By Ed Felker
American Randonneurs have been very busy this year with brevets, flèches and two 1200K randonnees completed before July 4th. As randonneuring continues to grow in the United States, so do the number of blogs devoted to our beloved sport. These days randonneurs can easily create their own blogs and give us a front row seat to their cycling adventures.
Starting off with the grueling Shenandoah 1200K, Kelly Smith has
written what I consider the definitive account of the ride, during which he dug deep into the proverbial "suitcase of courage" to persevere through searing Virginia heat and unrelenting hills. Fortunately Kelly gave me his funny and gripping story to put up on my blog, The Daily Randonneur, and it's worth a read. See his story, titled "The Idiot's Guide to the Shenandoah 1200," at: dailyrandonneur.wordpress.com.
Mike Dayton gave us the other side of the ride through posts documenting the S1200 control at Fancy Gap on the Blue Ridge Parkway. He brought a group of North Carolina Randonneurs up to man the overnight stop there. See his account and photos at his Research Trailer Park blog at: ncrandonneur.blogspot.com.
Coming at the end of June, the Cascade 1200K has also generated
compelling blog posts. Host club Seattle International Randonneurs kept us updated throughout the ride via the official C1200 blog at seattlerando.org/C1200, and the blog has also posted a report from finisher Charles Coldwell titled "The Prodigal Son Returns."
Geoff Swarts wrote about his successful and dramatic C1200 at his
Green Hornet Randoing blog. Learn everything you ever wanted to know
about ice socks at greenhornetrandoing.blogspot.com. Meanwhile, C1200
volunteer David Rowe writes about the heat during the randonée and the
impressive generosity of fellow volunteer Ralph Nussbaum at his
A gripping account of another kind was posted by RUSA President Mark Thomas at his Mark's Rando Notes blog. A group out for the Seattle Crystal Mountain Climb permanent encountered a driver careening uphill who swerved right into their lane as they descended the twisty Mud Mountain Road. Bob Brudvik tumbled right over the hood when the driver broadsided him. Fortunately Bob was not seriously hurt and the group managed to stop the driver from leaving the scene. Read the entire story at: rusa64.blogspot.com.
Back on the East Coast, Eastern Pennsylvania RBA Tom Rosenbauer has been staging some terrific brevets this year leading up to his 1000K in early August. Rookie randonneur and recumbent rider Dan Blumenfeld of Pittsburgh has been showing up and making it look easy. Dan has written about his rides at his ranDanneuring blog at:
Finally, how many of us celebrate their wedding anniversary riding a 400K on a tandem? Ron Anderson posted a touching account of his and his wife Barbara's fifth anniversary at Tom's 400K. See their story at Ron's Double Super Secret Tandem Rando Society blog at:
Thanks everybody for sharing your stories. I'm sure we'll see new
blogs and interesting blog posts soon from the Rocky Mountain 1200K, Last Chance, and the RUSA 10-year anniversary rides, among all the other brevets still to come. Keep on riding...and writing!
Ed Felker is a member of the DC Randonneurs and keeps the long distance cycling community updated through his blog at dailyrandonneur.wordpress.com.