18 Oct 2015, 08:46

Goodbye Quest

Well, I sold the Quest - the most photographed riding machine I have ever owned.

The Quest was an incredible machine, always lots of comments at rides and many photos taken.

I purchased the Quest in August of 2014 and sold it October 2015 putting 3,972.3 miles on it. The first month of riding I put just over 800 miles on it.

The Quest is definitely the king of the roadies. I captured many Strava KOMs in the Georgetown area trading first place back and forth with professional triathletes, mainly depending upon the strength of a good tailwind for them and dead still air for me.

I also did more centuries (100 mile rides) with the Quest than any other bike. With three wheel independent suspension it has an amazing ability to cover a lot of ground in great comfort.

  • Austin to Shiner GASP ride - 100 miles - 5 hours 40 minutes
  • 24 Hours in the Canyon race - 100 miles - 7 hours 22 minutes - climbed the canyon wall!
  • RUSA 160k - 101.7 miles - 109.4 degrees high temperature
  • Hotter N’Hell ride - 100 miles - 5 hours 39 minutes
  • 18 Strava KOMs in the Georgetown area

It went to a great home - congrats Greg Gross!

One last ride in the minivan for the Quest as I deliver it to it’s new owner.


The Quest

Washed, waxed, buffed and ready to roll.


24 Sep 2015, 09:15

Quest - For sale! (Sale Pending)

Well the Quest is now for sale - $6,000 - located near Austin Texas.

Why am I selling this fantastic machine? Because I purchased a DF-XL and need to make room in the garage (according to the wife two velos not allowed).


I purchased the Quest August 2014 when it only had about 200 miles on it. You can read about the purchase and bringing it home here: http://danhansenjr.com/2014/08/01/quest-arrives-home-.html

I have put almost 4,000 miles on the Quest since then on many epic rides:

  • 2014 Cove House Classic
  • 2014 Hotter N’ Hell
  • 2014 Waco Wild West 100
  • 2015 Georgetown Autism Ride
  • 2015 GASP
  • 2015 Tour de Vineyard
  • 2015 24 Hours in the Canyon
  • 2015 Tour d’Italia
  • 2015 Hotter N’ Hell

You can read about these rides (many of them contain videos) and most of my training rides on my blog http://danhansenjr.com.

Here is a pretty good post about Strava KOM hunting (includes video): http://danhansenjr.com/2014/11/02/quest-kom-hunting-3-koms-and-one-2nd-place-video-.html

Quest ride history:



The Quest is serial number CB0025. I have upgraded the front chain rings, front tires and the rear shock. The body is in great shape. Never been wrecked, crashed or rolled. There are scrapes on the bottom from driveways, speed bumps, etc..

Not sure what the official weight is but it is pretty heavy compared to a brand new carbon fiber Quest.

Everything I have in the garage that is Quest specific I will be including with the Quest. Tires (many), tubes (many), tools, bags, accessories, etc., etc..

There are currently no peddles on it (I moved my Garmin Vector 2 power peddles to the DF-XL). I can install a set of SPD or Speedplay I have laying around if need be.

  • Full suspension
  • Sturmey Archer 70mm drum brakes
  • Custom Triple front crank (58/46/30)
  • 9 speed Shimano rear cassette (11-34 I think it is a -34, it might be a -32)
  • SRAM Grip Shift
  • Drive system completely isolated from the elements
  • Monocoque design
  • Yellow
  • Front tires: f-Lites (w/ extra pair)
  • Rear tire: Schwalbe Marathon Plus 
  • Kayak style cockpit cover 
  • Lighting package (front/rear/interior light/ composite “dash”)
  • Turn Signals/Hazards/Running lights
  • Cateye  computer
  • Brake light
  • Electric Horn
  • Second Mirror
  • Fabric Wheel
  • Ventisit Comfort Seat Cushion
  • Risse Shock (rear)
  • Convenience Handle (Tail Mounted)
  • Accessory light mount

Also for sale separately Schermer One Piece Racing Hood w/NACA air duct $500.

29 Aug 2015, 09:06

Quest - Hotter N'Hell Ride Report (videos)


This was my third year at HHH100 and my best ride so far.

Did the 100 mile route in my fastest time yet. The recumbents start a few minutes before everyone else and the certificate below does not refelect the actual start time. Garmin and Strava indicate that my total elapsed time was 5 hours and 39 minutes for the 100 miles.


