June 2024 Newsbrief




The Cross Canada Cycle Tour Society  June 2024,  Volume 41, Issue #6


From the Hub and Spoke Director’s Desk – June 2024

Welcome to summer!  We have launched our summer Hub and Spoke season with two successful events held in May. 

The Ottawa chapter hosted 24 friends from across the country and the US for a week of cycling in the nation’s capital.  The group explored the bike paths of Ottawa, en route to see the thousands of tulips that grace the city during the annual Tulip Festival.  Riders also enjoyed quiet rural roads leading to quaint towns of Eastern Ontario, such as Almonte, Carleton Place, Fitzroy Harbour, Pakenham, Carp and Ashton.  A strenuous ride through Gatineau Park demonstrated the strong hill-climbing legs of all participants, especially the participants from the hillier west coast!  Another highlight was the visit to the Diefenbunker, a multi-story underground bunker built during the Cold War to house 500 members of government and support staff in case of a nuclear attack.  Thanks to our organizers Nel Ahmed and Geoff Kennedy (with help from your Hub and Spoke Director too).

Next up was our west coast Hub and Spoke based in Everett, Washington.  Highlights included riding along the Snohomish River, the Centennial Trail from Snohomish to Arlington to Nakashima Barn, a ferry ride across the Puget Sound to cycle the hilly Whidbey Island and pastries at the Snohomish Bakery.  Most importantly, it was a chance for old friends to reconnect and get caught up and for new members to get acquainted.  Thanks to Elaine and Dick Carpenter for organizing and leading this trip. 

Still to come are the following approved Hub and Spokes: 

  • Nicola Valley Grasslands Gravel Roads – June 9-16, 2024
  • Silver Star Cross-country Skiing – Dec. 3-10, 2024
  • Palm Springs – March 16-23, 2025  


2025 events could also include chapter-organized Hub and Spokes in Vancouver, Chiliwack and Comox, while spring 2026 could include cycle touring in Texas (Austin area and Big Bend National Park). 

Lastly, I would like to comment on the lottery process.  Have you ever felt that the lottery was biased in favour of couples?  If so, read on for some history of the lottery process and our findings on this question of bias.

First a bit of history.  Many years ago, club members would organize a hub and spoke or tour, and if it was oversubscribed the organizer picked the people they wanted.   Club members felt this was unfair so we came up with the idea of posting the event and having people sign up.  First-come, first-served!!  But this ended up favouring those who were quick-fingered and able to get registered before everyone else.  So at this point we moved to the present-day lottery system, where applicants receive a randomly-generated number that determines their ranking.   The lottery period typically runs 5-7 days, and it does not matter when in that timeframe you sign up; it is your number that determines your ranking.  The numbers are between 1 and 1000, and the leaders are automatically given the number 1000 – we figure since they’ve done all the work, they deserve to get in!! 

This ingenious lottery process was designed by Max McClanahan who many of you will remember as a dedicated CCCTS tour leader and webmaster extraordinaire, who passed away suddenly while on the CCCTS Gaspe tour in 2019.  In fact, Max used his software development skills to design our entire website.  It’s tailor-made for our CCCTS needs, and, while not perfect, it does meet most of our needs, and is saving the club thousands of dollars in IT costs

Now back to the question of couples versus singles.   When you register as a couple, each member of the couple is given a lottery number, but the two are then averaged together.  So for example, if one member gets 200 and the other gets 400, their “shared” lottery number is 300.  So their ranking is now determined by this number of 300.  We took our question of bias out to a couple of analytical brains who ran some tests, and here is what we found.

Is there a bias?  Indeed, it appears that there is a bias in the lottery process, and it often operates in favour of couples.  But not always.  In cases where twice as many people apply as there are spots available, in other words 50% of registrants get in and 50% are excluded, there would be no bias.  And in cases where there are more than twice as many people applying, the bias would actually work in favour of singles.  But in the case of just a few people not making the “go list”, it is indeed more likely that you will be excluded if you register as a single because the averaging process helps to ensure that a couple does not get that “really low” number.  It is a small bias, but it does exist, especially in those cases where there are only a few people who don’t make the go list.

So, you might well ask, why we don’t fix the bias?   The Board has determined that it isn’t worth remedying this situation because of the risk that tinkering with our custom-made website will result in other problems for the lottery function.   Any attempt to fix the problem could be very costly with very little benefit. 

Remember, whether you sign up as a single or as a couple, once you have registered, you cannot change this.  If you’re having trouble figuring out how to register as a couple, check out the video and the FAQs on our website.  Good luck on your next lottery!!

