It’s dumping even more snow outside today (Feb 13th), but despite snow piling up to the roof there are signs of stoke starting to build for the 2020 race and ride season here in Steamboat Springs. Our small town has a long history of hosting cycling events big and small, such as the International USA PRO Challenge, and some may remember that 5 day mountain bike stage race known as the Mercury Tour back in the late nineties ($100K prize purse and too tough for Lance)
The upcoming season in Steamboat brings another great spread of new and long time cycling events with the trend seeming to be “Bring on the gravel roads!” But this town has some sort of event for everyone – road racing, gravel rides, road racing on gravel, XC mountain bike, enduro mountain bike, and gran fondos. Here’s our rundown of the 80487 cycling calendar, if we missed any please let us know. And if you need a squad to ride with check out our Club and Team membership.
Steamboat Gravel Festival (2nd annual) // May 11 – 17th
This event oozes good vibes from both the event director JR of Veloscapes along with the numerous locals who turn out for the iconic routes courtesy of TheDirtyRoads and supported by numerous local partners. Don’t miss all seven days of chill dirt road cruising and post ride socializing with friends.
Free with no registration required
Steamboat Roubaix (1st edition) // Sunday May 31st
Coming during the spring season (yes that means chance of snow) and including a sprinkle (40%) of dirt roads, this new Steamboat Velo promoted road race could live up to the moniker of “Hell of the High Rockies”. It will be run with race rules, moto officials, and doping control, all courtesy of USA Cycling sanctioning. Participants can opt into a range of categories from novice to Pro, or choose the Fun Ride option, but the weather will be a wait and see surprise. Groups race over course distances of 36mi, 53mi, or 70mi.
$65 registration online, capped at 500 riders, and benefiting Steamboat Velo, Lift Up, Humane Society, and Bicycle Colorado
Moots – Colorado Ranch Rally (7th Annual) // Saturday June 27th
Non-timed, non-competitive, full speed gravel fun over a 52 or the new for 2020 72 mile course. This is perhaps the original gravel event that first exposed riders to the quiet and remote dirt roads outside of Steamboat Springs, and it’s promoted by early pioneer of gravel machines – Moots Cycles.
$150 registration online, capped at 300 riders, and benefiting Community Ag Alliance
Eriksen – Tour De Steamboat (15th Annual) // Saturday July 18th
This ride has roots back to the seventies thanks to pioneer and local legend Kent Eriksen, but officially it was kicked off in 2005. It remains one of the original big deal bike events held in Steamboat Springs raising huge sums of money for various charities during it’s long history. Gone for 2020 is the 116 mile ‘Gore Gruel’ paved route, but riders are now raving about the 100 mile Bingham Gravel Gruel (did we mention gravel is kinda a big deal this year?)
The Summer Bear // Early August
Remember going on bike adventures before it was broadcast realtime on social media, when you weren’t sure how the route was going to play out, and before bike events gravitated towards being ultra tough mudder triple marathon races of attrition? The Bear has you covered for an “authentic, unpolished and original” self supported adventure ride run on 400 miles of
roads terrain most events wouldn’t dare send you on – North Routt County. Wyoming. Brush Mountain Lodge. California Park. Bears Ears. Farwell Mountain. Steamboat Ski Area. Buff Pass. Emerald Mountain.
Registration is online and it’s free, but pretty sure this one won’t be televised on your instagram feed so go irl.
Revolution Enduro // August 8th & 9th
One day of backcountry enduro racing traditionally held on some of our harder trails combined with a second day at Steamboat Ski Resort. Stay tuned to their website for event updates. $210 registration now open.
RCR – Emerald Epic (formerly Steamboat Stinger) // Date TBD
In year 10 this classic Steamboat Springs mountain bike race will be promoted by local cycling group Routt County Riders along with Partners in Routt County. Many locals have honed their mountain bike racing skills on the challenging course run each year over Emerald Mountain, including last year’s winner and past Steamboat Velo rider Tanner Visnick.
SBT GRVL (2nd Annual) // Sunday August 16th
Ask anyone who participated in 2019 and they will surely back up the claim that this event is ‘World Class’, after which they’ll explain how dang hard it is! It hits every great dirt road you might want to ride in Steamboat, in a day, with top tier support. While the 2020 event is sold out, you should absolutely consider volunteering which can be as rewarding as pedaling your bike over the 144 mile course. Benefiting 3 local organizations.
Steamboat Springs Stage Race (12th Annual) // September 5th, 6th & 7th
A lone holdout in much of the country and a mainstay bike event for Labor day weekend 11 years running – SSSR remains a great multi day paved road racing experience. Perfect for teams, for riders looking to experience back to back days of road racing, and run on some amazing roads around Steamboat Springs.