Starting with the Bradfords

Again this year we stayed with Gary and Gay and their family.

A picture of Robyn and Gay just before the start of the ride.


Another picture of Robyn, Gay and family at the start.


Robyn rode with the kids and they had a blast. They went on the 10k route and every time the little girl went down an incline she would scream “I’m going 100 miles an hour!”.

The Start

This is a very long video showing the start of HHH100. It covers the first 10 miles from Wichita Falls to Iowa Park which I did averaging almost 21 mph the whole way.

I try to get in as many miles as I can early in the ride to avoid the heat that occurs later in the morning.

All the recumbents start together at the front of the line. Must have been a couple of hundred. Recognized a lot of friends at the start. Next year I need to get to the start line a little earlier so that I can visit before the ride. Once the ride start everyone turns all business like.

Fast Pace Lines

Around mile 28 there start a four mile gradual uphill into Electra. This is where the very fast pelotons start catching and passing me. The pelotons are groups of 50 to 80 riders drafting together to try and finish the ride in a certain time - under 5 hours, under 6 hours, etc.

It is pretty amazing when they start flying by you.

One of these days I’m going to make it to Electra before they catch me.

New Roadie Code Word Discovered

Riding into Burkburnett I caught up with one of the slower pelotons. There were a lot of them in a very long line consuming the whole width of the lane. The road conditions were perfect for the Quest (slightly downhill and very smooth) and I decided to pass them all.

I crank up the watts on the power meter and started flying by them. Well I learned a new code word these fast riders have. After I pass a few riders I hear one of them yell “Holy Sh!t”. If you listen closely in the video you can hear them yell it out.

I pass a few more and again another rider yells out “Holy Sh!t”. I must have heard that yell about 6 or 7 times before reaching the front of the peloton.

As I’m approaching the front two riders I hear the one in the back yell to the one in the front “Get ready, I heard a Holy - HOLY SHIT!” as I flew by them. I guess the front two thought that someone was going to try to sprint out the front of the pack and they were going to chase them down. Good luck with that.

They finally did catch me about four miles later on another uphill.

Garmin Vector Power Meter

One of the reasons I did ok on the ride is that a few weeks ago I started riding with a power meter.

I got the Garmin Vector 2 power meter peddles. I just replaced mys existing peddles with these and then wireless (Ant+) to the Garmin 1000.


After the first hour I knew that I would have to reduce the effort a bunch if I wanted to finish the ride and not have to pull over later on and fight the cramps.

This is kind of an interesting chart of speed vs heart rate vs power. Last ten miles of the ride I was just trying to coast as much as possible. I was pretty much spent by that time.


Strava KOMs

Well, strava really like my ride. Twenty-four trophies because this was my fastest time to complete the ride.


By The Numbers


bordered http://www.strava.com/activities/381294325


bordered http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/882979193

20 Jun 2015, 21:59

Quest - Tour d'Italia

What a blast!

Got up bright and early at 4:30am to drive to Italy, Texas for the Tour d’Italia. This was my third time for this ride and the first in the Quest.


The town population probably triples during this ride with more than 1,200 riders spread amongst the various routes.

I started up front with the fast rider doing the 63 mile route. By the time we took a couple of twisty turns on getting away from the High School starting line and out onto the main road out of town about 60 strong riders had already passed me.


Once onto the main road the fun started. Smooth road and a little down hill allowed me to quickly catch and pass all the riders and around the first mile marker I passed the leaders. Well they took that as a challenge not to let the old fat guy in the banana get out in front. They hunkered down, put the peddle to the metal, to catch me and hang onto my tail for as long as they could. We cruised at 32 to 33 mph with them drafting right on my tail for the next 3 miles on very level road. Every time I looked in my rear view mirrors they had their serious looking riding faces on, were in a very tight pace line and just inches from my rear bumper.

My heart rate was pegged at 150 and I was putting some hard effort (for me) into the peddling.

Eventually around the 2.9 mile mark I hit a slight downhill and was able to up the speed to 36-37 mph and hold it for about 1/2 mile. This allowed me to start pulling away and they then back off on their speed significantly.


At 4.5 miles started a long uphill climb which really slowed my speed down. The lead pack quickly caught me and passed me like I was standing still. I looked at my average speed and I averaged 27.5 mph for the first 4.5 miles. It quickly decreased to 22.5 mph while I climbed the first long hill.

