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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 07-04-06, 05:34 PM   #1
Angus
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What's your state's (or country's) best century?

Just wondering, since it appears that people on this forum do centuries several times a year, what do you think is the best century in your state? (Or province, or country, or other type of organized event. Whatever you care to discuss.)

I've only done a few in Indiana, but the best I've tried so far was the Indianapolis Zoo Wild Ride. The first one was in 2005, and there were problems that showed it was their first time--mainly that the road markings were poorly done and many riders ended up getting lost multiple times. But overall it was a nice event, although expensive ($60). The food was provided by Starbucks, and it seemed crazy to be able to enjoy as much of that over-priced food and drink as you wanted. Part of the ride went around the Indy 500 track, and that was very cool, as well. There were mechanics and medical professionals at each SAG, and there was a nice dinner in the dolphin facility at the end of the ride.

The rest of the route was nice, too. The ride went out through Eagle Creek park and cruised by the mansions and horse farms near Zionsville.

I had hoped to take my family on the 15-mile family ride portion this year, but the organizers dropped the family price, so now each rider would have to pay the $60. That's disappointing, because I know my kids would have loved the shorter ride.

So that was the best in my state. What's your state's best event?
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Old 07-04-06, 08:58 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angus
Just wondering, since it appears that people on this forum do centuries several times a year, what do you think is the best century in your state? (Or province, or country, or other type of organized event. Whatever you care to discuss.)

I've only done a few in Indiana, but the best I've tried so far was the Indianapolis Zoo Wild Ride. The first one was in 2005, and there were problems that showed it was their first time--mainly that the road markings were poorly done and many riders ended up getting lost multiple times. But overall it was a nice event, although expensive ($60). The food was provided by Starbucks, and it seemed crazy to be able to enjoy as much of that over-priced food and drink as you wanted. Part of the ride went around the Indy 500 track, and that was very cool, as well. There were mechanics and medical professionals at each SAG, and there was a nice dinner in the dolphin facility at the end of the ride.

The rest of the route was nice, too. The ride went out through Eagle Creek park and cruised by the mansions and horse farms near Zionsville.

I had hoped to take my family on the 15-mile family ride portion this year, but the organizers dropped the family price, so now each rider would have to pay the $60. That's disappointing, because I know my kids would have loved the shorter ride.

So that was the best in my state. What's your state's best event?
Fellow Hoosier here: "Hilly Hundred" as well as the "Huntington County 140" amd let's not forget about RAIN!
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Old 07-05-06, 11:34 AM   #3
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If "best" = "toughest," then I guess that for Maryland, it would be the Civil War Century -- 7400 feet of climbing, four big climbs. I tried it for the first time last year, after having done not much riding that season, and virtually none in the hills; I had to bail out and take the 72-mile option. I didn't think it was physically possible to have every major muscle in both legs cramping at the same time . . . every two minutes.

http://www.baltobikeclub.org/index.pl/cwc

Aside from "tough," it is a great ride otherwise, too -- beautiful Eastern mountain scenery, low traffic, the Civil War battlefields, etc.

I also like the Southern Maryland Century (Indian Head 100); it's a much smaller crowd, very low key, very rural and pretty, rolling terrain.

http://www.ohbike.org/century/index.htm

Last edited by maxine; 07-05-06 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 07-05-06, 12:57 PM   #4
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I haven't done it, and it's not really my idea of fun, but the 102 mile ride from Spartanburg SC to the top of Mt. Mitchell in NC seems pretty tough. 102 miles of straight climbing (around 11,000 feet of climbing).

http://www.freewheelers.info/assault.html
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Old 07-05-06, 07:23 PM   #5
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My province's best centuries are the ones I create myself.

There's only one other organized century here, and I've never ridden it so I'm not sure what it's like.
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Old 07-05-06, 09:13 PM   #6
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The Sierra Fall Classic and the Heartbreak Hundred are the two best that I've done so far in California. The former with some of the most spectacular scenery on the planet, and the latter with sweeping vistas. Both had challenging climbs galore, and little to no traffic - 7k-8k+ altitude gains. Absolutely 1st class cycling.

Some sample pics:

Sierra Fall Classic:




Heartbreak 100:


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Old 07-06-06, 06:35 AM   #7
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Virginia's best century is the one that I happen to be riding
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Old 07-06-06, 11:15 AM   #8
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Chupacabras 100km

The best of road long distance ride takes place in my country takes place in Northern Mexico www.chupacabras100km.org. It is right next to El Paso TX so it has a lot of participation from the US too.
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Old 07-06-06, 12:18 PM   #9
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I haven't really done a lot of organized century riding in Massachusetts, but I'm looking forward to the Deerfield Dirt Road Randonee. 107 miles, 70% dirt and carriage roads. Looks utterly gorgeous.

Otherwise most of my centuries have either been part of self-organized tours, solo brevet training runs and/or charity rides for Multiple Sclerosis and AIDS fundraising. Charity centuries tend to be 'ok' but they tend to ramp down the challenge ratings in order to make the ride accessible to a wider audience; so a lot of gorgeous local scenery gets skipped because it's surrounded by semi-difficult climbs.
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Old 07-06-06, 05:50 PM   #10
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Thanks Bigbossman for posting those pics. I have to agree the Sierra rides are all so beautiful.

In California we have lots of choices. I recommend (and note I'm from southern Ca so don't know the Nor Cal rides well):

Wildflower Century (see slobc.org) out of Creston, CA - April

Cruisin the Conejo North LA Vlley area down to Camarillo and back - May

Cool Breeze Century that runs from ventura to Goleta and through Santa Barbara - August

Lighthouse Century (again slobc.org) from SLO through Cambria and up the coast and back. Sept

Sierra Fall Century out of Mammoth (usually same weekend as Lighthouse)

Spooktacular by the Kern Wheelman outside Bakersfield in the fall. - October

Not my favorite but others like the Solvang Century (March), Ride Around The Bear (June) and Amtrak Century (September).
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Old 07-07-06, 02:39 AM   #11
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I think the best Ontario century is the TNT Hairshirt it's a double century from Toronto to Niagara falls and back to Toronto in one day. All together it's 322km (200 miles).
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Old 07-07-06, 04:31 AM   #12
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Hi,
I have yet to do a century, but the Lobster Ride in Maine is one I'd
like to do.
http://www.bikemaine.org/lobsterride/index.html
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Old 07-07-06, 07:04 AM   #13
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The Rocky Mountain 1200, its a whole pile of centuries lined up back to back

It is my goal.
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Old 07-07-06, 07:23 AM   #14
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Great photos, bigbossman! That is some gorgeous countryside.

If I were a Nevadan , I'd vote for "America's Most Beautiful Bike Ride," which goes around Lake Tahoe (with an out-and-back to Truckee to make up the 100 miles.) That was my very first century. It took me forever to finish -- aside from being a slowpoke, I kept hopping off the bike to take pictures!
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