For the third consecutive year, Felkerino and I pedaled around with our #BikeDC peeps to support the Hains Point 100, an event hosted by Megan (and friends) to raise money and awareness for WABA’s Women & Bicycles program.
The WABA 50 States Rideis fast approaching (this Saturday!) and it’s important to be ready for the District’s ultimate concept ride. Are you?
Before you answer that question, I’ve put together some handy taper and training tips that you can follow for the rest of the week. Remember, you want to make it to the starting line rested, ready, and raring to go.
This Sunday, Felkerino and I participated in WABA’s annual Vasa Ride, a bicycling event conceptualized loosely around Sweden’s Vasaloppet cross-country ski race. The ride begins and ends at the House of Sweden and all participants receive a cup of blueberry soup (or Blåbärssoppa, if you’re fancy) at the finish.
Our early spring schedule left a hole for the Vasa Ride so we signed up to see what it was all about. According to WABA’s site, entry is capped at 500 people and it was a decent crowd (maybe 150 people or so? I’m not good at eyeballing these things) that showed up for the 59-mile start, despite the gray skies, temps in the thirties, and chances of rain in the forecast.
The mission of Women and Bicycles is to get more women on two wheels through mentorship and peer-to-peer learning, between those who already ride and those who would like to ride. The program consists of dinner parties, workshops, bike rides, and celebrations.
Megan, a member of the BikeDC community, organized a century ride on Hains Point to raise money and awareness for Women & Bikes on December 23. Hains Point is a well-known 3.2-mile loop located in the Southwest quadrant of Washington, D.C., and is a popular training spot for the area’s roadies road riders.
Megan’s organizing impressed me. She encouraged people to show up and support the event, even if they did not or could not ride the full 100 miles.
This past Saturday Felkerino and I participated in another edition of the Washington Area Bicycling Association (WABA) 50 States Ride. Yeah, that ride with 500 participants that crosses over all 50 of the state streets within the District of Columbia and covers about 65 miles in the process.
True to our plan, we shortcut as our coffee requirements dictated and skipped a few state streets along the way. At the end of the day, Felkerino and I crossed off 34 of the 50 state streets. I don’t know if this means we have to do some Sharpie editing to our 50 States Ride t-shirts or what so if you know the protocol, please let us know.
This coming Saturday marks the arrival of another edition of the 50 States Ride. While this ride sort of freaked me out the first time I did it, it’s since grown on me and now it’s a much-anticipated fall event.
Washington Area Bicycling Association (WABA), our local cycling advocacy group, organizes the ride. My entry fee supports WABA’s good work and in exchange I get a tour through all four quadrants and 50 state streets in the District with 500 other people.
The total 50 States route is around 65 miles. My plan is to not ride the full route. How about that for ambition? Rather, I’ll be doing the “More than 25, but fewer than 50 States Ride,” depending on where and how far I feel like riding. Last year, I pedaled over 40 of the 50 state streets and completed slightly more than 50 miles.
It feels good to accomplish the full route and all 50 state streets, but I found myself pulling out my hair at some of the more congested downtown areas. Since I ride those fairly frequently anyway, it doesn’t break my heart to skip them during the 50 States Ride.
Leslie T., superhero transportation cyclist, and I go way back to the days I first began riding with the D.C. Randonneurs. If there is a way to get there by bike, Leslie will figure out it. When work requires her to travel, she takes a bike along. Vacation? It usually involves a bike. Getting around town? Bike, of course.
You may have seen Leslie out and about. She volunteers with WABA, partakes in the occasional touring and group ride, and regularly attends #FridayCoffeeClub. Here is what Leslie had to say about cycling in the Washington, D.C. area.