In Fall of 2006 my good friend Steevo and I set off to ride the Great Divide, a 2500-mile, 85% off-road mountain bike route along the Continental Divide from Canada to Mexico. Steevo’s photos from his blog are here and here. I only managed to get one post up here.
The key word is ‘ride’. We tried to do it in 29 days and fell a couple hundred miles short of official completion. But anything you can ride you can race. The Great Divide Race started in 2004. It follows the maps from Adventure Cycling exactly. There is no support, no entry fee and no prizes. Pretty cool. (before the official race John Stamstad, who I have written about previously blazed the course in 19 days on his own).
But the route was extended north into Canada so….see where this is going? Long story short, one of the previous years’ winners, Matt Lee, suggested that the race also be extended. The GDR race organizer (apparently) did not think this was a good idea. So Matt started his own race: Tour Divide. And they are both happening at the same time right now. If useful website is a gauge to measure a race, then Tour Divide wins hands down. They have real-time GPS on every racer. I’ll be keeping up on this and thinking about what it must be like to ride over a hundred miles a day, off-road, with no support for over two weeks.