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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by contango View Post
    An interesting question about permanents or DIY rides, that I came across in another forum.

    If your route has control points where the primary purpose is to gain proof of passage, that control point could be a train station where your proof of passage could be a platform ticket or some such. In theory you could have a route where each control was a station, and each proof of passage was a ticket to the next station with an appropriate timestamp on it.

    It would be interesting to see if such evidence was considered acceptable to show the route had been cycled.
    Seems easier, more useful, and more generally applicable, to have people provide a receipt for a purchase (which might not even be necessary) at a food shop (rather than wasting money on a ticket you won't use and be constrained to follow a rail line).

  2. #27
    Lurking Under a Rock
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    There isn't really any evidence for this. The rules certainly don't do much to prevent cheating.
    Of course, you don't know my experience. The RUSA perm coordinator and any RBA who has jurisdiction over an area where your route passes through need to "approve" your perm route. And helping others, I have run into headwinds. "someone could cut off a block here" or instead they could "cut off 7 miles and go over a mountain pass with 3000 feet of climbing and on a busy 4 lane highway." Perhaps you have no evidence, but it's a poor assumption that no else does either. So now, there are routes that have extra stops. Which brings me back to one of my original points, preventing those who cheat doesn't stop them, it just makes it more of a burden for those of us who like to ride.

  3. #28
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    Seems easier, more useful, and more generally applicable, to have people provide a receipt for a purchase (which might not even be necessary) at a food shop (rather than wasting money on a ticket you won't use and be constrained to follow a rail line).
    Sure, proof of passage can be just about anything. One permanent I recently rode started in an area with numerous shops and the proof of passage was little more than "grab yourself a receipt and head off". Some people get an ATM receipt, some a platform ticket, I bought a big bottle of mineral water to fill my water bottles, others stop for a meal, it doesn't really matter.

    The point of the question wasn't about the usefulness of the rail ticket, more about whether the ride would still be validated if the proof of passage could also be taken as evidence that no part of the route was actually cycled.
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by contango View Post
    The point of the question wasn't about the usefulness of the rail ticket, more about whether the ride would still be validated if the proof of passage could also be taken as evidence that no part of the route was actually cycled.
    It's not clear why this wouldn't be the point. The latter (less important) point is another reason it isn't that good of an idea. Why suggest things that are impractical and not necessary?

    It's easy to cheat (you might need a buddy with a car). The rules (as they stand) don't really do anything to prevent cheating.

    If you were really concerned, you could have people use a tracking device that guaranteed they "rode" the entire course at a "bicycle speed". But even that wouldn't preclude cheating.

  5. #30
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by contango View Post
    An interesting question about permanents or DIY rides, that I came across in another forum.

    If your route has control points where the primary purpose is to gain proof of passage, that control point could be a train station where your proof of passage could be a platform ticket or some such. In theory you could have a route where each control was a station, and each proof of passage was a ticket to the next station with an appropriate timestamp on it.

    It would be interesting to see if such evidence was considered acceptable to show the route had been cycled.

    That seems to be done quite frequently in the UK, where there are trains everywhere. Or posting a postcard, or getting receipts with date and time on them from the grocery store, etc. And yes the evidence would be considered acceptable.

    Actually I like the idea of doing a ride from train station to train station in Europe.




    (and ignore njkayaker, he appears to be going through a cranky phase)

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by ronocnikral View Post
    Of course, you don't know my experience.
    I don't need to know your experience.

    Quote Originally Posted by ronocnikral View Post
    The RUSA perm coordinator and any RBA who has jurisdiction over an area where your route passes through need to "approve" your perm route. And helping others, I have run into headwinds. "someone could cut off a block here" or instead they could "cut off 7 miles and go over a mountain pass with 3000 feet of climbing and on a busy 4 lane highway." Perhaps you have no evidence, but it's a poor assumption that no else does either. So now, there are routes that have extra stops. Which brings me back to one of my original points, preventing those who cheat doesn't stop them,
    So what?

    It's easy to cheat. The rules don't really prevent that.

    You
    haven't provided any evidence that randonneursare generally concerned with "cheaters".

    Quote Originally Posted by ronocnikral View Post
    I think randonneurs get too caught up in "cheating."
    Is this all of them? Most of them?

    I think it's more likely that randonneurs are more "caught up" with tradition and adherence to a few simple rules than being worried about "cheating".

    Quote Originally Posted by ronocnikral View Post
    it just makes it more of a burden for those of us who like to ride.
    ??? No one is stopping you from doing a bicycle ride. It isn't unreasonable to have some standards for "permanents". Once you accept riding a defined route, the "burden" of having to get a few receipts (proof of passage) is pretty minor. Since it seems likely that most LD riders are going to want opportunities to buy food/etc, it makes sense to plan to include food stops on a route anyway.

