Monday, June 29, 2015

2015 "The Gamut" MTB & Running Courses Updates

  • 2014 PDF Map & Route Guide 
  • On Stage 1 the new trail Rattlin' Run replaces the pavement section between the Beginner Loop and Songbird.
    • Mt. Bikers will ride Stage 1 in the opposite direction from 2014. The 2015 Stage 1 is generally counterclockwise and starts with climbing Hi-Dee-Hoe.
    • Runners will run Stage 1 in the same direction as 2014, generally clockwise, and starting with the Beginner Loop to Rattlin' Run.
  • Stage 2 is 100% identical to the 2014 Stage 2.

Q&A Regarding RUNNING being added to all VES Trail Events

How many miles are you going to make us run?
Runners can come and run any distance they will have fun with! There are generally three course length options detailed per VES event, a 10-15 miler, 20-25 and 35+. 
And, like the mountain bikers, runners can turn around and head back to the start / finish at any time. So if you're not up for running one of the full routes, just run in the woods for awhile and turn around when you're ready!
Is there a way to sign up?
There are no registrations in the VES, just show-up, meet other cool kids and go! Each VES event does have a Facebook event associated with it, so if you're planning to come (and you do Facebook) then swing by the FB event and click on "Going"!
Are there any aid stations or other logistics already planned for?
Generally there are no aid stations or course markings at VES events. The route(s) are very well described, and the fun is generally self-supported and self-navigated.
I wish these events weren't on a Sunday. Excludes all of us church goers.
God is present at all VES events, and anyone is welcome to organize a service/worship at the site before or after the event! 
And, we have started adding some Saturday events! The only reservation we have with moving too many VES events to Saturday is that a number of the organizers are bike shop employees who work Saturdays, and have off Sundays.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

7.26.15 "The Gamut" (Ride or Run Every Trail at Carvins Cove) | FREE Event #8 in Virginia's Endurance Series

**New for 2015** Ride or RUN the Gamut!

Yes, trail runners are welcome and encouraged to participate! :)


When: 9am Sunday July 26th
Where: Carvins Cove - Bennet Springs Parking Area

PDF Map & Route Guide 
v2013 GPX FILE
v2014 Additions GPX FILE
v2015 **coming soon**

How to Navigate with GPX Files
What is the Virginia Endurance Series? LINK

Roanoke is the "2013 Best Trail Town" for one reason ... the singletrack at Carvin's Cove.

Download & Print: PDF Map & Route Guide (11"x17" recommended)

With the sweet trail offerings continuing to expand, riding "The Gamut" at Carvins Cove (every trail in the extensive singletrack system in a single day) has become quite a challenge: 43+ miles with LOTS of climbing.

The absolutely incredible trails, and the corresponding high most mountain bikers experience while riding them, keeps the accomplishment of riding "The Gamut" seemingly within reach (though very few have people have actually done it).

The Gamut consists of 2 stages (see above map). Both stages start and end at the Bennett Springs parking area, which is perfect for refueling and restocking mid-point in the Gamut attempt. Both stages contain numerous bail out options too.

On Sunday July 27th we will meet at the Bennett Springs Parking Area for the 9am start of VES #8 an attempt at riding "The Gamut".

Gamut v2014 adds the BRG Gauntlet Jump Line, Lakeside Trail, lower Hemlock Tunnel and the section of Kerncliff between Comet and Jacob's Drop. 

Friday, June 5, 2015

super most fantastic supa D #enduro results!

We had quite possibly the most splendid day one could ask for. Super hot and humid with just enough tack from the pre-dawn rain showers to make you sticky icky to those sweet trails at Pandapas Pond!

There were about 16 hardy souls that showed up to GET SOME! All bike types were represented from full blown and medio squishers, hard tails and single speeds. Most riders (depending on route chosen) pedaled them bicycles close to 28 miles of TRAIL!

Here is how the day's times turned out. Get outside today!


Tuesday, April 7, 2015

4.12.15 Terrapin Mountain Predicament | FREE Event #4 in the Virginia Endurance Series

Location: Jefferson National Forest
near Arcadia, VA

Ride Parking / Meet Up Location:

This is also RIMBA LDS (Local Destination Series) Ride #1 - ARCADIA, with guided 17, 25, 36 and 41 mile route options!

At 9am on Sunday April 12th mountain bike adventurers will embark on an attempt of "Terrapin Mountain Predicament"! The the "Full" route as crafted by living legend Kyle Inman is 41.9 miles with 9,995 feet of climbing. TripTik is below. | Link: Details & GPX file | CLICK HERE for a printable PDF

There are *loads* of ways to shorten this ride (shorter options are illustrated below) so come and enjoy as much adventure mountain biking goodness as you're up for!

This is THE map!! CLICK HERE for a printable PDF.

