Sunday, December 8, 2019

Thanks to the 2019 PA Rando Volunteers

2019 has been an amazing year for Pennsylvania Randonneurs. We have managed to continue our tradition of running high quality and challenging brevets in Eastern PA. We introduced a totally new SR series and a new Fleche venue. Our unbroken string of R12 series events allow riders to stay on their bikes seeking rando glory all year long. Such accomplishments for this club would not be possible without volunteer help. In 2019, the  Pennsylvania Randonneurs would like to thank volunteers:
  • CJ Arayata 
  • Gavin Biebuyck
  • James Bondra
  • Janice Chernekoff
  • Tom Dermody
  • Matt Farrell
  • Bill Fischer
  • Nigel & Joyce Greene
  • Greg Keenan
  • Eric Keller
  • Steve Kraybill
  • Patrick & Cecilie Gaffney
  • Nick Manta
  • George & Erin Metzler 
  • Andrew Mead
  • Chris Nadovich
  • William Olsen
  • Susan Proulx
  • George Retseck
  • Tom Rosenbauer
  • Steve Schoenfelder
  • Len Zawodniak
Thanks to all of you who volunteered this year. (Let us know if we missed anybody.) If you rode a PA event this year, people on this list made it possible. Please thank them for their effort. But to really thank them, to really, really thank them, you (yes, I mean you) should volunteer for a PA Rando event.

Continuing our long-standing tradition, Pennsylvania Randonneurs plans in 2020 to continue the R12 series, the SR series, the Fleche, and a few populaires.  We might add more populaires if there is enough interest and willing volunteers.  Look for a few new routes as well as the revival of some that few may remember.  We kick things off on January 4 with the Little Britain brevet. Event and registration details are posted on the website.

Chris Nadovich
Andrew Mead

Hope to New Hope Ride Report

It was about as hopeful a December day as could be expected, riding along the Delaware. Chilly, a little breezy at times, but there was a good amount of sunshine. Of those that clipped in at the Blairstown Diner, 13 of the 14 made it to the finish at the Blairstown Inn within the time limit for a 93% completion rate.   Preliminary results for the December 2019 edition of the Hope to New Hope 200K have been posted on the website.  Please review the results and let me know if they align with your memory.  The results will be submitted to RUSA later in the week and will become official once certified.

James Haddad enjoys a gyro at the Market in New Hope

Riders had little trouble navigating the relatively straight and flat course (for PA Rando) from Blairstown, beyond Hope, on to New Hope, and back through Hope to Blairstown. The only DNF was Tom Keenan, who's navigation device was lost till Spring somewhere in a snowbank after an unfortunate glove maneuver.

The Hope to New Hope route is not the most scenic PA Rando route. H2NH uses larger secondary roads such as 519 and 29. The higher traffic on these roads is tolerated in the hopes that the shoulder remains snow and ice free through the Winter. On this occasion, there was little issue with snow and ice (other than in Footbridge Park). Any "stickyness" on the shoulder was limited and manageable. The biggest annoyance reported was, in fact, the traffic: specifically all the cars with Christmas trees on the roof. The consensus was that 1 in 3 cars was carrying a tree.

And here's some Blairstown Diner trivia you might not have known. December 13th is a Friday! Whooo...

Winter riding protective facemask with rando mottos.

First finisher Iwan Barankay writes...

Thank you for putting together this brevet. Perfect start and end controls and ideal conditions for a December brevet. I particularly enjoyed the meditative and muscle relaxing walk across Stockton bridge and the warm coffees at each control. Glorious day to end the 2019 brevet season. Next year I hope we will put together a brevet to start in Philly.

Hey Philly Gang, did you hear that "brevet to start in Philly" part? Time to get crackin' on this!

This brevet completes the 2019 season for Pennsylvania Randonneurs. Thanks to all the volunteers, this year has been an amazing success. Congratulations to all the riders -- especially those who went on to PBP this year.  I wish you all the best over the holidays and hope to see you next year at our first event, which will be held on 4 January 2020. Details coming soon on the PA Rando website.

Chris Nadovich
Brevet Organizer

Monday, December 2, 2019

December R12: Hope to New Hope **Update

Update: 4 December

I scouted the northern extent of the course today. There is a LOT of tree-branch debris on the shoulders on 519 above Belvedere. Also some shattered ice shards. This will affect the start and the finish -- especially the finish for riders finishing after sunset. People need to be extra vigilant to scan for "sticky" areas as they ride in the dark. These roads are relatively low traffic on Saturday, but they DO have traffic. Blinding by oncoming car headlights may make spotting the debris difficult. Please stop and wait for traffic to clear if you can't verify that the road in front of you is safe. 

The parking lot at Footbridge Park was NOT plowed, nor was the footbridge. These areas are flat, wide, and the snow/ice isn't deep. We can still park there. But if it turns out these are still frozen and unridable on Saturday, I'll want everyone to walk bikes through the frozen mess. Please don't try to ride over an ice covered footbridge unless you have spiked tires.

The rt 97 highway bridge is still under construction, with a one-way traffic light robot flagperson that has a silly long wait time. Normally the workaround has been to use the road through Footbridge Park, but if the footbridge is still frozen (see above) it's hard to say which way is better. The final decision will be made at the riders meeting after consulting with everyone's guardian angel.

Original Post...

Yes, yes, yes. Despite RUSA insurance gyrations we are indeed running the Hope 2 New Hope 200K brevet on 7 December starting from the Blairstown Diner at 7AM. Don't park at the Diner. Please park across the creek in Footbridge Park.  The finish is at the Blairstown Inn, across the street from the diner. All the information, and an online registration link, are on the event web page.

There has been no pre-ride of this event, but we believe that the roads in question are very reliable with little chance of issue. Famous last words.

Unlike previous editions, the Milford and New Hope controles are open controles. Milford baker is no more. If you want breakfast in Milford, go to the Bridge St Deli. If you want something quick go to the Milford Market. The cued route through New hope takes you past the brewery (which may not be open yet -- penalty for fast riding). There's a Starbucks, a Dunkin', and numerous small establishments. If you want Wawa or McDonalds or the diner in New Hope, these are a right turn at mile 62.8, about 0.5 mile off course.

The start and finish extend during night hours. The organizer will strictly enforce the rules regarding lighting and reflective gear.

Bonne route!

Chris Nadovich