Flooding forces RAGBRAI reroute

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MADRID, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- Recent heavy rainfall in central and northwest Iowa has forced park staff, local public officials and RAGBRAI organizers to reroute the bike ride to avoid flooding.

Rainfall has caused high lake levels at Saylorville Reservoir and flooding of the Des Moines River.

This flooding is affecting the lower area of Ledges State Park, which was set to host RAGBRAI on July 24. Areas along the route are currently under as much as 20 feet of water and the flooding isn't expected to subside by the time riders arrive.

“It’s unfortunate cyclists will not get the opportunity to see the scenic beauty that Ledges has to offer," Park Manager Andy Bartlett said. “Riders will still get a chance to experience the state park atmosphere, though, when they pass through Wildcat Den State Park later in the week. Ledges is definitely a gem within our state parks system and I would encourage those interested in exploring what it has to offer to plan a visit in the future.”

The reroute will have riders leave Boone eastbound on US Highway 30 and ride about 1 mile, turning south on Quill Avenue (R27), where after travelling 3 miles will meet up with the original route.

The reroute decreases the day's distance by 3 miles.