Around mile 15 started a 10 mile stretch, very slightly downhill and into a significant headwind. I caught most of everyone who had passed me on the last 5 mile rolling, climbing terrain by the time I reached Silver City.

The road was a glass smooth 3 miles on Route 31 from Silver City to the turn off for Navarro Mills. Four lanes with a middle median, and a very wide shoulder to ride on, good downhill but a very significant head wind. The second to the lead pack was in front of me and I used the opportunity to draft them for the first mile while I caught my breath and rested some.

The last mile of Route 31 before the Navarro Mills turn off started with a good downhill and I was able to boost the Quest speed to 30 mph - into the headwind! I quickly passed the group in front of me and held 30 mph for the next mile until I had to turn on route 667 heading north back to Italy. I managed to hold off all but two of the stronger riders from the second pack by the time I reached rest stop 3.


About mile 31 Mark and Linda Metcalfe pass me for the last time. We had been trading places for the last 30 miles. I get ahead on the downhills, they get ahead on the uphills. By now my legs were toast and this time when they passed me I knew that I would not be catching them again.

It 33.5 miles the routes split between the 63 mile route and the 50 mile route. Seeings as how I had started way too fast and my legs were talking loudly to me, I made a command decision to shorten my ride from the planned 63 miler to the easy-peasy, 50 miler.

Turns out where the 50 mile route splits from the 63 mile route, the 40 mile route re-joins and I spent the remaining 17 miles passing riders left and right. Several times some strong 40 milers would see me coming from way back and try to hold me off as long as possible. There were two exceptionally strong 40 milers that managed to hold me off for several miles. One woman rider I did not catch until just a couple of miles from the finish.

All in all a great ride. 50 miles at 19.0 mph.


bordered http://www.strava.com/activities/329308661


bordered http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/809562977

13 Jun 2015, 09:01

Quest - RUSA Populaire 160k

What a wonderful day - 101.7 miles, 109.4 high temperature, 3,519 calories, great company on the ride and beautiful scenery.


Friday afternoon I headed to Fort Worth to spend the night at Alexis and Greg’s so that bright and early Saturday Greg and I could drive over to Mansfield for the start of the Lynn Creek Marina Century 162k RUSA Populaire.

This would be my second RUSA ride - and as it turns out - great practice for the Hotter N’ Hell later this year in the middle of August.

Saturday morning Greg and I arrive at the start fresh and ready to ride. Here is Greg getting ready to ride. The sun was just rising and the day was looking beautiful.


Everybody else assembling for the start. Here is Steven Hazelton (left) and Debbie Breaud (right), the rider in the middle was on the 255k route and I did not get his name. I think there were about 10 riders on the 100 miler (160k).


The route was really hard for me in the velomobile. The first five miles was basically coasting slightly downhill on very smooth roads and a couple of stop lights. Wanting to stay with the group I was riding the brakes a lot to keep the speed down.

But then at mile 5 the climbing started and just never seemed to stop. Greg waited for me several times at turns to make sure I did not get in any bonus miles (thanks Greg!).

There was one steep hill climb I’m now calling “Leg press hill”. I crawled up the last 30 yards of that hill leg pressing the peddles only able to turn the cranks about 20 rpm. It was all I could do to not start rolling backwards. There was a second hill just like that one but I was a little smarter and got out of the velo and walk the final 40 yards up it.

The first control (and rest stop) at mile 30 in Maypearl could not come soon enough. By now it was 9:30 am and the sun was starting to burn through the early morning cloud cover. From here on out the sun’s intensity would be constantly increasing hitting 100 degrees just before noon and a high of 109 on the pavement by 1 pm.

At the second control (Waxahachie) Debbie Breaud (RAAM Finisher!) has her picture taken with the Quest. Notice at this point in the ride she is still all smiles. Even though I’m trying to smile it probably still looks like a grimace. The heat was getting pretty fierce.


We probably spent three hours riding in temperatures over 100. I was not prepared and around mile 90 had to pull off the side of the road into some shade to get relief from the sun. Greg left me use his homemade tube-sock coolers which helped tremendously. After several minutes of cool down I was ready to start riding again - but at a much slower pace.

Eventually we got to the last 10 miles of the ride which was a big downhill then mostly flat to the finish. Still it was all I could do to finish in the terrific heat.

