Friday, February 17, 2017

the Tour Divide, have you ever heard of it?

It's an annual amateur ultra-distance mountain biking race traversing the length of the Rocky Mountains, from Banff, Alberta Canada to Antelope Wells, NM.... it's the world's longest off-pavement cycling route.

The race format is strictly self-supported, and it is not a stage race - the clock runs continuously from the start until riders cross the finish line, more than two weeks later.

The race has a very low profile, has no entry fees, no sponsorship, and no prizes. Although "letters of intent" from likely starters are encouraged, any rider may turn up on the day to participate.

Challenges along the route include mountains, great distances between resupply towns, risk of mechanical failure or injury, bears, poor weather, snowfall, and significant unrideable sections that require pushing the bike.

 Riders usually adopt a "bikepacking" style, carrying minimal equipment sufficient for camping or bivouacking, and only enough food and water to last until the next town. In this way, riders ride huge distances each day.

The Tour Divide has been raced and completed on both single speed bicycles and tandem bicycles. It usually starts on the second Friday in June

It was tirelessly mapped over a 4 year span, and published in 1998, highlighted by long dirt roads and jeep trails that wend their way through forgotten passes of the Continental Divide. It travels through Canadian provinces of Alberta and British Columbia, and the United States of Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico


  1. I'm kind of a MTB nut, and have been following this for a couple of years. For a great overview check out the movie 'Ride the Divide' - classic mtb film.

    And if you like to read cycle touring like these guys do, racing from Banff to the Mexican border, check out and search for GDMBR (the Great Divide Mountain Bike Race). There are a couple of race journals there, plus a bunch of accounts of every day people touring the course (that is riding the course, but not racing).

    Lots of other great touring reads on that site as well. Check out some of the Scottish journals, where they ride across the Cairngorms. Amazing photos.

    Love that you keep on sprinkling in bicycling stuff on your page.

    Steve Z

    1. I will definitely check out the movie if I can find it, but, read? When will I ever have time to read? HA! Never! Too much to blog about, and that alone takes up all my spare time. I'll pop in here and there and everywhere, but it's pretty time consuming just to enjoy the day, but add in filtering out the stuff I don't like, posting the stuff I do, editting that for a brief article (I don't think people like to read much more than some captions as comments seem to miss what I say after the post title... a LOT) and looking for more fun stuff to post. I will give those sites some time, but I'm not going to look for the scottish stuff... I'll never have time to get to it. I will read anything that's exceptionally well written, but we both know that stuff is really rare. I post that stuff. Crazyguyonabike, that's a cool name for a site!

    2. I forgot to mention earlier, I used to bike, a lot. I was doing a 100 miles a weekend. I got started at age 7, no training wheels, just messing up those knees every damn day, and ironing on patches every damn night. I kept that up til around age 29 when my life changed drastically. I think I put about 7 thousand miles on that bike in 5 years
      Replaced everything but the frame and front forks. Raliegh Technium. Still have it... just need to put air in the tires and go
      Have you enjoyed ?

  2. I love it that you post things like this! I don't read every post on here, but I dig that I can read about something I never heard of like this. Serendipity is awesome!

    1. Oh yeah?@?@?!!! Well I don't read all your comments! SO there! Neener!

      Hey, I hope you're laughing, I just had to say that. It's rare I get to joke about comments, but you killed me! "I don't read every post on here" well, that's probably the only reason you're still coming back! I've posted some stuff that's seriously hardcore gearhead boring, or opinionated, or just a rant about some crap that irritates me.

      But lemme tell you, it is a real pleasure to learn about something this cool, and then pass it along, and other people share it and tell me they enjoy what I do because of articles like this!