RAW Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How can I get more detailed information on the ride?
A: Download the 2014 RAW Ride Guide. This document is updated several times during the year, so revisit the site in July for the final version if you want to print and bring one along. Further, if you have a detailed question about the event, please email the RAW Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: How do I pay my RAW balance?
A: Remaining balance is due May 1st. Go to "Instructions for Purchasing Add-ons". On step 5 after you click "Buy Add-ons", you should see an option "RAW - Remaining balance". If you still have difficulty, email email@example.com
Q: What kind of road support is there?
A: RAW is happy to offer on-the-road support with the help of many great volunteers. We offer three guaranteed water and snack stops each day, including a fully catered lunch menu. In addition we provide a team of 4-5 roving support vehicles equipped with short wave radio sets, water, snacks and basic maintenance supplies.
Q: Can I bring a personal support vehicle?
A: Sorry, no. With the high level of road support that RAW provides, personal support vehicles are not needed; we recommend they not be used, unless special circumstances prevail and they are pre-approved by Cascade staff. In past years, non-riding loved ones have been allowed to volunteer, providing us with much-needed assistance during the event. This must be set up in advance.
Q: Can I wear earbuds?
A: Cyclists must turn off and put away any headset or ear bud(s) connected to any electronic device capable of transmitting or playing a broadcast or recording. Distractions such as music players and radios are also not permitted. If necessary to check, use or answer a cell phone or pager, the cyclist must first pull off the road or trail and stop.
Q: Can I bring along a pet?
A: God knows we love them, but sorry…no pets are allowed in camp or on the ride.
Q: Can I bring along a non-riding partner?
A: Please read above note about personal support vehicles.
Q: How do RAW costs compare to other large-group multi-day events?
A: RAW offers a fabulous value for a week of fully supported riding, especially if you compare it to other week-long tours offered by many organizations around the country. Just about everything you need is included in the price of the tour. A further major value and most importantly perhaps is the fact that due to the limited ridership number; you won't have to wait in line for bathrooms, food, or water.
Q: Do I have to wear a helmet?
A: Helmets are mandatory on all Cascade Bicycle Club events. We require that you wear a helmet whenever you are on your bike.
Q: Why is RAW limited to only 250 riders?
A: RAW is purposefully being kept much smaller than other Cascade events. RAW riders can enjoy a personal experience shared with like-minded cyclists. 'On your left' will very rarely, if ever, be heard! RAW will offer the kind of experience from which lifelong friendships can spring, of which lifelong memories will be made!
Q: Why is registration open to Cascade members only for the month of January?
A: As part of our desire to reward club members for stepping up and supporting our mission, we decided to open all events just for members for the first month of the year. While we acknowledge the support and loyalty of riders on our individual events, it is only through strong club membership numbers that we can provide effective representation in the community. Plus, since riders receive substantial discounts on events, membership is not a financial hardship for most of our riders. Not a member? You can join today.
Q: How fast do you normally sell-out this event?
A: Most years we fill the 250 spaces within 45 days of opening registration. There have been a couple of years that did not sell out. Regardless, we normally update the “spots available” every two weeks on the registration page after opening up event sales.
Q: Can I sell or transfer my registration?
A: We have listened to feedback over the past few years and are able to announce a revised policy of transfers for RAW:
- Original registration and full payment are due 90 days before the event
- $100 fee associated with each registration transfer
- Signed transfer form
- Signed registration form from the person receiving the transfer
- All paperwork and fees due to Cascade no later than 10 days before the event
Please read the detailed refund and transfer policies before signing up, then visit the club message board to find a seller
Q: I am not 100% positive I can attend the ride. Should I still try to register in January?
A: If you are not sure you can attend for any reason but want to be sure of a spot there are a few options:
When signing up in January, pay only the $250 (minus the member discount) non-refundable deposit. The remaining balance is due by May 1st, you can decide whether to cancel at the time. If you cancel, you will then lose only the non-refundable deposit.
if you have purchased the non-refundable deposit and cannot ride , you can try and sell you spot to someelse. Please visit the transfer policy page for details.
