Archive for January, 2014

Populaire and Annual Meeting Both Rescheduled to Saturday, February 1st

Friday, January 24th, 2014

Dear Rando Friends,

The Glen Echo Populaire and the DCR Annual Meeting are both rescheduled to Saturday, February 1st.  All other details remain the same except for the date.  The populaire starts at 9am, and the annual meeting at 4pm; for details see  and
A topic for special discussion at the meeting will be the upcoming 1000km and we hope to get feedback from members about details of the event and about likely ridership.  So we really hope that you’ll be able to make it to the rescheduled meeting.
We had volunteers pre-drive portions of the populaire route.  Sixteen miles of the route are along River Road, on which the shoulders have not been plowed.  Riders could easily be forced into the main traffic lanes, and River Road can often have a fair amount of fast-moving traffic.  The northern part of the route goes on smaller, shaded, and hilly roads, with the likelihood of snow and ice still being there.  Compounding that, the forecast is for a 60 to 70 percent chance of snow between 10am and 2pm all along the route with accumulation up to an inch.  So even aside from concern about traffic, visibility along the route may not be good, and you may not be able to see the road surface to even know if you’re approaching a sheet of black ice.  Finally, if we reschedule the populaire, and there is an inch of new snow on the roads, we think that possible attendees may just decide to skip the meeting.

So … after consultation with the DCR Board, I am making the call to reschedule the populaire, and Mike Wali is making the call to reschedule the annual meeting.

Hope to see you in a week and a day!

Best regards,
Nick Bull and Mike Wali

Cue sheet and GPS Files for Jan. 25th Glen Echo 106km

Monday, January 20th, 2014

The Glen Echo 106km populaire starts from the Glen Echo Town Hall at 9:00 AM on January 25th, 2014.  HOWEVER, please park in the Glen Echo Park parking lot, NOT in residential streets in the neighborhood. Details about how to get to the Glen Echo Park parking lot, and how to ride your bike to the Town Hall are here

Registration  starts at the Town Hall at 8:00 am.

The cue sheets are now posted at

The link to the GPS files is posted below. But please read this information before downloading them. Always get a copy of the final cue sheet. That final cue sheet contains the official route, so in case there is a conflict with the GPS file, you should resolve the conflict in favor of the cue sheet. Use the GPS as a handy-dandy adjunct. Keep your wits about you, as the GPS cannot notify you of road hazards — it is up to you to ride safely.We strongly recommend that you set your GPS to the settings below. We cannot guarantee that these will keep you on the official route, but if you have your GPS set some other way, it is entirely possible that it will take you off route, possibly onto unsafe roads. Go to the Setup->Routing page and set as follows:

Guidance Method: Follow Road
Follow Road Method: Shortest Distance
Next Turn Pop-Up: On
Follow Road Options:
Off Route Recalculation: Prompted
Calculation Method: Best Route
Calculate Routes for: Car/Motorcycle
Avoid: (set to none – the route itself should control this)

By the way … make sure that your GPS either has maps already downloaded, or select the relevant maps around the routes. The GPS files are posted in a zip file at

The route is also posted to RidewithGPS.  Don’t use the “cue sheet” generated by RWGPS … use the official cue sheet posted above.

Hotel Information for 2014 Brevets

Saturday, January 11th, 2014

Here is the hotel information associated with our brevets:I made reservations for blocks of 20 rooms for the Friday night before the 300 and 400 and for the  Friday and Saturday nights of the 600.  My thinking is that most people want a room before or during an event, but not after.  So for a two-loop 600 where you come back to the start for the overnight, people will want to keep a room for Saturday night that has all their stuff in it.

Let me know if that is how you actually like to book accommodations and if not, then I can phone the hotel back and potentially revise the block.

I chose 20 as the number of rooms on the assumption that most people will want to double up (or more), so this should be enough.  If the block fills up, we may be able to add more rooms.  Ideally, if we have filled up the block and there are latecomers to the ride, then earlybirds will be willing to share a room with a latecomer.

While I would encourage you to book early, please do not book and then just cancel since that potentially loses a room that someone else might want.  Contact me &/or the hotel if you want to cancel so that we can get the room put back into the block.

