2018 March-April Ride Schedule

March 4 - Annual Withlacoochee State Trail - Rails to Trails Ride 
***NOTE Change in Start Time for this ride only*** 
  • Meeting Time: 8:30 AM, leave promptly at 8:45 AM
  • Meeting Location: North Apopka Avenue Trail Crossing, 315 N Apopka Ave., Inverness, 34451, in front of the Red Caboose
  • Distance: Your choice of 14, 30, 48, 62 or 100 miles (or any other distance you prefer)
  • Speed: 12 - 14 mph
  • Ride Leader: John (813) 613-6047
Postponed from October, due to storm damage, this is an annual event for us on the scenic, 46-mile Withlacoochee Trail. Its $35 to ride, but all proceeds go to the Rails to Trails fund. You can register online by March 02 to be entered for a door prize, or register as a walk-up on the day of the ride. The event features 5 sag stops, breakfast, lunch, snacks and prize drawings. More info and registration information at 

Call the ride leader if you plan to ride with us so we can coordinate meeting up and starting together. Right now the plan is to ride together as a group for about 30 miles, but you are free to determine your own distance.

March 11 - Two Rides for you to pick from - one short and one long:

March 11 - Long Ride - Seminole Heights to MacDill AFB 
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM, riders leave promptly at 8:15 
  • Meeting Location: The Independent Beer Pub and Cafe, 5016 N. Florida Avenue, Tampa, 33603 - two blocks south of Hillsborough, Note: Park in the vacant lot across the street - you can also use the fenced lot there. Do NOT park behind the Dollar Tree Store or you will be towed.
  • Distance: 26 miles
  • Speed: 12-16 mph
  • Ride Leader: Earl of Tampa 727 415-8993 (call or text)
Ride from The Independent Beer Pub in Seminole Heights to MacDill AFB and back via sections of the downtown Riverwalk, Bayshore Blvd and the Gadsden Park Bike Trail. We'll pass through the Water Works Park, Kiley Gardens, the University of Tampa's Plant Park and the stately mansions lining Bayshore Blvd. We'll stop to enjoy waterfront views of Downtown Tampa at Ballast Point Park, then return through Hyde Park and the winding streets along the Hillsborough River. Enjoy brunch, pastries and gourmet coffee back at the Independent Cafe's outdoor patio after the ride.

March 11 - Short Ride: Navigating Seminole Heights by Bike/Sunday Morning Market
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM (riders leave promptly at 8:15)
  • Meeting Location: Memorial Middle School, 4702 N. Central Avenue, Tampa 33603 (corner of Central and Osborne - park on the OSBORNE side of the school, across from the Hillsborough High School track). Note: restrooms will be open at the Hillsborough High School gym at the far end of the track
  • Distance: 13 miles
  • Speed: 10 -12 mph 
  • Ride Leader: Margaret (813) 254-8882
Come join us as we make a circuit around and through different sections of Seminole Heights, one of Tampa's friendliest neighborhoods. Discover historic houses, lovely yards and pocket parks sprinkled along the Hillsborough River, as we avoid busy streets by taking less traveled connector roads. We'll return in time to enjoy the food, fun and other offerings at the Sunday Morning Market, located on the front lawn of Hillsborough High School, across the street from our starting spot. Secure, complimentary bicycle parking is provided at the Market by volunteers from the Seminole Heights Bicycle Club. This is a great ride for novice riders or for those wanting to tour a lovely, old neighborhood at a slow and leisurely pace.

March 18 - Courtney Campbell Trail from Safety Harbor
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM (leave promptly at 8:15 AM)
  • Meeting Location: Safety Harbor Marina, 110 Veteran's Memorial Lane, Safety Harbor, 34695
  • Distance: 28 miles
  • Speed: 12 -16 mph
  • Ride Leaders: Susie and Earl, 727-415-8993 (call or text)
We'll start from the Safety Harbor Marina and ride the trail extension south along Bayshore Dr. until it intersects with the Courtney Campbell Trail. From there we'll ride the Courtney Campbell Trail to its eastern end, just in front of the the Grand Hyatt hotel where we'll connect with a trail that runs along Tampa International Airport. We'll take this trail south to beautiful Cypress Point Park and Beach, and then retrace our route back to Safety Harbor. We'll breakfast after the ride in Safety Harbor. The Courtney Campbell trail is truly spectacular - and it's great fun to ride, including the tall bridge over the boat channel in Upper Tampa Bay. If you like cycling with lots of water views, this ride is for you. Not much shade, though, so bring sunscreen and lots of water. Restrooms located at the start and midway during the ride.

March 25 - Davis Islands Ride
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM (prompt departure at 8:15 AM)
  • Meeting Location: Sandra Freedman Tennis Complex Parking Lot, 59 Columbia Drive, Tampa 33606 (next to Tampa General Hospital)
  • Distance: 15 miles
  • Speed: 10-12 mph
  • Ride Leader: Les (813) 598-4944 (call or text)
We'll tour waterfront homes, the airport, dog park and seaplane basin as we ride a circuitous route around and then up the middle of Davis Islands. We'll end up at a coffee shop where we can enjoy food and conversation. This is a good ride for new riders because the pace is relaxed, the roads are quiet and traffic is minimal. For those who want to add 10 miles to the ride, there will be a group riding down from Seminole Heights to the start. Call or text Les (813) 598-4944 if you want to join them.

