Bosch was there with ebikes, Selle Anatomica, Bianchi. I saw the same resellers as last year, and the prices didn’t seem out of line with local bike shops (read: not cheap). A woodworking show I have attended for years has rapidly declined….same story as you described…the big names are not coming out anymore. You mentioned Amazon….methinks…[Read more]
@BarryTantlinger – yes, a long last day can be problematic. Our group rides fairly slowly, and even with a very early start we weren’t sure half our team would make their 2pm (!!) bus ride cutoff back to Council Bluffs. We made it work, but a shorter last day would be welcome. My wife and I drove from CT and we only made it as far as Elkhart…[Read more]
YES!!! This is the best post of 2019. You hit the nail on the head…..it’s a miracle it goes as well as it does, and that miracle comes in the form of hundreds or thousands of folks working behind the scenes. I had a blast again this year. Thanks to TJ, everyone in the towns that hosted us, and to all those riders who forgave the mistakes I made…[Read more]
Haha…on the Karras loop I was headed out from the resort after collecting my patch and was being passed by a tandem when a salmon swam by….there was a light-hearted “cheater!” from the tandem that gave us all a chuckle. It’s all good!
I would rather spend my money locally on the ride. It’s the host towns that put up with the hordes and I would like to give back by buying my food and drink from town-associated vendors. But how to know which vendors are “local”?
Don’t get me wrong – I am still going to buy burritos from Jose’s Taco truck because they are world class good, but…[Read more]
I loved the gravel loop. Big climbs and downhills to match. The folks that passed me on a tandem deserve a medal for bravery.
The roads were pretty rough in spots, but nobody promised a velodrome experience.
Howell’s farm was a highlight for me. The snow globe, melon cannon, bubble bath ride, and the goat ladder were unforgettable.
The town of…[Read more]
My watch uses a barometric altimeter and I never get the same elevation numbers twice on identical rides.
I was pretty stressed out leading up to my first RAGBRAI and it turned out fine…. back for my third this year. Take it easy, eat well, stay hydrated and before you know it you’re in Keokuk making plans for RAGBRAI 2020.
Comfort is king.
Gravel bike probably has wider tires – better shock absorption.
Handlebars? Drop bars offer more hand positions to let you use different muscles throughout the day.
Speed is really not the point here. I mean there is nothing wrong with speed, just that you won’t need it.
Roads are generally in good condition. You’ll cross RR…[Read more]
A 14 mph average is fine – that’s right about where I was on my last two RAGBRAIs. You will find plenty of people riding quite a bit slower than that. If you’re concerned about making it to the overnight town on time your best hedge is an early start. That gives you a time cushion to dial in a comfortable pace. The only prize for getting to camp…[Read more]
I’m from New England with 2 RAGBRAIs under my belt. Which means I probably don’t have much to offer as far as Iowa weather advice, but a few clothing items have proven invaluable.
1. A wool pullover hat. Instant warm up, water resistant, small, light.
2. A rain shell. Won’t keep you completely dry but it will keep the wind off you which is the key…[Read more]
Hi! Considering you don’t have to lug it around (much) anything that fits in your luggage is fair game. I have a couple of therma-rest mattresses, but the one I take on RAGBRAI is a “basecamp” model that is wider and thicker than the one I take backpacking. Not quite plush, but plenty comfortable for a week, and it fits in my duffel with the tent.…[Read more]
Third RAGBRAI, first time on an upright bike. The advice to choose comfort over speed is wise. I am riding 38s – hello gravel! I have no trouble keeping pace with my wife on her Trek Pilot with 23s. I’m just hoping I don’t regret leaving the recumbent with the big comfy seat home this year 😁
No answers for you but the fat tire guys were flying on the gravel loop the year I rode it. Road bikes were making good time….I bet you wouldn’t even need to change the air pressure unless the gravel turned out to be exceptionally loose this year.