Cancellation of 2020 Brevets

All Brevets scheduled for the St. Louis Region have been cancelled for 2020. 

Effective today, I have resigned as Regional Brevet Administrator for the St. Louis, Missouri, region.

Randonneuring is a dangerous activity.  Anytime you share the road with automobiles and trucks, a cyclist is taking a chance.  This danger has increased significantly since I started riding brevets in 2006.  It used to be that the major concern was the intoxicated driver.  That has changed now that we have to be very concerned about distracted drivers.

Luckily we have not had any serious accidents during any of our rides since I have been the RBA.  But each year, our roads become a little less safe.  Each year they are just a little more dangerous so that we now have a situation in which I cannot sanction these events.

I have made many close friends through randonnuering and I regret that I cannot organize events in which riders can have the same unique experiences I have had during my rides.

Dennis N. Smith – March 2, 2020


A New 200k Course

For the first time in over fifteen years, RUSA has approved a new course for the St. Louis, Missouri, region.  The course is identified as RUSA #2479 Randy Johnson 200k.  It can be viewed on RideWithGPS at and is available in the Brevets App as RUSA2479-RandyJohnson200k.

The new course incorporates the best parts of the the old 200k and replaces parts of the course with a 38 mile ride on the Madison County Bike Trail to start the brevet.  The portion of the old course that used Highway 177 to Okawville has been eliminated.

20181212WatershedTrailA view along the Watershed Trail, December 12, 2018, which you will encounter on the Randy Johnson 200k course.

Randy Johnson was a longtime member of the ultradistance cycling community.  He became a member of STLRandonneurs in 2006.  He frequently volunteered to support other riders during record attempts, and his boundless sense of humor and good natured attitude made him a welcome riding companion at any time.  He is missed by all of us who knew him.


We will be using the new course for the first time on September 28, 2019.  John Jost and I pre-rode the course on September 15, 2019, and it is in fairly good condition.  I have updated the cue sheets available on this site at RandyJohnson200k.

April 6, 2019


It seemed like a beautiful day for a bike ride, and the temperature was perfect.  However a persistent wind of more than 10 miles per hour from the southeast wore the riders down during the first half of the event.

Pictured above are eight of the nine riders who rode events on April 6.  Gay Ely and I completed the 200k.  Jerry Cabeliza, Scott Ebbing and Todd Ranney completed the 300k. Tom Gee and George Jarad completed the 400k.

Kelley Wegeng attempted the 600k, but decided to end her ride when the prospect of riding 180 miles alone in the dark in the rain seemed like less fun than a warm hotel room in Mount Vernon.  Kelley was riding at a good pace into that ever present headwind.  She is an excellent rider and hopefully she will be back to finish the 600k.

Scott Thompson attempted to ride the 200k, but fell victim to heat exhaustion.  As an experienced randonneur, he wisely called for his wife to rescue him in Okawville.  Just a reminder that a rider can suffer from dangerous heat exhaustion even in cooler weather.

Thanks to Robert Tesar for pre-riding the 300k course.

April 13, 2019 Report


Three riders completed the 200k on April 13, 2019.  They were Ed Carl, John Garrett and Scott Thompson.  Scott extended his streak of riding at least one brevet each year for the past fourteen years.

Six riders started the 400k on April 13, 2019, with an ominous weather forecast predicting wet and cold riding ahead.  The forecast proved to be accurate with parts of the course receiving rain of more than one inch.  Nevertheless, four current members of STL Randonneurs managed to finish.  They were Michael Billing, Jon Batek, David Mitchell and Jerry Cabeliza.

Two riders did not finish.  They deserve recognition for attempting a challenging ride.  Both Robert Tesar and Jeff Schmela both completed approximately 220 miles before wind, rain and cold stopped their rides.  Jeff was attempting to join STL Randonneurs.

Congratulations to all nine riders.

April 6, 2019 Rides

On April 6, 2019, we will offer a 200k brevet, a 300k brevet, a 400k brevet, and a 600k brevet.  All rides will start at 7:00 a.m., but you need to register between 6:00 a.m. and 6:30 a.m.  Pre-registration is not available.  You should complete the registration form on this website and bring it with you on the morning of the rides.  You should also try to have the exact amount for your ride.  The costs of the rides are $10.00 for the 200k and 300k, $15.00 for the 400k and $20.00 for the 600k.

Robert Tesar pre-rode the 300k course last Sunday and found an error in the Ride With GPS file.  I think that error has been corrected, but you must remember that the official course is set out on the cue sheets which are available on this site.  It is your responsibility to make sure any electronic versions of the course are correct.  The Brevets app for the iPhone also has electronic versions of the courses available.  I create these courses for Brevets and use them to help create the cue sheets, so they tend to be very accurate.

I have driven or ridden each course and they appear to be in pretty good shape.  There are some potholes but they are infrequent.  On the 600k course, I did not ride the Tunnel Hill Trail between Burnside and Vienna, but I spoke with some trail users, and they said the trail was in good shape.

