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Riding alone

I am riding day 1 and 2 of RAGBRAI this year (my first….can’t wait!!) I have lived in Colorado for almost 30 years but I was born and raised in Atlantic so sleeping at “home” the first night and then will join Day 2 as the ride goes directly by our family farm just east of town. A friend that was hoping to ride with me this year is unable to. No worries, life happens. I am not concerned at all about riding by myself but everyone I tell can’t believe I am riding these two days by myself. I know I’ll have 15,000 plus RAGBRAI friends but should I look for a group?

10 Replies

RDaryl Daryl, July 4, 2019 at 6:22 pm

You are only alone if you want to be.
Strike up conversation with other riders and you might just develop some life-long friendships.


BillSpriggs, July 4, 2019 at 8:38 pm

This will be my 5th RAGBRAI three of which I’ve ridden by myself. Your never by yourself on RAGBRAI, lots of people to keep you company. I wasn’t born in Iowa but my parents were native Iowan’s and I still have family in Creston. I’ll look for you on the road.


cmparsley, July 4, 2019 at 8:41 pm

My first RAGBRAI I rode alone as well. I actually loaded everything on my bike and rode solo from where I lived at the time to the overnight town. Then I rode the route the next day.

It was scary rolling down my driveway knowing that I had 80 miles to ride followed by a 72 mile day and it was all on me to get it done. This experience fundamentally changed me. Waking up the next morning and seeing the sheer number of bicycles was mind boggling. Here I was, alone in a sea of people all riding the same direction to the same place. Eventually I got to talking to people around me and I knew I was going to need to experience more.

The next year, I rode every single mile. I dipped my back wheel in the Missouri River and the front wheel in the Mississippi River. I remember the last climb and seeing the river and the sea of people lined up to dip their tires. I was moved to tears.

For the last 11 years, I have ridden every single mile. Now I have an RV that my wife drives. We have 12 friends that go with us every year. RAGBRAI will be whatever you make it to be. That is the true beauty of this event.


Lisa Weaver, July 4, 2019 at 8:49 pm

thanks for your comments…..have a great ride!!


Lisa Weaver, July 4, 2019 at 8:49 pm

Thanks for your comments….have a great ride!!


Ian Thomson, July 5, 2019 at 10:00 am

I joined a group for my first ride last year. Saw them every night and a couple times some days but not all. The group was a big help for dinner, mostly for hauling the gear every night. Every day was a new adventure and everyone so much fun. You’ll have no problems either way. If you see Team Taco come say hi!


nstill, July 5, 2019 at 1:11 pm

This will be my 7th RAGBRAI. I’ve been with the same charter and “group” for all of them but I tend to ride alone. I love it! It’s how I train, too. Occasionally, I see people from my charter (it’s smaller and the same people come back year after year), but I don’t make an effort to ride with them. It’s fine. And if you decide you want companionship, there always are people to talk to you. Go to one of the official RAGBRAI stands, and get a license plate. It’s a great conversation starter.

I didn’t see this addressed, but, as a woman, the only times I’ve felt nervous or unsafe on RAGBRAI have been due to weather. Otherwise, I’ve never worried about being a woman alone.


Lisa Weaver, July 5, 2019 at 1:19 pm

Thanks so much for your comments. I love MY TIME on the bike as well. I’ll check out the license plates, too. Happy riding!


Susan Zvacek, July 6, 2019 at 5:20 pm

Hi there, fellow native-Iowan-now-Coloradan! My step-daughter and I will be first time riders this year, so if you see someone in a Pteam Pterodactyl jersey, say hi!


Brandi Bresson, July 8, 2019 at 9:24 pm

I don’t ride with a group at all. This is my 2nd year. Just my daughter (now 11 years old) and I. And she usually leaves me in her dust. We rode 2 days last year. Three, if not 5, this year.
You won’t be alone alone!


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