Good planning on the Steven’s part to end the ride at a What-a-Burger. AIR CONDITIONING!!! Greg and I must have sat in the heat sucking down liquids for the next hour while I cooled down from the ride. No dehydration, but I did have heat rash on the tops of my thighs.

Over the next few weeks I’m going to have to work on my techniques for riding in the heat.

All in all, I really enjoyed the ride. I’d do it again in a heart beat. Although, I will have better heat control techniques next time.


bordered http://www.strava.com/activities/325481572


bordered http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/804100942

31 May 2015, 18:50

Quest - 24 Hours in the Canyon (videos)

My second time racing at “24 Hours in the Canyon”!

Great picture taken by an overhead drone of the start of the 24 hour race.


There are several race categories starting at the same time:

  • 24 Hour Road Bike Competitive
  • 24 Hour Mountain Bike Competitive
  • 24 Hour Human Powered Vehicle (HPV) Competitive
  • 24 Hour Road Bike Non-Competitive
  • 24 Hour Mountain Bike Non-Competitive
  • 24 Hour Road Team
  • 24 Hour Mountain Bike Team
  • 24 Hour Slicks and Knobies

Of course, the category I was in (HPV) was required to climb up and out the canyon wall to first ride a 100 mile loop outside the canyon before returning back down the wall and doing loops inside the canyon.

But, I’m getting ahead of myself. Lets start at the beginning.

A few months ago Billy Younts facebooks me asking if I want to race in “24 Hours in the Canyon” with him with the velomobiles. Well, I commit and we work with the organizers to create a ‘Human Powered Vehicle’ (HPV) category. It’s happening. 24 Hours in the Canyon now has a HPV category. Wednesday I pack and load the minivan for the trip to Palo Duro Canyon.


After spending Thursday night with Billy and his wife Angie, on Friday we load up and head to Palo Duro Canyon to spend Friday night camping in the canyon. Being both overachievers we are one of the firsts to arrive and setup our tents at the campgrounds.

Friday night was full of thunder, lightening and lots of rain. But, we survived and Saturday morning found us readying the Quest and Strada for the race start at noon.

Lots of people stopped by Saturday morning asking many questions about the velos.


Almost the beginning of the race. People lining up. Much excitement.

We found out later at one of the rest stops outside the canyon that there were only 45 competitive riders that were brave enough to tackle the canyon wall. All the other 24 hour riders chose categories that kept them in the bottom of the canyon and avoided the wall.


Video of the start of the ride. A couple of good downhills. Mostly getting out of the canyon was all about going uphill.

At the 24 second mark the race winner passes me. I never see him again until the awards ceremony. He set a course record of 442 miles in 24 hours. Really good considering all the climbing involved.

The competitive mountain bikers started first with a 5 minute head start. We caught them pretty quick once we could start using the hills as rollers.

We were very close to the head of the pack when we got to the bottom of the big canyon wall. (then depression set in)

Close to the start of the ride there was a photographer taking pictures. A couple of good pictures of Billy and I as we cruise just outside of the starting gate.


The “look” (what is that thing? hmmm, must have a motor in it)


Yep, I’m pretty sure this one has a motor.


bordered At the bottom Billy and I got out of the vehicles, put on our 'running' shoes and proceeded to spend the next 45 minutes pushing the velos up the canyon wall. My heart rate was through the roof.

One quarter of the way up the wall. The views were incredible.


Billy wasn’t having any problems pushing his strada up the hill.


Marsh-mellow man was having a very difficult time. This was one of my many rest stops.


Finally, out of the park and riding into the distance on a very gorgeous day.


Billy and I managed to ride the 100 mile loop in about 6 hours. Here is a video towards the end of the race heading back to the canyon.

Entering the park and then down the canyon wall. It only took 4 minutes to get down the wall. I was riding the brakes the whole way. Towards the bottom of the canyon I could tell the effect it was having on the drum brakes and my front suspension system. Twice I did not think the velo was going to slow down enough for the next hairpin corner even though I was squeezing the brake handle for all I was worth.

It is a long video but I wanted to capture how beautiful the scenery is while riding around the bottom of the canyon.

Finished the 100 mile loop. Back at the camp site. Originally I had big dreams of riding some laps around the canyon bottom but I was much too tired to even think of getting back into the velo again.


Greg Gross finished the 12 Hour Recumbent race strong taking first place and setting a new course record.


Podium finishers in the HPV category! Billy 1st, me 2nd.