    Again...

    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    The permanent routes are meant to be training/preparation alternatives to organized brevets. Thus, the idea is that they should be like organized brevets as much as possible.
    The whole organized randonnee stuff is designed to be preparation for a specific event (PBP).
    Last edited by njkayaker; 04-16-13 at 05:20 PM.

  7. #32
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    does anyone doubt that you can cheat at randonneuring if you want to? I think we could just drop the subject of cheating and the world would be a better place

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    That seems to be done quite frequently in the UK, where there are trains everywhere. Or posting a postcard, or getting receipts with date and time on them from the grocery store, etc. And yes the evidence would be considered acceptable.

    Actually I like the idea of doing a ride from train station to train station in Europe.
    It's a cute idea. It would be unfortunate if the route was compromized to accomodate it.

    The "theme" stuff should come after the route and experience.

    Many riders don't really want to stop very long, which, if you want to be courteous to them, then stops should be useful too (I doubt that train stations would generally be useful).

    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    (and ignore njkayaker, he appears to be going through a cranky phase)
    It doesn't seem that helpful/useful to promote cute/gimicky ideas.
    Last edited by njkayaker; 04-16-13 at 05:30 PM.

  9. #34
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    People say that about PBP, but I don't think that's true for very many people any more. Just consider fleches, for example.

    I considered putting a 1/8 mile drag strip as a control on my permanent and making people get time slips for their run

  10. #35
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    It's not clear why this wouldn't be the point. The latter (less important) point is another reason it isn't that good of an idea. Why suggest things that are impractical and not necessary?

    It's easy to cheat (you might need a buddy with a car). The rules (as they stand) don't really do anything to prevent cheating.

    If you were really concerned, you could have people use a tracking device that guaranteed they "rode" the entire course at a "bicycle speed". But even that wouldn't preclude cheating.
    Huh? It's a theoretical construct. If you find it an uninteresting theoretical construct that's fine, but that doesn't answer the question of whether a collection of train tickets, each covering the journey from one control to the next control, would be considered acceptable evidence for cycling the entire route.

    When I ride I validate with GPS wherever possible, as it's less of a faff than stopping to collect receipts for trivial purchases regardless of whether I actually wanted to stop or not. On a calendar event that doesn't work but then there are proper controls with stamps and things which makes it easier. As you say you can fake a GPS track log without too much effort. When I submitted the first DIY brevet I ever rode the validator read my email with my proposed route and thought it was my actual track log.
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

  11. #36
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    That seems to be done quite frequently in the UK, where there are trains everywhere. Or posting a postcard, or getting receipts with date and time on them from the grocery store, etc. And yes the evidence would be considered acceptable.

    Actually I like the idea of doing a ride from train station to train station in Europe.
    Europe would be better than England. We have trains everywhere but walk on fares are often stupidly expensive, and although you can get around unless you're going a long distance or from point-to-point along a single line they can be desperately slow. I often use the example of the journey from my house to a friend's house who lives about 35 miles away by the shortest road route. By car it takes about 45-60 minutes depending on route and traffic. By train it's a good two hours station-to-station, plus a good 20-30 minutes of walking and on average 30 minutes connecting time. By bike I can usually do it in around 2:15 - 2:30.

    (and ignore njkayaker, he appears to be going through a cranky phase)
    I noticed
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  12. #37
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    It's a cute idea. It would be unfortunate if the route was compromized to accomodate it.

    The "theme" stuff should come after the route and experience.

    Many riders don't really want to stop very long, which, if you want to be courteous to them, then stops should be useful too (I doubt that train stations would generally be useful).
    Not sure how a route is "compromised" to visit a train station any more than it's "compromised" to visit a cafe or an ice cream shop. If you're doing a permanent where the control is an area that happens to include a station among other things then you could buy yourself a coffee and cake, an spare inner tube or a platform ticket at the station. The fact some might choose to indulge a bit of train spotting doesn't detract from the route for those less interested in trains.

    If someone is planning their own route (what we in the UK would call a DIY) then as long as the distance between controls is within limits they can set the controls wherever they want. So if they have a passion for railways they could make every single control a railway station.

    How useful a train station is depends on the station. Some are little more than platforms with grumpy attendants and overpriced vending machines that don't work. Others practically have shopping centres built in. I did a brevet last year where one of the control points was a vintage railway with a rather nice cafe.

