Getting Home & Getting Your Bike

We pedal one-way out to Montauk, NY. That means that no matter which route you choose, at the end of the ride you are going to be in Montauk, and you really have just two delicious choices to get home:


Find a way home on your own, such as getting a lift from a friend.  Remember that you can NOT take your bike home on the train on Saturday or Sunday of Ride to Montauk weekend, even with a bike pass.  (These are the LIRR’s rules; not ours).  Those train rules are the reason we offer optional return transport.


OR...

Sign up for our optional transportation home for your bike and you.  We offer transport home on Saturday (ride day) and on Sunday.  Optional transportation costs extra.  You can sign up for it during on-line registration, If you have already registered for the ride and decided that you want the return transport after all just drop us a note here and we’ll take extra-good care of you. (You can also add it on last-minute at the finish line itself, but it costs more then. How much? It makes my head dizzy just thinking about it...)



If You Are Getting Home On Your Own


Thanks for coming along! When you get to the finish line enjoy a free hot shower, free massage, free Blue Point Brewery beer, and free all-you-can-eat post-ride meal, then leave whenever you are ready.  (Of course, if you drink a LOT of delicious Blue Point Brewery beer you’d be an idiot to drive, right? Right!)


How to Get Picked Up After the Ride in Montauk


As mentioned, there is absolutely no parking at the finish line (no; not even for a moment) and the police WILL be writing tickets for parking AND standing.


Here's the info to pass on to your driver. If you wish you can click here to download a printable version of these instructions.


If you are picking up a cyclist after the ride, do NOT try to park at the finish line -- there is going to be a big traffic jam there, and when you finally get to the front of it, the police will be waiting to write you a ticket if you try to park OR stand by the side of the road, in a private lot, or in the residents-only parking lot by the beach.


Instead you should park here:


The Montauk Lighthouse

2000 NY-27

Montauk, NY

Driving directions here.


Parking here costs about $8, but you get an amazing view tossed in for free. We don't get any of that parking money -- it goes to the NY State Park Service. We are not responsible for theft, damage, etc. etc.


We'll run a free shuttle service between noon and 8:00 p.m. for people and bikes.


So after you park you have several delicious choices:


• Hop a free lift to the finish line. You can purchase the post-ride meal there if you wish, but it's not required.


• Call your cyclist and tell them that you have arrived. They can catch a free ride with their bike to where you are.


Shuttles will run about every 30 minutes.



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Photo by Sharon Soons.  Bikes at the Montauk finish line waiting to be carefully packed up for the trip home.


We work really hard (and spend a lot of money) to get the bikes back home as quickly and as safely as we can, but there comes a point when reality sets in -- there is only so fast you can carefully load a thousand bikes.


It is for this reason that we STRONGLY recommend that you select our optional next-day bike pick up.  Drop off your bike at the Montauk finish line after the ride on Saturday, then just head home and relax.  Come back to Manhattan, Babylon, or Mastic-Shirley on Sunday any time between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. and your bike will be there waiting for you, guarded by our staff and ready to go.  


All cyclists should finish the ride in Montauk no later than 6 p.m., either by pedaling there or by getting a lift from us.  Bikes that arrive in Montauk after 6 p.m., for ANY reason, can NOT be picked up on Saturday - they will be held for Sunday pick up.  (We gotta sleep sometime!)


We understand that Sunday bike pick-up doesn’t fit everyone’s schedule, but if there is a way you can do it I think you’ll be much happier.  (We even price it lower as an added incentive!)  Already signed up for Saturday pick-up and now want to switch to Sunday?  No problem!  If you let us know in advance we will make the change AND refund you the difference.  Just drop us a note by clicking here.


Do you really truly want Saturday pick-up immediately after the ride?  We are happy to oblige, but remember: this is a slow (SLOW!) process.  You should plan on spending FOUR HOURS OR MORE waiting for your bike to arrive once you arrive at Manhattan, Babylon, or Mastic Shirley.  


Or as our friend Keith says:


Photo by Catherine Van Dyke


If You Are Taking Our Return Transport Home


A VITAL MESSAGE FROM GLEN, YOUR TOUR DIRECTOR AND HUMBLE SERVANT:


Howdy boys and girls.  