New is a 100+km ULTRA route 62.9 miles, +13,167 feet. This option has never been completed and is only possible for the most fit, experienced and skilled back country mountain bikers. ULTRA Route: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3.

Like all Virginia Endurance Series events, this is FREE! Be well fueled, super hydrated and ready to roll at 9am. Estimated ride time 6.5+ hours.

Note: If you plan to do the full epic (to the summit of Terrapin and looping back) one stream crossing is may get your feet wet, so consider bringing an extra pair of socks.

*Top Tube Frame Sticker*
Legendary Jens Voigt quote and
Virginia Endurance Series mantra.
All riders will be handed one of
these stickers at the ride start.
TMP Full-Course Navigation: 41.9 miles | 9,995 feet
GPX File | How-To navigate with GPX Track Files using a Smartphone or Garmin 800/810

The National Geographic Trails Illustrated Map #789 (Lexington / Blue Ridge Mts) shows most of the Predicaments trails. A scanned copy, with the course marked in as best as I could, is below the TripTik.

The TripTik as written by the legend:
  • Start/finish - bridge over North Creek past campground
  • Go up dirt road to apple orchard trail, which begins with a wooden bridge.
  • Sharp Right turn to stay on the trail.
  • Take Apple Orchard trail 1.2 miles turn left to go over the wood bridge across the creek leading to Parker's Gap dead end.
  • Take Parker's Gap dirt road 2.1 miles to intersection of FS 812.
  • Right on 812 3.1 miles to BRP overlook.
  • Go straight across parkway, look for trail/fire rd on left, go around gate and continue until trail opens up into a field, cross field and 
  • Bear left (NE)out of field onto singletrack 3004 
  • Singletrack opens to grassy 2 track, Salad Hill, still 3004
  • Take 2 track several miles eventually passing through a gate. You will come back through this gate after tackling Terrapin Mt.
  • Go 1 mile to Camping Gap. Terrapin Mt trail is on right, 
  • go around gate to enter Terrapin Mt Trail, up a steeep climb for a few hundred feet, then turn left onto trail marked by yellow blaze to stay on trail (do not go straight).
  • Take trail across ridge. 
  • Gorgeous, technical, very sweet and stop to take in the stunning view off of the left side of the ridge from the rocks near the summit.
  • Trail descent becomes a boulder strewn hike. I think very skilled back country rock riders could ride virtually all of this very technical descent. Classic.
  • Trail dumps onto open road. You'll pick up a lot of speed and be having a blast. Keep your eyes peeled for trail 3009 on right, it's easy to blow by. If you reach a gate you've gone too far - trail is BEFORE gate.
  • 3009 is a nice rolling contour trail around the base of Terrapin, beautiful with easily rideable stream crossings, until you reach the one before the gate. You can stay dry while crossing this one by walking from rock to rock.
  • Go thru gate and turn right to climb along creek on fire road.
  • Eventually arrive at a brisk creek that's wide (maybe 30 feet on 3/3/2013) and 1/2 wheel deep but rideable. You can walk across and stay dry on the left but it's a little tricky.
  • After creek turn right onto trail, climbing, climbing, and then climbing.
  • After a couple miles, a hard switchback right will appear. Take that, bringing you back to Camping Gap just feet from the Terrapin Mt trail from earlier.
  • Take left back up dirt road 3004.
  • Go through gate. Shortly thereafter spot fire road on right, White Oak Ridge 3011.
  • 3011 will present a right turn option shortly thereafter. Stay left.
  • Proceed upwards for about 2 miles, eventually arriving at BRP across from giant golf ball radar dome.
  • Left on BRP to Sunset Field fire road on left, ridden earlier.
  • This time, exit field to right, SW, on Onion Mt section of the horse trail.
  • Trail will climb sharply at first. Stay alert for hard right turn once climbing eases. Trail is marked.
  • Take rough singletrack about a mile to Overstreet road and falls.
  • Take right, upwards, on Overstreet dirt road. Go 1.4 miles to BRP, mostly steep climbing.
  • Take a right, north, on BRP, 2 miles back to Sunset Field overlook on left.
  • Take Apple Orchard Falls trail from overlook down sweet, tech singletrack.
  • Upon arriving at open fire road, take a left. Fire road descends for a bit, climbing abruptly near the end.
  • Stay straight at top of steep climb onto Cornelius Creek Trail. Awesome, you are almost done!
  • Go 2 miles down Cornelius Creek trail, eventually arriving back at North Creek road.
  • Go down North Creek Road to bridge. Done.
The Terrapin Mountain Predicament Route Overview: 
(Red Arrows = Out, Blue Arrows = Return)

    If you print the TripTik and the above map you have a good chance of staying on course.

