Tuesday, August 02, 2016

RAGBRAI - Day 1 - Glenwood to Shenandoah (49.7 miles, 2614 feet of climb)


I forgot to add the following bits:

  • We saw Ghost Busters in Shenandoah.  Ming was pretty sure we could skip it because he had promised to go with his family, but it was the only thing starting.  His family went without him during the ride. It all worked out.
  • I was on the shuttle bus with a drive who told a few of us his life story about being born in the town 63 years earlier.  He left for a woman.  Those women can make you do whatever they want.  You can't do a thing about it.
  • We were told to meet the shuttle at the tennis courts.  The shuttle didn't stop at the tennis courts, so we sprinted to a nearby stop with a man and his wife - the guy was very cranky about the directions.  We met him a few other times during the ride.  He was just sort of cranky.  At one point on a tractor ride later during RAGBRAI someone was surprised at the turn radius of the tractor shuttle.  He noted, "That's what tractors do."
  • The spaghetti dinner below as at the Knights of Columbus.  The highlight...the ice cold iced tea - all you could drink.  Later in RAGBRAI Ming would come to judge other dinners by their lack of all you could drink beverages.
  • I got lost.  I got up in the middle of the night and wandered the quarter mile or more to the bathroom down by the stadium.  When I came back, I couldn't find our tents.  I wandered from tree to tree looking for one with a lot of dead branches with no luck.  Then I wandered from (same) tree to (same) tree looking for my bike.  After a few rotations, I finally found it.  I was probably walking around the same tents multiple times at 2:00 a.m. for almost 20 minutes.

Day 1 - the heat isn't exactly gone, but it's not as bad as 3:00 a.m. on Day 0.

Still..everyone is very careful to ensure they have enough water.

It was HOT in Tabor.  But we were functional.  So I took this sweet, sweet photo of me on a stand in front of a cutout of Iowa. This is the very first spot Adam accused Ming of eating watermelon just so he could get a boner.  That lasted the whole week.

Bikes.  There were a lot of bikes.

Breakfast in Malvern.  I didn't eat pancakes all week as I have in the past.  We mixed it up a bit.  Although I had more pancakes than Ming or Adam.  I tend to meet nice people sitting down for some flapjacks.

All this tech and I can still get my finger in the picture.  Adam's in this photo.

Cyclists! In motion!

We were generally up by 4:40 and on the road by 5:15 a.m.  EARLY AS FUCK.  I didn't even have lights because I'm used to getting up early, but leaving with first light.  So wherever we were, it was relatively sparse.  I think Ming may have missed out on a bit of RAGBRAI by not rolling along with a group of 1000.

In Shenandoah, it sprinkled on and off.  But never enough to have to find shelter.

Here's the other half of that rainbow.  But wait for it...it gets better.........

IT'S A MOTHERFUCKIGN DOUBLE RAINBOW!  AND MING HAS ONLY ONE ARM AND YET HE FINISHED RAGBRAI!  Amazing.  You can barely see him, but Tun is in this picture.  Ming met him in the bleachers and we saw him every day for the rest of the ride.  Nice guy although fuck all faster than we are on his loaner $8500 carbon fiber bike (he's only faster because of that expensive bike - I'm sure on my bike, or Ming's bike, he's actually slower than we are).

At one point a bunch of guys hauled this tent to the middle of the field as a joke.  The volunteer in the stands told us the groundskeeper would NOT be amused.

TENTS!  This is a tents-centric post.  There were a lot of tents.  Look for the one with broken poles.  That's Ming's tent.  Adam could have helped him at any time with his pole repair kit.  He wisely chose to refrain until the end of RAGBRAI.

We had a spaghetti dinner in Shenandoah.  Delicious.  The "pick 2" homemade dessert bar was excellent.

Shenandoah is the home of the Everly Brothers. (All I Have to do is Dream and Cathy's Clown).  It wasn't an exciting historical site other than the fact that their house was MICROSCOPIC.  One room.  And not a big room.

This is it, including a jukebox they probably didn't have.

I said this was a tents-centric post.  Ming's tent serving as a dryer.  My tent is in the foreground.

Adam looks like he's going to puke.  He got a new tent for this ride.  No pole issues like last time.




It was one of the few days it rained.  But we were already in the end town, so we were caught under the Casey's canopy for a while, but not much more.  There are people smoking next to the gas dispensers in this photo.    Seriously.

The live version...

We spent quite a bit of time in the Shenandoah museum which had a bit of A/C and lots of displays.  Adam thought this lady was creepy.

They had a sense of humor.  This mastodon skull is ready to ride.  I had some ice cream across the street before taking my second tour of the museum.

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