So … click to see the Calendar:

For the 300, there is a block of 20 rooms reserved at the Warrenton Hampton’s Inn for the night of Friday, April 11th at a price of  $129 per room.  Call 540-349-4200 and reference reservation code DCR.

For the 400, there is a block of 20 rooms reserved at the Frederick Day’s Inn for the night of May 2nd at a price of $70 per room.  Call 301-694-6600 and reference reservation code DCRAND.

For the 600, there is a block of 20 rooms reserved at the Warrenton Hampton’s Inn for the nights of May 16th and 17th at a price of $139 per room.   Call 540-349-4200 and reference reservation code DRB (not DCR).

For the 1000, there is a block  of 30 rooms. It’s really hard to say how many riders we’ll have.  I have in mind that with two riders per room, this lets us set a limit of 60 riders.  So please be willing to share a room if the block fills and we cannot get more rooms.  Who knows, maybe we’ll only get ten riders.  Or maybe people will come flooding in from all over the world and we’ll have to impose a limit.

While the route for the 1000 is not dead-set-certain, it seems probable that it will be Leesburg-Lexington-(West Virginia)-Lexington-Leesburg.  So …

The 1000 starts on Friday, September 5th, so the first night is for Thursday the 4th at the Leesburg, VA Comfort Suites $110 per room, call 703-669-1650 and reference “DC Rand Bike Tour”.

The hotel on route for the first and second overnight is included in the ride fee.  It’s at the Lexington, VA Best Western Hunt Ridge Inn for Friday the 5th and Saturday the 6th.

The final block of rooms is set at the ride-end at the Leesburg, VA Comfort Suites for Saturday the 6th and Sunday the 7th, again $110 per room, call 703-669-1650 and reference “DC Rand Bike Tour”.

The intention of that final block of rooms is that riders who expect to want a room when they finish can make their best judgment about when they expect to finish and book a room accordingly.  I do not think that riders will be required to book both nights but if that’s the feedback you get then I’ll call and talk with the hotel.

When should you expect to finish?  If you can finish the Middletown 600 or the Frederick 600 with three hours to spare, then my best guess is that you can finish the 1000 with three hours to spare.

Let me know if you run into problems reserving rooms.
Any updates to this info will be posted to the website’s blog.

Nick Bull

2014 Glen Echo Populaire, January 25th

Saturday, January 11th, 2014

Like last year, the populaire will start from the Glen Echo Town Hall.  Park is at the Glen Echo Park at the “P” on the map.  The neighbors will complain if we park in the neighborhood or the Town Hall and then we might not get invited back … don’t be that person!

Starting time is January 25th at 9 am.  There is no ride fee, but please pre-register so that we can plan for the correct number of riders. We have a new registration system courtesy of a tremendous amount of work by George Moore with some assistance from Bill Arcieri, Bill Beck, Mile Wali, and me.

Here is last year’s route.  Until the checkout ride has been completed, we can’t know if the description will be accurate …  The route heads up somewhat urban roads for the first fifteen miles to an info control at what used to be Poole’s Store at Seneca Creek State Park.  This store was founded in 1901, and was the oldest continuously operated country store in Montgomery County.

After Poole’s Store, there is a sharp but brief climb, after which the terrain moderates and the roads become very rural (and increasingly hilly).  Some of the roads are also quite shaded, so watch carefully for icy spots.  The next control is at Denise Bakery and Deli (formerly Hyattstown Deli), which is your first lunch opportunity.  (Alternative: grab a quick something at Hyattstown and eat a more substantial sit-down lunch at Cugini’s in Poolesville.)

Returning to Peach Tree road, the route passes its high point, 700′, at about mile 46, just south of Comus Road, and enters the town of Poolesville. A final stretch along River Road will return riders to the DC Randonneurs meeting in Glen Echo, starting at 4pm.  The final twenty miles have a net descent of around 600 feet, helping them go by more quickly, though there’s enough up and down to keep your attention.
(About 4600 feet of elevation gain, which is a fairly typical rate of climbing per mile for DCR brevets.)