What is this Hains Point 100 I keep hearing about?
FIrst let me introduce myself. I’m Megan. I like to ride my bike a lot. I live in Arlington, Virginia. In 2012, I had a crazy idea to ride 100 miles around the Hains Point 3-mile loop on a cold December day.
Why? Because I wanted to raise awareness and funds for the Washington Area Bicycling Association’s Women & Bicycles program. I deeply believe that getting more women on bikes will make DC a better place for everyone. Doing a 3-mile loop gets a little boring so I asked the DC cycling community to join me for music, food, door prizes, hand-ups, and more!
The HP100 is now heading into its third year. So join me on December 21, 2014 down at Hains Point for fun and ride some laps to show your support!
But, wait, if I show up, do I have to ride 100 miles?
Nope! This is a social ride so you can come when you want…leave when you want.
So, how do I participate?
Heading into the 3rd annual HP100 and I'm amazed. My how has it grown. So, now it's time to change it up a bit! This year, I challenge you, the cycling community, to join the HP100 Club. Your choices are:
- Solo 100 Miler - You are pledging to ride 100 miles around Hains Point solo!
- 100 Miler Team Challenge - You and your friends pledge to ride 100 miles total (cumulative mileage (example: 4 riders together ride 25 miles or 1 rider does 75 and your friend does 25).
- 100K of Love - You pledge to ride 100K (62.1 miles) around Hains Point solo!
- 100 Minutes of Fun - You pledge to ride at least 100 minutes at Hains Point. (All at once or in bits and pieces.)
- 100 Hugs and Kisses Supporter - you pledge to come out to cheer, have fun and volunteer. Bring your bike, or not, but you're joining in to show support of the Women & Bicycles program. This is also for folks that are not going to be in town and still want to show support for the rest of us crazy folks riding round and round in the cold.
Is this a formal organized ride?
This is not a formal organized ride, we are getting together on a chilly Sunday afternoon.
While there is no registration fee for this event, I do ask simply for two things if you are planning on riding or participating in the festivities::
- You provide some sort of donation to WABA's Women & Bicycles Program.
- Fill out the sign-up form so I can plan on how many people are coming, have a way to reach out to you for any last-minute notices, and for planning on handups, sponsors and other special goodies throughout the day.
That's it...oh, and show up and have fun!
What’s the schedule for the day?
At 9:30 a.m. I’ll be doing an official welcome, introduction, hellos. The ride will begin at 10:00 a.m. with a group picture. The pit stop/staging area will be situated at the south tip of Hains Point in the tour bus cut-through/parking lot.
If you are coming after 10:00 a.m., be sure to stop by the pit area to sign in. You’ll see plenty of friendly faces out there going along so after checking in, so just roll on in!
Here’s a day of location map with day of ride essentials marked. If you’re driving down, there will be no shortage of parking. Please park along the sides, tennis court lot, or pro-shop lot. The pit area will have a lot of cyclists rolling in and out and the fewer cars in that area pulling in and out will make it a bit safer.
Can anybody come?
Yes! Everyone is invited whatever the age or riding ability. All I ask, so we can get an idea of how many people are coming, is that you fill out this quick interest form.
Feel free to break off into your own pacelines, work on your sprint, or just enjoy the day however you like. In previous years, we had road bikes, hybrid bikes, mountain bikes, cruiser bikes, fatty tire bikes, tandem bikes, children on bikes, unicycles, and even a Capital Bikeshare relay team.
I also encourage you to invite the women and girls in your life to attend with you! If you’re coming solo, you’ll meet plenty of new friends that will be representing all skill levels so you won’t be alone.
People that don’t want to ride are invited to participate in the festivities at the “pit stop” rally point, too!
Tell me more about WABA’s Women & Bicycles program.
Now in its third year, WABA’s Women & Bicycles program is closing the region’s bicycling gender gap. They are getting more women biking for fun, fitness, and transportation through deliberate mentorship, workshops, meetups, rides, and online forum.
In 2013 they worked with over 1,100 women through 65+ events and used their mentorship model to get well over 300 women out on the road and on two wheels. Bicycling Magazine named the program one of the leading innovative approach in bike advocacy, and this model is inspiring other similar programs across the United States.
Sounds great…now, sign me up!
Ok, go here and fill out this quick interest form to let me know you’re coming. And, don’t forget to donate to WABA’s Women & Bicycles program after you fill out that form! WABA is a registered 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization. All donations to WABA are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
I’ve never been to Hains Point. What can I expect?
Here’s how you get there and the loop we’ll be doing…
The Hains Point loop is a completely FLAT 3 mile loop. There are no hills (trust me, I don’t lie about hills). There are 3 stop signs. There are two lanes, most of the way has one way traffic. And, it’s got scenic river views. So, yeah, that in a nutshell is Hains Point.
