It’s official. Organizers of Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI) announced on Saturday that this year’s route would start in Sioux City and end in Davenport.
The expected 10,000-plus cyclists in this year’s rolling party across the Hawkeye State will travel about 460 miles with 16,000 feet of elevation gain.
That’s the 19th shortest RAGBRAI in its 43-year history and the 13th flattest route, officials announced at an announcement party on Saturday.
The towns benefiting from the onslaught of thousands of hungry and thirsty bicyclists during the July 19-25 bike tour are:
Sioux City (starting town), Storm Lake, Fort Dodge, Eldora, Cedar Falls, Hiawatha, Coralville, and Davenport (ending town). The first day from Sioux City to Storm Lake is the longest — 74 miles. The ride from Eldora to Cedars Falls is the shortest — 56 miles.
A couple of options could add more mileage to this year’s route.
For the first time, organizers added an optional 15-mile gravel loop for the fat tire crowd and those who like an added degree of difficulty. The loop — named in remembrance of wheel maker Steve Hed who died last year — comes on Monday between Storm Lake and Fort Dodge.
The next day, organizers are adding about 30 miles to the stretch between Fort Dodge and Eldora to create a century ride.
With Saturday’s announcement, registration to the lottery for RAGBRAI XLIII opened. You can register at the RAGBRAI registration site.
- January 24, 2015 – RAGBRAI Route Announcement Party & Iowa Bike Expo
- February 15, 2015 – Deadline for registering via paper applications
- April 1, 2015 – Deadline for weeklong rider registration ( all minor waivers and payments by this deadline for your entry to be complete and finalized)
- May 1, 2015 – Lottery results are posted
- May 15, 2015 – Deadline to request a registration refund
- June 1, 2015 – 2015 Registration closes
- July 18, 2015 – RAGBRAI XLIII Expo
- July 19-25, 2015 – RAGBRAI XLIII