The Ride to Montauk is a fantastic fun event, but when we hear complaints or death threats, 99 percent of them are about how long it took to pick up a bike after the ride.


The Ride to Montauk is, I believe, THE largest one-day transport of bicycles in North America.  (No, wise guy; I’m not counting RAGBRAI where 20 different companies are each involved in return transport).


Packing up a thousand bikes and getting them safely back home from Montauk is a SLOW process.  

OK?  OK!


Resume normal reading.


First we’ll explain how your bike is getting home, then we’ll explain how your butt is getting home.


How to Get Your Bike Home


Easy.


When you cross the finish line in a blaze of glory the very first thing that will happen is that we will help you park your bike in just the right spot, depending on where you want it to go and when you want to pick it up.  


Don’t forget to remove and take with you ALL water bottles, bike computers, bags, pumps...  Everyone says, “Oh, this won’t fall off.”  Remind me to show you my huge collection of lost water bottles, expensive bike computers, pumps...


WARNING: Do not just leave your bike any old place or pick your own parking spot and assume that it will get home OK.  It won’t.  This is like getting your luggage tagged at the airport, leaving it in the food court, and expecting it to arrive home on time.  Just because it’s tagged...


That’s it -- we’ll take care of the rest.  We’l load up your bike into one of our private trucks and get it to your choice of destinations: Manhattan, Babylon, or Mastic-Shirley.


READ THIS!

We are cyclists with expensive bikes too, and we are gentle with all of the bikes, but even under the best circumstances, nicks and scratches happen. YOUR BIKE MAY BE SCRATCHED, DENTED, BENT, OR DESTROYED. WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGE TO YOUR BIKE, AND WE DO NOT PAY FOR BIKE DAMAGE.


In other words, if you see one of our staff jumping up and down on your bike, we promise to kill them, and we will pay for damage to your bike. Ditto ditto if one of our trucks goes over a cliff -- we purchase special Truck Over a Cliff Insurance (honest!) and you’re covered.


But if your bike gets a flat tire, scratched, banged, dented, bent, or destroyed accidentally during shipping, we can not be responsible, and we can not reimburse you. This may be the wrong ride to bring your one-of-a-kind, Dura Ace 25th Anniversary Edition, custom-painted-by-Ernesto Colnago-himself-bicycle.


Why the hard line on bike damage?


Good question.


Years ago I was the tour director of a ride where a cyclist swore that we scratched the paint on the bottom of his bike. (You know -- the bottom -- where you can’t see it...)


The solution that he proposed was that we pay to have all of the components removed from his bike, have the bare frame shipped to Italy where it would be hand-painted, then shipped back to the U.S. and reassembled. Estimated price way back then: $3,000.


Were we responsible for that scratch in his paint? I don’t think so, but who knows? So rather than risk bankrupting our little company every time we ride, we just put this mean policy in place instead.


I’m reminded of our high school drug dealer youth-group leader. He was the first person I ever knew who had a custom-built bike.  He had a dream that he dropped the bike and scratched it, so he never rode it again.


You are on an adult adventure and adult adventures involve risk.


Where’s My Bike?

Bikes shipped back to Manhattan will be at W. 33rd Street between 11th Avenue and 12th Avenue


Bikes shipped back to Babylon will be behind the Babylon LIRR station.


Bikes shipped back to Mastic-Shirley will be at the Mastic-Shirley train station.


Bikes shipped back to Brooklyn will NOT BE AVAILABLE FOR SATURDAY PICK-UP. They can be picked up Sunday ONLY from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. at:


Bicycle Habitat bike shop

560 Vanderbilt Ave

Brooklyn, NY 11238


You can see directions to the shop here.


Bikes left at the bike shop past Monday will be charged $5 per day storage.


AND... while you’re picking up your bike, you can save 15% off all accessories at Bicycle Habitat! Just tell them that you’re with the Ride to Montauk. Cool, right?


How to Get Your Butt Home


Easy.


After you drop off your bike (above) just relax.  Have a free Blue Point Brewery Beer, free massage, free all-you-can-eat meal, a hot shower.  What’s your hurry?