I survived. This race is NOT recumbent friendly. The views are incredible. The challenge is difficult. One more thing crossed off the bucket list.


bordered http://www.strava.com/activities/296941825


bordered http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/792229901

02 May 2015, 07:40

Quest - Tour de Vineyard

What a beautiful day it turned out to be for a nice ride in the country.

Lots of hills - but the scenery was gorgeous!

Lining up at the start of the ride (I always seem to be the first one to the starting line), Brian Buckmaster took this picture of me relaxing in the Quest. Hmmm, for some reason the word ‘dork’ comes to mind. Not sure if it is the orange helmet, feet sticking out, or the big yellow velomobile. I guess it is what it is - I sure do enjoy relaxing riding around the country side in the quest.


Eventually everyone else started lining up also. Tour de Vineyard is a pretty small ride with maybe 200 to 300 riders. These women riders starting just behind the quest put the hurt on me for the first 15 miles until we started getting some long downhill stretches.


Lots of hills. I spent a significant amount of time in the granny gear. Usually this ride heads south from Florance towards Georgetown and Andice. However, this year due to road construction the route was north to Killeen, Stillhouse Hollow Lake and then Salado. I’ve ridden these roads quite a few times before and there are some pretty good climbs. Although I was thankful they did route around Eagle’s Nest Hill which is hill I have always had to walk up no matter what bike I was on.

Had lots of people pass me on the first big climb about mile 5. By mile 20 I only had two people in front of me. Around mile mile 41 on the last long climb there were about 10 people that passed me climbing up to the top. The last 3 mile downhill segment I passed everyone doing 46 mph (my top speed for the ride). I think I finished third, but I not really sure. My 15.9 mph average is a pretty slow average for the good upright riders even if there were a lot of steep hills.


At the finish. I rode straight through with no stops.

On the last climb I had one guy pass me saying “Man, I’ve passed you 10 times now.” Once we crested the top of the last hill and started the big downhill the quest coasted up to above 40 mph and I did not see him again until he arrived at the finish line.

Susan, Brian’s wife, said I was the talk of the rest stops. *“When he passed me he must have been doing at least 40 mph.”

Sitting in my camping chair having a drink afterwards a young very fit couple comes up with their son who wants to see “the rocket”. The man approaches and says loudly “What is your name?”. I reply Dan Hansen. “So you’re the one with all the Strava KOMs! We live in Georgetown and see you riding all the time. We try to catch you but it is impossible.”



bordered http://www.strava.com/activities/296941825


bordered http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/763289724

25 Apr 2015, 01:44

Quest - GASP 2015

The 2015 GASP (Greater Austin to Shiner Peddle) is in the books. Five hours 40 minutes elapsed time - 3,096 calories burned - 17.4 mph average.

The start of the ride was very wet with severe thunderstorms having just rolled through the area a few minutes prior to the ride. We actually ended up catching the storm and rode in the pelting rain for about an hour. Fortunately all the thunder and lightening was long gone and we only had to contend with the pouring rain.


The start was incredibly fast. Being slightly downhill for quite aways, and a little into the wind, I quickly dropped everyone and led for the first 10 miles. After 4 or 5 miles it was just me and the lead out vehicle and everyone else was so far behind that you could not see them anymore. Eventually, at an intersection the lead out vehicle told the motorcycle policeman to pace me while the lead out vehicle circled back to pace everyone else.

Eleven miles in I hit the first sustained uphill and then a huge, 50+ riders, pack passed me on the uphill. I’d been averaging probably 26+ mph but this long uphill slowed me down to 10 mph for quite a while.

Here you can see that even with the long uphill I still averaged over 21 mph for the first 10 miles and about 20.5 mph average for the first hour of riding.


And then the rain starts. Big ol’drops, that when you’re traveling 30 mph really hurt when they hit your face. Well, at least I was mostly enclosed in the velomobile. Glad I was not on a normal bike.

The quest is a real speed demon.

Year Elapsed Time (HH:MM) Description
2015 5:40 Quest (10 mph headwind a lot of the way)
2014 7:14 Bacchetta TiAero (10 mph headwind whole way)
2013 6:22 Musashi (10 mph tailwind)
2012 7:41 Optima Baron (really wiped out at end)
2011 - Musashi DNF after 88 miles

My best GASP time by far and I was very tired at the end but not extremely wiped out like I have been in prior years.