Linda Graupner

Hub and Spoke Director



Safety Corner by Maureen Weston

Spring weather has finally arrived! Our members are enjoying weekly rides and participating in long awaited tours and H&S events. This is a good time of year to review safe riding practices, especially when cycling in groups. Please take a moment to read our Safety Guidelines:


We ask you to pay special attention to the following guideline:

  • Keep a safe distance (one bike length) behind the rider in front of you. In risky situations, including steep downhills, heavy traffic, gravel, crowds of cyclists, ride at least 3 seconds or 3 bike lengths behind bike in front.

There have been some close calls and even some collisions on recent rides where riders are cycling too close together.

Using a rear view mirror can also prevent collisions. The Board of Directors STRONGLY RECOMMENDS all members use a mirror on all rides. If you are not already using a mirror, consider mounting one on your handlebars, your helmet, or your glasses. The ability to see behind without turning your head is a game changer, increasing your safety and the safety of those riding with you.

Let’s all work together to make our rides as safe as possible.


The Third Installment of Dave Charles Trike Experience

Outfitting your Trike

by Dave Charles


Safety on the road has to be the paramount concern of trike riders. Being seen and heard are foremost.

Flags: A six foot flag mounted behind the rider alerts car drivers behind you..

Lights: Attaching a flashing rear light like the Cateye Vis300™ to the flagpole improves visibility especially in low light conditions. A headlight mounted to the frame for oncoming traffic and a flashing light on the helmet which can be directed at merging drivers give the trike almost 180 degrees of frontal visibility.

Horns: Compared to a bike, dodging tight traffic situations isn’t as easy on a less nimble trike. Electronic horns with a range of 120 to 150 decibels let other road users know where you are. The inexpensive version I use emits three different sounds at 120 db. It mounts easily to the frame and has a push button trigger that attaches to the steering post. It works well for light to moderate road traffic volumes. For heavy traffic the more expensive 150 db version should be considered. Both can be purchased online.

Pedal clips or heel straps: Lastly, recumbent Tadpole model trikes (two wheels up front, one rear wheel) should be equipped with some form of pedal attachment to prevent feet from sliding off the pedal and being dragged under the frame. Know by trikers as “heel suck” ankles could be severely injured should the foot gets pulled below the trike. This is usually not a problem for Delta model trikes where the upright riding position provides greater foot stability. Clips however, allow the rider to pull up adding power to the pedal stroke.

Rear view Mirror: A no-brainer for every cyclist. They usually mount easily to the steering bars. For the trike, the larger the mirror surface the better.


Electric assist: This option has become an essential part of most elderly riders equipment as trikes are heavier than bikes. Some pedal assist motors come integrated into the crank as part of the original trike equipment. They may also be added subsequently. The addition of a throttle make merging safer and is very helpful starting up on an incline.

Rear radar: Mounted facing backwards, it scans for vehicles approaching from behind. Bluetooth links it to the rider’s front- mounted mobile phone. Rear radar provides audible and graphic display warnings and augments the rear-view mirror. The model I use is rechargeable and features a three-setting red flasher.

Fenders: Three wheels produce more spray than two. Definitely recommended if you like staying clean and dry on muddy trails and puddled pavement.

This concludes my series on trikes. I would welcome readers comments and questions. My email address is biketrekker@hotmail.com.  

Trip Reports

  • 2024 Everett H&S

    2024 Everett H&S Written by Swee Lee Cycling to Snohomish Sunday, May 19: A large enthusiastic group of us CCCTS members met at the lobby of the Hampton Inn in downtown Everett for the “Everett to Snohomish” pre-ride arranged by our leaders, Elaine and Dick Carpenter. Old and new members alike chatted with excitement, hopped … Continue reading 2024 Everett H&S

  • Napanee Hub and Spoke 2023

    The National Capital chapter had yet another successful Hub and Spoke the third week of September based out of the Fox Motor Inn in Napanee, Ontario. The weather was great and everyone had an  excellent time! Many thanks go to Nel Ahmed and Geoff Kennedy for the planning, organization, and leading; and to Linda Graupner … Continue reading Napanee Hub and Spoke 2023

  • 2024 CCCTS South Korea Tour Review

      In April of 2024, 15 keen cyclists from across North America embarked on a cycling tour of South Korea, taking us through bustling cities, beautiful valleys, and along stunning coastlines. Over the course of 15 days, we grew closer to each other, made lasting memories, and deepened our knowledge of South Korea and its … Continue reading 2024 CCCTS South Korea Tour Review

  • Dolomites Cross Country Ski Trip, 2024

    by Linda Graupner We were very lucky with the weather. Day after day of sunny blue skies. Temperatures would drop at night, keeping the snow in good shape and then we had clear sunshine until mid-afternoon when shade would cause the the temperature to drop like a stone. Everything was well groomed and well signed. … Continue reading Dolomites Cross Country Ski Trip, 2024

    Upcoming Tours.