Whenever you’re ready look for the big banner that states TRANSPORTATION HOME HERE and just get in line.  No advance reservation needed, no check-in, no boarding passes, no paperwork -- just get in line.  


Resist the urge to approach the transportation desk to ask how you get home -- just get in line.  (You know those people who always approach the desk at the airport gate, even though they already have their boarding pass?  Yeah...)  


We’ll have friendly staff walking the line to find out where you want to go and make sure you get there as fast and as safely as possible.


While your bike travels in our private trucks, you travel by van, charter bus, or train.  If you have a strong preference for one of those modes of transport you’ll get to choose when you get in line.  Please be aware that if we are loading up charter buses next and you say that you only want to travel by train that’s fine, but it may delay your departure time.  Your call.



I have a monthly LIRR pass.  Can I use it to get home from Montauk on ride day?


On Saturday (ride day) you can NOT use your LIRR monthly pass, and you can NOT buy a ticket at the train station ticket window in Montauk on ride day. This is Long Island Rail Road policy.


If you are headed home on Sundayou can use your Long Island Rail Road pass if you have one, or you can buy a regular return ticket when you depart Montauk.



Do I need to sign up for return transportation in advance?


YES.  Return transportation does sell out. If you don’t sign up for it in advance, you might be stuck in Montauk overnight.


You can sign up for return transportation during on-line registration for the ride.



I already registered and said that I did NOT want return transportation, but now I want it after all.


No problem-o! If you already registered for the ride with no return transportation, and decide later that you want it after all, not to worry! Just drop us a note here and we'll take extra-good care of you.


If it’s right before ride day and on-line registration is closed you can purchase transportation at the finish line.  Last-minute transportation costs more.  Bring cash. Lots of cash.



Where Does the Return Transportation Go?


We offer return transportation to four locations ONLY -- Manhattan,  Babylon, Brooklyn, and Mastic-Shirley. (This means that you can NOT park in East Hampton and get a lift back there after the ride. )


______________________________________


You know, that’s really all you need to know about transport!   When you get to Montauk we’ll take extra-good care of you, and pass on any information you need.  I highly recommend that you stop reading right now and go get some ice cream.


If you really want to read all of the excruciating details, well, here they are, but I must point out that we DID try to stop you...


Where Does the Return Transportation Leave From?


Right from our Montauk finish line.  You can relax right until you’re ready to go.



What Time While My Return Trip from Montauk Depart?


Who knows? It depends on when you get to Montauk, and that depends on how fast you can pedal a bicycle!


Here’s a Ride to Montauk secret: no one (NO ONE!) can accurately predict what time they will arrive in Montauk.  Too many variables -- which way the wind is blowing, how hot it is, what mood you’re in, how the bike behaves that day...


When you arrive in Montauk relax, have a beer, and get in line for return transport whenever you’re ready to head home.  


We’ll load trips home continuously from Noon to 8 p.m.



Where and When Do I Pick Up My Bike?


MANHATTAN/SATURDAY PICK UP

33rd Street between 11th Avenue and 12th Avenue

Bike pick-up closes on Saturday at 11 p.m.


Remember that this is NOT where the Manhattan start line was -- it’s a few blocks away.


Bike pick-up closes on Saturday at 11:00 p.m.  That means that if you arrive earlier and don’t want to stand around waiting for your bike, you can leave and come back later.


This also means that if you take the last 8 p.m. trip home from Montauk you can not pick up your bike on Saturday -- we’ll hold it for you for Sunday pick-up.  (We gotta sleep sometime!)


It will take AT LEAST 4.5 hours from the time you drop off your bike in Montauk until it arrives in Manhattan, and probably MUCH longer.  


Why?  Because it’s a three-hour drive from Montauk to Manhattan plus we need time to actually load the bikes (and, depending on what time you arrive in Montauk, there may be 500 bikes to load ahead of yours).


MANHATTAN/SUNDAY PICK UP

33rd Street between 11th Avenue and 12th Avenue

9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  


Remember that this is NOT where the Manhattan start line was -- it’s a few blocks away.


Your bike will travel overnight and be waiting for you when you arrive, unpacked and ready to go.


NOTE: If you are staying overnight in Montauk see details below on Sunday travel for your bike and you.


