Ride Report: Roadrunner Rocks – Muenster, Texas by Adrienne Taren

From the ride organizer (Spinistry): “Our host is the amazing 4R Ranch Vineyards & Winery. A fantastic property with outstanding views and great terrain. The routes are almost exclusively hard packed gravel roads through the scenic Red River Valley. The course is marked and water tables/aid stations placed throughout the route. Camping will be available both Friday & Saturday nights (but you are not required to camp). Saturday will be the main event day with 70, 50, 25, & a beginner’s escorted route of 16 miles. A complimentary wine tasting is included with registration. Food trucks on site, live music and general good times. Free bikepacking clinic Saturday evening provided by The Gravel Guides.”

After my wind-filled adventure at Red River Riot this spring, it was hard to pass up another opportunity to visit 4R Ranch & Winery for more bicycle action. Hopefully with less wind.

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry
Photo Credit: Scott Drevicky

Be careful what you wish for. You might, for example, trade your wind for a miniature monsoon that the Accuweather radar swore was not going to happen, but instead hits mid-bikepacking trip to Muenster, Texas (no, not from Oklahoma. I may be that crazy, but I do not have that much spare time.) When you eventually show up to the campsite at 4R on Friday evening, you are then told you look “like a stretch of gravel road.” Fortunately, the Texas variety of gravel is a trendy shade of gray and does not permanently stain your cycling kits orange (cough cough Oklahoma).

On the plus side, I now know that my dry bags actually keep things dry.

On the double-plus side, there was whiskey, pulled pork, pico, and a barn to hide in. If you were at Red River Riot (or weren’t, but have a vivid imagination), you likely remember the large, winding, rocky, sandy, Hill-o’-Doom that you had to climb at the end of every loop to get back into the ranch. The campsite is at the bottom of that hill, complete with a rustic shelter housing two primitive showers and a roundtable large enough to hold Clif bars and several gallons of organic non-GMO coconut water.

After consuming the appropriate amount of re-warming beverages to make one forget about how wet one is and how wet one’s kit is still going to be in the morning, I enjoyed a peaceful night’s sleep to the sound of light rain on the tent roof, also known as “free white noise.”

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry

Saturday morning was rain-free and beautiful. The sun had already done a good job of drying out the roads by the time we took off. In anticipation of also riding later in the day, I uncharacteristically rode the shortest (gasp) loop. You should try it sometime. It results in getting back to the wine and pizza faster. The roads were hard-packed and fast after the rain, with a scenic backdrop of windmills and hay bales along a clearly marked route. They even went so far as to provide a friendly, adorable dog to run alongside us for several miles.

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry
Photo Credit: Scott Drevicky

On account of having a job other than riding my bicycle and writing about riding my bicycle, I had to ride back to from whence I came on Saturday afternoon, so I missed the Sunday morning cowboy breakfast provided by 4R for campers. However, I have since been informed that there was grilled avocado. Remind me why I have a real job?

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry
Photo Credit: Scott Drevicky

Most importantly, I had some time to chat with our gracious hosts at 4R Ranch Vineyards & Winery about their future plans for hosting cyclists on their property. The campsites that were available for Roadrunner Rocks may become a regular thing with bookings available. For the less camping-inclined, there is a beautiful house currently available to rent. There are gravel roads in every direction. There is a winery with growing food offerings on-site, and even a special edition Gravel Grinder wine. Basically, this has the makings of a perfect cycling getaway. I may have threatened to stay and live in the bushes with my bicycle rather than go back home (guys, I promise I’m not still there). In the meantime, you can check out their website and Facebook page, and keep an eye out for future Spinistry events hosted by 4R.

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry
Photo Credit: Scott Drevicky

roadrunner rocks report 4r winery spinistry

4 comments on “Ride Report: Roadrunner Rocks – Muenster, Texas by Adrienne Taren

  1. Thanks for the report Adrienne. Looks like a facinating place. I’d like to see more photos of the bike packing scenery along the way. Anything with actual hills unlike Florida.

    K-Dogg

    1. Only some from Florida would think that North Texas is hilly! The bikepacking scenery was beautiful, although quite waterlogged, and thus most of my pictures are blurred with rain 🙁 We encountered some very wet open range cattle along the way. Return trip soon!

      1. Yes, Florida is so mountain challenged we have to invent a phony North Florida range called the Flappalachians. So far they are still gravel. We race them back and forth
        on our Worlds Tallest Leprechaun night jams.
        At least it is never too cold to ride down here.
        K-Dogg

  2. Adrienne not sure where North Texas is compared to the Texas Hill Country since I am from Pa. I will say this much about the Texas Hill County. I love Colorado/Alaska/Vermont/ and the entire New England area. Texas Hill country when I rode thru it sad to say in the sag wagon can hang with all of them. Nice ride report.

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