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Springtown Spin, Springtown , Texas

October 26, 2013

I really enjoyed the Springtown Spin. The route was scenic and well marked. Aid stations were spaced nicely and well stocked. Everyone was friendly. Benbrook Bicycles raffled off a new bike. SAG support was covered by Bicycles Inc. and Mad Duck. Yummy lunch to cap things off. Good times. I'll be back.

Springtown Spin 60 mile ride. The local weathermen doomed a high turnout for this ride. From Wednesday on all we heard was it would likely be cold and rainy in the morning. What we got was warm with no rain and even some sunshine. Despite the 'dire' weather predictions a good number of top local riders showed up for the ride. As always an under appreciated ride in the DFW area. The ride is challenging with almost as many hills as you are going to find in DFW. Online registration and packet pickup on site with no problems. Plenty of parking at the high school. The school and football practice facilities are open and provide plenty of restroom facilities. They gave away a KHS bike from Benbrook Bicycle before the start of the ride. The route is the same as they have used in the past. It's challenging with frequent hills, much of it on back roads with literally no traffic. Fairly typical roads for North Texas with some patched up back roads and traditional chip-seal. Well marked with arrows on the pavement and signs at the turns. Intersection support where needed. At the end of the ride we are greeted with a band and BBQ sandwiches (large sandwiches from Woody Creek BBQ). There are shower facilities available as well. This ride deserves more support, the organizers do a good job and they have a challenging route. I will continue to support this ride and encourage others to do so as well.

Enjoyed the SS. Looked like less than 200 cyclists were there. That's a shame as the organizers did a great job again. Volunteers were enthusiastic. Benbrook Bicycle shop donated a $2000 bike for a pre-start raffle drawing. Pre-ride snacks and rest stops had Krispy Kreme doughnuts as well as standard fare. Did the 40-mile route and it was generally well-marked; however, did see a few riders try to go straight on Old Springtown instead of turning left onto Upper Denton. Suggest larger roadside signs. The SS is one of the more challenging rides in the area. It's 40-mile route (38.8 actual) had a little over 2000' of climbing per my Garmin. Muenster's 40-mile route has about 100' less. The roads were all decent with very little traffic once out of Springtown. Post-ride lunch (Woody's BBQ sandwich, chips, drink, dessert) was good. Live band was also good. Another suggestion is to redo the route maps using a site like RideWithGPS. The 2009 course guide is obviously old and still has the 100-mile route which isn't used.


October 20, 2012

Don't know why more cyclists don't do the Springtown Spin. Plenty of parking and indoor restrooms at the high school. Quick check-in for pre-registered riders. Enjoyed a Krispy Kreme doughnut. Staggered start with the starter lady providing route info and other details before we rolled. Did the 40-mile route which has basically the same 2200 climbing feet as the Muenster 40-mile route; translation - don't leave your climbing legs at home. Road surfaces were mostly good except for some of the climbing to first rest stop. Police support, route markings, rest stops, and SAG support were very good. Traffic was minimal and shared the road. Lunch included BBQ beef/chicken sandwiches, chips, pecan pie in a cup, and lemonade. A band provided entertainment and there were drawings for prizes. Saw one guy win a new helmet. If you can handle some hills, you should enjoy this ride.

This was a lot of fun. Organization was smooth and signage was great. Plenty of hills, but the views were terrific and there were some screaming downhills! The band and barbeque were super and all of the volunteers were enthusiastic! Bring your climbing legs, but it will be worth it!

Springtown Spin 60 mile route. To the best of my knowledge, one of only three rides in the DFW area with at least one categorized climb, per mapmyride (Paluxy with 'the Wall' and Mineral Wells with 'Cherry Pie Hill' are the others), maybe they need a catchy name for the hill. While it's not as iconic as others, it 'cracks' a lot of the top riders. The route is challenging and definitely not flat. Back roads keep riders away from most traffic. The organizers are very passionate about their cause. On line registration was easy and packet pickup took two minutes. Back to t-shirts this year instead of socks. The school was open so we had access to the restrooms and showers, there were no lines. Big arrows painted on the road were good, the signs with arrows are really too small and could easily be missed. A selection of food at the end, including large bbq sandwiches (beef and chicken). They also had a live band providing post ride entertainment. I'll continue to support this ride and hopefully more DFW riders will as well.

October 22, 2011

This ride continues to be under appreciated. Great weather this year allowed for better attendance than last year's thunderstorms. A nice selection of some of the top DFW area riders did attend which made for a fast pace. The course (60 mile) is challenging with some good hills and some technical twist and turns. This is the same route they've used in the past. There are a few areas that have a lot of patch work on them but they are mostly in the first 15 miles. Approximately 95% of this course is on back roads or lightly travel roads which keeps rider to auto interaction at a minimum. Unlike most rides, not much need for public safety at most intersections as there is no one out there. The organizers are enthusiastic for their cause. There were showers available in the football practice facility (in previous year the high school was open which provided some better facilities). The bar-b-cue sandwiches after the ride were quite good. Again they provided socks instead of t-shirts. Certainly don't mind the change of pace, with the socks, but not the same socks as last year (seems that anybody that goes the socks route does this). I'd really like to see them work on their sponsorship so they could build this ride up. Except for the challenges of weather in late October (the ride starts at 9am to mitigate potential chilly temps) there is no reason this ride should not be better supported by the DFW riding community.

