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We did RAGBRAI 2022

Old 08-02-22, 07:47 AM
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We did RAGBRAI 2022

Howdy. We completed RAGBRAI last Sunday. It was the first time for us and we had a great time. I would say it exceeded my expectations. As my friend aptly stated: woodstock on two wheels. :-) Here are a few photos.










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Old 08-02-22, 08:48 AM
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That sunrise picture is fantastic! Glad the trip went well for you. How did you get your bike to the event? We really want to try schlepping our tandem up there next year
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Old 08-02-22, 09:28 AM
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I drove with the bike.
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Old 08-02-22, 10:25 AM
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Love this! Thanks for posting....
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Old 08-02-22, 10:47 AM
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Looks like folks had fun. I used to think I wanted to do RAGBRAI, then I decided I liked "real touring" better than a rolling party. These days I am starting to think maybe it would be worth doing it at least once. I see that they stopped the lottery approah and are back to the first come first served ticket approach. Maybe I'll see if I can get a spot next year. I have never done any sort of supported tour let alone a mass party one like RAGBRAI so it would be a new experience for sure.
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Old 08-02-22, 11:08 AM
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I've done 12 or so RAGBRAIs now, and this year was easily the nicest weather I've experienced that week. Never too hot, just a sprinkle or two of rain... the tailwind made the century day pure pleasure. It will be very hard to top this year!
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Old 08-02-22, 02:08 PM
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It does sound like a lot of participants contracted covid based on what I read on their forums. It is enough to make me hesitant unless the covid situation is better next year. I might be less concerned if my wife were not imonocompromised and we both wre not old geezers. Hopefully targeted boosters will be available in tha Fall and will help get things better under control. Likely not before I'd have to commit to purchasing a spot on the ride though.
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Old 08-02-22, 02:21 PM
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yeah. covid love crowds and 20,000 riders mingling is no way to avoid it :-)
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Old 08-02-22, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Looks like folks had fun. I used to think I wanted to do RAGBRAI, then I decided I liked "real rouring" better than a rolling party.
The crowd size and the party aspect has always made me think the event is not for me. I got a bit fed up on my 4th Cycle Oregon, and that was only about 2,000 people. And having ridden maybe 4 days in Iowa in late July while crossing the country, I would not want to subject myself to the possibility of what we experienced. We spent an afternoon/night in Dyersville. Not one of our group of 13 went to the field. It was over 100 degrees and very humid.

With that said, everyone I know who has done it liked it a lot.
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Old 08-02-22, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
The crowd size and the party aspect has always made me think the event is not for me. I got a bit fed up on my 4th Cycle Oregon, and that was only about 2,000 people. And having ridden maybe 4 days in Iowa in late July while crossing the country, I would not want to subject myself to the possibility of what we experienced. We spent an afternoon/night in Dyersville. Not one of our group of 13 went to the field. It was over 100 degrees and very humid.

With that said, everyone I know who has done it liked it a lot.
It is pretty much the opposite of what I usually look for in a tour, but it might be fun to experience it once.
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Old 08-03-22, 08:53 PM
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It's not my cup of tea, too many riders and too many lines if you don't contract with an outfitter but I have a good friend who has done it with her brother now 33 times (he's only done it 32 times, ha)
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Old 08-04-22, 05:24 AM
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Originally Posted by robow View Post
It's not my cup of tea, too many riders and too many lines if you don't contract with an outfitter
Care to elaborate? What lines does using an outfitter avoid? Does avoiding lines mean staying in different locations, eating in a different venue, and so on or just having them schlep your gear? I am not entirely clear on what services are provided by the tour organizers vs the outfitters.

Edit:
Also if lines are an issue, how dependent on when you ride is that (early riser vs late starter, etc.).

