Wednesday, October 29, 2014

November R-12

The November R-12 is on Saturday, 11/1. We'll be running the Stillwater 200k Retour course but with a couple of route tweaks since the July event -- so those familiar with previous editions will once again need to turn off their auto-pilot and pay close attention to the cuesheet!  The changes include a reroute to get you off Rt 94 just past Columbia.  There's also a new controle in Lafayette, which will limit the amount of time you spend on some busy roads on the northern extent of the course.  Lastly, with the limited amount of daylight in mind, you'll take a straight shot down Rt 579 instead of the twisty Sweet Hollow Rd from the top of the Tunnel Rd climb.  A volunteer preride was completed on Tuesday by your RBA and subsequently, the cuesheet has been updated to draft 10, dated 10/29.

The start/finish is in Milford, NJ -- the southern most extent of the course.  Please note that you'll need lights and reflective gear at the start, which is about 30 minutes before sunrise. Organizer Norman Smeal will be sending you on your way at the Milford Bakery start and greeting you at the Ship Inn finish. There is plenty of parking in the large parking lot on Church St in Milford (PA Randonneurs has permission to use the parking lot off of Church St which is now owned by the Medical supply store at the old bakery location). The Bakery opens at 6AM and has breakfast sandwiches along with an assortment of baked goods.  The finish controle and post ride gathering will be at the Ship Inn, a couple of stores down the street from the Bakery.

SPOT trackers will be handed out to a few selected riders. The units are about the size of a cell phone and can be carried either in your back pocket or in a bag, away from the saddle. If you happen to have a personal SPOT tracker, not already listed here:
... please send me a link to your SPOT tracking webpage.

Additional event details are posted on the event web page:

Additional Course Notes:
-Watch out for deer, especially on River Rd after the start, and on the descent down from the Tunnel Rd climb into the Milford finish.
-Mile 94.1: You'll be turning on to a short 0.2 mile stretch of dirt road that goes uphill.  While it's possible to find a good line to ride between the ruts, it might be more prudent to dismount and walk if you are unsure of your bike handling skills on dirt and gravel.
-The current weather conditions are calling for some cold and wet riding conditions.  It's been a while since we've had a "Character Building Opportunity", but it looks like one is shaping up.  This will be a good test of your foul weather gear -- a good place to start is with a bigger bag on your bike for all the spare clothing you'll want to have.
-With the rain and wind in the forecast, watch out for slippery conditions for any wet leaves on the road.

*** Roster (as of 10/30) ***
1 Michael Anderson -
2 Charles J Arayata -
3 Eoghan Barry -
4 Ed Bernasky -
5 Gavin Biebuyck -
6 Larry E Brenize - Guest
7 Jane M  Brown -
8 Jeffery S Butt -
9 Matthew Farrell -
10 William Fischer -
11 Guillaume Gantard -
12 Stephen Glowacki - Guest
13 Zachary R Goodrich -
14 James P. Holman -
15 Gil Lebron - Guest
16 Daniel McGill -
17 Chris Nadovich -
18 William Olsen -
19 Tom Rosenbauer - Volunteer Preride
20 Norman Smeal - Organizer
21 Bob Torres -

-Tom Rosenbauer
Eastern PA RBA

Monday, October 20, 2014

PA150k/200k Ride Report

Photo compliments of George Brandt

Preliminary results for the PA200k have been posted at:
... and the for the PA150k:
...Please let me know of any corrections or other issues.  Results will be submitted shortly, and become final, pending RUSA certification.

Mild temperatures in the 50F's at the start eventually reached into the 60F's. After a brief spritz of rain in the morning, it was a pleasant day to be out on the bike with a mix of sun and clouds.  21 of the 24 200k starters were official finishers.  Due to an early mechanical, Eoghan B. had to withdraw as a participant but then graciously offered to sweep the course as a volunteer.  Kate and Victor completed 'a 200k' ride, but unfortunately, their GPS was not programmed with the many route tweaks in 'the official 200k'  course; hence, they could not be recognized as official finishers.  All 9 of the 150k starters made it around the course with 8 official finishers.  Of note, there were many first time participants with many riding their very first brevet.  Special thanks to Eoghan B., Matt F.,  Chris N., and several others for introducing the newcomers to the sport of randonneuring.  But with the challenging terrain for both the 150k and 200k, this was certainly an introduction into the "deep end" of the pool.  All the newcomers managed to keep their heads above water and complete the course. However, Guillanume G. finished 25 minutes past the 150k time limit, mainly due to a late start and finding some additional bonus miles near Belvidere. Also of note, Bob T. completed a RUSA cup challenge: one of each type of RUSA event and 5000k over a 2-year period -- congratulations, and well done!

