Tell Us ...
In July, we asked you to tell us about your favorite group ride.
Ron Willeman — Shenandoah, Iowa
I first started riding RAGBRAI (the Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) in 1987, and the ride rekindled my childhood love for biking. I've ridden on 23 rides since, and RAGBRAI has always been a great time and a wonderful reason to get into riding shape. The ride can be challenging on the hilly southern routes, which like this year has nearly the same amount of vertical climbing as Ride the Rockies. It is a reconnection with the same old faces and new ones, and it has to be one of the friendliest weeks on two wheels.
RAGBRAI also got me involved in the development of the Wabash Trace Nature Trail, for which I've been a board member, bridge decker and now help maintain the trimming and mowing of it's 62.3 miles. The shady Wabash Trace rail-trail is now my favorite biking route, and it is so fantastic to see more restaurants expanding in the little towns along the way. The Wabash Warm-Up on National Trails Day in June has become a special day with food, beverages and live music on numerous bridges. In August, a Meteor Ride when the Perseid shower occurs makes a lively weekend. In December we even have a Winter Solstice Ride to celebrate the sun's return to the north.
Wayne Dumont — Somers, N.Y.
This year will be the second time I do the Tour de Putnam, which is a tour in Putnam County, about 50 or 60 miles north of New York City. I did the 15-mile ride in 2009, and this year I plan to do 30 miles. My younger brother, who lives in Texas, will be doing the "Hotter than Hell Race" in Wichita Falls, Texas, later this summer for the second time. He did 25 miles last year, and this year he's training to do the whole 100 miles—in Texas heat!
John Hardy — Massachusetts
My favorite group unfortunately no longer exists, as I knew it. It is still around in a different incarnation, but when I rode it was the Tanqueray AIDS rides, specifically Boston- New York/Northeast AIDS Ride. It was very challenging, but there was great camaraderie and spirit. Even with some adverse circumstances, it was a great ride to do.