About Great Lakes Ultra Cycling and Great Lakes Randonneurs

Great Lakes Ultra Cycling (formerly Great Lakes Randonneurs) was founded in 1987 by Lon Haldeman.  Originally, rides were out of Sharon, WI but have moved over time.  Today, GLU hosts rides in several states, we always enjoy seeing new and small roads and exploring the Upper Midwest.  Our rides follow the general goal of endurance over speed; we do not race and our average speeds are generally in the realm of 12-16 mph.  A nice long ride in the countryside or city where we can view wildlife and natural features is always key in a GLU ride.

Our mission:

To promote non-competitive endurance cycling events in the Upper Midwest including centuries, double centuries, randonneuring, cycle touring and others at and over 60 miles.   

To encourage safe cycling, provide a forum for camaraderie and training for endurance cycling events, and to positively impact the communities in which we ride.

Great Lakes Randonneurs continues to exist as a subset of Great Lakes Ultra Cycling.  It is a great sport with lots of tradition.

Club Values

Our core values are Cameraderie and Perseverence.  Our club follows these two principles in everything that we do.

Camaraderie means that we value and respect each other as riders and individuals.  We share our challenges and know that our rides are successful when all of us have a good time and ride well.  We also value the places we live and ride in and respect them in our behavior towards the people we meet, be they motorists, other cyclists, pedestrians, etc.  Stopping or pausing to render assistance or just say hello to anyone is highly regarded and rewarded.

Perseverance means that we acknowledge that we all have goals and we know that it can take time to acheive them.  We always ride within our physical and mental limits and respect our abilities.  We are here to slowly become more fit and better,safer riding partners.

GLU rides include:

  • Centuries
  • Double Centuries
  • Cyclo-touring
  • Randonneuring
  • Any ride over 60 miles

The Pandemic

In the past, GLU has worked hard to emphasize riding in small groups to promote both safety and fun.  We always remember rides better when we have someone to share the experience with.  In the age of COVID-19, this is becoming even more of a challenge.  Some types of ultra cycling such as randonneuring or the typical Grand Fondo  are unfortunately not friendly to the age of social distancing.  Our riders are typically in the 40-60 year range which can be a more elevated risk for the virus.  Part of camaraderie this year is knowing our own risks even more than before.

In response, GLU is pausing from the more traditional models to embrace technology and expand our horizons as a way to enable our core values.  Our pre-ride meetings are on Zoom.  We also want to encourage people to stay socially "in touch" on rides via texting and other socially distant ways.  While we can't ride in a pack, riding with 1-2 others where distance is maintained can give us assurance and support without increasing our risk - we call this "Pod RIding".

None of us is safe until all of us are safe 

During the pandemic, we are as a club becoming more aware of those who are less fortunate than ourselves.  While previously we used the greatest part of our budget to provide amenities for ourselves, during the outbreak, this money will be diverted to support the homeless.  As of now, we have choosen The Night Ministry in Chicago as our charity of choice.  We have already donated almost $1500 to them via our jersey sale and as a portion of rider fees.  You will always have an option to donate through GLU to this cause.

All are Welcome

GLU is open to all riders equally.  It does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations.  Respect for all is part of our club code of conduct.


GLU works with several sanctioning bodies

GLU Leadership

GLU is run by a board of directors (and the efforts of MANY volunteers)

  • Michele Brougher - President and RBA
  • Kingston Smith - Treasurer
  • Jennifer Danhaus - Secretary
  • Jerad Tintera - Route Master
  • Ted Fay - Outreach Coordinator
  • Mike Welsh - Member at Large
  • Paul Danhaus - Member at Large

GLU Awards

Unlike the typical awards, ours are all based on participating and supporting our core values.  Awards should bind us together, not show us off.

  1. Great Lakes Ultra Rider - within one season, complete one from each of the following ranges
    • 100-150 miles
    • 150-200 miles
    • 200-250 miles
    • 300+ miles
  2. GLU Assistance Award - for taking time to help others
  3. GLU "Best PIcture" - for taking a photo that captures the spirit of the club (the photo will be featured on the next year's website)
  4. GLU Imperial Dozens - for showing up to 12 Imperial rides over the course of the year
  5. Imperial Hebdomadal Award - for riding an Imperial in 52 consectutive weeks
  6. Volunteer of the Year - for supporting others instead of riding yourself