Guy H. writes: "...Thanks for bringing back the great old course with new tweaks. I really liked using Mountain View Road from Stewartsville to get over that ridge. In fact the whole section from Portland to Milford was perfect. .."

Chris N. writes: "... Great new route....  My buddy Joe commented that the spectacular Autumn scenery with dry leaves blowing around in Cherry Valley was like being in an "endless
German car commercial..."

Jim H. writes: "...Thanks for another great ride.  The fall foliage was sensational in many areas with the Lommason Glen climb being especially gorgeous.  Lower Saucon Road and Mountain View Road were real kickers.  As usual, I had great riding companions, and the food at the finish was a boon for this hungry randonneur..."

Norman S. writes: "...What a fantastic day for a ride, weather, scenery, autumn leaves, big climbs, what more could you ask for in a 200k event.  Thank you and the team for putting it all together..."

RAAM finisher Geoff B. writes: "...Just wanted to thank you for your efforts on Saturday.  I really enjoyed catching up with you and seeing and chatting with some of the folks who I hadn't seen in a while.  The course was great, cue sheets were perfect, weather was ideal, food afterwards was much appreciated, and thanks so very much for making the Milford Market the last on-course controle as I was in serious need of a dill pickle.  Their "Barrel o' Pickles" in the back by the deli was was equal to a "Pot o' Gold" for my beginning to cramp calves resulting from all of the climbing.  I loved the course with it's steep climbs and comfortable descents - good stuff..."

George B. writes: "...Thanks for a great day. The course was challenging as I expected and the scenery was beautiful. Thank you for the hospitality and the delicious grilled chicken. .."

Joe D. writes: "...I had a great time on my first brevet.  The course was tough for sure... The
navigation went well except where I made a right instead of a left on one flat road, but that was only an extra 1/2 mile.  The bad one was when I got almost to the bottom of Mountain View I decided I was going the wrong way and I went back up about a mile, then turned around and went down
again...  It turns out I was about 100 yards from the stop sign when I turned.  Oops. .... The weather was great and the roads were fantastic...."

Eastern PA Suuper Randonneur, Greg K writes: "...Thanks to you for all your efforts and the framed SR plaque.  My randonneur adventures for this year have exceeded my expectations and your personal efforts are truly appreciated. ..."

Don J. completed a long streak of Eastern PA R-12 events, and writes: "...I had 25 PA R-12 rides in a row, until missing the October event due to a work conflict.  But I still have a streak going for the RUSA R-12.  I was able to get Bill's Hawks Nest Permanent in yesterday to make it 62 months in a row for RUSA R-12 Brevets. ..."
Don hopes to start a new Eastern PA R-12 streak in December.

Special thanks to volunteers Jim Bondra and Bill Slabonik for helping at the finish controle.  And thanks also to participants Zachary Goodrich,  Bob Torres, and Robin Landis for helping with the set-up and clean-up at the hostel.

The Eastern PA fall series continues with the next ride scheduled for November 1st.  The start/finish will be in Milford NJ; details will be posted soon.

-Tom Rosenbauer
Eastern PA RBA

Saturday, October 11, 2014


*** Update 1 (10/17) ***
According to the latest foliage reports:
... the leaves will be ranging from "high color" to "peak".  That being said, with all the rain and wind this past week, many of those colorful leaves are on the ground and could pose a slipping hazard which you should be mindful of.

As noted on the website, you should park your car in the large parking lot half way down the driveway on the right -- Not  the few spots near the house (which are reserved). Breakfast items (oatmeal, bagels, etc) will be available 1 hr before the start.  If you are staying at the hostel on Friday night, early arrivals before 10PM should use the woman's dorm and later arrivals should use the men's dorm.  I'll be arriving late on Friday night after a high school football game, but the house parents John and Gerry Anne will be expecting you.