Someone mentioned 20,000 riders! Most of the pictures in this thread have only a few people to a few dozen at most. Is that because of time of day or because they are spread over a large area. The pictures look very uncrowded. Is that deceptive? Or is it possible to somewhat avoid the crunch at least some of the time.
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Old 08-04-22, 06:13 AM
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Fun photos, glad you had a fun time.
it sounds very much the same as the Velo Quebec week long trip called "Le Grand Tour" that my wife and I did a bunch of times. It's usually about 1500-2000 people and also has a fun atmosphere like this.

So, did the sucker in the dunk chair get dunked or not? Wink wink
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Old 08-04-22, 07:02 AM
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We heard similar sentiments before we went: Oh you MUST go with an outfitter. ... or us this was not true. We opted for to go without an outfitter and everything was fine.




Originally Posted by robow View Post
It's not my cup of tea, too many riders and too many lines if you don't contract with an outfitter but I have a good friend who has done it with her brother now 33 times (he's only done it 32 times, ha)
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Old 08-04-22, 07:05 AM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
Fun photos, glad you had a fun time.
it sounds very much the same as the Velo Quebec week long trip called "Le Grand Tour" that my wife and I did a bunch of times. It's usually about 1500-2000 people and also has a fun atmosphere like this.

So, did the sucker in the dunk chair get dunked or not? Wink wink
Yeah the sucker was ME :-) I volunteered haha

here is proof:

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Old 08-04-22, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Care to elaborate? What lines does using an outfitter avoid? Does avoiding lines mean staying in different locations, eating in a different venue, and so on or just having them schlep your gear? I am not entirely clear on what services are provided by the tour organizers vs the outfitters.

the mechanics of the ride are this:

1. You put all your camping stuff in one bag that is under 50 lbs (yes they weigh it)
2. Every morning, you wake up, pack your stuff into the bag, carry the bag to a truck
3. The truck drives to your destination
4. You reach the destination, pick up your bag, pitch your tent, take a shower, explore the town you're in, sleep, wake up and pack your bag again
5. repeat for 7 days

The trick to success is:
1. Don't pack Your bag too heavy
2. Find the best possible camp site that is closest to the trucks.
3. Get on the road early. 5:30-6AM to avoid lines to the truck
4. Finish early to find best possible campsite and to avoid long lines for a shower

Benefits without outfitter:
1. Save Money
2. The organizers get the central campsite closest to showers and the pool or high school showers
3. The town shuttle bus is guaranteed to have a stop at the central camping

The best benefit for me was freedom. I could find any campsite anywhere I chose to, I did not have to patronize with the same people in an outfitters group
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Old 08-04-22, 07:36 AM
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(I knew it was you)

ya, Le Grand Tour routine is exactly the same.
Only difference is there are no "outfitters" groups, the only different options for participating are a small number of spots available using small local hotels, and for a bunch of years, a "set up a tent for you" option, so organizers set up a separate batch of tents with numbers on them and folks who find it too much of a hardship to put up and take down a tent just go to their numbered tent when they arrive in that nights "village" set up for each day---usually beside a high school or large park or whatever, large enough to set up a giant kitchen tent, spots for hundreds and hundreds of tents, and all the other infrastructure.
Le Grand Tour has been going for about 30 years now I think.

very good food, thats the big draw, they stress that and I can attest its all quite good, lunches also at the designated lunch spots we stop at.

and a lot of the fun, friendly French Quebecois love of life, joie du vie, attitude from most people.
average age is pretty old geezers like most of us, 40, 50s , average is I think in the 50s.
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Old 08-04-22, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by PedalingWalrus View Post
the mechanics of the ride are this:

1. You put all your camping stuff in one bag that is under 50 lbs (yes they weigh it)
2. Every morning, you wake up, pack your stuff into the bag, carry the bag to a truck
3. The truck drives to your destination
4. You reach the destination, pick up your bag, pitch your tent, take a shower, explore the town you're in, sleep, wake up and pack your bag again
5. repeat for 7 days

The trick to success is:
1. Don't pack Your bag too heavy
2. Find the best possible camp site that is closest to the trucks.
3. Get on the road early. 5:30-6AM to avoid lines to the truck
4. Finish early to find best possible campsite and to avoid long lines for a shower

