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How does this RAGBRAI compare

I heard talk that this RAGBRAI was one of the tougher rides. This was only my second so I wouldn’t know the difference except that last year was much easier.
Based on the distance, hills, heat and headwinds how do you think this one compared to others.

7 Replies

Clive Rider, August 5, 2011 at 8:34 am

I’ve done the last six.  I had just over 4000 miles in before this year’s, which is way more pre-RAGBRAI miles than I’ve had on any of the others.  I didn’t feel like the route was all that challenging.  However, the heat variable made it more difficult.

I guess we’ve been lucky the last several years with the heat indices.

I agree that last year was way easier, and the weather was mild as well.


getbent, August 5, 2011 at 8:38 am

I agree that the heat was the compounding factor. 2009  was a hilly year, but it was also a really cool year. I had a moment this year where I wished to be as cold as I was last year. Terrain was easy, but weather was hard.


pmac, August 5, 2011 at 8:44 am

Since this was my first Ragbrai, I can’t compare it to previous rides, but according to ISU, this year had the second highest heat index.  The hills are only an issue for the short time you’re going up them.  The heat is always there, on or off the bike.


ehlent, August 5, 2011 at 9:03 am

The only difficult thing this year was the heat and humidity.    The few hills we had were not bad at all.  

I prefer routes that have few hills.   Last year was too flat.   This year, the route was good but it was very hot.  The best we can do is hope and pray that next year will be at least as hilly as this year and a little cooler.


Michrider !!!, August 5, 2011 at 10:35 am

This year was difficult for me due to the heat and Lefty (my knee).  I had a cortisone shot about 10 days before the ride, that stuff works like magic!!!!  I tried to spin up the hills.   The knee was mostly pain free but weak.  I started to feel stronger later in the week.  I’ll be working on Lefty and get  ready for next year!


ts, August 5, 2011 at 12:06 pm

This was my fourth year.  The route seemed about average: harder than last year, easier than 2009, and about the same as 2008.  The heat made it a little tougher, but not that much.  The main issue with the heat for me is that it made it much harder to sleep, even with a tent fan.  My tent doesn’t have great ventilation, which is fine for where I live, but it wasn’t a good RAGBRAI tent this year.


knotbury, August 5, 2011 at 2:25 pm

The heat made this ride a hard one for the Brits. We left London in temperatures of 53f and as soon as it doubled we started to ride our bikes. We can replicate hills and put in distance but the other two H’s are outside of or control. That said the Hooligans had a great time, rode every mile and a few more and met many fine folks. Ragbrai is more than a bike ride it is an experience and an adventure – we had a blast! Thanks


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