SPOT trackers will be handed out to selected riders.  If you have a personal SPOT unit not listed here:
... please send me a link to your tracking page.

*** Original Post ***
The PA Randonneurs fall series kicks off on October 18 and you have a choice of either a 150k or 200k course.  Hopefully, the fall foliage will be in peak color.  The start/finish will be at the Weisel hostel, with breakfast served 1 hour before the start  We'll also have the traditional post-ride BBQ, where we can recap the accomplishments of the past year and look forward to the challenges of the coming year. Registration and other event details are at:

With only about 10.5 hours of daylight available, 200k riders will need lights and reflective gear, unless you have previously finished  the course in less than 9.5 hours.

Long-time PA and NJ randonneurs will remember that the design of the 200k course is based on the "Hilly 100 miles" of the 2003 edition of the NJ600k.  It's been run as an October event ever since then, as one of the most challenging 200k's on the PA schedule.  In the never ending quest for traffic-free and scenic roads, there are several route tweaks for the 2014 edition, so those familiar with previous editions will need to turn-off their autopilot and pay close attention to the cuesheet.  The changes start right with the very first turn: instead of left, we'll be turning right from the Weisel hostel driveway and heading to Lower Saucon Valley Road, as a warm-up. After passing through Easton, some additional route tweaks offer some quieter roads on the way to Wind Gap.  After the big climb up Fox Gap, another one awaits you up Lommason's Glen.  After the Montana Road descent, additional route tweaks will take you to Tunnel Road, which is the "kinder and gentler" way up Jug Town mountain.  But in between, another little lump in the form of Mountain View Road awaits you. About half way up the climb, be sure to look out to your left, where a nice vista can be seen through a break in the trees.  The 150k course generally follows the 200k route until Mud Rud, where 150k riders will go directly to Belvidere while 200k riders head into Cherry Valley and up Fox Gap.

A volunteer preride was completed this past week by your RBA, and the cuesheets have been updated as follows:
200k: draft 8 dated 10/10/14
150k: draft 8 dated 10/10/14

Additional Course Notes:
-Mile 40.9 (200k): As you descend the backside of Wind Gap, watch out for some very hazardous sewer grates in the shoulder -- they are actually more akin to wide open storm drains, and will most certainly ruin your day if you hit these at speed. You'll want to take a line more to the left in order to avoid these hazards.
-Mile 111.1 (200k) / 79.7 (150k): There is bridge construction that is closed to cars but is easily bypassed  if you dismount and walk around the barriers. Since the road is closed to through traffic, you'll practically have the road all to yourself.  But as you get closer to the road closure, the road becomes less maintained -- be sure to watch out for gravel, potholes, and debris, especially on the descent and curve about one mile away from the bridge that is out.

200k Roster (as of 10/17)
1 Charles J Arayata - Friday night hostel
2 Eoghan Barry - Guest
3 Jane M  Brown
4 Geoff Brunner
5 Jeffery S Butt
6 Joseph (Clifford) Dille - Guest
7 Alfred Dolich - Guest
8 Dwight Engel - Guest
9 Matthew Farrell
10 J Scott Franzen
11 Zachary R Goodrich - Friday and Saturday night hostel
12 Stewart J Gouck
13 Guy Harris
14 James P. Holman
15 Greg Keenan
16 Robin C Landis - Friday night hostel
17 Peter Macholdt - Guest
18 Kate Marshall
19 Daniel McGill - Guest
20 Chris Nadovich
21 William Olsen
22 Laurie Riley - Guest
23 Tom Rosenbauer - Volunteer Preride
24 Norman Smeal
25 Gilbert Torres - Friday night hostel
26 Victor Urvantsev
27 Eva Van Stratum - Guest

150k Roster (as of 10/17)
1 Gavin Biebuyck
2 George Brandt - Guest
3 Janice Chernekoff
4 Guillaume Gantard
5 Gil Lebron - Guest
6 William M Slabonik
7 Keith A Spangler
8 Bob Torres

-Tom Rosenbauer
Eastern PA RBA