First time to participate in this rally. Word-of-mouth from other cyclists got me there. Rode 40-mile route, wicked washboard surface for the first 5-7 miles, and some further out. Hard south wind didn't help any (no one's fault there). If hills are your thing, this rally won't disappoint, complete with gorgeous views at the top, with some goosebump downhills (nearly 40 mph) and tight turns. Although no ice until second stop, beautifully stocked with other supplies above-and-beyond, with volunteer enthusiasm from the heart, start to finish! Got socks instead of T-shirt (no problem here). Male friend said one-size-fits-all didn't work for him, but I suggested that it would make a fine beer coozie (Quack!). Humongous barbecue sandwiches and Frito chips at the end were fantasic! Don't know why only 200 cyclists showed, but y'all need to give this one a try next year. Thanks to all of the hard-working & cheerful volunteers! You put on a nice rally, and I look forward to coming back next year!

Springtown Spin is not to be taken lightly. I rode the 60 mile course - they removed the 100 mile route this year. I believe they said this is their 4th year for this event. Combine the wind and the never ending hills, this course is a must ride for those animals that like to climb hills. The event coordinators used their resources well, the rest stops did not have fluff, just the essentials needed for riders who need to get in and get out. The ride tricks you by starting with a down hill through town. The next 10 miles rise 455 feet, into a south wind. I thought I had conquered the ride at about 20 miles as I continued through the beautiful country roads and got a tail wind, but I was wrong. A staff member said only about 25 of the 200 riders completed the 60 miles, I saw several very health young riders take short cuts or cut off at the 40 mile turn. The reward at the end was a great meal of BBQ and tables lined with riders engaged in polite conversation. Get the word out that this is a fantastic ride, even with the challenges, keep your pace and you can finish the course giving great bragging rights for finishing.

October 23, 2010

Springtown Spin – this ride definitely deserves more attention than it gets. The 60 mile course offers plenty of challenges with a changing topography. There are some very nice hills, several series of hills and some nice twists and turns. Not for those that just want a flat turn four times route. In my opinion, a bonus this year, they went with socks instead of t-shirts. It was a nice change. The bar-b-q sandwiches at the finish were very tasty.

October 2009

First time riding the Springtown Spin (2nd annual event). Clearly the organizers read the comments from last year. Ride kicked off at 9am, no conflict with other established rides in the area and HUGE arrows painted on the road (in fact 100 yards before the turn and at the turns). I was on the 60 mile course and had no trouble navigating the course solo.
The course is challenging with short hills but with decent grades (5-6%). Once away from Springtown there were long stretches on back roads with few cars.
Again they had BBQ sandwiches at the finish. The ride starts at the high school which is open for restrooms and showers.
Primary suggestion is to clarify the cut off between the 100 mi and 60 mi as four of us took the 60 cut off while everyone else seemed headed down the 100 mi course. To the organizers credit they did have 100 mi written on the road, but if you didn't know the course (the 100 mi turn off is in the first 10 miles) and were just following the pack there was no clear indication at the actual turn which route you were going on.
All in all the organizers seem to be learning fast and appear to have improved significantly over the first year. I'll try this one again and recommend others give it a try next year.

I know this is only the second year for this ride but that is no excuse. Perhaps the ride director could visit Aledo or Weatherford for some much needed tips. The registration was too slow. The start needs some music, maybe a megaphone or loud speaker system. Where were the rest stops? This is a Hilly ride and no rest stop until almost 19 miles. Then nothing, no water, no gatorade, nothing. The girls manning the girls manning the stops tried their best but there was obviously no supervision. Roads were rough and for the most part marked OK. One down hill at about 8 miles had a sharp turn with no notice. Some one could get hurt here. However, the BBQ at the finish helped. This is a really challenging ride. I hope they make some improvements. Most first year rides are better organized.

Man, I hope this ride makes it! The route is superb, one of the more challenging and scenic on the North Texas calendar. The hills are relentless. No iconic ones like The Wall or Cherry Pie, but in this area only the Ride For Heroes and Muenster offer the same degree of hilliness – about 60 feet of climbing per mile. I can’t comment on the shorter routes, but the 60- and 100-mile routes are not for the ill-prepared.
A word about the roads: they are typical of Parker County, which means they’re okay to good. If you’ve ridden Peach Pedal or Ride For Heroes, you’ll know what I mean. The roads here are very similar, but with less traffic. In fact Springtown reminds me more of Ride For Heroes than any other – I guess because it covers some of the same territory. Still, Springtown has a character of its own, and I can’t think of better bookends to the local riding season than Heroes in March and Springtown in October.
I have only ONE complaint about the ride, and it’s a minor one: the 60-mile route features a very short stretch of very bad road almost immediately after leaving FM 920, and if there was any warning of it I didn’t see it. It is at most 50 yards of rough, gravelley, shade-dappled downhill, laced with potholes. At other rides with comparably dicey sections, volunteers yelling and waving their arms warn the riders to be aware.
In just its second year, Springtown appears to have doubled or tripled its participants from last year’s inaugural. Being late in the season probably limits participation. A pity, because October weather is about the best it gets in Texas. That was certainly the case at Springtown – clear, dry, 50s at the start and 70s at the finish. The sandwiches at the end were outstanding. The volunteers were friendly and the hot race director very earnest. I hope the Springtown Spin thrives. It deserves crowds at least comparable to better-attended but less interesting rides. I certainly plan to return next year.


