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clarksonxc

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Reply with quote  #1 
Just wanted to put this ride out there for those that may be interested.  Beautiful gravel roads, manageable class IV, and no death-defying singletrack.  Pretty low key with a modest entry fee.  Several well stocked aid stations, well marked course, and wood fired pizza at the finish.  We did it for the first time last year and we'll definitely be going back.  100k has over 7000ft of elevation gain so bring your climbing legs!

I've done a handful of Vermont gravel rides and fondos, and to me this is the quintessential Vermont gravel event.  
https://www.bikereg.com/cabot-ride-the-ridges
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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #2 
Can you give me a link/blog report of a ride or write up of somebody doing it a previous year. I like to do some homework or what JOM calls over at gravelcyclist tribal knowledge so I can get a feel for the ride. I did come across a website Minuteman Road Club that lists around 50 gravel/fondo/rando/road rides in the MA/VT/NH area for the year on a blogspot. I see he lists the Cabot Ride the ridges as 75-80% ? dirt. I am good with that as I didn't want to drive all that distance and only do a 40-50% gravel bike ride.


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Zman

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No Mojo

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Reply with quote  #3 
I'm considering this ride. I have a camp in North Haverhill NH and the dirt roads here are spectacular even compared to some of the paved roads at home. Will be doing the Rose Mountain Rumble for sure and hope to meet some of you there.
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TimmyR

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Reply with quote  #4 
Thanks for posting...I am trying to keep rides in my future as goals to keep me going this summer as I am working thru some issues in my hip.  This looks like it may fall in my wheelhouse.



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clarksonxc

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Reply with quote  #5 
It's awesome that you guys are thinking of doing it!  Me and my gf both agree, this ride should be way more popular than it is.  I just think that their advertising wasn't reaching the right people, and that's what kept it from hitting it's full potential.
Zman - as for a write up, it is pretty small so I doubt you'll find much of anything.  I can post some pics here from what I have.  I can confirm it is at least 75-80% unpaved.  As for my report, first and foremost there is a ton of climbing.  Over 100ft per mile easy.  5 aid stations; two of which are "mobile" which means the RD drives out and sets up a table and waits.  We were never in danger of running out of food or fluids.  Two of them were a table that other volunteers set up that you hit twice (once going out and once on the loop back) and the last one was at a farm.  Woodfired pizza cooked right at the finish.  Very casual and low key ride.  Course was marked so well you didn't even need the cue sheet.  The class IV (unmaintained) roads kept it interesting but not too dangerous.  I think the steepest I saw was 18%.
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clarksonxc

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IMG_1176.jpg  IMG_1177.jpg  IMG_1178.jpg  IMG_1179.jpg  IMG_1180.jpg  IMG_1181.jpg  IMG_1182.jpg  IMG_1183.jpg  IMG_1209.jpg 
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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by clarksonxc
It's awesome that you guys are thinking of doing it!  Me and my gf both agree, this ride should be way more popular than it is.  I just think that their advertising wasn't reaching the right people, and that's what kept it from hitting it's full potential.
Zman - as for a write up, it is pretty small so I doubt you'll find much of anything.  I can post some pics here from what I have.  I can confirm it is at least 75-80% unpaved.  As for my report, first and foremost there is a ton of climbing.  Over 100ft per mile easy.  5 aid stations; two of which are "mobile" which means the RD drives out and sets up a table and waits.  We were never in danger of running out of food or fluids.  Two of them were a table that other volunteers set up that you hit twice (once going out and once on the loop back) and the last one was at a farm.  Woodfired pizza cooked right at the finish.  Very casual and low key ride.  Course was marked so well you didn't even need the cue sheet.  The class IV (unmaintained) roads kept it interesting but not too dangerous.  I think the steepest I saw was 18%.


FYI Gravelcyclist and even this site is always looking for other people to contribute or do a write up on rides/races. Maybe if this was done on the ride/race it would help to promote it some. From my end I luv to read about rides and get some feel for the ride.

This is the report or info I was looking for. I am in unless my collarbone nerve pain would start acting up and I didn't get the training in I need. The Pony Express ride in Kansas kind of spoiled me for all other gravel riding/racing I have done. The first mile or less going out of town was a hard road and the rest was gravel.

Thanks for the info.
Zman


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If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #8 
Hi all -

I am one of the race directors for Ride the Ridges, and so greatly appreciate the chatter on this site about our fantastic ride. As one of the directors, I can honestly say that we have no idea how to market our ride. We are a bunch of volunteers who are doing our best to get people out to our region, to ride these fantastic roads, view some breathtaking sights, and to generate funds for our non-profit mentoring program in Cabot named CabotConnects. 