    It doesn't seem that helpful/useful to promote cute/gimicky ideas.
    It doesn't seem that helpful/useful to nitpick a theoretical construct - if you want to discuss relative merits go ahead, if you want to ignore it go ahead, but nitpicking it is no more helpful/useful than someone turning up and posting that they think it's silly to ride 400km when you could just take the car.
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

  13. #38
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by contango View Post
    Not sure how a route is "compromised" to visit a train station any more than it's "compromised" to visit a cafe or an ice cream shop. If you're doing a permanent where the control is an area that happens to include a station among other things then you could buy yourself a coffee and cake, an spare inner tube or a platform ticket at the station. The fact some might choose to indulge a bit of train spotting doesn't detract from the route for those less interested in trains.

    If someone is planning their own route (what we in the UK would call a DIY) then as long as the distance between controls is within limits they can set the controls wherever they want. So if they have a passion for railways they could make every single control a railway station.

    How useful a train station is depends on the station. Some are little more than platforms with grumpy attendants and overpriced vending machines that don't work. Others practically have shopping centres built in. I did a brevet last year where one of the control points was a vintage railway with a rather nice cafe.
    I'm guessing njkayaker has not been to Europe/UK and doesn't realise that pretty much every town has a conveniently located train station, often with (as you say), shops, toilets, and all sorts of stuff that would be useful to a cyclist. He's probably thinking Amtrak where the stations are few and far between.


    But yes, another answer for unterhausen and the question about creating permanent routes ... look at what other countries do. Audax UK riders have been riding permanents for years ... see what they do and what makes a good permanent route there.

  14. #39
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    A lot of these issues are great ones to consider. Not all the issues, of course.

    So, an informational control is less useful on an out-n-back unless its the far end control? I had an idea of using highway historical markers for informational controls, but may not use them for out-n-back rides.

    Another issue I'm wondering about - people talk about keeping the distances close to the 100,200,300 k numbers or whatever, but the surfeit of roads where i live make my proposed routes all a bit over, if i want to include some key features into the rides.... 214k, 112k, those types of distances. is 5-10 percent off the even hundred k mark acceptable for permanent routes?

    The theme idea is one i've already been considering.





    Quote Originally Posted by contango View Post

    It doesn't seem that helpful/useful to nitpick a theoretical construct - if you want to discuss relative merits go ahead, if you want to ignore it go ahead, but nitpicking it is no more helpful/useful than someone turning up and posting that they think it's silly to ride 400km when you could just take the car.
    Enigmatic, and so 'logically' based, that for me months ago I came to a conclusion the njkayaker posts are bit-generated.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  15. #40
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    A lot of these issues are great ones to consider. Not all the issues, of course.

    So, an informational control is less useful on an out-n-back unless its the far end control? I had an idea of using highway historical markers for informational controls, but may not use them for out-n-back rides.

    Another issue I'm wondering about - people talk about keeping the distances close to the 100,200,300 k numbers or whatever, but the surfeit of roads where i live make my proposed routes all a bit over, if i want to include some key features into the rides.... 214k, 112k, those types of distances. is 5-10 percent off the even hundred k mark acceptable for permanent routes?

    The theme idea is one i've already been considering.
    As I understand it (and I'm fairly new to this so may be off the mark) an info control is no longer accepted for permanents in the UK because it makes it too easy to cheat. If you get your brevet card on the day you could still cheat the infos but it would take at least marginally more effort. If you get the brevet card and ride the route on some day of your choosing in the future it makes it quite easy to have a sniff around the area in Street View or find the answers some other way.

    I forget where I read the idea of having a simple out-and-back route that passed information controls in both directions but avoided the cheating issue by having a manned control at the far end that gave out the questions to answer on the return leg. Obviously that works for calendar events although I guess in theory you could put something together to make it work on a permanent, as long as you had a range of questions and friendly establishments at either end to verify cards and hand out the questions.

    Enigmatic, and so 'logically' based, that for me months ago I came to a conclusion the njkayaker posts are bit-generated.
    Some of his recent posts remind me of me when I'm feeling grumpy and irritated at just about everything. Usually I try not to post at all when I'm in that mindset.
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

  16. #41
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Audax UK's info about DIY rides ... http://www.aukweb.net/diy/

    Note that to plan one of these rides you plan it for the shortest possible distance between checkpoints, but you can ride a longer distance or whatever route you want ...

    "REMEMBER! You don’t actually have to ride the shortest distance between your checkpoints. You can choose any route you like, as long as you pass through the checkpoints. However, the shortest distance must be used when declaring the distance of the ride."

    I suspect the Handbook might provide more info, but it's too big for me to download right now.


    And this is Audax Australia's document on Permanent Rules ...
    http://www.audax.org.au/public/image...oct%202012.pdf


    And this is BC_Randonneurs info on Permanents ...
    http://www.randonneurs.bc.ca/permanents/main.html



    It's good to refer to what various organisations do ... each does something slightly different so you can get ideas about what works etc.

