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Posted on July 21st, 2014
RAGBRAI riders get up close and personal with Iowa's rolling hills. Photo by Dave Herholz.

RAGBRAI riders get up close and personal with Iowa’s rolling hills. Photo by Dave Herholz.

RAGBRAI (the Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) is all about biking, eating pie, and enjoying Iowa’s varied scenery. With the latter in mind, the Iowa Geological Survey, with support from the Iowa Limestone Producers Association, has developed a series of brochures to help riders learn a little bit about the state they’re pedaling through.

IGS Research Specialist and Geologist Ryan Clark led an effort to develop a series of informational brochures to help RAGBRAI participants learn about Iowa’s geological, cultural, and natural characteristics as they ride across the state. Clark and other staff members created one brochure for each day of the ride, pointing out interesting landforms, geological phenomena, and current research projects for the riders.

The brochures have been a tradition at the Iowa Geological Survey for years, one that continues today now that IGS staff have joined IIHR. This year the brochures got a new look, thanks to the work of Jessica Bristow, IIHR’s former creative media specialist. The content is developed by staff from all areas of IGS and IIHR, along with contributions from members of the U.S. Geological Survey and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

“It’s a great way for us to reach out to the public,” Clark says. “We take our role as educators seriously, and this is a fun way to get information out there.”

Each brochure has a different focus, appropriate for the day’s ride. This year, these include drought, lakes and streams, floods, mapping, fossils, marsh plants, and bedrock. Each brochure includes an infographic illustrating the landforms and elevation riders will travel over on that day’s ride, plus lots of information on interesting geography and projects in these areas.

To view PDFs of the brochures visit the IGS website.

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