    Map of Ride Parking / Meet Up Location: 37.54274,-79.585101,

    This ~36 mile route is what most riders were able to complete in the 2013 TMP:

    North Creek and Cornelius Option Overview:

    North Creek, Sunset Field, Onion Mt, Hereformost Mt, Apple Orchard & Cornelius Trail Option Overview:

    North Creek, Sunset Field, White Oak Ridge, Apple Orchard & Cornelius Trail Option Overview:

    Monday, March 9, 2015

    Get Virginia Endurance Series / VES Factory Team clothing at dealer cost! $5 is donated to RIMBA for every item purchased!

    It'd be fantastic if you'd support the completely free and volunteer organized Virginia Endurance Series and RIMBA by purchasing a premium VES clothing item **at dealer cost**.

    Starlight Custom Cycling Apparel will donate $5 to the Virginia IMBA chapter, RIMBA, for every item purchased!

    To order, visit

    Ordering deadline is 3/16/15!

    Thanks so much for your support!

    The Virginia Endurance Series Mission:
    Reveal and celebrate the very best backcountry mountain biking destinations in Virginia | Offer FREE monthly ride events in these destinations, with volunteer ride leaders and various distance options (something for everyone) | GIVE riders the maps and information they need to explore these areas | Help create, enhance and preserve Virginia’s great mountain biking experiences.

    Sunday, February 22, 2015

    3.14.15 Richmond Baja | Virginia Endurance Series

    Richmond Baja​
    Route information and all details:
    Facebook Event
    3.14.15 | 7am | Crossroads Coffee & Ice Cream
    3600 Forest Hill Ave, Richmond, Virginia 23225
    ​Choose your pleasure: Race (45-90mi) / Party Pace (25-30mi)

    "Races like the Richmond Baja are what keep me involved in cycling. The Baja is one part mountain bike race, one part alleycat, and one part weird mexican navigational nightmare. It's awesome. I like the Baja for a lot of reasons. First, it's put together by friends of mine, and it's always cool to see your friends doing awesome things. Secondly, it's a pretty inclusive event, with an encouraging and fun community, and a strong DIY ethic. Most importantly, the Baja embodies a lot of what cycling is about to me, both from a racer's perspective, and that of someone who sees the community behind the bike.
    The Broad Street Hooligans do a lot for the Richmond mountain bike scene. Between the trails, and the Baja itself, the Hooligans are out almost every weekend investing their time and resources in our trail system, with no recompense or payment.They do it because they love riding bikes. I look up to that. It's a clear and simply motivation, and because of it, the Hooligans do a lot of awesome things, and generally don't receive the thanks they deserve. They make an effort not to include their names anywhere, and are all known instead as friends of Steve Justice. The Baja specifically is the only race of its kind in Richmond, and is a fairly unique event nationally, which makes it that much cooler.

    The Baja is a pretty inclusive event, and that mentality of inclusivity is what drew me to cycling in the first place. The Hooligans are friendly dudes. The people that race the Baja are friendly people. More so, the race is set up in a way that encourages everyone from beginners to pros. There's a full length, and half length course, and while neither is a walk in the park, they are both definitely do-able. Between that, the proximity of the race to the city, and the overall 'vibe' the event puts offs, it really is meant for everyone. I can say after working as a volunteer and riding a lot of the course this year, that there were no negative experiences. Everyone was friendly and helpful, and all of the racers, riders, tourists, promoters, and Hooligans were just out to have a good time, and it showed.
    The best thing about the Baja, and the Hooligans is the DIY ethic that oozes from everything they do. To me, more than anything this is what cycling is about. Want to ride 20 miles? Go do it. Want to learn how to mountain bike? Go fall until you get it right. Cycling for me was and still is a school of hard knocks. I was super fat when I starting riding, and it was only through dragging myself around for an hour or so every day that I got to where I am today. Cycling forces you to rely on yourself. No one can log the miles but you. An adventure race like the Baja really brings this mentality to the forefront. 100 miles is long on a road bike. It's daunting on single track. That combined with the fact that you are responsible for all nutrition, water, and navigation, along with any mechanical failures that may occur make the Baja a tough and unique event. The Hooligans doing a great job not making seem impossible though. With volunteers like myself, and other Hooligans stretched out across the course, there are just enough checkpoints to reassure the riders that they're going the right way.
    While working my checkpoints during the last race, I found myself oscillating between encouraging riders who were hurting, and having lighthearted conversations with the guys and gals that were doing just fine and had stopped to grab a beer. It was a blast, and felt like exactly what a bike race should feel like. The Baja reminded me that they're exactly that, bikes, a means to have fun, and get outside. It's easy to get sucked up in gear talk, and racing and numbers, and the Baja sort of throws a lot of that out the window, and brings back the awesome.
    -Friend of Steve Justice"