7 Must-Do Cycling Events In 2015

(Mammoth Gran Fondo. Photo: Steve Schmunk)

L’ETAPE DU CALIFORNIA

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When: May 16

Where: Ontario, California

Tackle the Amgen Tour of California Stage 7 just hours before the racers tackle the very same route that finishes atop the hors categorie climb of Mount Baldy. Recently retired fan-favorite Jens Voigt will be headlining the event that features the long climb up Glendora Mountain Road that simply serves as a warmup for the route’s final push up the final 15 switchbacks from Baldy Village to the summit where riders will gain 1,000 feet in just three miles. After finishing, riders will receive a BBQ lunch and a premium viewing area to watch the pros finish. www.amgentourofcalifornia.com


 FARM TO FORK FONDO – VERMONT

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Photo: Riverside Farm

When: July 12

Where: Pittsfield, Vermont

The Farm To Fork Fondo in Vermont will be making its debut in 2015, and it’s already created a lot of buzz due to its unique format that celebrates locally grown, farm fresh food as much as it does cycling. A total of six aid stations located on working farms will keep the 101-mile Gran route riders well fueled throughout the ride. Three shorter ride options are also available. Once riders are done tackling the Green Mountains there will be a BBQ and and Kid’s Fondo to stay entertained. www.farmforkfondo-vt.com


 HOTTER ‘N HELL HUNDRED

Photo: Richard Carter
Photo: Richard Carter

When: August 29

Where: Wichita Falls, Texas

Going into its 34th edition, the Hotter’N Hell Hundred is once again expected to be the largest single-day 100-mile ride in the country with over 12,000 riders coming out for the full weekend of events. What began as just a 100-mile ride to celebrate Wichita Falls’ centennial, has now become a full three days of events that include trail runs, mountain bike racing, multiple criteriums, and the Hotter’N Hell Hundred ride that offers five route lengths, ranging from 10k up to 100 miles. www.hh100.org


REBECCA’S PRIVATE IDAHO

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Photo: Linda Guerrette

When: September 6

Where: Ketchum, Idaho

Take a ride on gravel roads through the Sawtooth Mountains for an unforgettable experience regardless if you choose the 94-mile Big Potato, or the 56-mile Small Fry route. You don’t need mountain bike skills for the gravel roads, just the right equipment. A ‘cross bike with 35c tires will do just fine, but you’ll see everything from road bikes to full suspension mountain bikes, and everything between. Once you head out of town at the start there will be few signs of civilization on the rural routes, but no worries because the numerous aid stations are well-stocked with boiled potatoes and an abundance of GU Energy products. And like any gravel event worth its salt, the post-ride festivities are truly unforgettable. www.rebeccasprivateidaho.com


 MAMMOTH GRAN FONDO

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Photo: Peter Morning

When: September 11-12

Where: Mammoth, California

Riding through the High Sierra Mountains in early-morning summer sunshine is a magnificient experience, and the Mammoth Gran Fondo’s three course routes 102-, 70-, and 42-mile give you that opportunity. In addition to the Fondo, there’s also an optional time trial the day before that takes riders through downtown Mammoth before finishing at the mountain lodge next to the iconic Mammoth statue. www.fallcentury.org


 LEVI’S KING RIDGE GRANFONDO

Photo: Culture Pop Films
Photo: Culture Pop Films

When: October 3

Where: Santa Rosa, California

In its seventh year, Levi’s GranFondo is once again set to deliver beyond riders’ expectations of course scenery and overall organization. Over 7,000 riders will take in the country roads throughout Sonoma County; and depending on which route chosen, riders could find themselves on the coast faced with the choice of climbing the dirt road of Willow Creek, or the challenging pitches of Coleman Valley to get back to festival and gourmet food trucks waiting for the finishers. www.levisgranfondo.com


 EL TOUR DE TUCSON

el tour de tucson
Photo: Monsoon Production Services

When: November 21

Where: Tucson, Arizona

Held annually the weekend before Thanksgiving, the El Tour de Tucson attracts 9,000 people out to the Sonoran Desert for one of four route distances. Long before Gran Fondos became all the rage in the U.S., El Tour de Tucson has been offering timed courses that attract everyone from pro racers to casual riders. A downtown Fiesta will greet finishers that includes food vendors, a beer garden, and live music. www.perimeterbicycling.com


There are other events that could have made this list but are already filled up to their rider limit, so there’s no point in getting you excited about something you can’t have. What events are you excited about tackling this year? Let us know at [email protected]!

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