The Great Iowa Fall Ride registration is open!


Has there been any decision made or announcement about mask wearing on or off the bike for RAGBRAI this summer? There have been comments made in other threads but I don’t see anything official on the website. Thanks for the help.

5 Replies

NYC Highwheeler, April 19, 2021 at 2:02 pm

From the FAQ section:
4. What other measures are you implementing to ensure the health and safety of your riders?

Though we will continue to defer to current state guidelines regarding COVID-19 mitigation and we expect the further relaxing of rules & guidelines regarding various safety measures, as of this date RAGBRAI expects to implement the following set of protocols for the safe & responsible execution of the event in July.

Online pre-event health screening will be required of all participants.
Daily health screening will be required of all staff, vendors, and volunteers.
Participants, staff, vendors, and volunteers will be required to wear a mask when social distancing is not possible.
Hand sanitizer must be available at all vendor locations, in SAG wagons, and will be provided to towns for entertainment venues & volunteer use.
Appropriate COVID-19 mitigation signage provided by RAGBRAI will be posted at the entrance to all areas on the ride expected to have large numbers of participants or spectators.
All venues & towns will be encouraged to recommend outdoor dining to their restaurants & bars.
Indoor-hosted housing will not be supported by RAGBRAI.

RAGBRAI reserves the right to add or remove any of the above mitigation methods based on current State of Iowa recommendations and industry best practices.
My thoughts:
I realize this isn’t an exact answer to your question, but “…required to wear a mask when social distancing is not possible.” indicates that masks will be required when you can’t stay 6 feet away from others.

With that said, almost the entire event takes place in public places and on public roads. Enforcement of mask and similar rules are next to impossible. Are they really going to be clipping wrist bands in the middle of the event? Would that even make a difference? How will the crowds react if police or RAGBRAI officials try to take enforcement action against those not in compliance?

Also, the information about riding behind someone and getting “misted” by the breath of the rider in front of you are… well, let’s just say something you probably don’t want to think about too much.

I think this all points to a need for each person to get themself vaccinated before the ride, and accept that there will be a certain percentage (20-50%???) who will not follow any rules of guidelines. I wish I had more optimistic insights, but we’ve had a year of evidence of how people behave during a pandemic, and I don’t think it is going to magically improve in the next 100 days.

This reply was modified 1 year, 5 months ago by NYC Highwheeler.


mootsman, April 19, 2021 at 2:42 pm

NYChw, There was recent study that showed near zero risk of spread at outdoor events. Specifically there were looking at those mass gatherings in near and in water. Not sure if RAGBRAI officials will read that study but people should feel safe outdoors. Not sure where you got the idea that one rider can “mist” another when riding in front of them outdoors. I have never seen any one, CDC or otherwise, claim that is a risk. Now going into bars?? And forget about a high percentage of people on RAGBRAI being vaccinated. There would be no way to tell. And RAGBRAI has not announced any enforcement procedures.


Mike Cordes, April 19, 2021 at 4:48 pm

USA cycling has posted some guidelines for group rides. These include some “RAGBRAI impossible” recommendations like avoiding the draft of another rider (masked) by 20 ft.; staying side by side in small groups; and social distancing when off the bike. Any normal RAGBRAI has normal choke points in the passthrough towns to encourage sales – has RAGBRAI provided guidance there, for shaded areas at Mr. Porkchop, at the Iowa beer tent, Beekman’s, Farm Boys, etc. At best, the approach will be roll of the dice with fingers crossed that we’ll have herd immunity by late July.


Uncle Kraig, April 19, 2021 at 8:48 pm

RAGBRAI is a two step process this year…..

Step 1 – Get vaccinated
Step 2 – Enjoy the ride

See you in July


Randy Kurt, April 19, 2021 at 8:57 pm

Thanks for the input. Just trying to nail down plans/logistics for the ride. See you out there.


You must be logged in to reply to this topic.






Gatherings & Meetings

Lost and Found


Clubs, Teams & Charters

Friends of RAGBRAI