Tour de Mountains 2016 is
We have an exciting weekend planned for Tour de Mountains 2016. We've tweaked the routes and we are collecting prizes to give away. Here is a quick rundown.
One bit of news: Last year the Farmers Fish Camp Bridge over the New River had washed out an the new bridge was under construction. This had been a scenic delight for several of our routes, but we had to work around in 2015. The new bridge is finished and it is real treat for riders and all but the popular 35-mile route cross this bridge. That 35-mile ride is so popular, we really did not want to change it. Here is a short run-down of plans for the day. Click on the Routes tab for links to a detailed description of each route.
A new 20-mile route has been added that offers a lot for cyclists wanting a taste of the challenge of these mountains and it includes the new Farmers Fish Camp bridge. The ever-popular 35-mile route is unchanged. Our Metric Century and our Century rides both have been altered to include the new Farmers Fish Camp Bridge.
We heard from a number of riders who claimed last year's Century with 100 miles of pavement and over 10,000 feet of climb was a bit much. In rerouting the ride to include the Farmers Fish Camp Bridge, we could only wring out 9,600 feet of climb. However, we were able to still include that slog up Doughton Mountain that crests near the highest peak in the county and we managed to also retain the long climb up from the river on Nile Road. You won't be disappointed.
Before the ride, you are invited to enjoy a full continental breakfast. We are still looking at some tweaks to the menu for this year. SAG support is with you start to finish. Every 10-15 miles expect stocked rest stops manned by smiling volunteers. Whenever you finish, a spaghetti lunch that includes meat-lover and meatless vegetarian options as well as salad will be waiting -- another change we've made based on feedback from the 2015 ride. The Wellness Center's hot showers will be available and our indoor pool will be open to riders. It's a great way to wind up the ride.
You could be a winner:
We are still collecting prizes to give away, so check back to later for an update.
Happening the Ride Weekend:
There's a free concert in Crouse Park Saturday evening. Details are still being worked out. Located two blocks behind the Courthouse, the tree-shaded lawn of the park slopes down to the stage, so bring a lawn chair or blanket to spread out on the grass and enjoy the music.
Located just across from the Courthouse, the Alleghany Jubilee features live bands playing traditional mountain music for listening and dancing every Saturday beginning at 7 p.m. Check the Chamber of Commerce website calendar for more local events, places to shop and just about anything you might want to know about Sparta and the surrounding area. More information is also found on the Host Town page.
Sparta, Alleghany County and the surrounding area offer accommodations in a number of motels, bed and breakfast inns, and vacation rentals. The Alleghany Inn has been a faithful Ride sponsor and is located less than a mile from the start of the Ride. Their helpful and courteous staff and first-class accommodations will please any visitor. Follow this link for a complete list of motels, bed and breakfast inns, vacation rentals and campgrounds..
Any time is a good time to ride: Some anytime pleasure rides have been added to the Routes link. Check them out and plan your own visit to our mountains for a pleasure ride.
A fundraiser for the Alleghany Wellness Center, this annual event will support a variety of programs including spin classes. The Alleghany Wellness Center is a community supported nonprofit agency whose mission is to provide the people of Alleghany County and the surrounding areas the opportunity to achieve and maintain healthy lifestyles through health education, medically supervised programs and facilities for physical activity and recreation.
Sparta and surrounding Alleghany County are North Carolina's eastern most Blue Ridge Mountains on the border with Virginia. The area is convenient to the North Carolina Piedmont via I-77, SW Virginia and SE Tennessee. Bordered by the Scenic New River on the north and west riders can enjoy mountain and river vistas.
The community offers motels, bed and breakfast inns and vacation rentals for riders who wish overnight accommodations or want to expand the ride into a weekend in the mountains. Sparta's old downtown and two shopping centers provide needed provisions.
The Tour de Mountains is a ride, not a race, but regardless of the ride length you chose, this is the Blue Ridge Mountains and there will be challenging climbs. Being in good physical condition is the key to an enjoyable ride. If there is any doubt regarding your fitness level, consult your physician before participating.
Watch for gravel. Some backroads are paved with gravel over tar and there will be loose gravel on recently paved roads.
Watch for animals. You may encounter untethered dogs. Carrying dog repellent is advised. Be alert for deer and turkey crossing the road.
All routes are over paved roads. Wide mountain bike tires designed for off-road riding are not necessary and will increase the difficulty of the ride.
For the safety of our riders, we do reserve the right to make necessary route changes to accommodate any unforeseen construction, etc.
A cell phone may be helpful in case of emergency.