It’s a perfect spot for beginner cyclists to get their feet wet cycling while more experienced riders use the loop to do threshold testing, sprints, and practice pace lining. Fun for all.
Who is organizing the Hains Point 100?
It’s just me and a bunch of local cyclists and supporters getting together for a casual ride. There’s no registration fee, there’s no permits, and we’re not selling anything.
We’re doing out best to make it easy and fun, but there will be no hot lunches (unless someone brings a chaffing dish or fires up a BBQ), race radio, or – alas – soigneurs.
What do I need to bring with me?
It is a self-supported ride so make sure you have whatever nutrition you need to get you through your day.
Although this is a self-supported ride, I thought some other treats and goodies will make a lovely festive pot luck picnic! From brownies to cookies to salty chips and pretzels, feel free to bring what you’d like and share! A table will be set-up at the staging area. We may also have some folks donating food. I’ll update as I have details…
In the past two years, the water fountains and bathrooms were not shut down for the season.
Here’s a day of location map with day of ride essentials marked. However, I can’t guarantee that water and bathrooms will be open again this year. I’ll send out a pre-ride e-mail to participants and will update the site if I learn there will not be water available. (If there is no water available, we’ll be asking for volunteers to bring some containers with them to have at the pit stop.)
Hains Point? Isn’t that National Park Service land?
Why yes, yes it is. So that means there are a few things we all need to remember. First and foremost – this isn’t a formal sporting or anything event, so nobody’s applied for any permits (nor do they believe they need to).
Second, this means that Park Police may be around. Particularly near stop signs. Please be smart and lawful. And smart. Also, NPS rules don’t generally allow the sale of goods or services without a permit on NPS land. Which is fine with us, because we’re not selling goods or services. There’s no fee for this ride, there’s no raffle tickets for sale (you simply get one if you show up). But we really do hope you’ll contribute to WABA (either online ahead of time, or when you sign in). For what it’s worth, it’s 100% pass-through. Every dollar you give to us goes straight to WABA. If you need a receipt from WABA, however, it’s best to give online in advance.
I will have a backpack, bag or other stuff with me...
We will have an area at the pit area to leave your bag. BUT remember, although there will always be a wonderful Hains Point 100 volunteer at the pit area, they can’t keep a constant eye on everyone’s stuff. So, be sure not to leave anything valuable in your bag…and make sure to pick up only *your* bag when you’re done with the ride.
What if I have an issue with my bike? Or, now that I think about it, I’m actually mechanically inclined, how can I help?
Be sure you come with whatever you need to get through the ride. However, we will have a tool box, a pump, and an assortment of tubes. Look for it all near the bike stand at the pit stop. Last year, we had some local bike shops (thanks Revolution Cycles) bring out their mechanics for quick tune-ups.
If you find yourself having issues, get to the pit stop. We’ll definitely have one or two folks that can help you out.
If you have an issue out on the loop, just let someone know and you’ll get the help you need. And, if you see anyone having issues, please stop and assist if you can.
What if I have an emergency?
We hope everyone is careful out there. To quote Bike Arlington, we’d like every rider to be a PAL – Predictable, Alert and Lawful. As you would on any of your rides, if you have an emergency, please call 911. If you don’t have a cell phone, ask a passing rider to call for you.
As a rider, we also trust that if you see someone having an issue, you will kick in to help as you would on any ride when you see a fellow cyclist in trouble. We will be taking down emergency contact information from all riders, just in case. Please be sure to have your ID on you. If you want to get in touch with us? Call Mark Blacknell at 202.552.1795. He’s the Directeur Sportif for this effort, and will be answering that number the day of the ride. Also, if you don’t like anything about the Hains Point 100? Totally.his.fault.
December can be cold...will you cancel due to weather?
Well, that's an interesting question. In 2013, we had record warm temperatures and then the torrential rains came. We rode anyways. Rain or shine. Part of the fun of this event is that we might have to do it in cold cold temps. It adds and extra challenge and extra fun to the event.
If it looks like the weather makes conditions treacherous then I could possibly call the event off (ice ice baby). I will e-mail participants (that's why I need folks to sign up), update the official facebook page and event page, and tweet (@hainspoint100). I will announce another date, if necessary.
Who do I need to thank for this awesome event?
First, all of the awesome volunteers that helped me get ready for this ride and are at my pit stop that will be making sure the day is fun.
And, a hearty thank you to the leader of the volunteer/pit crew pack – Mark Blacknell.
Next, you should thank Nelle Pierson, Outreach Coordinator and the fine folks at WABA, for having such an awesome program to support.
And, finally, please thank all the wonderful organizations, shops and individuals that have provided support for my ride by providing prizes and provisions!