Pandemic Bicycle Shortage Impacts Iowa

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AMES, Iowa — Over the past year, the global pandemic has left a shortage of bicycles and bike parts. Skunk River Cycles is doing its best to find bikes and parts for customers.

“I just read an updated shipping list and was pretty excited about seeing the product being on the ‘will ship’ list,” said Skunk River Cycles owner Ronn Ritz. “I looked at the date and it was Santa Claus is going to have a much longer beard by the time, December 2023.”

Ritz talks to customers about getting the bikes and finds that some still want to “shop around.” His advice is don’t wait.

“If you find a bike you like in another city, just call them up right now and buy it,” said Ritz. “You’re not going to go wrong. I don’t think you can buy a bad bike from a bike shop.”

If you are thinking of buying a new bike before RAGBRAI, that might be difficult.

“Bicycles are going to be hard to get a hold of for someone to get a new bike for RAGBRAI, so much more limited supply, even from our three different suppliers,” said Ritz.

Charlotte Wingert of Ames sold her car a few years ago and counts on the bike to get her around town. Last year she thought would be a good time to replace her aging bike.

“Spring will be a time to go replace one, and then the pandemic hit, basically wiped out the supply of bikes, so I’m just now trying to find one,” said Wingert.

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