Some of the 600k riders have stopped at the Hotel 7 in Vienna, Illinois, and rested for a short time.  I checked with the hotel yesterday, and they said they only had three reservations for Saturday night, so it is not too late to get a room if that fits into your plan.

The weather looks like it will be nice on Saturday with some possible rain on Sunday.

If you have any questions, please contact me.

Dennis Smith, RBA

St. Louis, Missouri Region


March 16, 2019 – Brevet Update

Taking advantage of favorable weather, five riders started the 200k and seven riders started the 300k at 7:00 a.m. this morning. Their times at the control at 51.45 miles are as follows:

200k Riders

Robert Tesar 9:55 am

Emily Higgs 9:55 am

Will Purba 9:55 am

George Jarad 9:55 am

Jason Marshall 10:27 am

Above left to right Randy Anderson, Doug McKerran, Jason Marshall

300k Riders

Randy Anderson 10:15 am

David Mitchell 11:00 am

Doug McLerran 10:15 am

Kurt Hentz 11:00 am

Ted Tiberi 11:00 am

Marty Heyen 11:00 am

David Wiley 11:00 am

David Mitchell, Kurt Hentz, David Wiley, Marty Heyen and Ted Tiberi in Breese, Illinois

Cancellation of January 19, 200k Brevet

I have decided to cancel the 200k brevet scheduled for this coming Saturday, January 19, 2019, because I do not believe it would be safe for the riders.

Last weekend the St. Louis area received a significant amount of snow.  Because of the cold weather this week, most of this snow remains on the bike trail portion of the ride.

If that was the only safety concern, I would re-route the ride to avoid this section, but there are ominous weather forecasts for this coming weekend.  Current weather forecasts for Saturday predict freezing rain and snow during the ride.  Additionally, temperatures are predicted to drop from 37 degrees at the start to 29 degrees after ten hours.  The wind is predicted to be between 20 m.p.h. and 23 m.p.h. during the ride.

I hate to cancel a scheduled event based on forecasts, but I want to give everyone enough time to make other arrangements.

Ultimately, rider’s safety is our primary concern.  Based on the current forecast, this concern mandates a cancellation.  I hope you will be able to join us for rides later this year.

Dennis Smith, RBA St. Louis, Missouri


The Courses

The St. Louis Randonneurs have been using basically the same routes for almost twenty years.  I hesitate to change anything that has worked so well, but sometimes minor adjustments are required.  For example, roads may be closed for some kind of repairs as happened this year.  And sometimes controls move as happened this year with our finishing control at the Edwardsville Police Station which moved down the street.  Because of this we have to reroute parts of the courses at times.  And print up new cue sheets.  And alter the courses in the Brevets App and on RideWithGPS.  And try to make sure that everything is absolutely correct.

Because of the road closure east of Millersburg, Illinois, I had to reroute the course this season.  I added a ten mile loop through the Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, campus onto the start of the ride to make up for the ten miles we lost by rerouting around the road closure later in the ride.  The advantage of this change is that you will pass within one-tenth of a mile of the starting point at the ten mile mark.  So if you forgot to turn off the interior lights in your car, or you forgot your extra tire tubes in your car, you can drop back by the start after ten miles and then immediately rejoin the course.

So as soon as I rerouted the course through campus, the City of Edwardsville started working on St. Louis Street.  So the street is a little rough between miles .5 and 1.5 and during the same stretch on the return back around mile 8.5 to mile 9.5.  Other than that the roads are in pretty good condition.  I rode part of the courses last Sunday, September 15, and then drove the parts I didn’t ride this past week.  Everything should be OK.  The sneaky dog that sometimes chases us at mile 45.25 hasn’t been around for the last couple of times I’ve ridden the course.  (Sneaky because he doesn’t bark at you until he is next to your rear wheel.)

All of the courses share the first 78 miles and the last 42 miles.  The 300k and the 400k share the first 113 miles and the last 60 or so miles.  So don’t just follow the cyclist ahead of you because he or she may be riding in a different event.

The weather forecast looks good for September 22, 2018, so I hope to see a lot you enjoying Southern Illinois this weekend.  I have updated the courses on RideWithGPS and have designated the 200k course as RUSA116-20180919 and the 300k course as RUSA117-20180919.  You can create GPX files from these this site.

I have tried to use GPX courses created from RideWithGPS but I keep getting errors on my Garmin 1000.  I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but I will keep working on it and see what happens.

11925              10877

All of the courses that can be used by the Brevets App have been checked numerous times, and if you have an iPhone, I urge you to use the Brevets App as a supplement to the printed cue sheets navigation during the brevets.  Version 2.0 of the app will be available soon which adds audio directions.  If you show me that you have the Brevets App installed on your iPhone at the time of registration, you will receive a one-time $5.00 reduction in the cost of the ride.  The app costs $5.99 in the app store, so I think this is fair.  Here is a screenshot of the app.  The speed and miles are inaccurate but this gives you a sense of what the riding screen looks like.


When in doubt, the printed cue sheets are to be considered the official route.