Société des Rambleneurs: The Summer 2021 Challenge (1 July-15 August)

Once again, I’m back with another challenge that gets you membership into a club! The challenge will happen for about six weeks, starting on Thursday July 1st, 2021 and ending on Sunday August 15th. This challenge is all about sharing the art of rambleneuring.

What is Rambleneuring?

No, it’s not “randonneuring”, where one has to self-sufficiently ride a number of miles in a certain time frame. To heck with that. This is all about going slow and appreciating the journey. This one’s about taking more time than you think you’ll need. You think you can do those ten miles in an hour? How about doing it in two instead! You like riding the direct route? How about trying the indirect route instead!

Rambleneuring is a great way to discover the world around you. It’s not about getting from Point A to Point B, it’s what’s along the way. It is not focused on speed, distance, time, and/or the end goal, it’s about the little things in between. It’s about lazy days in summer, unrushed, stopping to smell the roses (to use a cliche), observing.

Rambleneuring is a state of mind and not defined by rigid rules or guidelines. We’ll share the basic guidelines, but they are up for your interpretation. Take it easy and check things out!

What is the Main Challenge?

It’s pretty simple:

  • Ride anywhere from one ride up to five rides during the Challenge period
  • Each ride should be three miles (5 km) in length, but this is not a hard-and-fast rule
  • Each ride should take at least ninety minutes, the longer the better. This is also not a hard and fast rule
  • Each ride must hit up at least one of the sub-challenges listed below
  • You can do up to three sub-challenges in one ride
  • You can repeat any sub-challenge twice, if that moves you
  • You can do up to three rides in one week (week defined as Sunday-Saturday)
  • You can only do one ride a day.
    • If you do a ride that continues after midnight, the ride will count for the day you started.
    • If you wanted to do a ride on the day the ride above spills over into, you must go to sleep before the next day’s ride, and the ride cannot start before sunrise.
  • The challenge can be done on any bike, as long as it doesn’t have a combustion engine. (E-assist bikes OK)

The Rambleneur Challenge will happen from 12:01 AM on Thursday July 1st, 2021 to 11:59 PM on Sunday August 15, 2021. All times local to wherever you be.

What are the Sub-Challenges?

  1. Dead Ends. Ride to at least one dead-end street on your route, more if you’d like.
  2. The Road Less Taken. Travel on streets/roads you normally don’t ride on.
  3. Urban/Rural
    1. If you live in an urban area, ride to an area that feels rural.
    2. If you live in a rural area, ride to an area that feels urban.
    3. If you live in a suburban area, you can choose to ride to an area that feels urban or rural, or hit up both!
    4. These areas don’t need to be exactly “urban” or “rural”. It is open to your interpretation.
  4. Water. Ride by a body of water (natural or man-made). Bonus points if you go in the water, even if it’s just your feet.
  5. Promonotory. Ride to a high spot, preferably one with a view.
  6. Zig-Zag. Choose an endpoint no more than five miles (8 km) from your start. Get to this endpoint by the least direct route possible.
  7. Interesting roads.” There are some weird and unusual street names out there. Find one or more and ride to it.
  8. The opposite of Paperless. Use a paper map to navigate your route. Do not pull out your phone for guidance unless you are truly horribly lost or are in danger.
  9. Stop for what interests ya. This one is open to wide interpretation. Simply put, stop as many times as you want for interesting things on the journey. If these things are part of a theme determined by you, all the better!
  10. Coffee Outside. Drinking hot beverages outdoors on a bicycle ride is always nice! It can be coffee (even instant!), tea, hot cocoa, hot cider, or other warm beverage. You can complete this challenge in one of three ways:
    1. Bring a stove and make coffee at your destination.
    2. Make coffee at home and bring it to your destination.
    3. Pick up coffee along the way and drink it at your destination.

The important thing about these sub-challenges are they are open to your interpretation. You don’t need to “check in with me” regarding whether your idea for the “interesting roads” sub-challenge is up to snuff. If it’s up to snuff for you, that’s what matters. Run with it, folks!

What do I get if I do the Challenge?

Everyone who signs up and does at least one ride, and submits their journal:

  • A membership card with your member number
  • Two stickers

And everyone who completes at least three rides and submits their journal gets all of the above, plus a patch made by Falls Creek Outfitters!

Here’s the important thing to remember: The amount of rides counts, not the amount of sub-challenges.

Let me clarify this:

  • You can do one ride that hits up three subchallenges. This counts as just one ride.
  • You can do three rides that hit up one subchallenge apiece. This counts as three rides.
  • You can do three rides that hit up three subchallenges each. This counts as three rides.

You have to do three separate rides to qualify for a patch. You can only do one ride a day.

Registration

Registration is required! Use the Etsy link below. There is a registration fee of $25 USD plus shipping/handling for the club and prize packs. This price will cover my initial shipping of the reporting journal plus the shipping of the prize pack and returned journal. (Shipping of the journal to me is not included, you need to pay for that.)

When you sign up, I will send you an Official Reporting Journal. This journal will contain all the rules and pages for you to document your rides. If you are in the US, you must send me via post the physical journal. If you are outside the US, you can send scans/photos/PDFs of the journal.

Timeframe and Deadlines

  • Thursday July 1st, 2021: Challenge starts.
  • Friday August 6th, 2021: Registration closes.
  • Sunday August 15th, 2021: Last day of Challenge.
  • Friday September 3, 2021: Reporting deadline.
    • Participants inside the US: Physical journal must be mailed in and postmarked by this date. Note that I said “postmarked” as it doesn’t need to be in my hands by September 3rd.
    • Participants outside the US: Electronic copies of the journal must be emailed to me.

Register here!

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