Frequently Asked Questions
To help those interested in BRAN, we have compiled a list of frequently asked questions along with the answers to the questions. Please review the lists below. If you still have questions, don’t hesitate to email us at email@example.com and we’ll be back in touch soon. Thanks!
How do I register for the ride?
Online Registration is closed. Join us in Benkleman, NE on June 3rd, 2023 to register!
I can only get away to ride for certain days; is that possible?
Yes, there are multi-day options for BRAN again this year. We offer a 7-day tour, 4-day tour or a 3-day tour.
What is included in my registration fees?
Your registration includes access to outdoor camping or RV spaces, hot showers, baggage transportation from overnight town to the next for the entire week, aid stations with hydration and basic nutrition, access to bike mechanics as needed, access to sag vehicles as needed, medical support, and an end of ride luncheon.
Does BRAN provide refunds?
BRAN has a NO REFUND policy with no exceptions. If you have concerns about receiving a refund and you are not able to participate, then you should consider purchasing Travel Insurance on your own. BRAN will ONLY consider offering a refund in the event the BRAN Ride Director cancels the ride.
How do we pick up our packets?
- Information will be emailed to all registered participants, including a PDF copy of the riders book.
- Full packet will be provided during check-in.
Is Registration open on the first day of the ride?
Registration on the first day is available ONLY if the ride is not filled to the 600-rider maximum.
How many people ride on BRAN?
The ride is limited to 600 riders.
How do I get information about BRAN?
- BRAN stands for Bicycle Ride Across Nebraska. It is a once-a-year opportunity to visit the sites and enjoy the country hospitality of Nebraska from the seat of your bicycle.
- Proceeds from the ride are used to fund scholarships at post-secondary schools in Nebraska (Nebraska students attending Nebraska schools).
- Information about the ride itself can be obtained here at the FAQ site, our website at BRAN | Bicycle Ride Across Nebraska (bran-inc.org), or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Who is the ride designed for?
This is a tour designed by bicyclists for bicyclists and designed for all age groups.
Is BRAN a rain or shine ride?
Yes, the ride is rain or shine. During severe inclement weather we will have support vehicles sufficient to transport riders to safety.
What kinds of bicycles are allowed on the ride?
All bicycles are welcome on the ride so long as they have two working brakes and are in good working order.
Are e-bikes allowed on the ride?
Yes, ebike riders are welcome so long as their bicycles conform with Nebraska state law.
Are pets allowed?
No. To respect the space of other participants, pets are not permitted in the camping or headquarters site areas. For service animal exceptions, please contact the BRAN Ride Director at email@example.com
Are teams allowed to ride?
How can I find out more information on Nebraska?
Visit www.VisitNebraska.gov or call 877-NEBRASKA
Beginning the Ride
How do I get out to the starting point?
- BRAN arranges a Charter Service to take the rider, and luggage to the starting point. This Service is indicated on the registration form for an additional fee. You must sign up for this when you register as the number of seats are limited. We cannot take day of bus registrations. You are responsible for getting yourself to the bus departure point on time.
- You can drive to the starting point or carpool with other riders. You may have a friend or family member drop you off at the start town. If you bring a vehicle that will be with you all week then you need to register that vehicle.
- If you do not wish to ride the bus out, you can post your travel needs on the BRAN Facebook page to see if any other riders from your area are going and if you might arrange to ride with them.
How do I get my bike to the starting point?
If you ride the BRAN buses, a separate truck will take your bike to the starting point. If you are not riding the bus, you will be responsible for transporting your bike to the starting point.
How do I get my bike to the starting point if I live out-of-state or don’t want to ride the bus?
In the past, many riders have made arrangements with Nebraska area bike shops to mail their bikes to the starting point. Others have made their situations known on our BRAN Facebook page and have made arrangements with other riders going on the tour. Or contact the ride start town and arrange to ship your bike directly to them.
I need someone to drive my car to the starting point. Can BRAN help?
Please post your needs on the BRAN Facebook page. We have had people volunteer to help out with driving when they see those needs.
What time does the BRAN bus leave?
Buses will leave promptly at 8am. Bike and buss loading begins at 5:30am at the Ashland High School, 1842 Furnas St.
Where do I park my car if I want to leave it at the bus departure point?
There will be designated parking for BRAN 41participants taking the bus from Ashland, NE to Benkelman. Parking will be in designated area at the Ashland High School, 1842 Furnas St. A signed waiver is required to leave your car for the week, and will be provided day-of by BRAN crew.
Is there a place for me to leave my car at the first host community?
Further instructions will come out in the springtime for riders wanting to leave their car in the first host city of Benkelman. If you are thinking of doing so, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
What do I need to bring for check in?
You will need to bring your ID. Check-in is on Saturday, June 3rd in Benkelman, NE for weeklong riders and any 3- or 4-day riders starting in Benkleman. Check in will be from 1pm to 4pm MDT.
Can I camp at the departure point before buses leave for Benkelman?
Yes, camping is allowed at the Ashland High School, 1842 Furnas St., with access to one bathroom available.
