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WHEN

Sun Nov 24 2019 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

WHERE

Firehouse Saloon & Grill
Eldora, IA

WHO

Ben

Description

Fat Bike

Distance - 20, 30, or 40 miles

FIRFAR II
Fantastic Iowa River Fatbike Adventure Ride
20, 30, or 40 miles
Sunday, Nov. 24, 10:00 AM
Starts/Ends outside the Firehouse Saloon & Grill in Eldora.

Iowa River railbed gravel (unimproved) trail + Grass trail + Paved road + paved trail + gravel roads + grass road.

In the never-ending quest to create bad acronyms, the FIRFAR was born...not that long ago, and in a galaxy not far away. Why is it an adventure? Well, for one, about any ride this time of year can be an adventure. In addition, portions of the ride are on sections of abandoned railbed trail (someday in the future to be paved Iowa River Trail, but currently "unimproved trail"). https://www.inhf.org/what-we-do/trails/current-projects/iowa-river-trail/ The metal and railroad ties have been removed from those trail sections, so it's just a gravel base (alternates between sections of smooth, medium, and some chunky gravel). There are also stretches of kind-of-weedy/grassy-but-rideable sections. The bridges have no side rails and are best walked across. Again, it's "unimproved trail"; go at your own risk, and don't expect a fast, smooth ride. It's an opportunity to ride some new-ish trail that few have been on.

I think the different start/end location this year (at the Firehouse Saloon & Grill in Eldora instead of in Steamboat Rock) will make it easier to accommodate riders that want to do different distances (and also gives a food option at the end). However, we'll be passing through Steamboat Rock a couple times, and Happenings will be open by the 2nd time we roll through around mile 13.

All are welcome. Fat, plus, or mountain bike recommended. Gravel / Cross bike? Might work fine depending on tires and your comfort level with taking it through a few stretches of chunky gravel and grassy sections.

Multiple distance options, and includes some trail and roads that we didn't do in last year's ride. Ride as far as you want...
All riders in the courses below are on the same route for the first 18 miles

Long course (up to 40 miles)- https://ridewithgps.com/routes/31407680

Short (20 mile) & Medium (30 mile) course - https://ridewithgps.com/routes/31412216

No registration, no fee, no support services. Just show up and ride. You are responsible for you.

If you've made it this far, maybe you're interested. A few other details...

* There is a 1.5 mlle grassy trail loop in the Sac & Fox Wildlife area during mile 6. It's a mowed path, but if you don't have wide tires, it may be tough. In that case, you may want to hang out at the shelter there while others do that short loop. Also, for those doing that grass trail, there is a STEEP decline down into the valley....be careful!

* If you're curious, about 12 miles of the "long course" 40 mile route is Iowa River railbed gravel trail, and it's broken up into four sections for this ride; going north out of Eldora, then coming back from the northern-most part of the route back into Steamboat Rock, a section between Gifford and Union, and then the final section is the last few miles coming back into Eldora from the south. We'll cross several short railroad bridges, but no long / main bridges other than the renovated one over the river into Steamboat Rock. The route intentionally avoids the trail bridge over the South Fork Iowa River north of Gifford, as that bridge is in rough shape.

* While there will be an effort to regroup with most at least a few times along the way, folks are encouraged go along at whatever pace they want. Some may want / need to stop more often, but in cool weather, others may prefer to keep moving.

* Convenience stores / other. Happenings (bar) in Steamboat Rock is open at 11:00 for any that want to warm up / take a break. There is also a convenience store in town (The Rock Stop) at mile 13. After leaving Steamboat Rock, there are no other convenience stores open along the route until back to Eldora.

* A little snow would be nice, but if weather is rainy or conditions muddy, will likely postpone to later this year.

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Venue

Firehouse Saloon & Grill

1202 19th St.
Eldora, IA 50627
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