For the past several years, John and I have spent Memorial Day weekend climbing and descending some of the finest dirt roads Vermont has to offer. Over the years, friends have found links to our routes, guessed our starting times, and ridden the same roads at the same time. We love riding with other dirt-road loving folks. We managed to put together a pretty amazing route from Ludlow up to Waterbury and back, mostly on quiet dirt roads.
Photos from 2011 can be seen here. Photos from 2010 - Day 1, Day 2 and Day 3 are on Picasa.
For several years now, John has been talking about doing a trip based on the Bayley-Hazen Military Road - mainly to get photos of himself standing in front of Bayley signs. Last year Hurricane Irene did some major damage in Southern Vermont, and at the time we needed to book accommodation, we weren't sure whether our old routes would be repaired, so we decided to do the Bayley Hazen ride this year.
We will be staying in East Burke, and starting rides at 8AM in front of the General Store. We usually ride as a social group and regroup at the top and bottom of the big climbs.
Friends are welcome to join us, with the following disclaimer: This is not an organized trip. You are just riding the same roads we are at the same time! These roads are often steep and hard-pack dirt. While not technical, the surface can sometimes be loose, especially if the road grading monster has been on them recently. We recommend 28mm or fatter tires, but folks have gotten by with smaller, although they have tended to puncture more than others!
You can download the gps tracks from RideWithGPS. We have ridden all the routes at some time in the past. The GPS tracks should be accurate. However note that RideWithGPS auto-generates cue sheets that are about 90% accurate. I have not gone thru the cues to verify or correct. So don't count on the cue sheets.
There is a great map, Cycling the Northeast Kingdom, that is available in East Burke.
These are the rides we are planning to do. If you plan to join us, send us an email.
South Bayley - Saturday
North Bayley - Sunday
Radar - Monday
Willoughby - a shorter option
Walden Stanton - another short option for the Gnarnia Crowd. It has about 1/2 mile of big gravel on a climb, and a stream crossing that was a bit more than ankle deep last week
Burke Mountain - If you haven't had enough climbing