Is online registration available?
- Yes! The link and necessary waiver can be found in the BRAN 41 Registration section on this website.
We offer a full week, 3-day or 4-day ride options.
- If you choose the weeklong ride you will start in Benkelman and end in Ashland. You can buy a bus ticket that will take you to the start town or be dropped off at the start town by a friend or family member. At the end of the ride, you can be picked up by a friend or family member or leave your vehicle at the Ashland Highschool during the week. Registration and check-in will be Saturday night June 4th in Benkelman.
- If you choose to ride the first 3 days you will start in Benkelman and end in Red Cloud. At the end of your ride, you will need to be picked up in Red Cloud by a friend or family member. You can also buy a bus ticket that will take you to the start town or you can elect to be dropped off at the start town by a friend or family member. Registration and check-in will be Saturday night June 3rd in Benkelman.
- If you choose to ride the first 4 days you will start in Benkelman and end in Hebron. At the end of your ride, you will need to be picked up in Hebron by a friend or family member. You can also buy a bus ticket that will take you to the start town or elect to be dropped off at the start town by a friend or family member. Registration and check-in will be on Saturday night June 3rd in Benkelman.
- If you choose the last 3 days you will start in Hebron and end in Ashland and you will need to find a ride to the start. Registration and check-in will be Wednesday night, June 7th in Hebron.
- If you choose the last 4 days then you will start in Red Cloud and end in Ashland and you will need to find a ride to the start. Registration and check-in will be on Tuesday night, June 6th in Red Cloud.
- Please note that all registrations and check-ins are the night before each ride option starts.
How much does BRAN cost?
The registration fee for the 2023 tour is $350 for the full week, $240 for the 4-day ride and $180 for the 3-day ride. The 2022 bus fee is $125 to ride the bus from Ashland, NE to the start host town, Benkelman, NE. Any private vehicles accompanying BRAN riders are also charged a fee. The private vehicle fee for 2022 is $100. (Prices will increase on April 15th)
Is Registration open on the first day of the ride?
Registration on the first day is available ONLY if the ride is not filled to the 600 rider maximum.
How do I register the person(s) who will be driving (or riding in) my car during the tour and providing private support?
Private support vehicles must register. All drivers must be registered and sign the BRAN Agreement, Waiver and Release of Liability. There is a place on the registration form to indicate car registration. A BRAN Agreement, Waiver and Release of Liability must be signed by all additional passengers in your vehicle.
How do I know if I have been accepted for the tour? What kind of confirmation is given?
When using online registration, you will receive an automatic email notification at the time of registration.
How long does it take to receive the BRAN packet and Tour Guide after registration/fees are sent in?
Packets are will be emailed out mid-May. Please watch for emails from email@example.com
BRAN Accommodations & Amenities
What about sleeping accommodations?
- BRAN is a camping tour. Each rider is expected to provide for their own sleeping arrangements. Most riders bring a tent to sleep in. BRAN arranges for riders and support personnel to camp on high school football fields or in their city parks. In the event of inclement weather (i.e. heavy rains, thunderstorms, tornadoes, snow, etc.), facilities will be provided.
- Each of the host towns will designate camping areas and places for those requiring RV parking. Riders may choose to bring their own gear and set up in the basic camping space at no charge; other for-fee options include charter tent and cabin services provided by our partners at Pork Bellies LLC. Our registration page contains links for those wishing to charter a tent or cabin.
- Some towns/cities have hotel/motel/Bed & Breakfast accommodations as well. Anyone interested in such lodging is responsible for making their own reservations.
- In the past some churches have allowed riders to stay in their basements. Again, this kind of arrangement would depend on what the host community provides. Check with the Host Community contact to confirm if they will be offering this service.
Do I have to carry my own gear?
No. A baggage truck transports your luggage/camping gear to each host town. The luggage is lined up and riders claim their gear when they get in from the day’s ride.
How is my gear tagged?
Please put a tag on your gear with your information. You are limited to 2 bags.
What time do we have to get up in the morning?
You can wake up whenever you want to, but you are required to take down your tent, pack your gear and get it to the Baggage trailer each day so that it can be taken to the next town. We will post baggage drop off time when determined but usually by 8:00am. DO NOT START TO RIDE BEFORE DAYLIGHT!
Where do we eat/get food on the tour?
• It’s always a good idea to check your Tour Guide for food options. The host towns will provide breakfast/dinner at a cost. Many of the churches and civic organizations plan buffets, potlucks, etc. There are also restaurants in the towns/cities on tour. A city/town along the way may set up a luncheon (at cost to the rider). The BRAN SAG support also offers fruit/water and other snacks on the tour. Donations are welcomed for these supplies. There are also convenience stores along the way most days of the tour, as well as bake sales and other food booths supplied by various civic/school organizations.
What do we do during the day and in the evening after the ride?
- Check the Tour Guide for interesting stops on the ride. In the Host Communities, people will get a nap in after riding all day or will take advantage of whatever the town has to offer for entertainment. There are several options for grub, ranging from Potlucks to local restaurants. The evening is also a great time to meet new friends and just have fun!