October 18, 2008

We always support inaugural rides so we had to miss the Mineral Wells ride to do Springtown. Conflicting dates robs us of another ride and both the rides of their maximum charitable revenue. Hopefully Springtown will move their ride to one of the open dates next year. There was also the ride a TMS so even fewer riders could make either event. Not good. The route was over very old and rough country back roads and the entire route was surprisingly hilly.

First ride in Springtown and it showed in a few areas. I hope the organizers don't take this as a slam because I enjoyed the day. The conflicting dates did hurt the attendance, but I was glad to have another option of this date. Check in was smooth, even though they were working by car headlights when I got there. They announced where the starting line was, and as some of the riders moved up to the line, they started more announcements and had a prayer and the national anthem. Trouble was the speakers were only at the front of the school. Ride started on time and we got out of town quickly. Springtown PD held traffic at the light. There was quite a few "car up's" in the first few miles, but once we got past Veal station, traffic became almost non existent. Rest stops were adequate, meaning they had oranges, bananas, sports drink and cookies,which with the cool weather, this was all we needed. Someone does need to learn how to mix the drink. It was pretty thick. The roads were typical for north Texas. Some rough, some smooth, some potholes thrown in for fun. I have to admit the routes had more hills that I expected. No heart stoppers. Well maybe one or two. Several great downhill's. 40 mile route showed on my computer to be 39.8. Finish line was great. Your choice, barbeque or chicken sandwich and iced tea that hit the spot.
I hope this ride makes another year, I will be back.
Now, Did I win the raffle?

Registration was online. There was no separate tandem registration.
Because of the small number of riders, there were no issues with parking, registration or long lines for the restrooms.
The packet was very nice consisting of a cloth bag. The organizers were nice enough to give my daughter a t-shirt even though she was not registered, as she is being towed. The organizers had us sign a waiver before giving us our numbers.
The map provided online was very good and detailed. The printed map given out was not. Although the route was marked on it, the rest of the map was so faint it was impossible to read.
If you liked the new route of the Sherman Red River Classic, you would like this route too. At the beginning of the ride was a gain of about 200’ in elevation, then the route simply went from the top of one hill to another. Some of the grades were quite steep. The roads were very narrow and rough with some potholes that you had to watch for. The signs placed on the route were clear enough and were color coded. There were no markings on the pavement.
The rest stops were well stocked with fruit and cookies. The only complaint is that they were not exactly where the map said they would be, but they were close enough.
I did not notice any mechanical SAG on this ride, and that is something that definitely should be provided should this ride be held again next year.
I was able to take a shower after the ride simply by finding the showers in the high school gym, and the water was hot.
My suggestions for improvement: 1) Move the start time from 8:00 am to 9:00 am. At this time of the year heat is not an issue, and the later start time may encourage more people to attend the ride. 2) Schedule the ride one week earlier so that it does not compete with the Crazy Kicker ride in nearby Mineral Wells. If these suggestions are adopted this ride definitely has a place on the North Texas circuit.

Inaugural ride with 89 total riders. Organizers did a good job for a new ride. I did the 60 mile route with about 20-25 other cyclists. I decided to participate in this ride over the other 2 rides in the area. Registration 9/10: smooth and quick. Parking 10/10: easy access at the high school. Start 9/10: national anthem, prayer, staggered start based on distance. Route 8/10: an occasional rough road, others with smooth asphalt, major roads with a shoulder, challenging rollers, more hills than anticipated, hillier than the Peach Pedal route, signage was okay but could be larger, major turns were attended by volunteers, minor turns were unattended and could be easily missed. Traffic 8/10: intersections was controlled by police/sheriff dept in town, scarce traffic along route. Rest stops/SAG 8/10: well-stocked with fruit, cookies, snacks, water and sport drinks at the 30 mile stop, enthusiastic volunteers, SAG vehicles were not marked. Dogs chasing riders 3/10: an abundance of loose dogs made for short sprints along the route. Seven times a canine made me short of breath. Finish 10/10: a post ride meal was well appreciated. Chance of me returning next year 9/10.

Great route, hardly any traffic and no metropolitan areas. It was the first year so there is room for improvement with signs and route support, but otherwise the ride was just what some of us city dwellers are looking for, wide open spaces, very little traffic and great scenery. The support at the start could be better, but the BBQ at the end was the best! Like the start, plenty of parking, real rest rooms and organized start with the National Anthem. I'll be back.