This bike climb is an exclusive race that only takes place once a year. At this time the roads are blocked off to traffic while bikers take center stage and can test their challenges in an amazing event that benefits the community and lyme disease research.
This is definitely a challenging climb that will test your muscles with every pedal you take. It’s a 5.4 mile cycling race that brings you from the bottom of the scenic mountain up to the top. You’ll be traveling along Mt. Equinox Skyline Drive to make it to the summit.
The average grade on your way up is 12% overall, which is equivalent to Mt. Washington’s average grade. There is just one hill to challenge here and it can only be done on one day of the year. The beginning elevation is 652 feet above sea level and the ending elevation lies at 3,849 feet above sea level. The total elevation gain is 3,173 feet on this 5.4 mile cycling adventure.
Up until 2004 the road leading to the summit was closed to cyclists and only motorized vehicles could use it. The first race was held in 2004 giving cyclists the opportunity to get in the saddle to defeat this monster.
Since then it has become a significant event that draws in climbers from around the nation. If you want to spend some time spinning your way to the top or just want to take part in a biking event to say that you’ve accomplished another mountain, this is a great race that gives you boasting rights once you’ve made it to the top.
One of the best prizes that you could ever receive with this challenge is the view from the top. This is a spectacular view since Mt. Equinox has one of the highest peaks in the areas.
You’ll be able to look down and appreciate Mother Nature at its finest when you’re done the event and you’ll also be surrounded by a breathtaking view when you’re on your way up.
Love views? Have a look at this hillclimb too.
Following the Race
It starts at 8 AM for riders under 29 years of age, at 8:05 AM for riders between the ages of 30 to 49 and at 8:10 AM for riders that are 50 and older with registration ongoing from 6 AM until 7:15 AM.
There is an awards ceremony and a fantastic barbecue starting at 11:30 AM that takes place at the Welcome Center. Cyclists eat for free and the food fair is much appreciated after the expending all that energy first thing in the morning.
Getting Down The Mountain
Unfortunately, you are not going to be able to ride your bike back down the mountain. You won’t be able to walk it down either so you’ll have to have a ride arranged for a pickup. Carpooling is greatly encouraged since there aren’t that many parking spots available.
Needing a pickup is the only downfall to this race, however, that we could see. Since it is stated up front that you can’t ride down there is no disappointment to be found with the cyclists that have decided to participate.
Mount Equinox is based in beautiful Manchester, Vermont and while you’re striving to do your best and enjoying the scenery as much as the challenge, you’ll also be contributing to a fantastic cause.
All of the money raised from this racing event will be donated to finding a cure for Lyme disease and to supporting the Manchester Rotary Club’s local charities. This is a race that beginners, intermediate and senior riders adore and flock to year after year. It’s worth checking out if you love a good challenge and it’s also a good warm up for the grand daddy of them all, the Mount Washington hillclimb.
Heard of Six Gaps? It’s quite the series of challenging hills. More info here.