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Rookie from Illinois

Hi All…..
2011 will be my first experience with RAGBRAI. I’m an experienced rider looking for a team that enjoys riding, drinking and laughing.

28 Replies

Ragbrai Nation, February 5, 2011 at 10:24 am

glstrak said: Hi All…..2011 will be my first experience with RAGBRAI. I’m an experienced rider looking for a team that enjoys riding, drinking and laughing.

You might check with your local bike shops for leads on charters going from your area. Contact them immediately as they will be finalizing their rosters with the ragbrai commission, SOON. We’ll be looking for ya  :) 


Ragbrai Nation, February 5, 2011 at 10:29 am

glstrak said: Hi All…..2011 will be my first experience with RAGBRAI. I’m an experienced rider looking for a team that enjoys riding, drinking and laughing.
I see now you’re from IL. (duh, me) Check with http://www.theshuttleguy.com they are out of Dodgeville WI but they are huge into ragbrai. Their ragbrai charters leave, bright and early from Chicago, Saturday, JUL 23rd.


glstrak, February 5, 2011 at 11:09 am

Yes… A flatlander…. from Rockford. Do you know anything about Pork Belly’s?


Michrider !!!, February 5, 2011 at 11:17 am

glstrak said: Yes… A flatlander…. from Rockford. Do you know anything about Pork Belly’s?

My favorite charter.  Check out their website.  I’ll see you in Iowa!



glstrak, February 5, 2011 at 11:36 am

I have Michrider. Have you used them?


“Bicycle Bill”, February 5, 2011 at 12:42 pm


Doesn’t anybody join an honest-to-God bicycle club and ride with them any more?

Rockford IL is, or at least was, home to the Blackhawk Bike and Ski Club.  Back in the 1980s they were *H-U-G-E*, hosting several invitational rides annually (I remember rides on Memorial Day and 4th of July) as well as a comprehensive summer-long schedule of one-day and weekend rides primarily for the members.  Check with them, if they’re still around.

And if they’re not, that’s another pet peeve about which I could sound off on for a couple hours at least.  I became the avid rider I did because I was fortunate enough to live in a city with an active bicycle club — so active, in fact, that it eventually split into *TWO* clubs (which I think was the beginning of the end, but I digress).  It was from riding with the club on the Saturday rides around the area, or the occasional overnight we would take that I learned what to carry and what could be left behind.  It was because of the free exchange of information from other, experienced riders that were willing to help a tyro that I learned some of the other tricks of the sport (how to launch a snot-rocket without spraying the guy behind you, for example, or how to ride one-handed so you could still hold your line while drinking from your water bottle).  And it was from these rides in close proximity to these other members that I developed my road sense and raised my comfort level while riding in groups.

So I can’t understand why when something like RAGBRAI comes up, everybody wants to get a group of strangers together to go — but if one had located and supported their local club year-round instead of just the last week of July, one just might find a lot of friends, not total strangers, who are of a like mind.  Cyber-cycling on the board here is OK, stationary training (on rollers, a trainer, or even a Spinning class) is better, but there is no substitute for a real ride on a genuine bike on an actual road in a group of living, breathing people.



Michrider !!!, February 5, 2011 at 12:44 pm

glstrak said: I have Michrider. Have you used them?

Yes, I have traveled with them on 3 previous RAGBRAI’s and plan to do so again this year.  You won’t be disappointed with PBV!


glstrak, February 7, 2011 at 7:20 am

The information they sent looks Impressive Michrider.


glstrak, February 7, 2011 at 7:22 am

As for yor Bicycle Bill…… Do you have a little built up anger? BBC still has the Memorial Day ride. I’ve ridden in it several times.


Tony, February 7, 2011 at 1:14 pm

glstrk You have several official charter near by. Dodgeville, Quad Cities and Muscatine. I’m with QCBC. We still have openings for charter service out of Davenport. Check http://www.qcbc.org.


Sandaltan ., February 7, 2011 at 6:24 pm

Beebs is pasionate about all things cycling but never angry.



kicks9, February 8, 2011 at 2:30 pm

Only bad thing about PBV is they were pretty far from everything last year.  Other than that, they were awesome, power charging station, free showers, free water for waterbottles and other uses, free beer (kind of since it is included in the price) 2 or 3 provided meals.  They also provided entertainment in camp 3 nights last year.  Good if you dont ever want to leave camp, but if you want to see everything else you might miss some stuff in one place or the other.  The Elders were a good show.  The nice part is they are big, so you wont have any trouble finding someone to talk to or ride with, the bad thing about them is they are big.  Your bags are in there somewhere just keep looking.  Did he say early or middle?  Was that yesterday or today?  If you have the money and are willing to spend it they will setup a tent for you too.  Jump on this service early though as they sell out of that service fast.

Kicks ( I rode with PBV last year, I would have this year if I didnt have a buddy with an RV)


Michrider !!!, February 8, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Yeah Kicks they do an awesome job!  I don’t mind the bigness, just means more people to drink and talk with! I’m with them again this year and I’m doing the tent service.  I won’t have to look for my bags, the magic gnomes will put them inside my tent!!!! 


nomormoto, February 8, 2011 at 6:08 pm

BB, I would like to find a bicycle club in Northwest Indiana. I know of a few guys that ride, but nothing like the QCBC. Wish I did.
Any help?


“Bicycle Bill”, February 9, 2011 at 2:21 am

Nomormoto, try this site — https://members.bikeleague.org/members_online/members/findit.asp.   Make your selections, set your area(s), and see what comes up.  If you can’t find anything in your area of NW Indiana, check SW Michigan or NE Illinois.

Just remember that this will draw from a list of clubs that are affiliated with the League of American Bicyclists, so it will quite likely be incomplete.  I’d include a search for the bike shops as well, and then use them as a jumping-off point to see what clubs might be in the towns they serve.



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