The Tour Divide Video – A 2745 mile mtb race

8 06 2010

This Friday, the 2010 Tour Divide races will set out from Banff, Canada to ride 2745 miles off-road across the American Rockies to Finish in Antelope Wells on the US/Mexican Border. It’s a self supported race, no entrance fee, no race support, no pre-arranged help allowed, you go alone!

I first came across this race two years ago during our honeymoon tour round Central Europe, and it captured my imagination. To be honest, my desire to one day have a crack at this race is what drives my ever increasing mileage and adventures, it’s all about ‘toughening myself up to the challenge’ to see if I have what it takes. Does anyone want to join me?

Here is a little clip from a movie made about the 2008 race.

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7 responses

8 06 2010
Redbike

Is it wrong to actually fancy that? Does that mean I’ve flipped?

I can’t foresee myself ever entering it though. I think i’m going to stick with my slightly easier Trans Wales (if I can get the money together) and Lejog next year.

8 06 2010
jamesrach

I thought you might fancy that. If I do it, I can’t image it will happen within the next 2-3 years, but maybe? In that time I need to put in some real long off-road rides in this country. Do you fancy the idea of a Lejog off-road sometime?

8 06 2010
Redbike

It’s irronic that you should post that. I’ve been looking at how practical it is to add a few off-road trails into the Lejog.

I’ve done very little in the way of planning for the Lejog other than read about other peoples trips but my basic plan so far is to start off with a road bike and no luggage (ie use B&Bs) so that motor on up from Cornwall through Wales to Stoke (where I live) within 2/3 days.

At this point I will switch bikes to a 29er MTB come cyclo-x bike kitted out as a tourer.

From Stoke it will be the Pennine Bridleway up to Carlise (The last bit of this path is yet to be built),

From there its cycle route 7 around the coast to Glasgow. (This isn’t really off-road)

From Glasgow its the West Highland Way and then onto the Great Glen Way to Fort William.
(These are footpaths but you can legally ride them).

This could well all change yet. I’m slightly worried that adding in too much off-road will significantly increase the number of days i’m riding for and make things too hard.

My next planned big off-road ride is the Lakeland lugger.

8 06 2010
jamesrach

Well that defiantly sounds interesting and I’m sure adding of-road sections will add to the total length but if you have the time then so what as it would be fun and interesting what ever you decide to do.

13 06 2010
trio25

I love this race, but don’t think I would ever do it. Enjoying following the brits progress this year.

26 06 2010
trail rat

2012 you say ? i have already begun plans for that.

redbike – i have an article from cycle (the ctc mag) about an off road lejog – the route looks good BUT i dont think its the distance or the race that draws me to the Tour divide – its the scenary , the quirky people that folks seem to meet and the back countryness – no matter where you are in the uk your never far from a shop or people ….

27 06 2010
jamesrach

I rode to Spain self-supported last year on my touring bike and used a very light weight set up; tarp, bivy, very few clothes, etc. Whilst I was never far from anywhere, the pushing on every day, the sleeping in fields, the eating out of shops and restaurants and watching the distance tick by, made for a very hard but very rewarding adventure. And despite being on roads and passing villages every few miles I did feel on my own and at times very lonely.

In reflection I think it was the miles covered each day (approx 150) and the need/desire to ‘push on’ that made the adventure so real. You can’t sit round and draw comfort from an internet cafe, or from a hotel room, you have to push on. It drew me closer to the places where I did stop and the people I did chose to meet and the landscape just added to it. I hope to ride lejog for the same reason, to push on, but this time ofroad and my own country, finding people and places along the way.

For me the tour divide is the next logical step after that.

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