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Riding to Fredericksburg from the LBJ Ranch

The 2005 South West Tandem Rally visited Fredericksburg, Texas on the third weekend of April. The three day rally and ride was planned and directed by the Dallas Area Tandem Enthusiasts (DATES) WWW.doubledates.com. We stayed at the headquarters hotel, The Sunday House, where all the rides started and finished.


Friday 22 April 2005: The rally started without us...Becky had been in Portland, Oregon and arrived back in Houston at 6:00am. I met her at the airport and then drove directly to Fredericksburg. We planned to join the ride at the lunch break at the start of the Willow City Loop. Some critics claim this is the best 21 mile ride in Texas; it certainly is a great ride, but during the bluebonnet season there are lots of tourist who generally drive slower than the bicycles. I had the camera ready to shoot the next field of flowers, but always thought there would be a better shot ahead, We soon finished the Loop without any bluebonnet pictures. After the lunch break we pedaled the 14 miles back to Fredericksburg. There was a happy hour that evening on the Marktplatz complete with speciality wines relabeled by the DATES. After the happy hour we discovered the Fredericksburg Brewery for dinner.

135 Tandems ready to roll to Luckenbach on Sunday morningSaturday 23 April 2005; The route for today was a round trip to the LBJ Ranch near Johnson City. While Fredericksburg may be accustomed to large numbers of Harley Davidson motorcycles, the logistics of 135 tandem bicycles moving in mass required a police escort to safely ride out of town. The locals didn't seem to mind the inconvenience because they had never seen such a sight. The round trip was 54 miles with a significant rest stop to take the tour of the ranch and enjoy the catered lunch. The tour lasted longer than we wanted because we had to push hard to arrive back at the Sunday House in time to hear Bill McCready talk about the society of tandem riders. The rally banquet was Saturday night at a local dance hall with a good barbeque dinner. The entertainment included a C&W band and while they were a decent group the volume level reached the threshold of pain, driving everyone to leave as soon as the presentations were complete.

Hugh and Becky in Luckenbach


Sunday 24 April 2005: The final ride of a tandem bike rally is usually short to give everyone the afternoon to drive home. The last ride was a 28 mile round trip to the famous dot on the map of Luckenbach, Texas. A cold front blew in on Saturday night bringing the temperature to the low 40's for the start. We stopped in Luckenback long enough to take pictures before returning to Fredericksburg to pack up and leave for Houston.



Tandems in Luckenbach...no place but Texas

The deadline is looming if you plan to attend the 16th Annual SouthWest Tandem Rally at Lake Murray Lodge, near Ardmore, in scenic Southern Oklahoma on April 28-30, 2006. Gear up for three days of challenging, fun riding on low traffic paved roads, and discover Oklahoma does have hills, lakes & trees. Those who have attended in the past will tell you this is not an event to miss. So come join tandemists from all over the country for 3 days of fun! For registration and lodging information go to:

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