Chainge The World Bike Ride - Gilmer, TX
May 5, 2012
This was a great ride benefiting Refuge International. I rode the 40 mile course and was treated to the beautiful rolling hills of the East Texas piney woods. The roads were very good, signage good, rest stops adequate, staging area good, plenty of parking. There was very little traffic for the most part on the ride. They had delicious pulled pork sandwiches at the finish. I've done many rallies and this is one of the best. It just needs more riders. Do yourself a favor and put this ride on your calendar for next year.
May 7, 2011
This is a great ride. There were about 75 riders who were treated to East Texas scenery and local hospitality, including welcoming remarks from the Mayor of Gilmer. The 60 mile route takes you out north to Pittsburg and brings you back south, which happened to be into a stiff wind last Saturday. Long, gradual rolling hills mixed with flats characterized this route. There was very little traffic. The organizers had ride signs out with ride sponsors' names in bold text on them in addition to the usual route marker signs. That was a nice touch and a great way to credit the sponsors. Volunteers were located at major intersections and thanked the bicyclists for coming out. Good food was served at the end of the ride under shade trees.
This is an excellent ride! I've been to a lot of rallies, and this one has the friendliest people – period. You are treated like a king, and the friendliness makes a tough ride better. Did the 100k (actually 60 miles). Tough, tough, very hilly course. Except for one turn (downtown Pittsburg) there were friendly folks everywhere telling you where to turn. There were several Dallas riders (wife and me included) who made the drive to escape the "gridlock" of the Dallas area rides. 100 people total made for a lot of solo riding. Again, very friendly, great ride. I will be back!
May 5, 2010
This is a very well run event with lots of volunteers and wonderful routes of 10, 21, 40 and 100K distances. The volunteers really cater to the cyclists and provide well stocked rest stops, friendly fellowship and numerous sag wagons. The terrain is a combination of rolling hills and scenic flats in the beautiful East Texas countryside. All the routes use Farm to Market roads and stay away from high volume traffice situations. You often do not see a car or truck for many miles! Refuge International raises money for many, many missions around the globe. I rode there inagural event last year (rain, thunderstorms, lightning) and was so impressed that I brought 5 others back with me this year (weather was great!). I encourage you to put this ride on your list of "things to do" as a cyclist. You won't regret it.
"Chainge the World" cycling event in May every year in Gilmer, TX. The ride is sponsored by Refuge International as a fund raiser for their organization. This was the second year for the event and everything was very well done! Last year, their first year, the weather was terrible with rain, thunder, lightning, etc. This year everything went very well with great organization, beautiful routes. fantastic rest stops, and friendly, helpful volunteers. I believe this event will grow every year as the word gets out about it! I am president of the Marshall, Texas, bike club (Maverick Chain Gang) and brought 6 cyclists over to Gilmer. They loved the event and plan to come back year after year. I felt I needed to spread the word to other cyclists.