As a Gravel Grinder myself, I can honestly say that both the 60K and the 100K are true Gravel Grinders. I had the opportunity to ride the 100k last year, and it was a killer - over 7500ft of elevation gain, but so, so fun!  I rode it without the aid stations, which would have been very much appreciated!  The 60K also has over 3500ft of gain, and is also quite challenging. There is tremendous scenery in every ride, fully-stocked aid stations, and wood-fired pizza at the end of the event.  We also have a family-friend 10K ride and a 30K ride as well.

For the next week (until the end of the day on Friday, August 3rd), you can save 10% off your registration price by using the code "Ridges2018". Also, we have just created a referral code for any registrants to our ride this year. Should you register for our event on BikeReg, a randomly-generated code will be created, and should 2 riders use your code, you will be refunded 30% of your registration fee through BikeReg.
100K trail 2.jpg  RTR Bayley Hazen.jpg  RTR Cabot Plains.jpg  RTR Trail.jpg 
Please take a look at our facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/cabotconnects/ - and our ride on BikeReg, and should you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me directly at ryhoffman4@yahoo.com

Hope to see all of you, and your friends, in Cabot on September 9th!!

Ry

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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #9 
Hey Ry:

Thanks for this info and the pics. Can you say a little bit about what the closest or a few towns would be that an out of state rider could look at for lodging. I have to get the Rose Mt. Rumble in NH first and check out my vacation time left and funds to see if I could swing this ride. Is this ride sometimes close to what I call Leaf Peeper season or fall foliage?

Thanks
Zman

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If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #10 
Hi Zman -

Cabot is located about 30 minutes away from everything (however, that makes for some terrific gravel roads and beautiful views). If you are looking for hotel lodging, I would recommend looking in either Littleton, NH (about 45 minutes away), St. Johnsbury (30 minutes away), Barre (30 minutes away), Montpelier (30 minutes away), or Marshfield (10 minutes - Marshfield Inn and Motel - http://www.marshfieldinn.com/
We have a number of people who camp, as Groton State Park is 15 minutes away and gorgeous.
As for the leaf-peeping possibilities, we should be starting to get some color around the time of the ride, but to be honest, it is a little early for full foliage season - that is more around October. We chose September for this ride in hopes of having a bit better weather. It is apple season, so we will have some freshly picked apples from a local orchard, and they also provide dozens of cider donuts (which are amazing!) for a pre-ride energy boost.

Ry


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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #11 
Zman (and anyone else interested) -

I should have mentioned this in my first post, but we also have a website - http://www.ridetheridges.net - which has further details of each ride. The pics are a bit outdated, but here are a couple of quick links:

100K - http://www.ridetheridges.net/rides/100k.html

60K - http://www.ridetheridges.net/rides/60k.html

Ry
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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #12 
Thanks for all this info RY. I am going into work today and see how much vacation time I have left but kind of saying I am in right now. The Marshfield Inn looks ok on the reviews. Last question at my end. Will the course be marked or do we rely on cue sheets and or GPS? I see a poster above said that the course was well marked so that eases my mind some as I can get lost easily and this doesn't look like the kind of ride I want to be doing extra training miles on.


Thanks
Zman

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If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zurichman
Thanks for all this info RY. I am going into work today and see how much vacation time I have left but kind of saying I am in right now. The Marshfield Inn looks ok on the reviews. Last question at my end. Will the course be marked or do we rely on cue sheets and or GPS?


Thanks
Zman


Morning Zman!

First off, let me say that I'm sorry you have to go into work on a Sunday. Hopefully its a quick day and you still have some time for a ride in the afternoon!
Glad to hear that you are considering our ride. I promise it won't disappoint.  As for the course markings, we do provide cue sheets, but as clarksonxc commented, those cue sheets should not have to be utilized. One of our volunteers custom-makes our signs, and we make sure to put them out prior to every twist and turn in our respective courses. Each of our rides has a different color-patterned sign. We will also have confidence markers in some of our trickier areas this year (one of our improvements from former years). GPS probably won't work consistently for the entirety of the 100K route, as we will be out in some rustic areas that still aren't 100% covered.
We operate a staggered start, where our 100K takes off at 8:00 am, 60K at 9:00, 30K at 10:00, and 10K at 11:00. Pizza starts being ready to eat around 12:00, but remains on the green until around 3:00pm (mainly for our 100K riders).
I'm planning on going out for a ride this morning and riding a good chunk of the 100k today, so I'll share some additional pictures of some of the roads, either later tonight or tomorrow.

