RAGBRAI is the oldest, largest and longest recreation bicycle touring event in the world. This year was one of the shortest with the fewest climbs in RAGBRAI 45 year history. However, the last day we still climbed 3,200 feet over the last 44.8 miles and finished in the small town of Lansin, Iowa. Iowans are incredible and a special thanks to Les Keune who allowed us to park our vehicle at his home in Lansin the week before. We were able to finish our ride, shower, load-up and start our adventure back home without having to take the long 6 hour bus ride back to the start town of Orange City. On our way home we stopped by Sioux Falls (Fred Leoni caught a flight home), Mt Rushmore, Devils Tower, Rawlins (for the most incredible dinner at the Aspen House Restaurant), Dinosaur Park, Dinosaur National Monument, Elko and Lake Pyramid. Team Sonoma began our adventure on July 14th and we returned to Sonoma County on August 2.
On our way to RAGBRAI we traveled through Manzanar (WW II Japanese Internment Camp), Las Vegas, Zion National Park, Bryce National Park, Fort Collins . . . Finally we arrived in Orange City, Iowa and started riding our bicycles on Sunday, July 23 with over 20,000 of our closest bicyclist friends. There were long lines every where; from bathrooms lines to food lines, to large log jams in most of the towns we passed through.
Code Blue Team Sonoma celebrated July 3rd. with a ride up Skaggs Spring Road. About two miles into the climb I remembered why I avoid Skaggs Spring Road. We rode 7 miles up and then turned around. It was a great downhill; almost coasted the whole way to the Dry Creek Store (Healdsburg) where we re-grouped. Thank goodness, there won’t be any hills like that in Iowa (RAGBRAI).
Code Blue Team Sonoma is training for RAGBRAI (The Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa). As part of Satursday’s training we rode our bicycles to the Penngrove Rancho Adobe Firefighters Association Annual Pancake Breakfast. Part of any balance training program includes eating. With fuel in our bellies we rode back to the Town of Windsor and finished the day in Santa Rosa.
Time to get serious about training for RAGBRAI. There are always reasons not to train. I know I can’t wait for Google to mass produce a self-riding bicycle. Even with the strange winter storm yesterday, I need to start training. So maybe after I watch the Warriors and Cavs basketball game. Of course it will be to dark to ride tonight. But the excuses have to end and training must begin. In little over a month, Code Blue Team Sonoma leaves Sonoma County for our bicycle ride across Iowa. It’s time to train, it’s past time. So tomorrow the training will begin. Really, I really will begin training. But that’s tomorrow and now it’s time to sit back on the sofa and watch the Warriors.
The Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI) is an amazing non-competitive week long bicycle adventure across Iowa (July 23 – July 29). It is the largest bike touring event in the world with over 8,500 participating. Code Blue Team Sonoma will be represented with local cyclists: Paula Shimizu, Fred Leoni, Don Keylon, Tom Saylor and Ed Buonaccorsi.
THE MEANING OF COMMUNITY RADIO
Richard Ruge with Skip Jirrels hosts a radio broadcast covering different community interest stories. Richard is part of the West County Homeless Advocates who encourages and inspires others to be informed on community issues and challenges. On May 7th KOWS scheduled a talk show related to the Code Blue Bicycle Event on October 14th and homelessness in Sonoma County.