I only stopped once on the ride at the 45 mile marker rest stop. Needed to “de-hydrate”. Once back on the road I went the remaining 65 miles without stopping. I supplied pretty good, stayed well hydrated, plenty of home-brew sports mix. Energy chews, cliff bars, etc.. I had lots of food left over and a whole 16 oz bottle of water unopened.

Shortly after the 65 mile mark I could tell I was starting to cramp some (inter-quads) so I started stretching while coasting the downhills and very easy peddling the uphills. About mile 85 I started getting some hot foot which I was also able to stretch out somewhat. Mile 90 my left knee was getting really sore whenever I put any power into peddling so I mainly did pulling with the left leg and easy pushing with the right leg.

Tomorrow I’ll be icing down the knees for sure.

About the 65 mile mark I decide to call Robyn and let her know about when I should be arriving in Shiner. Well, I got her voice mail and started leaving my message with my usual greeting “Hey love, how’s it going?” - immediately the woman on her bike just in front of me turns around faster than I could blink and stares at me real hard. Hmmm, maybe I should hold the phone up to where she can see it. I know the yellow banana bike is a chick magnet but she did not look amused.

About 70 miles in I started passing riders who had started at the 50 mile point for the Half-GASP ride. In prior years I was lucky if I could catch some just before arriving at the Shiner brewery. This year I passed a bunch of them, especially on the long hill just heading out of Moulton which is about 8 miles from the finish. After 88 miles, I, and everybody else, where just trying to finish the ride without keeling over with exhaustion. Very few people were passing me on the uphills anymore, but on the downhills I was coasting up to 25 mph passing riders left and right.

It has been five years now since I took up riding. The GASP ride is one of the first organized rides I ever rode. It has been a good five years with lots of riding memories. Who knows, I might actually stick with this riding thing.


bordered http://www.strava.com/activities/292505994


bordered http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/756744449

21 Apr 2015, 09:17

Quest - Getting ready for GASP 2015

Looks like things are working out this year such that I can ride the Quest in the GASP this year.

This blog entry is about my efforts towards getting the Quest ready for GASP 2015.

The GASP ride (Greater Austin to Shiner Peddle) ride is a one way ride from Austin TX to the Shiner TX brewery. They usually meander the route a little bit for it to end up being a really nice century (100 mile) ride. You can either have someone meet you in Shiner to give you a ride back, or you can pay a little bit extra to take a bus back to the start in Austin and they will also haul your bike back in an 18 wheeler to the start.

This year my wife Robyn, and her sister Liz, will meet me in Shiner to have a few brews and give me a lift back. Last year they were off glamping in the AirStream so I took the bus back and had the organizers truck the TiAreo back in the 18 wheeler. Work has been a little crazy lately but things are starting to calm down and Saturday is looking good to do the ride.

I’ve ridden this ride 4 times before:

  • 2014 : Bacchetta TiAero 7:14 elasped time (10 mph headwind whole way)
  • 2013 : Musashi 6:22 elasped time (10 mph tailwind)
  • 2012 : Optima Baron 7:41 minutes (really wiped out at end)
  • 2011 : Musashi DNF after 88 miles

I’m hoping the Quest will give me a sub 6 hour ride. My training has been pretty skimpy this year and my longest ride so far has been 65 miles last Sunday. I’m thinking that if I just do a bunch of coasting on the downhills, and take it pretty easy on the uphills, I should be ok doing the 100 miles.

We shall see :smile:

The Quest

Washed, waxed, buffed and ready to roll.


The Route

The 2015 route map is the same as last year’s:


Stuff to pack in Quest

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve driven to an event and found that I had forgotten something back at home. I’ve never forgotten the bike, but everything else if fair game: a helmet, camelbak, water bottles, tire pump, drinks, etc, etc. - you name and it and I’ve probably left it behind at least once.

Now in an effort to not forget forget things I usually put together various checklists and my whole riding experience ends up being much more enjoyable.


Of course, with the Quest I end up taking a lot more stuff on the ride than I do with a normal recumbent.

FYI - The picture is missing a few things but they are included in the checklists below.


Things to put in the backback which the GASP organizers will take to Shiner for me

  • sports towel for showering
  • shorts w/built-in mesh, lightweight tee-shirt
  • lightweight long sleeve sunscreen shirt
  • big brimmed roll-up hat
  • minimalist running shoes (Vivobarefoot)
  • small bottle liquid soap
  • sunscreen
  • aloe vera gel (small container)
  • cliff bars
  • yellow Ankr battery
  • iPad mini in water proof case
  • reading glasses

Things to do Early Friday Afternoon

  • pick up ride packet from Jack Adams on south Congress

  • make a bottle of sports drink and refrigerate overnight (40oz Growler).