- We work closely with our overnight towns to create a festival area in each overnight town complete with food and beverage, live entertainment, and culture unique to the town. As the towns complete their planning, we will provide updates on our Facebook page. Be sure to click ‘follow’ to get the latest updates.
What about services for my bike?
In the evening people will check their bikes over to make sure they don’t have any thorns/glass etc. in their tires. The Bike Way is our dedicated bike shop that goes on tour with us and can meet most of your cycling needs.
Is there internet access available on the ride?
In many of the towns, the high schools open their computer labs or offer WiFi so people can check their e-mail or send messages to home.
Is there an emergency phone number for people to use who have to reach someone on BRAN?
Yes, numbers are usually posted or available with check-in materials.
Will someone wake us up in the morning?
No. However, you will quickly learn that there is no need for an alarm. The sound of tent zippers usually wakes folks up in a hurry. However, if you are a heavy sleeper or sleep away from the main campground area, you will need a travel alarm or someone to wake you up.
Are showers available in each town?
Yes. As part of your registration fee, showers will be available at each campsite in partnership with Pork Belly Ventures. The cost is included in your registration fee.
Are there any dump stations along the route?
Individuals needing RV services are advised to check with the individual host communities for details.
Are laundry facilities available?
There are Laundromats in some of the towns we will stay in and some of the host homes allow riders to wash/dry their clothing. Most riders choose to bring enough clothing for the entire tour.
Is there medical support while on tour?
- Yes. We have a nurse that can be seen at the Camp Director Headquarters after the days ride to get limited medical aid.
- If a rider becomes injured on the road, BRAN staff will call for an ambulance to transport the injured rider to the nearest medical facility.
- If a rider is unable to continue the ride due to fatigue, a designated SAG driver can pick them up. However, we are not a taxi service. Please condition yourself for a weeklong ride.
Is there on-road support?
- Yes. We have roving SAGs and stationary SAGs that follow the riders on tour. All riders receive course maps, sag wagon support as needed, course markings, fully stocked aid stations, medical support and mechanical support each day of the ride.
- Riders should know how to fix a flat tire and carry the necessary tools and spare tubes to fix a flat. However, if you feel that you lack this knowledge or are physically unable to do this, a support person or bike shop can help you. In many cases, more experienced riders will help you change your tire. To prevent most flats, make sure tires are properly inflated and free of thorns, etc.
- Please be sure to have your bike serviced and ready prior to the ride. Contact The Bike Way for a spring tune-up.
Am I allowed my own SAG?
Yes. While BRAN provides a SAG free of charge, we do permit riders to be supported by their own SAG. Drivers will be charged a nominal fee of $100, which provides access to our camp site, use of the Pork Belly showers, and other services. We charge this amount to ensure all participants and support personnel are covered by our insurance. Occasionally, the route may not permit individual SAGs to operate on the same road as the riders. In those cases, we will provide an alternate vehicle route and ask the rider to rely upon the BRAN-provided SAG. At the Rider’s Meeting on Saturday, we will provide updates on the routes, and we ask that your SAG driver attend as well. It is critical that all people who participate in BRAN follow all rules and signage.
Are the roads closed to traffic?
No, all roads are open to vehicle traffic throughout the ride. However, we work closely with the various law enforcement jurisdictions to provide the safest possible ride.
Are there restroom facilities on the road?
Not provided by BRAN. There are usually small towns that contain stations and/or convenience stores where you can take care of your needs. However, many riders use the great outdoors. You may want to carry a partial roll of TP, just in case. Folks who live on the road are sometimes agreeable to allowing riders to use their bathrooms as well.
What can I do if I want to take off a jacket or pants that I’ve worn in the cool early morning but don’t want to carry them on the bike?
You can give them to a stationary SAG and pick them up at Camp Headquarters after the days ride.
How do I share my pictures on the Photo Gallery?
If you are comfortable uploading your own photos, email the webmaster, address firstname.lastname@example.org
What do I do if I don’t feel comfortable doing the upload?
If you would prefer not to do the upload yourself, you can forward the photos to email@example.com and we will get them posted.
Making BRAN a Better Ride
How can I help to sponsor BRAN?
- As a non-profit organization, BRAN seeks to offer the best biking experience in Nebraska at the lowest price.
- As a sponsor, you can help make it possible for many riders who might otherwise not be able to afford the ride.
- Alternatively, you can help to fund additional scholarships which we will provide to the host towns that we stay with on BRAN 41.
- For more information on how you can help, email the webmaster at address firstname.lastname@example.org
How do I volunteer?
- One of the best ways to be involved with Bicycle Ride Across Nebraska without actually riding it is to be a part of our volunteers! BRAN uses a core crew with years of experience in making the ride happen, but we can always use a few more. Regardless of whether you are available for the whole week or just a day or so, we can find a way to get you involved. Many of our volunteers are family members of riders who travel along with the rider and have some free time to help out.
- If you are interested in being a volunteer, please contact us at email@example.com