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Does 616km count as a "brevet"? (Semi-ride report)(15 posts)

Does 616km count as a "brevet"? (Semi-ride report)Matno
Jun 20, 2003 2:17 AM
Did 370 miles with my brother in law last week. Started at noon on Monday near Idaho Falls and road northwest through Salmon, ID continuing on north to Missoula, MT, then west towards Sandpoint, ID. Finished the ride on Wednesday night. Total riding time was 26 hours. It had been a long time since I'd done a fully loaded tour, but this one worked out perfectly. I used everything I brought with me (except one long-sleeve jersey), which is rare for me (I usually bring lots of extra stuff). Total gear weight, not including water and food, was about 30 lbs. My old panniers worked perfectly, and we didn't have any mechanical breakdowns. Not even a flat tire. I can't even begin to describe how awesome the ride was. Beautiful scenery, smooth roads (literally NO potholes the whole way), very little traffic for much of the ride, and nothing to worry about except riding. Even set a new personal record for longest 1-day ride of 151 miles on the third day! (Not by choice though, our wives were supposed to meet us in the evening and they misunderstood our directions, so we just kept going until we got to where they were!) The only downside was a couple of unexpected climbs (well, not unexpected, just steeper/longer than expected!) and headwinds on the downhill sections, but other than that, a dream ride all around. It was supposed to be a 4-day, 500 mile ride, but the last day's road proved to be unrideable. Under construction with large sections of rough dirt road, bumper to bumper traffic, and no shoulder. We felt pretty good with what we did ride, so we didn't feel too bad about stopping when we did. All in all an excellent experience!
Nah, to be a brevet ...Humma Hah
Jun 20, 2003 5:59 AM
... you would have had to work up to it in a series of rides of graduated increasing length.

What you rode was an Epic.

You're 1.6 miles short of my 1-day PR (which I classify as an Epic), but I'll allow that I didn't bracket mine between other long days, so I MUST say that's an Epic.
what is a.....african
Jun 20, 2003 6:02 AM
brevet? and what is an epic?
wrongJS Haiku Shop
Jun 20, 2003 6:20 AM
this was a "long bike ride". not enough suffering was noted to qualify for epic or brevet status.

epic: /aka/ "death march". ride containing suffering and distance beyond expectation. on said ride all riders must be ready for it to end way, way, way, way before it's fininshed. tyipcally poor weather, difficult topography, and logistic & equipment challenges are required.

brevet: /aka/ "f@#$ illinois". french translates directly to, "ride for those with ultra-low IQ". czech translation, "why the f@#$ am i doing this?" self-supported, timed ride over long distance, run under a set of rules set forth by a french organization. frequently called "fast touring". pre-event IQ must not be above double digits.
totally agree with the IQ thingPeterRider
Jun 20, 2003 9:48 AM
although a french dictionary wouldn't define brevet by "ride for those with ultra-low IQ", I suspect there is some hidden little prints somewhere. Specially when, freezing and wet in the middle of the night, with hurting legs and hurting everything, you have the dreaded thought: "I could be sleeping in my comfortable bed..."

what is wrong with you guys???cyclopathic
Jun 20, 2003 11:26 AM
it is just a nice 600km stroll broken down in short legs between rest stops where you obligated to get french fries, hamburgers and Klondike bars. Time limit is so generous my grandma could have done it.

Now, to do RAAM you'd need IQ checked.
The time limit is so generous ...Humma Hah
Jun 20, 2003 12:35 PM
... I'm seriously considering riding a 200 and maybe even a 300k on the cruiser. I've already done rides of more than 200k on it at more than the required speed, and run centuries with enough average climbing per mile at a sufficient speed.

I'm sure the time limits were developed when most roads they were run on were dirt.
not exectlycyclopathic
Jun 20, 2003 1:10 PM
it is my understanding time limits where adjusted in after war era to reflect better roads.

first PBPs were pro events done on singlespeeds (did they had coaster brakes then?) on dirt/cobblestone roads and they did it in 52-58hr, hard to imagine.

with respect to doing DC 200 and 300 I have not ridden new 200k route but on 300k you'd need to walk Big Flat. The rest should be more or less o'k. If you decide to ride 200k in fall let me know I'd bring my MTB. my gears against knobby tires.

here's some read up on PBP history:

you may dig out more at
My memory's back ! I am cyclopathic's grandma !PeterRider
Jun 20, 2003 2:08 PM
... this must be why that 600km didn't seem so easy

... and why I had a MTB rear derailleur and a 30x32 easiest gear

... and why everything was hurting after the ride (arthritis)

... and why my eyes were so tired I couldn't read the signs on the road.


I'm glad you're feeling better grannycyclopathic
Jun 21, 2003 5:45 AM
and pls stop complaining about that 30x32 granny gear, you only need it climb the trees. 8-P
Sounds like fun ...Humma Hah
Jun 21, 2003 6:06 AM
I'll have to look at the schedule. The big event I'm training for right now is the Tour de Canal, the whole C&O towpath in 2 days. That's almost exactly a 300k, no climbing but all dirt. On the cruiser. Weekend of Sept 4.

I rode the qualifier last weekend ... the cruiser did better bashing thru the mud than the MTBs did.

I don't mind pushing up the occasional big hill ... the singlespeeder's granny gear.
A brevet is a ride in a series ...Humma Hah
Jun 20, 2003 6:33 AM
... of graduated distances, starting at 200k, then 300, 400, 600, and then you are rewarded with an opportunity to ride 1200. The distance, climbing, and other rules are very formalized, and the sport of riding brevets, randoneering, is almost as ancient as cycling.

An epic is simply a momentous ride worthy of poems and songs and a bronze plaque commemorating this historic event. Or at least bragging rights on this forum.
re: what is a.....cyclopathic
Jun 20, 2003 11:19 AM
brevet (bruh vay) - Literally, the word means "certificate", "patent", or "diploma" in French. In "randonneuring", it means two things: certification of having successfully done a randonné, --indicated by a small numbered sticker placed on a completed brevet card --, as well as, by extension the long-distance event itself (at least 200 kilometers in length). Completing a successful brevet means one's ride has been certified and registered in France, and the rider's name is added to the roll of honor, going all the way back to 1921. These challenging rides can also entitle the rider to enter longer events such as Paris-Brest-Paris or Boston-Montréal-Boston. As used in the "randonneuring" world, the terms brevet and randonnée are often interchangeable, but in common cycling usage, a randonnée might be considered to be less structured or formal than a brevet

more info at
re: Does 616km count as a "brevet"? (Semi-ride report)Heron Todd
Jun 20, 2003 8:00 AM
In addition to the previous comments, brevet time restrictions are for the total ride, not just time on the bike. For the 600K brevet, you have to finish in 40 hours including rest stops, eating, sleeping, etc. You also have to reach each checkpoint along the way within a certain time window. There really is no such thing as a do-it-yourself brevet.

Todd Kuzma
Heron Bicycles
LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776
That sounds about right. I'll post pics and full review later.Matno
Jun 20, 2003 1:44 PM
Although I don't think any of our pictures are all that great (heck, I'm in most of them...) Some interesting observations though, when I get a couple of minutes.

I guess this just qualifies as exactly what I thought it was: a long, fun ride!