Sincerely -

Ry
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #14 
I promised some additional pics. Not trying to bogart this blog, so hopefully this isn't seen as "too much". I rode a little over 50 miles of the 100K yesterday (over 6400ft of elevation gain). Here are some pics I took from my ride, and there will be more on our facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/cabotconnects/ - soon. 100K - East Hill Rd.jpg  100K - Peacham covered bridge.jpg  Taylor-Urban Trail 5.jpg  100K - Bony Woods.jpg  100K - Overlook Panoramic.jpg pdf 2018Poster.pdf     


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clarksonxc

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Reply with quote  #15 
Zman - we stayed at the Hollow Inn & Motel (don't remember it being named that though?) in Barre which was nice but nothing special.  I remember the rooms being fairly large, which was nice because we could work on the bikes inside.  We looked at getting the Marshfield Inn as that is the closest to Cabot, but it was sold out by the time we called.  It's also farther away from any other restaurants, etc, so keep that in mind.  Barre is a 30min drive from Cabot, but it's a rural drive, with no traffic or tolls.
There's a pretty cool bike shop in Barre; the owner/mechanic there is an ex-pro/world tour guy.  Pretty neat.

Ry - those photos are spot on!  Really reminds me of the course last year.
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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #16 
clarksonxc thanks for that info on the lodging. When you talk about the Marshfield Inn and it not being close to restaurants how many miles are you talking about to the closest restaurant?

Ry thanks for those photos. At  my end not being a techy rider yet since I had no mt. bike experience and came from the roadie end I like to know where the techy single track stuff is or if there is some really crazy loose gravel stuff on the downhills as I don't do well yet on either one although I am learning a little bit on letting the bike run some on the downhills.


Thanks again for all the advice/help on your ride Ry at my end I want to know a little bit about t he ride before I sign up and you have helped/given me that info.

Zman


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If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #17 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zurichman
clarksonxc thanks for that info on the lodging. When you talk about the Marshfield Inn and it not being close to restaurants how many miles are you talking about to the closest restaurant?

Ry thanks for those photos. At  my end not being a techy rider yet since I had no mt. bike experience and came from the roadie end I like to know where the techy single track stuff is or if there is some really crazy loose gravel stuff on the downhills as I don't do well yet on either one although I am learning a little bit on letting the bike run some on the downhills.


Thanks again for all the advice/help on your ride Ry at my end I want to know a little bit about t he ride before I sign up and you have helped/given me that info.

Zman



Zman and clarksonxc -

The Marshfield Inn is approximately 10 minutes to Cabot, making it definitively the closest hotel to stay at in our area. We do have a bar in Cabot that always has live music on Saturdays and pizza available, as well as local beers, kombucha on tap, a locally made rootbeer, and other non-alcoholic drinks. There is a Diner in the back which always provides a few food options as well. The general store has a deli as well, which can put together subs and other food - which you can order and take with you, or eat at the bar. In true "small town" form, this bar in Cabot is called "The Den", which is actually in our Hardware Store. We have the first "hardware store bar" in Vermont!

Another option close to Marshfield is Positive Pie in Plainfield (5 minutes away). They serve really great pizza, while also offering a full menu of other options.

Those two would be my top recommendations if you were to stay at the Marshfield Inn. If staying in Barre, I would recommend either Comfort Inn at Maplewood, Quality Inn, or Twin City Motel. There are a decent amount of food options in Barre and Montpelier. As clarksonxc said, the bike shop in Barre is small, but awesome, and the owner (Darren) is a super great guy!

Ry
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clarksonxc

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Reply with quote  #18 
I was just cruising the course map and noticed on Strava that Ian Boswell(!) has a few KOMs in the area.  Read up on it and it looks like he recently moved to Peacham with his fiancée!  How cool is that?
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #19 
Quote:
Originally Posted by clarksonxc
I was just cruising the course map and noticed on Strava that Ian Boswell(!) has a few KOMs in the area.  Read up on it and it looks like he recently moved to Peacham with his fiancée!  How cool is that?


Hey Clarksonxc!

