We sent Hershal Walker out to Iowa for the annual RAGBAI ride (RAGBAI = Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa). His best friend Logan tagged along to handle the bike pedaling duties as Hershal sat back and enjoyed the ride.
Travel Log [ Expand All ]
Today we began our journey from East Moline to Sioux center for the start of RAGBRAI, the Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. I was sent out from our office in Austin on a mission to accompany Logan, the gentle human who feeds me and will on occasion take me to fun bike events. He sometimes finds himself in over his head, so I was asked to keep a close eye on him, and document the events of RAGBRAI for this very first Field Trip entry.
Sioux Center to Cherokee, 55 Miles
The first day started significantly earlier than I thought. The overwhelming sound of zippers proved too difficult to sleep through even tucked soundly under the feet of the sleeping bag. I needed to make sure that Logan had the tent and gear packed up and in the truck by 8 am each morning. One of the benefits of being a registered rider for the event is that they carry your gear in a truck. So you fit all of your camping needs in a duffle bag along with kibble and beef jerky treats and they will carry it to the next camping town where you pick it up and set up camp.
Cherokee to Lake View 63 Miles
Today started out early with the shuffling of tents and the soothing zipper alarm clock that would become the theme song for me getting tossed out of the tent while things are packed up and loaded onto the semi with everyone else’s gear. Today’s ride will end at a lake, I know I am excited and it seems like Logan is looking forward to a relaxing swim after today’s 63 miles.
Lakeview to Webster City 81.2 Miles
Today started early. No alarm clock needed as Logan shoved me out the door at about 5 am. Yesterday’s headwind had made a lot of riders rethink their morning. We packed in a rush and jumped on the bike and hit the road before the sun came up.
Webster City to Marshalltown 77 Miles
Today was long and straight. There was a lot of time to just sit back and stare at the bikes that seemed to pass on both sides of us all day long. Some of the bikes were pretty wild race machines with aero bars and bladed carbon wheels. Wildly overdone for this type of ride in my opinion, but who am I to judge? I didn’t pedal one time the whole trip.
Marshalltown to Cedar Rapids 85 Miles
Good thing we were prepared for last night’s storm because things were well saturated when Logan threw me out of the tent shortly before 6 am. The rain seemed to cool the ground a bit as the morning started a little later than usual. Forgetting his Fairdale Kit on top of the tent seemed to make it hard to put on, shamed further by changing in the middle of the campsite. A risky move made possible by not tripping.
Cedar Rapids to Anamosa 43 Miles
Today started off wonderfully, the cool air seemed to hang through the first fifteen miles. Staying so close to the winding river kept the first stretch of the day’s brief 43 miles considerably more relaxing than expected. We passed a few interesting information booths from local groups passing out information on various human things. Ending corporate personhood table topped my list of things that gave me hope on the ride.
Anamosa To Clinton 70 Miles
The final morning was uncharacteristically quiet. The humans partied harder than usual last night, with most talking about how relaxed and cool the next day’s ride would be. Our campsite packed up quickly as both of us were eager to get the ride started. I sat at the bottom of the ramp into the truck while Logan loaded our gear for the last time. We rolled our rig through camp making sure to say good morning to the people who we saw regularly. Hearing Logan give the rundown of my breed, age, name and the usual info every fifteen seconds for seven days gave me the idea that there were quite a number of people who recognized me. It’s hard to tell the humans apart when they all are wearing such funny colored spandex, but I always appreciated the kind words.