2016 Ragbrai - bikes, beer and PIE!

Discussion in 'Sports' started by k7, Sep 9, 2015.

  1. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    We've been talking about getting a Advrider group together to ride in the 2016 Ragbrai bicycle event. This thread will help provide information on the event and make suggestions on tried and true tactics to really enjoy the ride.

    Ragbrai: The Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. The Register is Iowa's largest newspaper and the history behind the event is as colorful as the participants are today. This is and has been one of the premier cross-state events in the US for years. Imagine riding daily with 7,000 - 10,000 of your closest friends every day for a week. The economic boosts for many of these small communities is huge and trust me, they're thrilled to see the cyclists.

    Ragbrai typically averages about 67 miles a day although you can count on at least one or two long days. You literally have all day to ride and you may set your own schedule. Iowa IS NOT flat - depending on the route, you can count on rollers - up and down, up and down. While the days aren't difficult, you may want to train just a little to prepare yourself.

    This thread will help you understand when and how to register and perhaps, engage a charter company to add a tiny touch of convenience to the ride itself. More on these topics later.

    RAGBRAI XLIV: July 24-30, 2016 Here is the main information page for Ragbrai itself.

    Register: Registration open on Nov 15th. More to follow but we'll likely register as a group.

    Charter: See the post here. You're on your own here. Register w/ Bubba and pay him directly.

    Costs & budget considerations: See the post here for a starting point. YMMV

    Participants: Next post down
    #1
  2. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    Here's the preliminary list of those who have expressed interest. I'll attempt to keep this updated.

    Chisenhallw - interested
    Dranrab Luap -Registered with Ragbrai, registration with Bubba Pending.
    Kbasa - maybe
    Mr Head - maybe?

    K7 - Tentative yes, Bubba
    YakSpout - interested
    Ridge - Tentative yes

    chippertheripper & wife - Tentative yes, Bubba
    PRW - interested
    YakSpout & wife, maybe FIL +1
    Dirt Phoenix - maybe
    D Laup med school friend - maybe
    Patsymack - interested
    wannaklr - interested
    Brek81 - maybe depending on the route (word is that 2016 will be flat & downhill)
    :lol3
    #2
    wvridgerider likes this.
  3. Dranrab Luap

    Dranrab Luap E-Tarded

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    39,146
    Location:
    Louisissippi Coast
    Let's make your Original Post a living document Gerry. By that I mean let's add things like this as they are suggested.

    Bubbas Pampered Pedalars can handle all your logistical needs.

    http://www.bubbaspamperedpedalers.com/
    #3
  4. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    To charter or not to charter. That is the question.

    There are several ways to ride Ragbrai.

    One, you may go self-sufficient and carry your own gear. That means, as suggested, you carry your tent, your sleeping bag, your dirty laundry - everything. This is for the seriously hard-core tourers. No cost for this option.

    Another option is to use the trucks on Ragbria to sluff some gear from town-to-town. Imagine a 747 opening a hatch door and dumping everything on the ground in one large pile. It's not quite like that but you'll have to dig out your bags and get them back to your site. That might not be fun after a long, hot Iowa day. Not sure of the cost - I'll see if they charge for the luggage service.

    A third option is to have someone support us with a driver and a bus/truck. We can locate private homes that will allow us to camp in their yard and often, they'll allow use of their showers. Getting services at each location for each day might be a challenge. There would be a cost at each home/location and at a minimum, a cost to register the vehicle even if someone volunteers their time and effort.

    Personally, I think the best option is to use a charter. I've engaged Bubba's Pampered Pedalers before and while he's admittedly not inexpensive at $695 he and his crew really does a great job taking care of everyone. Here's what he includes:
    • Motor coach service to the RAGBRAI start town from the ending town
    • Bike transportation provided by a professional moving service to the RAGBRAI starting location from the ending town. Each bicycle wrapped individually with a moving blanket
    • Reserved camping locations
    • Tent and air mattress service – we supply you with a quality Kelty tent and air mattress AND we put up them up and take them down every day, even in the rain.
    • Bubba designed T-Shirt
    • Our very own Porta-Johns located at our campsites
    • Also included for FREE are the following. Yes you pay ONE Fee, no add ons with Bubba

        • Bag delivery to your tent
        • The PAMPER Zone canopies provide shade for sharing your daily RAGBRAI pictures, stories and experiences or to take a nap
        • Camp chair
        • Cold drinks (non-alcoholic)
        • Snacks
        • Our very own Porta-Johns right at our campsites
        • Shower Towels and wash cloths daily; Showers are not always on-site but close
        • Electronic charging (Cell Phones—iPads—Lap Tops–Garmins–Etc)
        • Bicycle work-station (work stand, floor pumps, shop rags)
        • Morning Coffee. Oh yea!
        • Massage Therapist (Extra Fee)

    The choice is yours. I know that several expressed interest in using the charter so please let me know your intentions and I'll make a note of that. You'll need to register with Bubba via his webpage and I've send him a heads-up on our behalf. Bubba will sell out quickly so you'll need to make that decision fairly early on in your planning and budgeting process. Again, it's not a requirement. We'll set up a semi-formal plan to meet each morning and from there, you can ride with the group... or not. We'll all have different capabilities and the advantage of using Bubba is that we'll have a place to hang out after-hours that provides drinks and snacks. Bubba doesn't mind if you want to throw in a six pack in one of his many coolers either.