• • •


BABYLON/SATURDAY PICK UP

The Babylon LIRR Train Station

Bike pick-up closes on Saturday at 9:45 p.m.  


That means that if you arrive earlier and don’t want to stand around waiting for your bike, you can leave and come back later.


If you take the last 8 p.m. trip home from Montauk you can not pick up your bike on Saturday -- we’ll hold it for you for Sunday pick-up.  (We gotta sleep sometime!)


It will take AT LEAST 3.5 hours from the time you hand us your bike in Montauk until it arrives in Babylon, and probably MUCH longer.  


Why?  Because it’s a two-hour drive from Montauk to Babylon plus we need time to actually load the bikes (and, depending on what time you arrive in Montauk, there may be 500 bikes to load ahead of yours).


BABYLON/SUNDAY PICK UP

The Babylon LIRR Train Station

9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.


Your bike will travel overnight and be waiting for you when you arrive, unpacked and ready to go.


NOTE: If you are staying overnight in Montauk see details below on Sunday travel for your bike and you.


• • •


BROOKLYN/SATURDAY PICK UP

There is NO bike pick-up in Brooklyn on Saturday. If you live in Brooklyn and need your bike on Saturday have it sent to Manhattan, Babylon, or Mastic-Shirley and pick it up there. Remember -- no bikes allowed on the train on Saturday or Sunday on the NYC/Montauk line.


BROOKLYN/SUNDAY PICK UP

Bicycle Habitat bike shop

560 Vanderbilt Ave

Brooklyn, NY 11238


11 a.m. to 5 p.m.


You can see directions to the store here.


Your bike will be waiting for you when you arrive, unpacked and ready to go.


Bikes left at the store past Monday will be charged a $5 per day storage fee, which you pay when you get your bike.


• • •


MASTIC-SHIRLEY/SATURDAY PICK UP

The Mastic-Shirley LIRR Train Station

Bike pick-up closes on Saturday at 9:30 p.m.  


That means that if you arrive on Saturday  and don’t want to stand around waiting for your bike, you can leave and come back, as long as you are back at bike pick-up no later than, say 9:15 p.m.


If you take the last 8 p.m. trip home from Montauk you can not pick up your bike on Saturday -- we’ll hold it for you for Sunday pick-up.  (We gotta sleep sometime!)


It will take AT LEAST three hours from the time you hand us your bike in Montauk until it arrives in Mastic Shirley and probably MUCH longer.  


Why?  Because it’s a 90-minute drive from Montauk to Mastic-Shirley plus we need time to actually load the bikes (and, depending on what time you arrive in Montauk, there may be 500 bikes to load ahead of yours).


Mastic-Shirley/Sunday Pick-Up

The Mastic-Shirley Train Station

9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.


Your bike will travel overnight and be waiting for you when you arrive, unpacked and ready to go.


NOTE: If you are staying overnight in Montauk see details below on Sunday travel for your bike and you.



What if I miss the bike pick up Saturday?


If you miss the Saturday pick up, you can get your bike on Sunday (the next day).  See info above on the locations and times for Sunday bike pick-up.



What if I miss the Sunday pick up too?


You are totally screwed. This presents some interesting challenges!


See, we don’t have an office in NYC or Long Island, so if you don’t pick up your bike it’s not like we can just lock it up at our place overnight.  We will TRY to drop off your bike at a local bike shop, and the bike shop WILL charge you for storage.


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Photo by Jeff Sheinkopf



If You Want to Stay Overnight in Montauk Saturday Night


If you are staying overnight in Montauk you can:


1. Drop your bike off with us at the finish line on ride day and you can pick it up on Sunday at your choice of Manhattan, Babylon, or Mastic-Shirley any time between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. On Sunday get a lift home from a friend, take the train (without your bike!), or take the Hampton Jitney.



2. Hang on to your bike for riding around Montauk. HOWEVER... you can NOT take your bike on the train on Sunday, the day after the ride, even with a bike pass (LIRR rules). You CAN take the Hampton Jitney and they do have LIMITED room for bicycles. Advance reservations highly recommended.


We no longer load bikes at the train station on Sunday. (Why? Because it was costing us a fortune and because we weren't having any fun, and as a friend said, "If it's not fun or profitable, why are you doing it?")