  • 2024 Grand Coulee Dam Loop
    Status: Registration closed
    Dates: Mon, 10 Jun 2024 ‐‐ Sat, 22 Jun 2024

    The Grand Coulee Dam has been called “man’s greatest creation” that turned the mighty Columbia River “into a slave of man.” A book published five years later called it “the eighth wonder of the world.” It first opened it’s spillway June 1, 1942 to a crowd of 10,000 onlookers. Beautiful little lakes of various shades of blue lie throughout Washington as we travel south. Our journey gives us the opportunity to cycle the Great Coeur D’Alene Trail and the Centennial Trail before completing our loop and returning to Grand Coulee Dam

  • Rideau Canal Pannier Tour 2024
    Status: Completed

    The Ottawa chapter of CCCTS invites you to join us for a self-supported “pannier tour” following the Rideau Canal from Ottawa to Kingston and back.

  • 2024 Slovenia – On The Sunny Side of The Alps
    Status: Ride is full, wait list only.
    Dates: Tue, 10 Sep 2024 ‐‐ Tue, 24 Sep 2024

    Join us in September, a perfect time to discover this special little country of Slovenia, a green jem squeezed between Italy, Austria, Hungary and Croatia! On a bike is a great way to do it! Turquoise lakes, the Adriatic Sea, the Julian Alps, alpine and medieval villages, the capital Ljubljana guarded over by its castle, turquoise rivers, mountain valleys, terraced vineyards….. We will have two weeks to sample it all, especially Slovenia’s native wines and wonderful cuisine!

  • 2024 Trail of the Coeur D’Alene’s including Route of the Hiawatha
    Status: Registration closed
    Dates: Tue, 3 Sep 2024 ‐‐ Thu, 12 Sep 2024

    This tour involves three cycling segments. It begins in Harrison Idaho with two days of cycling, then moves on to Wallace, Idaho for two more day rides, including the Hiawatha trail, and ends in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho with a two-night pannier ride on the Centennial trail to Spokane, Washington. The scenery will be lovely all along the way.

    Upcoming Hub and Spokes

  • Palm Springs Hub and Spoke 2025
    Status: Ride is full, wait list only.
    Dates: Sun, 16 Mar 2025 ‐‐ Sun, 23 Mar 2025

    Let’s get on that bike for some spring riding in Palm Springs, California. Join other CCCTS cyclists March 16-23, 2025 for great riding through Greater Palm Springs, a desert resort city surrounded by four gorgeous mountain ranges with plenty of bike lanes and coffee shops to explore. We will enjoy 5 days of riding near and around Indio while enjoying a comfortable stay in fully furnished rental homes. Then off to spend the last two nights exploring Palm Springs.

  • Silver Star Cross-country Ski 2024
    Status: 13 slots are available.
    Dates: Tue, 3 Dec 2024 ‐‐ Tue, 10 Dec 2024

    Get an early start to the ski season with our 2nd CCCTS cross-country ski event! Silver Star is known for its early snow and its excellent network of groomed trails winding through the hills. Join us for an “east meets west” chapter-wide event which will include plenty of opportunity for apres-ski socializing with your CCCTS friends from across the country.

    New Members

  • Name   City Chapter Joined
    Eileen McCann Bellingham United States 2024-05-30
    Mike Warren Burnaby Fraser Valley 2024-05-22
    Sheila Perry Ottawa The National Capital Region 2024-05-22
    John Walton Ottawa The National Capital Region 2024-05-21
    Jim Beckner Salmon Arm BC Interior 2024-05-21
    David Herzfeld Bellingham USA 2024-05-20
    Bruce Johnson Frederick USA 2024-05-19
    Janet Clark Richmond The National Capital Region 2024-05-18
    Peter Blancher Richmond The National Capital Region 2024-05-18
    Frank Sommer Surrey Fraser Valley 2024-05-09
    Kim Martin North van Fraser Valley 2024-05-08
    Peter Morch Surrey Fraser Valley 2024-05-07
    Terri Tourino Surrey Fraser Valley 2024-05-07
    Heather Schoenberg Cumberland Comox Valley 2024-05-07

Published at least ten times a year by The Cross Canada Cycle Tour Society, a non – profit organization for retired people and others who enjoy recreational cycling. 

Items for the NEWSBRIEF must be received by the 28th of the month. The Editor reserves the right to edit for clarity, brevity and suitability of publication. The views expressed in the “NEWSBRIEF” are not necessarily those of the CCCTS or the Editor.

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