This year Day 7

Outstanding year for weather, but the last day was probably the prettiest route I have ridden yet. Just beautiful! The hills were a challenge but it was a good relief from all the early flat stages and it is fun to climb. We really need to do a diagonal route starting from the SW corner and ending in the NE corner. Hilly start, flat middle, and hilly finish. That would be the crème de la crème. Cant wait for next year!

Cheers.

5 Replies

Bachetta rider, July 31, 2017 at 11:00 am

10-4!! The hills are pretty and fun to climb. It is good to be challenged.

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Sunflower, July 31, 2017 at 3:47 pm

Don’t get too excited about a “flat middle.” The rollers between Altoona and Grinnell are every bit as hard as anything else in the state.

This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Sunflower.

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KenH, August 1, 2017 at 8:46 am

Yeah, I think this was the best day 7 I’ve seen since I started doing this ride in 2010 (XL)! The hills were tough for us flatlanders, by TdF standards they were Cat 4’s, but that made the day special! My friend and I did the ride in a motorhome and having no driver we just split the driving between us. That works better with three or more rider/drivers but this year it was our only option and it still worked quite well. I made the first day a century by taking the gravel loop twice while he drove the whole day and then the second day I drove and he did the century. The meeting town the second day was on the Karras loop so it was easy for me to take the loop with him. He actually did the gravel loop with me, riding upstream back to the meeting town at its end. After that we each drove half days.

But the last day we both wanted to tackle those hills. So we drove to Lansing very early and then rode back to the route on Lansing Harper Road and Elon Road to the point where the route turned towards Waterville off of Elon. That gave us one more Cat 4 hill to climb! A fair number of people were taking that route the other way to get to Lansing without doing those hills, the bonus Cat 4 climb for us was all downhill for them. And that was a very scenic route too, it probably should have been designated as an official optional route for those who didn’t feel up to the hills on the main route. But for me it was the challenge of those hills and the scenic beauty they created that made this day 7 one to remember for all time!

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jelly0317, August 1, 2017 at 6:47 pm

“The rollers between Altoona and Grinnell are every bit as hard as anything else in the state” might be the funniest thing I’ve read all year.

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Jack in VA, August 1, 2017 at 10:06 pm

I grew up in Iowa (and Nebraska) and have been doing RAGBRAI since ’99 -this is the FIRST time I’ve ever been in this corner of the state, and it was magnificent. The roads and hills reminded me so much of those in Virginia / Maryland / West Virginia. I would have never thought there was terrain like that in Iowa. The uphills were a bit too much for me on a single speed (I had to walk several of them) but the downhills ROCKED!

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