April 1 - Starkey Park, aka Freda's Last Ride (until next year!)
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM (riders leave promptly at 8:15)
  • Meeting Location: Havana Dreamers, 3104 Town Ave. Trinity Florida 34655 (corner of Starkey Blvd and Town Ave - park on the street or in the dirt lot across from the restaurant)
  • Distance: 25 miles
  • Speed: 10-16 mph
  • Ride Leaders: Freda, 847-714-6860 (call or text), and other Helpers
Beginning in one of Pasco County's sprawling subdivision-towns we'll take the Starkey Blvd. bike path, across the street from Havana Dreamers, and ride 4 miles north to the entrance of Starkey Park. We'll ride the park's 10-mile Wilderness Trail until we reach the Suncoast Bike Trail. There we turn north and go 1/2 mile to see a pond with a resident alligator. We return the same way we rode out, adding a one-mile loop in Starkey Park for a water and restroom stop. While in the park we may see white-tailed deer, fox squirrels, sandhill cranes, and numerous varieties of other birds. Restrooms are also available before the ride at Havana Dreamers where we'll enjoy coffee, pastries, breakfast and/or lunch after the ride.

April 8 - Them Thar Hills around San Antonio
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM (depart promptly at 8:15 AM)
  • Meeting Location: San Antonio Railroad Depot Museum, 32627 Railroad Ave, San Antonio, FL 33576.
  • Distance: 22 miles with an optional, very hilly 5-mile loop at the ride's end
  • Speed: 12-14 mph
  • Ride Leader: John (813) 613-6047 (call or text)
We will start at the San Antonio Railroad Depot Museum and head south beyond San Antonio for our first climb up Prospect Hill. Most of our ride will take us north to northeast of San Antonio and then back. About 1/4th to 1/3rd of the ride is flat to gently rolling, although there are some hills with "steepish" grades including Happy Hill Road and "The Three Sisters". If you have a standard compact double front crank you can do the ride. You just spin your way up. There is no shame in walking part-way (or all the way) up, either! We'll enjoy breakfast after the ride in the San Antonio area. Note: We will be in the "country" for this ride, so be sure you come prepared with TWO bottle of water. There are restrooms at the ballfield across from our meeting location, but limited facilities on the route.

April 15 - Tour of Tampa from the Heights Public Market 
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM, riders leave promptly at 8:15
  • Meeting Location: Tampa's new Heights Public Market, 1910 N. Ola Street, Tampa 33602
  • Distance: 18 miles 
  • Speed: 10-14 mph
  • Ride Leader: Susie (813) 236-8119 (this is a landline - do not text!)
We'll take a leisurely ride along shady streets and urban bike paths, including sections of Tampa's Riverwalk and Greenways connector trails, as we tour Ybor City, Channelside, Harbor Island, the Convention Center, Cotanchobee Park, the Amalie Arena and downtown Tampa. Just outside of Ybor City we'll ride south to explore Palmetto Beach and the McKay Bay bike trail, then head back to downtown Tampa. We'll return through the uniquely renovated Perry Harvey Park area (where musical greats Ray Charles and Cannonball Adderley started their careers) before ending our ride at Tampa Heights' new Public Market for breakfast and river views. Restrooms at the start, midway and end of the ride. 

April 22 - South St. Petersburg Parks Tour
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM (riders leave promptly at 8:15)
  • Meeting Location: Medical Arts building parking lot, 2191 9th Ave. North St. Petersburg FL 33713
  • Distance: 25 miles
  • Speed: 12 -14 mph 
  • Ride Leader: Earl of St. Pete, 727-455-7854 (calls only, no texts)
This ride starts off south on 22nd Street with a tour of St. Petersburg's historic midtown neighborhoods. After a stop at Dell Holmes Park on the shores of sparkling Lake Maggiore we'll ride through Lakewood Estates and then on to the unique Pink Streets at the southern end of the city. We'll work our way back to downtown St. Pete by following the coastline of Tampa Bay, visiting several parks and historic areas on our way. Breakfast stop is at a local restaurant in downtown St. Pete, just two miles before returning to our cars. The last two miles of the ride, after breakfast, are filled with vibrant street art and huge murals, just another indication of why St. Petersburg has become a new "happening" place to live. The ride focuses on history, not speed. Restrooms available at the start, end and midway through the ride.

April 29 - North Tampa Ride to Odessa 
  • Meeting Time: 8:00 AM (leave promptly at 8:15 AM)
  • Meeting Location: West Village Commons Parking lot (5356-5368 Ehrlich Road, Tampa 33624) - park on the east side of the parking lot, next to W. Village Road 
  • Distance: 25-28 miles
  • Speed: 11-13 mph
  • Ride Leader: Don (813-964-9193 - this is a landline)

We will ride slowly through the lovely neighborhoods of Carrollwood Village and north Tampa and then meander around the rural lanes and lakes of Odessa. We'll return back along the same route. Bring some carrots, and, if you're lucky, you might get to meet Gus, the llama! We'll enjoy breakfast at a nearby restaurant following the ride. Restrooms before, during and after the ride.

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