Buy independent trip insurance. Be sure to read the fine print and buy when you sign up (not afterward) to ensure that you are covered.
Wait and see if people cancel. Check this site for openings later in the summer (between July 1 and July 25). We have last-minute openings every year.
Q: What happens if I have to cancel my registration after between 3 months and 1 month of the start?
A: We provide a 100% refund of the registration fees above the $250 non-refundable deposit for the event until a month prior to the event. Additional items like transportation, parking, etc are refunded according to the refund policy. Unfortunately, because we must pay for all meals, lodging and equipment beginning a month before the event, we cannot refund any money a month prior to the start . We strongly advise buying independent trip insurance as a guarantee against losing your registration fees.
Q: Where do we stay?
A: RAW camps primarily at public schools, county fair grounds and state parks. For more information, please take a look the "Accommodations" and "Route" sections in the Ride Guide.
Q: What if we want to stay in a motel one or more nights?
A: While we feel you'll miss some of the "atmosphere" of the event (and there is no reduction in fees), we understand that camping is not for everyone. There are few motels in close proximity to several of our overnight stops; a complete list will be available in the RAW Ride Guide. If you decide to stay in a motel (for one night or several) all we ask is that you check out with us before going out on the course in the morning and that you check in immediately following the end of each day's ride. We cannot provide luggage transport so please bring a small backpack for your gear if you choose this option.
Q: What about food/meals?
A: Starting with lunch on Day One, RAW will supply you with great meals along with water, snacks, sports drinks and awesome lunches along the route. Note that lunch on the Day Three in Port Angeles is NOT INCLUDED--enjoy what the town has to offer! We revise the menu each year and make a point of offering healthy and tasty menu choices daily. Tasty vegetarian options are available, but must be requested in advance on the registration form. We offer some gluten-free choices, but unfortunately, we do not offer a vegan option. Refrigeration will be provided if riders with dietary restrictions would like to bring their own food items.
Q: Sure the food sounds great, but how about coffee?
A: Once again this year our coffee on the ride is being provided by Grounds for Change. Grounds for Change is a family owned and operated, Pacific Northwest based coffee company that roasts their 100% fair trade, organic coffee in small batches to ensure the freshest coffee possible. The vast majority of their coffee is also shade grown, which helps ensure healthy habitat for migratory birds. We're excited to have them as a partner and hope you enjoy their coffee on the ride!
Q: What about showers and bathroom facilities?
A: One of the biggest compliments we receive each year from our riders is on our "Shower Truck"; individual stalls, good water pressure and all the hot water you want. Oh, sinks and mirrors out front!
Q: Can I volunteer for RAW?
A: Each year it takes many dedicated volunteers help us produce this event. Please send us an email if you or a friend or spouse would like to help us out during the event. Volunteers are even able to ride a day or so and don't have to pay for food!
Q: Does Cascade offer any services to help me train?
A: Cascade Bicycle Club offers an extensive Free Daily Rides program that can help you get ready for RAW. You can design your own personal training program by selecting daily rides that fit your schedule and ability. Instructions for doing so can be found here.
Q: What day does the bus arrive in La Conner?
A: Do to the fact that La Conner is only 90 minutes away, the buses will leave Seattle on the morning of the ride, Sunday Aug 3rd at 8:00am. Riders should be fed, fully packed and ready to ride when they board the bus, The start line opens right after they arrive in La Conner (approx 10:00 a.m.)
Q: I need to make special arrangements to get to and from the start line, can you help with this?
A: Sorry, the only official transport we are able to offer is from Seattle to the start line (and back) . If you need to leave early, be dropped off somewhere else, or have any other personal transport issue, please post a message on the event message board. We are not able to assist with any special requests for pre/post ride transport.
Q: Do you have parking available at the UW bus pick up area?
A: Yes, we do. You can buy a pass at the subsidized rate of $30 for the 8 days in advance or onsite the day of event departure.
Q Can I park my car in La Conner for the week?
A: At this time we cannot guarantee parking availability near the start line. However, we are working on this capability.
If you have any additional questions, please email the RAW Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org. No question is too mundane or silly. We are here to help you have the best time possible on the ride.