Monday, August 4, 2008
RAGBRAI - Day 7 Tipton to LeClaire (52.7 miles, 1,835 feet of climb)
Saturday, July 26th - Our last day! It was a short day but we were out on the road at our usual time; 5:45 am! This was our last chance to try to RAGBRAI traditional foods; the Pork Chop Guy and Beecham's homemade ice cream churned with antique stationary engines. We came across both at the same farm at 8:30 am. So it was a second breakfast for Ashley and I of a pork chop and ice cream which we shared. Very tasty!
Then we took pictures for a couple in the corn and they returned the favor for us....very corny pictures indeed.
Hard to believe how little wind there was on RAGBRAI but we did have some on this last day - and it was a perfect tail wind! Combined with a mostly gradual down hill ride to the Mississippi River Valley - I believe it was the easiest 55 mile ride of my life. The only scary part was how steep the road was directly down to the river! But we made it all 475 miles safely. What a feeling of accomplishment to dip your front tire into the Mighty Mississippi - it was awesome! Feel like I can cross an item off the "bucket list" now! And I'm so fortunate that my newly-wed-daughter would take a week to do this with her Mom. Thank you Ashley!
The rest of morning and early afternoon was spent meeting up with the Siouxland Cyclists, packing up the bikes to put on the truck, cleaning up with one last solar shower, getting something to eat, and then on the charter bus home with the Sioux City group. After watcing 3 incredibly silly movies: Idiocracy, Office Space and the Big Libowski, we arrived in Sioux City around 10:00pm.
All in all, I'm really glad to have ridden in a full week of RAGBRAI, and experience every cyclist should try at least once. Would I do it again? I believe I would if the opportunity came up to do it with a group of people I knew. But for now I'll be content with the more low-key Tour deKota ride in my own home state. Although I might like to try the Midwest Scenic Tour with a friend next year!