Looking for a challenging NW cycle tour

May 5, 2004
Outside Magazine
Week of March 26-April 1, 1998
Looking for a challenging NW cycle tour
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Looking for a challenging NW cycle tour
Question: My two friends and I have participated in Cycle Oregon for the past eight years. We're looking for a new challenge and would like to participate in an organized three- to four-day ride somewhere in the western United States or Canada. The March issue provides a partial list, but we are looking for something in the area of 50 to 100 miles per day — and challenging.

Karl Mosch
Bellevue, Washington

Hit the road for a 300-mile
loop through Montana

Adventure Adviser: Adventure Cycling Association (800-755-2453), a non-profit organization that publishes bike maps, a membership magazine, and, most conveniently, a free event guide, also organizes group rides. If you call the friendly folks at ACA, they'll fill you in on their own scheduled rides as well as give you information on how to get in touch with various organized tours around the country. The following rides are an example of the ACA's wealth of knowledge on the topic of group rides, but unfortunately, these all are one week in length, so you may need to readjust your plans or call ACA for some shorter events.

This summer, in the western United States, the ACA is offering two events: Cycle Montana and the Cascade Peaks Ride in Washington. Cycle Montana (August 1-7) is a 300-mile loop tour that starts in Bozeman and travels to Yellowstone National Park. The ride is open to 375 cyclists and costs $550, which includes catered meals, hot showers, and camping fees. The Cascade Peaks Ride (August 15-22) is a 450-mile tour of the Cascades that starts in Redmond, Washington. Open to a limited number of participants (175) and covering very challenging terrain, the tour is geared toward advanced riders. The cost is $550 and includes the same amenities as Cycle Montana.

A few others to consider are: SPUDS-Cycling Across Idaho, sponsored by Cyclevents (307-733-9615) is a seven-day ride from Boise to Driggs that traverses the Sawtooth Mountains, the Teton Valley, and the Central Desert. The ride, scheduled for August 2-8, is limited to 150 people. Call Cyclevents for more information. The Great Arizona Bicycle Adventure takes place a bit later in the season (October 3-11), but promises fantastic scenery and plenty of daily mileage. Call 520-690-7900 for more details. Bicycle Tour of Colorado is similar in size (number of riders) to Cycle Oregon, but it offers spectacular Rocky Mountain terrain. Call 800-985-9399 for more details. Unfortunately, Ride the Rockies, an outrageously popular Colorado event, is already full for this year. For information on next year's ride, check their web site at www.ridetherockies.com/.

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