It is super cool!  In fact, Ian and his fiance (Gretchen) are organizing a ride in Peacham in October called the Peacham Fall Fondo. I've signed up and am really looking forward to it.
I've been in contact with Gretchen, who is super nice, about trying to promote our respective rides together. I've invited both her and Ian to ride in our ride this year. Ian will be racing in the Vuelta, so he'll be a little busy - but I think Gretchen might be joining us.
Take a look at the Peacham Fall Fondo at https://www.bikereg.com/38666

Ry
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #20 
I just needed to share some super exciting news regarding our event! After getting a referral from Zman (thank you Zman!), I've been in contact with Jayson from http://www.gravelcyclist.com, who has just highlighted Cabot Ride the Ridges as a "featured event" on his website.
Check out the writeup at the following link, and please share it with as many riders as you know who are looking for an awesome experience - http://www.gravelcyclist.com/training-rides/featured-event-cabot-ride-the-ridges-cabot-vermont-usa/

Sincerely -

Ry
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #21 
Quick update:

Due to a special offer we received from this terrific company, as thanks for signing up for our ride this year, each and every 100k and 60k rider who pre-registers through BikeReg.com will receive an UnTapped Maple Waffle to bring with them on their ride. Not that there isn't already enough food available at the aid stations, but this is simply an added bonus to all participants of our true "gravel grinder" rides this year.  Also, visit UnTapped at https://untapped.cc/ - they are a terrific Vermont-based energy food company.

We continue to plan for this year's event, which is less than a month away!  Everything is shaping up for this to be the best year yet! Please continue to talk to your biking friends and neighbors to inform them of this terrific event, which also supports a tremendous cause - the Cabot Mentoring Program.

 

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clarksonxc

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Reply with quote  #22 
We made our reservations last night - staying up in Hardwick which is pretty dang close to the start.  Looking forward to another great ride!
PS - did they fix the bridge on Harrington Hill that was out last year?
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ridetheridges

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Reply with quote  #23 
Quote:
Originally Posted by clarksonxc
We made our reservations last night - staying up in Hardwick which is pretty dang close to the start.  Looking forward to another great ride!
PS - did they fix the bridge on Harrington Hill that was out last year?


Hey clarksonxc!

Hardwick is a nice little community!  My wife and I and some friends just went to a great seafood restaurant there this past weekend - it just opened, and is called "The Scale House". It wasn't cheap, but really great, fresh seafood and handmade pasta dishes. Of course, Positive Pie is a great place too for some tasty pizza!

The bridge on Harrington Hill has been fixed! I just rode it two weeks ago, and they even fixed up the dirt road leading to it a bit (it is still pretty rough, but a gravel ride has a few rough spots . . .).  So, this year there will be even more gravel than last year!

Looking forward to seeing you on the 9th!

Sincerely -

Ry
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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #24 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ridetheridges


Hey clarksonxc!

Hardwick is a nice little community!  My wife and I and some friends just went to a great seafood restaurant there this past weekend - it just opened, and is called "The Scale House". It wasn't cheap, but really great, fresh seafood and handmade pasta dishes. Of course, Positive Pie is a great place too for some tasty pizza!

The bridge on Harrington Hill has been fixed! I just rode it two weeks ago, and they even fixed up the dirt road leading to it a bit (it is still pretty rough, but a gravel ride has a few rough spots . . .).  So, this year there will be even more gravel than last year!

Looking forward to seeing you on the 9th!

Sincerely -

Ry




Hey clarksonxc when are you going up for the ride?

Ry staying at Berlin at my end. Do you know any good food places there which must be close to Barre or Montepelier? At my end a Mom and Pops Italian place would work. 

Thanks
Zman

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If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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clarksonxc

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Reply with quote  #25 
Ry - I had my heart set on stopping at Prohibition Pig on the drive in, but it makes more sense to hit up Positive Pie (which has been on my list for a long time anyways!) that night instead.  Can't go wrong either way!
As for the morning of, we were hoping to grab an early breakfast.  We were looking at the Village Restaurant, right on main street across from PP.  Any other recommendations?

Zman - We'll be rolling in from Potsdam late afternoon/early evening on Saturday.  We stayed down in Barre last year, and ate at the Ladder 1 Grill.  I believe they had some Italian dishes on their very big menu.  It is Fire Company inspired, so a pretty cool atmosphere.  Breakfast at Maria's bagels was well worth it.  I'd suggest stopping at Vermont Bicycle Shop if it's open.  I don't know about you, but we don't have many gravel/adventure focused shops where I live.  VBS was a breath of fresh air in that regard!
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