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30th Year Of RAMROD Ride Will Bring 800 Cyclists To Mount Rainier National Park


A "recreational" biking event will bring 800 cyclists to Mount Rainier National Park this week for the 30th Annual RAMROD, or Ride Around Mount Rainier In One Day.

With the ride set for Thursday, park officials are warning other visitors what to expect and what to watch out for.

"Due to safety concerns and to minimize impact to other park visitors, the number of riders participating in this non-competitive recreational ride has been limited to 800 pre-registered riders—all rider slots have been assigned and registration for the 2013 RAMROD has been closed," Mount Rainier officials said in a release. "Motorists coming to the park that day should expect some traffic delays, congestion around designated checkpoints and support areas, long lines of bicyclists sharing the roadway and extra emphasis by law enforcement of speeding and other traffic violations that could pose a risk to riders."

Park officials also stressed that "(D)rivers and pedestrians are cautioned that bicyclists in large numbers will be sharing park roadways, including the road east from Nisqually Entrance, Stevens Canyon Road, State Route 123 and State Route 410 throughout the day."

More so, "(S)low traffic along the riding route should be expected, as road shoulders are narrow or non-existent along many sections. Drivers may encounter bicyclists walking their bikes up the long grade or riding slowly to maintain control over sections of the roadway. Motorists are requested to use extra care when passing bicyclists, and to do so only when there is sufficient road clearance and an unimpeded line of sight to do so safely."


precedent and CYA are larger factors, IMO.

That well may be when it comes to the NPS decision making process. But what about PEER or some of the members of this board? What is their excuse for the hypocrisy of decrying a pro event while remaining silent on an amateur event with far more impact? They aren't ruled by precedent and certainly don't care about CYA.

To be fair, and as exemplified by this website, regardless of what decision they take, somebody is going to be angry. So, the NPS likes to take no decision.

Good point about the lack of website publicity, Megaera. Typical of our out-of-touch Rainier management. They announced last winter's weekday closures of Paradise with almost an afterthought on Twitter, then had a couple public meetings weeks later. Probably the project managers told the Stevens Canyon contractors to have an all day safety meeting Thursday. I can't imagine they will continue the current thirty-minute construction delays.

The permitted RAMROD event appears to me to have greater impacts on park visitors than the Tour of Utah or the proposed Colorado NM race. And yes, there will be TV cameras, probably from all the local stations, maybe even helicopters, Rick!

The number of cyclists circling Rainier is much larger and they are much more stretched out than a pro race. The rear is probably twenty of thirty miles behind the front by afternoon. The distances within the park are much larger and include two climbs of thousands of vertical feet. At least it no longer goes directly through Paradise.

It's not just delays for motorists along the narrow winding roads; businesses, turnouts, and the few restrooms are mobbed. There are extra demands on park staff as well. Last year's event included a fatality:

NPS management may find it expedient to explain their inconsistent cycling policy by distinguishing between pro and amateur events. However, ec, I don't think money, or even impact on the visitor or the park, is really at the root of it. Precedent and CYA are larger factors, IMO. It would be unpopular to end RAMROD after thirty years; it might be a career risk to allow pro races at COLO, so the path of least resistance is usually chosen. Looks like the NPS would like to think it's not their call concerning the Tour de Utah through Bryce and Cedar Breaks.

I'd love to be a silent passenger in the back seat when one of the folks who think events of this kind are great things actually got caught in the mess one creates.

Bet there'd be a whole lot of fussing and cussing going on.

Trouble is, there's usually no way someone who has had their plans destroyed can find any way to complain and have the complaints heard at a high enough level to make a difference.

another right wing flack here... I'm with EC too.

I'm with ebuck on this one.

Thanks for proving my point Rick. The RAMROD has as much if not more impact on the park than either the Pro Challange or Utah Race would. Opposition to the pro races has nothing to do with parks.

I will take Adam Smiths invisible hand over government any day. The invisible hand isn't perfect but it far surpasses a managed economy. The former made this the greatest nation ever, the latter is pouring it all down the drain. Oh, and BTW the issues of the "recent years" you referrenced where caused by the Government not greed. Do a little research on the CRA.

Anti-money, that poor suffering profit motive. Smith's Invisible Hand and all that. Or, in the words of Gordon Gecko, greed. Recent years have shown us that trusting the profit motive couldn't possibly go wrong. Sorry I don't have 30 years on Wall Street to better appreciate it.

I prefer the parks a different kind of green. Your Gecko imitation is getting sort of pale and whiny in this forum.

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