5/28/08 – PedalGR Cadence

FANTASTIC!  That’s what the weather was like when approximately 15 bicyclists left Founder’s for our tour of northeast Grand Rapids.  A huge blue sky above us and temps in the low 60s, perfect bicycling weather.

 When Amy and I arrived riding “the contraption,” at 6:10 there were a few people already waiting.  This was a good sign.  I’m going to try and remember names, but I probably will forget a few, so I apologize.  Keep coming and I’ll eventually catch on. 🙂  We had Linda, Tad, Kristina, Mark H., Kane, Ellie, Nate, Veronica, Chris, and a few others whose names have escaped me.  A good mix of Rapid Wheelmen members, WMMBA members, and others who just found the ride through word of mouth.

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5/28/08 – PedalGR Cuesheet

Here is the cuesheet for tomorrow’s ride. In the future I’ll try to get it up a sooner if you want to print it out yourself. PDF should be added tomorrow sometime.

Weather for tomorrow is currently looking to be sunny and 63 degrees! Perfect for riding and a big improvement on our cloudy and cool inaugural ride. I’m looking forward to meeting lots of new riders.

5/28/08 PedalGR map

5/28/08 PedalGR cuesheet

5/28/08 – PedalGR Ride!

PedalGR Ride, meeting at 6:15pm on Wednesday, 5/28/08 at Founder’s Brewing Company, 235 Grandville Ave SW

Spread the word and tell your friends (better yet, bring them with you).  Hopefully I’ll have http://www.pedalgr.com/ up soon.

 Here is the route:

View Larger Map

Need to Know:

  • This is a no-drop ride.  Nobody in the group will be left behind. 
  • There are lots of hills.  Bring your granny gear.  Lots of fun downhills too!
  • COBBLESTONE!  There are two cobblestone roads left in GR.  We’ll ride down one of them.
  • There is a “shortcut” with about 5 short sections of steps to go down.  We will help each other (this is a friendly ride) carry the bikes down them if someone has trouble.
  • Ride is 16 miles and should take approximately 2 hours.
  • Water and portable snack food are recommended.
  • HELMETS ARE REQUIRED on Rapid Wheelmen Club rides.

A few highlights include:

Although we will not be stopping often to take photographs, cameras are highly encouraged to document our journey. Please contact me with any questions.

Remember, having fun and riding safely are the two most important goals!  Hope to see you there!

 EDIT – 5/21/08: I rode the route last night and it’s pretty hilly, so I cut 2 miles off the route (we’ll have to ride through Cheshire business district on another ride) so we can finish close to the two hour time frame.  I’m also in the process of seeing if we can get a quick 5 minute tour of Newberry Place, the new co-housing community on Belknap Hill.

5/14/08 – PedalGR Cadence

The inaugural PedalGR went off without a hitch! I wasn’t sure how many people to really expect, since I had only publicized the ride through the Rapid Wheelmen ride calendar, the internet, and word of mouth. Plus, there just happened to be a giant Obama rally and some chilly, cloudy weather.

Happily, people did show up. Mary, who recognized me from a WMMBA (West Michigan Mtn. Biking Assoc.) meeting was the first. Then my wife Amy, Becky and her son Logan, and Paul slowly trickled in by around 6:20. Paul was having dérailleur issues, and wasn’t able to join us for the ride.

We headed off around 6:30 (I’m planning to start on time for future rides) and headed up the hill for our first big climb. The first major site was the recently restored former D.A. Blodgett Home for Children. This is far and away one of my favorite buildings in the city. They did a FANTASTIC job restoring it.

We then wandered through Ottawa Hills, admiring all the beautiful brick houses. The route looped back on itself to go past the Iroquois School (on sale for only $3 million), so it didn’t just SEEM like we were going in circles, we actually were.

Approaching the halfway point, we went down the big hill on the gravel section of Reeds Lake Blvd, passing by the infamous Dr. Stokes’ 10,000 sq. ft mansion. Other highlights included passing GR Christian High, the former Catholic Archdiocese building, and rolling down Buchanan with the downtown skyline, and Founder’s off in the distance. The sun had finally come out and the light on the buildings was beautiful.

I’m sorry that I don’t have any photos. I will make this a priority for the next ride. Feel free to bring your small cameras as well to take on bike shots.

Thanks to everyone who showed up and/or has expressed an interest in the ride. Please spread the word and bring a friend.   This is a slow ride, made to get the people who say “I don’t want to do a group ride because I’ll just hold them up” out on their bicycles.  The more the merrier and I will make sure that no one gets dropped and left on their own.

I’ll post the next route by Monday or Tuesday. The May 28th route is NE Grand Rapids and includes a cobblestone road, a giant earth sculpture, and a couple short sets of stairs (going down of course).