Benefits without outfitter:
1. Save Money
2. The organizers get the central campsite closest to showers and the pool or high school showers
3. The town shuttle bus is guaranteed to have a stop at the central camping

The best benefit for me was freedom. I could find any campsite anywhere I chose to, I did not have to patronize with the same people in an outfitters group
Ah, great. Thanks. I am an early riser who tends to break camp quickly and hit the road. On bike tours, canoe trips, and other group events I am almost always the first one up and first on the go. So I suspect I'll have no big problem with morning lines.

I am naturally kind of a minimalist even when not trying to pack UL so staying under a 50# limit is a complete non issue. I'd be way under 50# even if there wasn't a limit. I take less than that when heading out on a solo car camping trip on the other coast.

Add to that that I am a cheapskate.

I like options so not being tied to an outfitter sounds good.

So, I'd probably skip the outfitter if I do go unless someone else convinces me of some other added value that I can't do without for the outfitter option.

I am still spooked over covid though. I have some hope for targeted vaccines being more effective and in place in time for the event. The problem is that we likely won't know how effective they are in time for registering for the next ride.
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Old 08-04-22, 08:37 AM
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yeah. if covid is a concern I do not recommend participating in this ride
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Old 08-04-22, 09:41 AM
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Thanks a lot for sharing - what I don't get: Why the official RAGBRAI page is just available via US? I'm from Germany and not allowed to visit it :-(
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Old 08-04-22, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by PedalingWalrus View Post
yeah. if covid is a concern I do not recommend participating in this ride
Yeah, sadly I don't see the covid situation being controlled enough that it would be prudent for me, this coming year. I might consider it I my wife were not on drugs that suppress her immune system and high risk otherwise. I don't have any confidence that covid will cease to be a concern any time soon. An effective targeted or universal vaccine may be possible, but there is no guarantee we will get one any time soon.

Perhaps I'll go at some point. Maybe in a couple years. Maybe never.
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Old 08-04-22, 10:30 AM
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could it be?


anyone else from overseas try hitting ragbrai.com?

Originally Posted by jakez View Post
Thanks a lot for sharing - what I don't get: Why the official RAGBRAI page is just available via US? I'm from Germany and not allowed to visit it :-(
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Old 08-04-22, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by PedalingWalrus View Post
could it be?


anyone else from overseas try hitting ragbrai.com?
Works from the great white north eh
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Old 08-04-22, 01:02 PM
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Well Mr Walrus since it was your first time on RAGBRAI I guess I have you to thank for 7 days with temps in the low 80's and a tailwind every day. Don't think we'll ever see weather that good again. One of the beautiful aspects of RAGBRAI is that everyone can do it the way they like best - from the party teams that roll out at 10:00 to those that leave camp in the dark at 4:00 and everyone in between.
I choose to use a charter that sets a tent up for me, takes it down, and moves my luggage every day. Yes it costs more than the Ragbrai truck but I'm on vacation!
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Old 08-04-22, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by PedalingWalrus View Post
t

The best benefit for me was freedom. I could find any campsite anywhere I chose to, I did not have to patronize with the same people in an outfitters group
Not a minor consideration. At some point Cycle Oregon started offering Tent & Porter Service. For an extra fee, a contractor would supply you with a tent, have it ready for you when you arrived and have your bag waiting there. Thing is, you got assigned the same numbered tent every night, and the tents were pitched really close to each other. I heard more than one horror story from people who were assigned tents next to really loud snorers. Having ridden across the country with a group of 12 others, four of whom were bad snorers, I like the freedom to pick my own sites.

In 2014 I did the Bon Ton Roulet in the Finger Lakes area. Spent two nights at Keuka College. We found out the first night that we had pitched close to a really, really loud snorer. There was no practicable place to move the tent, so the second night the GF and I slept on couches in a dorm common area after watching the night’s TdF coverage.

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