    EDIT: Bubba responded - as long as you register in Nov, you'll be fine. You'll need to register and pay Bubba yourself. Bubba is ex-cop, has been doing these tours for years and is trustworthy.
    #4
  5. Dranrab Luap

    Dranrab Luap E-Tarded

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    39,146
    Location:
    Louisissippi Coast
    The first day of RAGBRAI 2015 had over 3500 feet of climbing. No, Iowa is not flat!
    #5
  6. Dranrab Luap

    Dranrab Luap E-Tarded

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    39,146
    Location:
    Louisissippi Coast
    We are thinking the same things. You can introduce Bubbas in the OP with a reference to post #XXX for additional details. Or I can shut the hell up and let you work your wonders.
    #6
  7. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    Working on it boss. :y0!
    #7
  8. 2whlrcr

    2whlrcr gooligan

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2005
    Oddometer:
    14,175
    Location:
    Dubuque, Iowa
    I'd like to do RAGBRAI, but not sure if I can travel that far to do it.
    #8
    Mr Head, k7 and Ridge like this.
  9. YakSpout

    YakSpout Obstacle Allusion

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2003
    Oddometer:
    8,405
    Location:
    all by myself
    I've got YakWife about 95% on board to join me and I think my father-in-law and another riding buddy are going to start checking their schedules.
    #9
  10. chippertheripper

    chippertheripper motorcycle junkie Supporter

    Joined:
    May 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    9,911
    Location:
    s.e. mass
    Subscr...errr, watched. I'm pretty sure I'm in, and pretty sure I'll also go the bubbas route.
    #10
  11. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    Great! Looking forward to meeting everyone!
    #11
  12. Dranrab Luap

    Dranrab Luap E-Tarded

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    39,146
    Location:
    Louisissippi Coast
    Member Dirt Phoenix (has been offline for a while) is interested. I'll let her take it from here with her status. I have a riding buddy here in NOLA who is also interested. Her Med school schedule will dictate whether she can make it or not. Is Mr. Head going to take the lead on getting us a team spot?
    #12
  13. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    I added them to the list as "maybe".


    Dunno - whoever does that has to pay for everyone in the group and distribute the registration packs. From the Ragbrai site:

    The computer lottery can select individuals or groups of more than one person, so that people who wish to participate together are not split up. In order to be considered in the lottery as a group, the members of a group must register as a group, and appoint one person to be the GROUP CONTACT. That person accepting is responsible for sending one payment to cover all costs of the group, registering vehicles if desired, taking delivery of the group’s Participant Packet in June, and distributing the participants’ credentials and merchandise.
    I'll leave it to him and if he doesn't want that role, I'm happy to do it. I've got access to Fed Ex rates which will make distributing the packs safe and secure....and cheaper than the USPS.
    #13
  14. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    The costs

    Ragbrai:

    You may enter as a rider or a non-rider. Anyone not riding a bicycle (a support vehicle driver, family members, or friends riding in a vehicle) must enter as a non-rider. A week-long rider fee is $160; a week-long non-rider fee is $35. A vehicle permit is $40. Throw in $5 to distribute the packages if we register as a group. That'll cover Fed Ex or USPS.

    From their most recent survey, 70% spend $25-$50 per day on RAGBRAI so figure $175 - $350 for food and incidentals.​

    Bubba:
    For a Bubba, he ain't cheap. $695 gets you a decent size tent, set-up & taken down each day. For a bit more, you can get one large enough for most of us to stand up in. I used the smaller tent and it was more than sufficient.
    So, you're looking at just over $1,000 on the low end plus transportation back and forth. There's also a hotel the night before and the night after the event ends unless you drive in that day. Not too cheap/not too expensive.

    One other thing - Bubba's boys are typically high school and college kids. In addition to what Bubba pays them, it's fairly customary to tip them at the end. I threw in the equivalent just over $5 a day. IMHO, they earned it. Your call to participate or not!
    #14
  15. Jurgen

    Jurgen CysHeteroPatriarch

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    50,697
    Location:
    Cofveve, Nambia
    This is awesome and cool. :thumb
    #15
  16. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    Why don't you join the fun ?
    #16
  17. patsymack

    patsymack Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2004
    Oddometer:
    409
    Location:
    Central PA
    Researching the logistics and cost mark me as very interested.
    Pat
    #17
  18. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    24,958
    Location:
    Aridzona
    Pat - done. We hope you can make it.
    #18
  19. wannaklr

    wannaklr Long timer

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Oddometer:
    8,537
    Location:
    Back In Iowa. Quad Cities to be exactish..
    Hey,

    I'm in Davenport, IA. We were the terminus for RAGBRAI in 2015. May have to look into doing this. This out of shape 51 year old may need some training and a bike, definitely a bike.
    #19
  20. Dranrab Luap

    Dranrab Luap E-Tarded

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    39,146
    Location:
    Louisissippi Coast
    If you ride a KLR, might I suggest a Huffy?
    #20