Viewing 12 replies - 16 through 27 (of 27 total)

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