By Dr. Kim Perry, Executive Director
1. Register now or later? If you want to guarantee a spot at the tour we recommend signing up early. We’ve just decreased our registration cap from 2,000 to 1,600 to help create a better rider experience. Registration opens on December 1st, 2012. Register in the month of December to receive your Early Bird Discount. You can register for the full tour or sign up for single days. Teams of 8 or more get a discount.
2. Camping or Hotel? This totally depends on your style. Camping at Headquarters is fun. There are tons of other riders around, a casual relaxing environment, and everything you’ll need within a short walk: food, entertainment, showers, and rider services. Camping and the transfer of your camping gear from one Headquarters to the next is included in the registration fee.
Hotels are located within about 10 miles of Headquarters. Riders are responsible for booking and paying for their own hotel rooms. We’ll provide you with a list of our official hotels (official hotels typically offer a discounted event rate, and may also offer special services). You might like this better if you don’t rest well when you camp. We offer a luggage transfer service for hotel guests on the tour (we move your gear to your next hotel and back to the finish area) and bus transportation for an additional fee.
3. Do I need to buy meals? Full tour registration for the ride includes 15 catered meals. A kick off dinner, Eat and Greet on Friday; Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner for Saturday through Tuesday and 2 meals on Wednesday. A vegetarian option is available (please select this when registering). We are not able to accommodate Vegan or special diets at this time. We often have food vendors at Headquarters that sell coffee, breakfast items, snacks, and dinners. This varies from year to year based on the vendors located in that community. Otherwise, riders go into the local towns for meals.
4. When and Where do I ride? Riders leave Headquarters between 7 and 9 am each day. If you prefer to ride in similarly paced ride groups then look for our optional paced start schedule. There are typically 2 route choices for the day that vary in distance and difficulty. You will ride on marked bike routes that have eye-level signs and other markers to help you navigate. Our signage teams post the signs each morning and remove them at the end of the of each day.
5. Should I come alone? Definitely! Don’t skip this fun tour just because no one can come with you. Many riders come by themselves. There are a lot of great people to meet and ride with, including singles. It’s a great tour for women, either alone or in small groups because you’ll be in good company with other riders for camping, riding, and entertainment.