  • position 56oz Growler next to fridge for mixing in morning

  • program garmin 800 for turn by turn diretions (already done)

  • load backpack

  • put ride number on quest, helmet, shirt

  • check tire pressure

  • review checklists

Things to load in the Quest Late Friday Afternoon

  • mount on the Quest

    • red tail light
    • garmin virb
  • inside the Quest

    • on the right side floor

      • bottle of sports mix
      • map pouch
      • ride packet
      • 16 oz bottled water (emergency)
    • on the left side floor

      • tire pump
      • kayak cover
      • blue nike grab sack (details below)
      • top rear rack bag (details below)
      • red wipe clothes (3)
      • micro-fiber cloth for cleaning glasses
  • seating on seat (to wear for ride)

    • helmet (peztel)
    • sun glasses
    • heart rate monitor
    • road id
    • bicycle shoes
    • compressions socks (might just wear these from house)
    • defeet socks
  • in handlebar bag (goes on right side floor)

    • garmin edge 800
    • 4 chews packages
    • 2 cliff bars
    • one PayDay candy bar
    • gutter sweat band
    • iPod for music
    • Hammer Enderolyes Extreme capsules (many)
    • cheater reading glasses
  • in top rear rack bag (goes on left side floor)

    • growler filled with water and fizzies
    • head lamp for getting ready in the dark
    • tri-flow chain oil (for squeeky front shocks)
    • backup emergency food
      • payday bar
      • two gel packs
      • fizzies
    • sun screen (bull frog)
    • put sunscreen on before ride starts if clear day
    • spare red cloth for wiping hands after fiddling with chain
    • black Ankr battery (w/usb cord)
  • in blue nike grab sack (checked completed)

    • spare flite front tire
    • spare inner tubes (2)
    • patch kit
    • rain jacket
    • long sleeve hi-vis shirt
    • tire irons
    • CO2 cartridges w/presta-adaptor
    • patch kit
    • universal parks tool
    • 3 paper towels
    • reading glasses

Things to put in the minivan Friday Afternoon

  • Floor tire pump
  • Cooler w/ drinks for ride and afterwards
  • backpack
  • camping chairs (3)
  • camping air mattress
  • camping sleeping bag
  • toolbox
  • loaded Quest (lock brakes)

Things to do Friday Night

  • charge Garmin Edge 800

  • charge Garmin VIRB

  • charge iPhone

  • charge black Ankr battery (w/usb cord)

  • charge red tail light

  • charge iPod for music

  • charge JBL round bluetooth speaker

  • put quest in minivan

Things to do Saturday morning before leaving house

  • have breakfest w/coffee
  • coffee for drive to south Austin start
  • review checklists

19 Apr 2015, 07:33

Quest - RUSA 104k Ride Report

A few months ago I signed Robyn and I up to Randonneurs USA. Kind of on a whim, but really some day hoping to do some really long multi-day rides.

From rusa.org:

Randonneuring is long-distance unsupported endurance cycling. This style of riding is non-competitive in nature, and self-sufficiency is paramount. When riders participate in randonneuring events, they are part of a long tradition that goes back to the beginning of the sport of cycling in France and Italy. Friendly camaraderie, not competition, is the hallmark of randonneuring.

And then a few weeks ago Peter Nagel friended me on facebook. Peter is a well known rusa member around the Austin area who happens to live in Georgetown too.

Saturday evening Peter fb message me about a ride Sunday morning. Since I was planning a 65 mile ride to Salado anyway I decided instead to meet up with Peter and do my first RUSA ride.

RUSA is an interesting organization somehow affiliated with the international version of the group (ACP) which dates back to 1891.

There is a local chapter in Austin - Hill Country Randonneurs. You can check out the links below.


RUSA events are published routes and since they are unsupported they are very well documented online. I followed the links on the Hill Country Randonneurs site http://www.hillcountryrandonneurs.com/flograngerperm.htm to download the various route sheets, maps, brevet card, etc.

There was also a link to RideWithGPS.com which had great instructions on downloading the route to my Garmin Edge 800.

