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Porta-Pottie ratio

RAGBRAI recommends 1 per 100 campers in the campground. That is entirely inadeqate as was demonstrated in Leon, Centerville and Washington for certain. The ratio is completely unrealistic if the units are not serviced during the night or early in the AM. Case in point was Leon where the town provided 2 for our group of 150. One unit was overflowing by 5:30 PM that day and the other overflowed by 6:30 AM. It left a lot of our riders with unpleasant and uncomfortable choices.

Centerville was almost as bad as there were only 4 units for hundreds of campers. There was not a scrap of paper left by 5:30 AM and the collection bowls were filling up. Don’t know what the people did by 7:00 AM if the units were not serviced by then.

After 2 nights of this, in Washington, our group of 150 was paired with at least 160 other riders and there were 3 units provided. We contracted for our own 3 units so that our riders did not have to endure another night/morning of the same conditions as noted above. The problem leaves a bad impression about the overnight towns that I assume they are not trying to leave and it turns some riders off to RAGBRAI itself. A far more realistic ratio is 1 per 50 in the campgrounds were people are spending 14 to 18 hours. Servicing the units might help with overflows and lack of paper, but still results in unmanageable lines in the morning.

7 Replies

navychief01, August 8, 2016 at 2:32 pm

We stayed at the high school in Leon, and it seemed like they did a decent job with the Porta-Potties. We were on the side where the baggage trucks were.

Last year I thought the situation was stellar. The outhouses were very clean and pretty plentiful. My only complaint then was that in Ft Dodge they picked them all up (the the high school) before people were packed up.


“Bicycle Bill”, August 8, 2016 at 4:45 pm

File this away as a reminder for next year — pick up a couple of little pocket-paks of facial tissues; there’s usually 12 to 15 tissues in a pack.  If you check the dollar stores (Family Dollar; Dollar Tree; Everything’s $1.00; those kinds of places) you can usually find them being sold six to eight packs to a bundle for a measly buck.

Buy some, put a pack in a zip-lock baggie, and make sure you carry it with you in your jersey pocket or bike bag.  It could make a world of difference, whether it’s because you find that the KYBO is out of paper or if you have to take a detour into a cornfield to answer nature’s call.



Michrider !!!, August 9, 2016 at 6:25 am

I always consider any RAGBRAI KYBO to be a paper free zone!!!


Sandaltan ., August 10, 2016 at 2:34 pm

A couple sheets of paper towels in a zip lock bag in my jersey pocket has been SOP with us for years.



jwsknk, August 10, 2016 at 3:19 pm

Glenwood, 5-6 for 120 people. Next night 2 for about twice that many.


stuckinmizzou, August 10, 2016 at 3:45 pm

In Glenwood, our host and their neighbor behind them (our bus was parked in the alley) had 2 rented kybos available for our team and the team staying at the neighbor’s. They had done it previously when we stayed with them in 2011. They do it right!


Sandaltan ., August 10, 2016 at 9:53 pm

Yes, stuckinmizzou, Mike and Bubba planned very well for us in Glenwood. We hope to see you again in that alley five or six years from now.



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