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Is it too early to prognosticate the 2018 route?

I don’t think it’s too early. Evidently, the city of Davenport doesn’t either:

62 Replies

jwsknk, September 7, 2017 at 1:17 pm

or maybe keep the last day short like a lot did this year by ending at Harpers Ferry. We hung out there quite awhile. They had a lot going on the main street. I think we had a 1:00 meetup there to dip. then 3:00 in Lansing to start bus/truck loading so we could leave around 4. I think it was around 6 when we got to Waterloo to eat and that took an hour then about 10 or 10:30 in West Des Moines. 11:30 back in Ames. Last time in Ft Madison we arranged truck and bus parking with a bar not to far from the dip site and had a couple of hours between dip and loading, I like it when it works out that way. and since they had food there no need to stop on the way home. And they knew at least 100+ would be there from about 2-4.


gbtrektn, September 8, 2017 at 7:44 am

Lets trek a diagonal.. Sergeant Bluff to Burlington.


T. Gap Woo, September 10, 2017 at 11:27 am

It may be too soon to end in Davenport (last was in 2015) again. If Dubuque County enacted the “event fee” that they proposed several years ago, DMR may not choose Dubuque. If the route follows I-80, then LeClaire would be a good choice for an end town.

Now watch DMR pick a route that starts in Hawarden and runs diagonally to Keokuk!

Regardless of the route, I’ll see you along the I-O-Way in 2018.


KenH, September 11, 2017 at 7:40 am

I fully support a diagonal route!

Not that my support counts for anything….

Yesterday I rode the Harmon Hundred a nice century (and shorter) ride put on by the Wheeling Wheelmen in northern Illinois. Well, the Wheelmen are a club in northern Illinois, all but about a mile of the ride is actually in rural SE Wisconsin. It was a gorgeous day and I think that RAGBRAI has taught me the secret of doing a century. I’ve bonked rather severely but managed to finish my previous two non-RAGBRAI centuries. But I have done five at RAGBRAI without any particular trouble. Oh, hills and heat and headwinds can make them long slogs but I never doubted my ability to finish one and always had a little fight left in me when I was done.

For me the secret seems to be something you do quite naturally at RAGBRAI.


So I packed a nice lunch from Jimmy Johns, got a big breakfast with pancakes at McDonalds, and filled my water bottles with sweet tea so that I could cram in all the calories I could during the day. I know you can’t absorb them all during the ride, I wanted to make sure the pipeline was full however. The typical bike club rest stop snacks are fine. I partook of those too. They just aren’t enough for me however. It was the best century I’ve done outside of RAGBRAI.

My Garmin on the other hand locked up on me at 85 miles. I think I have done five centuries since I bought it and it has now lost the ride data for two of them. I may be able to get it going again. I let the battery run dry overnight and it is now on charge and seems to be sane again. I’m guessing I will get little if anything off it from yesterday’s ride. If it will work again when it is recharged I will probably continue to use it but I will never buy another Garmin!

Ok, I feel better now, resume your prognostications!


mclousing, September 11, 2017 at 8:30 am

Ken, What Garmin do you have, I had that happen once on one of my older units. Although, call garmin support, they have some of the best customer support of any company I have ever called.


T. Gap Woo, September 12, 2017 at 3:20 pm

Clinton? Home of the Wide River Winery. Great wines and a nice party place to boot.

LeClaire? Wide River Winery has a retail store there, with an outside terrace under the shade.

Mrs Woo and I would be happy with either one.

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


Papa T, September 18, 2017 at 10:41 am

so howcome the western (start) town doesn’t have to be on the Missouri river, but the end town ABSOLUTELY MUST???


Amanda, September 18, 2017 at 12:43 pm

West side doesn’t have as many towns on the river. Plus the west side doesn’t have a lot of established dip sites.Not everyone dips at the beginning but most dip at the end. :)


jake d, September 18, 2017 at 8:43 pm

Besides Council Bluffs and Sioux City/Sergeant Bluff, I don’t know of
any other towns we have started in that actually border the Big Muddy.
I could be wrong if there city limits extended far enough.
Either way, the majority of starting towns do not sit on the river.

What most people don’t realize is that John Karras made up the whole
tradition of dipping your tires in an article about SAGBRAI, the second
ride. In his own words, ” that was pure balderdash”. It didn’t matter
people embraced it, and a tradition was born.
At the start of the ride I dip if it is convenient. At the end I Always
dip to celebrate.


Ken Reed, September 19, 2017 at 9:30 am

Hawarden is on the Missouri but hasn’t been a start town since 1998. I think it may be too small of a start town for RAGBRAI anymore. Onawa and Missouri Valley are way overdue. I’d be surprised if we start anywhere else than those two towns.


KenH, September 19, 2017 at 10:29 am

The dedication to the Mississippi dip at the end and the disdain for the Missouri/Big Sioux dip at the beginning among the route planners is a bit curious. If dipping on the western border is unimportant then so is dipping on the eastern border. I realize that suitable towns on the western border are in short supply compared to the abundance found on the eastern border but it is still possible to do a dip on the west, even when the start town is well inland like Orange City for example, who did a fine job for us.

All you have to do is to route the ride to the border during the first day. That could easily have been done this year. The RAGBRAI planners just don’t care enough about the dip at the start to do that. But they are not evil people. If the lack of a western border dip bothers you, let them know. They could be cajoled into including one if enough of us state our desire for one.

On an earlier side topic, my Garmin is an Edge 500. Yeah, it is old and obsolete by now but it was on the market for a fair bit of time and software does not break or wear out. Data loss on this unit was a well known problem and Garmin had plenty of time to fix it, but was either unable to do so or didn’t care enough to do so. So next time I buy a fancy bike computer I will give some other company the opportunity to write decent software for me … and we all know how that goes!


Ken Reed, September 19, 2017 at 11:32 am

To be honest with you, I haven’t dipped my back tires since 2010 in Sioux City an I haven’t dipped the front since 2013 in D-Port. It’s a nice little “tradition” but a little overrated.


Ed Kanitra, September 19, 2017 at 2:02 pm

None of the towns border the “Big Muddy”. the Big Muddy is in Illinois. It joins the Mississippi River south of Murphysboro.. Just saying.


jake d, September 20, 2017 at 6:01 pm

I have a cold and can’t ride, and nothing better to do. So, to clarify
a few points, the Big Muddy is officially in Illinois, however it is
also a common nickname referring to the Missouri River. Hawarden does
border a river, but it’s the Big Sioux. I told you I was bored.


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