In the past I have never had great success with turn-by-turn routing with the garmin. RideWithGPS had very specific instructions on how to setup your garmin for bicycle route guidance.

I decided what the heck, I’ll try one more time with garmin. At least I’ll be with Peter if I get lost. I configured the garmin according to the RideWithGPS instructions and downloaded the course to the garmin unit.

Turns out this worked perfectly!

The route started and ended just north of the Berry Creek subdivision meandered through the country side making a loop touching west to Florence and then east to Granger. I’ve ridden most of these roads many times so a lot of the route was very familiar territory.


Arriving at the Berry Creek Food Mart around 6:30 am I nervously waited for others to arrive. It was very overcast and drizzling a little. Sunrise was around 7am and with the overcast it was still pretty dark even just a little before 7am.

Just about 7am Peter comes ridding up on his bike (maybe I should have ridden my Quest to the start?). After introductions and some initial paperwork we start out. I guess other rides like to ride Saturdays instead of Sundays but today worked well for me with my current hectic work schedule.

The RUSA rules have certain safety requirements (lights, helmets, reflective gear, etc.) and certain documentation requirements which help show proof of ride performance. One of these is stopping at specific convenience stores, purchasing something and getting a timestamped receipt. Since one usually has to stop anyway (for the obvious reason) and since one usually buys a cold drink anyway when stopping - the RUSA documentation requirements are pretty much a non-issue.

I did have to carry a zip lock baggie to collect the receipts. The baggie also held my route sheet and brevet card. At one of the first stops I realized that I really should be also carrying a pen so one of my purchases was a bic ball point pen.

I have a cue sheet map container somewhere in the garage. I’ll have to dig through my stuff and get organized better for my next RUSA ride.

It was a long slightly uphill climb out of Georgetown to Florence. My heart rate stayed medium high. I had left my long sleeved shirt on at the start because the temp was about 60 degrees. That was a mistake. As soon as it was convenient I pulled over and removed the long sleeve shirt leaving just a thin short-sleeve tee shirt on.

About 9ish we rolled into Florence. The sun was starting to come out and at the stop I put on some sun screen on my face and arms. Being enclosed in the quest I did not need any sunscreen on my legs.

Here is a good picture as we roll out of Florence heading south on 195.


I had shined up the front of the quest the day before and like the reflections off the front hood.

Saturday I had also installed some new tires on the Quest - FLites. These are 50-406s and inflated to 50 psi. These tires were purchased based up on advice of quite a few others on BROL (bentrideronline.com). The tires are incredible! At 50 psi and 50mm wide they really smooth out ALL chip seal. At times I could see that I was on really bad chip seal but with these tires you can roll along in the quest at 20 mph and not be able to tell anything about the road.

They are a special order item - I highly recommend them.


These tires, combined with some pretty good quartering headwind lead to one of those magical moments in bicycling.

Five miles from Granger The road was chip-seal, but level and with a quartering headwind of 15 mph gusting to 25 mph.

For five miles I just coasted in the Quest. The front quartering headwind pushed the quest forward like a sail boat tacking in the wind. My heart rate dropped to 100 bpm and several time dropped into the 90s bpm. I just soft spun my legs to keep them moving so that I would not cramp later when I would need to start peddling again.

The headwind just pushed me along at 10 to 15 mph without any effort on my part at all!

After twenty minutes of coasting we entered into Granger. It sure is a pretty town.

As the day warmed up Peter makes a comment to me “That helmet looks hot, is it a ski helmet?”

Well no, it is not. Now that you mention it though, it does seem hot. Hmmm, looking at my ride analysis afterwards shows that in the quest leaving Granger, cycling slowly, up the hills, the temperature in the quest was pretty much a constant 97 degrees. I’d loaded my beer growler up (with water) at the beginning of the ride and had been diligent to making sure to drink lots of water throughout the ride. I guess for the rest of the summer I’ll have to wear a different helmet with more ventilation. Maybe I’ll borrow Robyn’s new helmet and give it a try.

Getting from Grange back to Georgetown turned out not to be as much fun. Lots of turns and hills. The turns just happened to be placed to make it impossible to carry the quest momentum and turn the hills into rollers.

Oh well, tough getting back, but what a beautiful, sunny, day!

Peter took a picture of me at the finish:


In all it was a fun, beautiful ride. What a great way to spend a morning.

Thanks Peter for the invite!


bordered http://www.strava.com/activities/288673513


bordered http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/751211299