What and when?

Next Willy Nilly: v17 - Sunday, February 23, 2025

The Willy Nilly is an individual and free-form version of an annual season-opening bicycling spin that happens on beautifully weird Vashon Island.


Willy Nilly Basics

> Registration/fees: None (for the record: this is not a ride that is "organized" for, or by, anyone...)
> "Ride your ride": Willy Nilly riders choose their ride details...start time, route, distance, pace...lycra, wool, or denim...maybe some road, gravel, or single track (there are trails on Vashon)...
> Number of riders: People frequently ask about this...for Willy Nilly, "size doesn't matter"...basically the numbers are unknown, as riders start/finish in different locations, at different times...and ride different routes...plus weather factors year over year, etc...we've estimated hundreds some years, and dozens other years...
> Typical start: Outside (south side) of Beveridge Place Pub in West Seattle
> Typical finish: Inside of Beveridge Place Pub (we believe in post-ride re-hydration)
> BPP to Fauntleroy dock: map
> One of many Vashon routes (a "standard"): map

Scroll down to view hastily-scribed blurb posts about past Willy Nillys...

Click here to sign up for Willy Nilly ride news

Willy Nilly Gear

> Willy Nilly t-shirts (100% of price mark-up supports fighting kids' cancer): view/purchase

Willy Nilly History

In January 2009 a handful of cycling friends (or drinking colleagues, depending on your perspective) were discussing options for a wintery road bike ride to kick off a new season. None of us were game for the iconic Chilly Hilly on Bainbridge Island. While the Chilly Hilly does an amazing job of inspiring thousands of riders to register and ride the beautiful designated route, this kind of ride just wasn't our cup of tea. To each their own, right? We decided to ride a more personalized and free-form ride on the same day as the Chilly Hilly, in solidarity with the herd to the north of us, and thus the present-day Willy Nilly was born.


Click here to sign up for reminders about upcoming Willy Nilly rides

v15 Snow Big Deal

Willy Nilly
February 26, 2023

Shocker: Not requiring registration, and advance fees, might, just might, reduce the barriers to many of the 300+ people on our Willy Nilly mailing list to (yawn, stretch) to decide to hunker down and stay home on Willy Nilly ride day, when the conditions seem...potentially uncomfortable. 

Harkening back to Willy Nilly post v1, there is a northwest outdoor activity adage: "If you don't go, you won't know!". 

 
And we quickly learned that it would turn out to be a gloriously gorgeous day for an official start to our 2023 riding season.


A wee bit of snow first thing in the morning seemed to deter many which, I'm grateful to say, dramatically thinned-out the lines at Burton Coffee Stand.


Having the Beveridge Place Pub in one's sights as a finish line surely doesn't undermine one's motivation to push through whatever conditions Willy Nilly day offers up...