With the snow flying outside, it's time to ponder and plan your big ride(s) for 2017!
Only three US organizers have 1200k's on tap for 2017:
- Carolina Spring 1200 - May 6
- Gold Rush Randonnée - July 5
- Colorado Last Chance - September 6
- Taste of North Carolina - October 6
North of the border, Ontario Randonneurs is organizing their
- Granite Anvil - August 24
Further afield, see the Randonneurs Mondiaux calendar for other 1200k and longer Grand Randonnées worldwide, 46 events in all!
Some awards for extra motivation:
- American Randonneur Challenge - finish two US 1200k's in the same year
- Coast-to-Coast - finish four different US 1200k's - over any number of years
- Can-Am Award - finish a US and a Canadian 1200k in the same year
The Gold Rush Randonnée, organized by the Davis Bike Club, heads north from Davis into the high plateau of NE California. The first and final 100 miles are flat (Sacramento Valley), but there's lots of climbing and scenery in between. Deluxe volunteer support. My report from the previous GRR (2013).
The Last Chance is rolling, open, and expansive, with panoramic views unencumbered by woods or canyons. There are some flat sections, but not as many as you'd think ("fewer flat miles than the Gold Rush"). The wind can be your constant companion. This year we are adding a foray along quiet roads into Nebraska. An evocative pioneer experience. My Photomontage (2006)
The Taste of Carolina in the fall, and Carolina Spring 1200 in the spring, vary their routes from year to year. You may get a taste of the Piedmont foothills, the Blue Ridge, and the coastal plain.
Lots of possibilities to challenge you in 2017. So start imagining and planning!