Biking Across Kansas

Frequently Asked Questions

Below is a list of frequently asked questions/answers that may be of benefit to you to better understand the purpose and logistics of the BAK Santa Fe Trail Rally.

Q: What are the goals of the BAK Bicycle Rally?
A: The goals of the BAK Bicycle Rally are to offer an opportunity for cyclists to ride safely together over multiple days; bring people together for a community event; enjoy the beauty, history, attractions, and people of rural Kansas; and celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Santa Fe Trail.

Q: Will the BAK Bicycle Rally be just like the BAK annual, eight-day tour?
A: The BAK Bicycle Rally will be a simpler event compared to the BAK annual, eight-day tour. Lodging and meals will be on your own through local hotels and local restaurants/businesses. One evening activity will be coordinated by BAK.

Q: What COVID-19 regulations will we be following?
A: Participants are required to follow any/all COVID-19 regulations/ordinances that are in place at the time of ride in the various cities and counties through which we will ride and stay. In addition, CDC recommendations active at the time of the ride will be followed.

SAG stops will include hand sanitizer, handwashing stations, and sanitization/disinfectant solution/supplies for cleaning surfaces. Whole fruit, single serve wrapped snacks, and hands-free water spigots. Handwashing will be required prior to being served at any SAG stop.

Each participant will be required to abide by the Illness/Injury and COVID Compliance outlined in the Biking Across Kansas, Inc. | BAK Bicycle Rally 2021 Release Form. (Review full release form here.)

ILLNESS/INJURY: If I exhibit symptoms commonly associated with or test positive for COVID-19, immediately prior to the event, I agree to stay home and not attend. If I exhibit symptoms commonly associated with or test positive for COVID-19 during the BAK Bicycle Rally 2021, I agree to immediately isolate myself from other participants, to cease participating in the Event until testing negative for COVID-19, and to be responsible for my own medical care and transportation. In the event of any other illness or injury during Biking Across Kansas, I agree that directorial or medical staff may determine that I cannot continue bicycling or traveling with the event for my own well-being and that of other participants. If this determination is made, I agree that I will leave the event within 24 hours, making my own travel arrangements, at my own expense, with no refund of entry fees. If my medical condition requires hospitalization in a BAK overnight city, I agree that Biking Across Kansas will not provide transportation to retrieve me after the tour has progressed along the route beyond that city. I agree to make my own travel arrangements at my own expense.

COVID COMPLIANCE: I agree to abide by the COVID-19 public health regulations of the jurisdictions in which the Event occurs, including wearing a mask when not cycling, unless excused by local law. I agree that my failure to comply shall be grounds for my expulsion from the Event with no refund of entry fees by BAK.

Q: Will families participate in the BAK Bicycle Rally?
A: The BAK Bicycle Rally is considered an all-age, all-family ride. Like adults, minors should be prepared for all bicycling conditions, weather conditions, etc. All persons traveling with BAK must be registered and sign a release. For minors, a parent or legal guardian must sign the release.

Q: Can I ride just one or two days of the BAK Bicycle Rally?
A: Yes, you are welcome to ride one to three days of the BAK Bicycle Rally. The registration fee is the same whether you ride on, two, or three days.

Q: Will law enforcement agencies close the roads to vehicles for the cyclists?
A: Law enforcement agencies do not close the roads to vehicles. However, Biking Across Kansas, Inc. will contact law enforcement agencies along the route and in Great Bend to provide them a copy of the route and discuss possible safety issues.

Q: Will there be a mass start each morning?
A: Each morning there will be a designated starting point for distribution of the daily route map and hooking up with fellow cyclists.

Q: How many cyclists will participate?
A: The BAK Bicycle Rally will be held with a minimum of 100 participants and a maximum of 350 participants.

Q: The BAK Bike Rally sounds like fun, but I'm not sure if I would be able hang in there with the group—I'm afraid I'll get left behind. Should a beginning cyclist try this?
A: A mix of beginners and experienced cyclists are anticipated. It is highly unlikely that you would not be able to find several people to ride with at your level of ability. However, it is important that you prepare yourself by training consistently. Bike Your Butt Off by Selene Yeager is one of many books that offer some training resources.

Q: What weather challenges should I anticipate?
A: Kansas wind is usually a factor for cyclists. Other weather conditions could involve high afternoon temperatures, low morning temperatures, rain, or possibly a thunderstorm.

Q: If an emergency arises or dangerous, inclement weather is approaching, how will I be notified?
A: The BAK leadership team will notify participants of emergency situations or that dangerous, inclement weather is approaching through a text messaging system.

Q: What overnight accommodations are available in Great Bend?
A: Hotel lodging is available in Great Bend. See the hotel list and reservation details here.In addition, BAK is working to secure an outdoor camping option.

Q: Where do BAK participants eat?
A: Participants are responsible all of their own meals through local restaurants/businesses.

Q: What about rest stops during the day?
A: BAK keeps several support stops (SAG stops) and vehicles on the routes daily between the mass start time and 5:00 pm (ending at 12:00 pm on September 6). SAG stops provide water and fruit as well as assistance with minor medical and mechanical problems. SAG stops are placed approximately every 15 miles in areas where local services are not available. Riders should plan to utilize the communities along the route and not rely solely on the SAGs for support. BE PREPARED each day and carry emergency water, food, and basic tools to repair a flat bicycle tire (pump, spare tire, patch kit, etc.).

Golden Belt Bicycling Company in Great Bend will be available for mechanical services (fee for service).

Q: What does the word "SAG" actually stand for?
A: SAG is a widely-used term in the cycling world and usually refers to a stationary vehicle or location that provides support for passing riders. While there are several theories as to what it stands for, most likely it's an acronym for "Support and Gear." You will also hear the term used as a verb meaning the someone did not finish the day's ride. For example, "He got hurt and sagged in."

Q: What type of bicycle should I have?
A: While you will see people on a wide range of bikes, a road bike will likely be most enjoyable on the paved roads on which we will ride. Mountain bikes are generally heavier and not designed for the distance BAK covers on the road. Your local bike shop can advise you and make suggestions for your budget and experience level. Most importantly, your bicycle should be in good condition with good tires and a clean, lubed chain. You should carry two extra tubes in a seat bag, and you should have a frame pump or CO2 cartridges. While there will be floor pumps on the ride, you should be self-reliant with the equipment and the knowledge/experience to handle a flat. A vehicle with a floor pump may not be nearby when you need it.

Q: Are E-bikes allowed?
E-bikes must be self-supported as we are NOT equipped to provide mechanical support for E-bikes or SAG support to life/transport E-bikes. Many traditional cyclists do not wish to ride alongside individuals on E-bikes for safety reasons. If participating on an E-bike, you should have substantial experience riding alongside or within groups of traditional cyclists. If you are not an experienced group rider, please keep your distance from other cyclists to avoid accidents.

Q: Is there a participant forum at which I can meet and communicate with other cyclists?
A. Join the Biking Across Kansas Discussion and Photos Group on Facebook to stay in touch with other cyclists. In addition, check the Biking Across Kansas event page on Facebook for information specifically from Biking Across Kansas, Inc.