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RAGBRAI Route Inspection Pre-Ride Day 4 – Iowa Falls to Waterloo

  • 10 June, 2021
  • Andrea Parrott

Thanks Iowa Falls for such a fun time, but now it’s time to come sail away. We had about a dozen riders gathered this morning to ride from Iowa Falls to Waterloo.

Good morning from the Estes Park Bandshell

Today’s ride was 67.9 miles with approximately 1,619 feet of climb. On our way from Iowa Falls to Waterloo, we visited Ackley, Austinville, Aplington, Parkersburg (Meeting Town), New Hartford, and Janesville (first visit). Click this text for a map of the fourth day of RAGBRAI XLVIII.

Photos from our trip are below – but be sure to scroll down for details on the day’s ride and our overnight town, Waterloo!

We also thought Ackley was Most Awesome! Believe us… stop here for a photo op

Time for a shady stop in Austinville!

Try the tea room in Aplington, or just take a break in the garden

We had a delicious lunch in Parkersburg at Our Neighborhood Grill – 10/10 would recommend

The City of Gardens didn’t disappoint in New Hartford. Check out their greenery or stop by one of their many vendors!

We hung out with this “bike gang” aka baseball team from Janesville!

Always time to stop at Singlespeed in Waterloo!

Wednesday on RAGBRAI XLVIII is PeopleForBikes Day, and we will also have our Mile of Smiles!

PeopleForBikes Day
PeopleForBikes’ mission is to get more people on bikes more often – and to make bike rides better for everyone. We unite our 1.4 million supporters, bike businesses and Ride Spot retailer members to build connected bike networks across the country. Learn more at and

Miles of Smiles
The final mile into Waterloo will leave you smiling from ear to ear! It’s a celebration of what makes you smile and the unique and beautiful smiles that make up this year’s ride.

We’ll be Rollin’ into Mootown in Ackley! Follow them on Facebook to keep up with their RAGBRAI plans – just click this text!

We can’t wait to visit New Hartford, the City of Gardens! Follow them on Facebook to keep up with their RAGBRAI plans – just click this text! 

New Hartford also has an official website, click this text to find more information about what they will look like and offer when RAGBRAI rolls through on July 28, 2021!

This will be our first visit to Janesville! Follow them on Facebook to keep up with their RAGBRAI plans – just click this text! 

Click here for photos from today’s ride by Brian Powers of The Des Moines Register! 

It was our best day of riding yet, although by the end it was “like riding into a hairdryer – and not on the cool setting.” We stopped for coffee in Iowa Falls at the Coffee Attic and then made tracks to Ackley. They’re going to have a unique barnyard and cow theme – believe us when we say you’re going to want to stop and take a photo. We took a short break in Austinville and then we headed to Aplington for protein smoothies and a visit to the Tea House. In Parkersburg we learned about the devastating tornado that hit the area. They also experienced tragic loss when their football coach Ed Thomas was murdered. One of the sayings that stuck with the locals was “give away your playbook,” and we love that enduring spirit of service. We moved on to the City of Gardens, New Hartford. They’ll have lots of vendors and entertainment for you, or just enjoy their garden. We’ll visit Janesvile for the first time, where a local baseball team “joined our bike gang” for a bit. Always a treat to get to know a community for the first time!

For a description of our visits to each pass-through town, check out today’s episode of the JustGoBike podcast! Featuring Kathy “Murphology” Murphy and Andrea “ParrotTalk” Parrott, and today a guest appearance by Isaac Novak and Nick Aguilera from PeopleForBikes! You can find it wherever you like to listen to podcasts, or follow this link:


Dearly beloved… are you ready for the Waterloo Experience?!

There is SO MUCH to do in Waterloo. Their entertainment will be The Purple Experience – a Prince Tribute Band! It’s a wild understatement to say we’re excited for this concert. While you’re waiting for the concert to start, here are a few other options: Grout Museum of History and Science, the Dan Gable International Wrestling Institute & Museum and the Sullivan Brothers Iowa Veterans Museum – all near the concert area downtown. The Cedar Valley also boasts an outstanding recreational trail system. Over 80 miles of hard-surfaced trails configured in a series of loops offer users a variety of experiences from peaceful wooded areas along lakes and streams to area attractions. Want to cool off? Lost Island Water Park. This 74-acre recreation park is Iowa’s premier water park with water slides, miniature golf, go-karts and a water coaster that opens this summer. Or try the Cedar Valley Arboretum and Botanic Gardens. The Arboretum offer visitors a wonderful array of native Iowa plants, trees, and flowers. The six gardens on this lovely 75-acre site showcase the incredible natural variety of the region.

Click this text for more information on Waterloo’s RAGBRAI Plans!

Click this text for fun facts about Waterloo!

Follow on Facebook:
Instagram: @experiencewaterloo

We recorded a preview of our journey from Le Mars to Sac City on the JustGoBike Podcast! Listen here:

Be sure to tune in each day for Route Inspection updates:
Social Media * Here on * JustGoBike Podcast
ft. Kathy Murphy aka Murphology and ParrotTalk!
We’ll release a JustGoBike Podcast every day! Including fun facts and RAGBRAI plans from the pass through towns on RAGBRAI XLVIII!

You can also follow the pre-ride adventure and learn interesting tidbits about the route by following us on social media:
Instagram: @RAGBRAI 
Murphology Podcast on Instagram: @MurphologyPodcast
JustGoBike Podcast:

Have a great day and we will check in with you tomorrow! – Andrea

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