  17. #42
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    Bek- many of our perms are odd distances (214k, 250k, etc.) That's not a route killer, just something that can make the route slightly less attractive. If you're trying to keep an R12 going, then a 199k doesn't cut it, and a 298k is a lot of extra riding.

    Here in Texas, train stations (Amtrak style), or DART style, are associated with large urban areas, which is exactly the places we try to avoid on bike rides, so that's a non-issue.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  18. #43
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    I decided that the drag strip idea isn't going to fly, costs $35 to make a solo run

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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    I'm guessing njkayaker has not been to Europe/UK and doesn't realise that pretty much every town has a conveniently located train station, often with (as you say), shops, toilets, and all sorts of stuff that would be useful to a cyclist. He's probably thinking Amtrak where the stations are few and far between.
    I've been to Europe, China, and Japan (so much for your ability to guess). Train stations are often situated in places that also have lots of heavy traffic. (in places that most riders would prefer to avoid)It isn't actually that convenient to have to stop at two places (a ticket booth and a food shop). And, if the verification is a purchased ticket, it's a waste too.

    Quote Originally Posted by contango View Post
    Some of his recent posts remind me of me when I'm feeling grumpy and irritated at just about everything. Usually I try not to post at all when I'm in that mindset.
    No, the "train station" idea just isn't a very good one.
    Last edited by njkayaker; 04-17-13 at 11:55 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    Enigmatic, and so 'logically' based, that for me months ago I came to a conclusion the njkayaker posts are bit-generated.
    Bek, considering your common tactic of just insulting people who don't agree with you and the numerous infractions you must have incurred on these forums, you really are a black pot.

  21. #46
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    I decided that the drag strip idea isn't going to fly, costs $35 to make a solo run
    That's unfortunate. I thought it sounded fun to do something kind of silly mid-ride for a controle.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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    I got the idea on Taste of Carolina last year, there is an 1/8 mile strip right off the route. It would be fun

  23. #48
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    I've been to Europe, China, and Japan (so much for your ability to guess). Train stations are often situated in places that also have lots of heavy traffic. (in places that most riders would prefer to avoid)It isn't actually that convenient to have to stop at two places (a ticket booth and a food shop). And, if the verification is a purchased ticket, it's a waste too.
    That would depend on the area. If you're doing a ride that goes through suburbs of major UK cities you'd expect to find lots of train stations on roads that are more cycle-friendly than a lot of other roads I've encountered on brevets. There are a few loops I ride based from home that cover 30-40 miles and many of them pass right by a good half a dozen stations and within a short distance of probably half a dozen more.

    Nobody ever said you had to buy a train ticket as proof but if the last shop has closed and you need proof of passage you could just buy a cheap ticket from a machine and buy some food later on. It beats not getting any proof of passage. If there were a supermarket nearby and you felt the urge to do your weekly shopping and request home delivery presumably the receipt spanning several feet would count as proof of passage.

    No, the "train station" idea just isn't a very good one.
    You made your thoughts on that one quite clear but still didn't address the implications of each control point covering an area that included a station, and a rider submitting a train ticket to the next control point as their proof of passage. You seem to be concerned that you dislike the idea that someone might choose to stop at a station for their proof of passage to the extent you're assuming the ride in question required participants to waste money on train tickets.
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

  24. #49
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    This thread has me thinking about joining RUSA after all.

    I'm not a member because, ironically, I try to be car-free. To ride an organized brevet I have to get to the start point, which is no big deal if it's ten (Princeton NJ) or fifteen miles (Cranbury NJ), but I'm probably not going to be up for more than that. I'm willing to rent a car occasionally (which I did to get to Ephrata to ride the Spring Forward 200k with the PA Randonneurs) but I'm not going to do this often enough to justify RUSA membership.

    So... now you've got me thinking, I could work out some 200k rides that start from somewhere near my house, and ride them (with or without friends) as permanents?

  25. #50
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rhm View Post
    This thread has me thinking about joining RUSA after all.

    I'm not a member because, ironically, I try to be car-free. To ride an organized brevet I have to get to the start point, which is no big deal if it's ten (Princeton NJ) or fifteen miles (Cranbury NJ), but I'm probably not going to be up for more than that. I'm willing to rent a car occasionally (which I did to get to Ephrata to ride the Spring Forward 200k with the PA Randonneurs) but I'm not going to do this often enough to justify RUSA membership.

    So... now you've got me thinking, I could work out some 200k rides that start from somewhere near my house, and ride them (with or without friends) as permanents?
    If all you're going to do is work out some 200k rides starting from your house and ride with friends you could just ride them with friends rather than registering them as rides.
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

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