Friday, October 4, 2013

Northern Promises

A beautiful start.

Starting up the shore. The group would splinter quickly

Rob was on the prowl for some gnar.

LisaT motors on all smiles

Monika Sattler would soon fashion a voodoo doll named Joshua Stamper. Photo cred Ben Oney

We ended up having to have a gas station potluck when the casino closed the kitchen.

John Carline rolling towards the Canadian border.

Ben Oney is the rose between two thorns PhotoCred: Ben Oney

Yeah, I Hauled pizza out to the middle of no-where. Photo cred: Ben Mullin

Bryce, why you bleeding all over the place? PhotoCred: Ben Oney

Ben Mullen captured the engineering prowess of beavers

We made time to break bread as a group. Photo cred: Doug Krone

Greatest bloody mary EVAR? Photocred: Doug Krone

After Bryce tried to put a hole in his hand, he volunteered to run the aid station, which meant that I got to ride on the last day! Thanks Bryce!

Dallas Wynne rolls in as a 2 time GC finisher

John Carline is also a 2x finisher, and Scott Spoo finshed his first GC

Bob was our resident meteorologist!

Monika and Chukker rolling down Bally Creek
Bryce shows off his puncture wound
Ben Mullen captures the essence of the north shore.
"There is a whole ocean of water down there, and you can drink it"
Many thanks to all the participants for bringing their A games. Everyone had fun and got to make some new friends.
Gravel Conspiracy 2014 will start on September 5th. We will start in Duluth, take a tour bus up to the canadian and then ride back to Duluth. Details will be forthcoming.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Laurential Divide Routes

 Ok. The routes are finalized.  Look for a series of emails from me over the next 36 hours that will include your schedule, cue sheets and GXP files.
Stage 1: Sept 13th GM to GP 52miles
 Stage 1 Start Time is at 12 Noon: GM to Grand Portage (GP) will start with 15 miles along hwy 61 then it turns straight up as you move away from the shore.  Expect road surfaces to be very poor with large rocks in the double track. Once you cross Tomohawk Trl you must be extremely alert as there is a very active logging operation in the area.  I will mark this on the cue sheets. You will then proceed into the Grand Portage Reservation and on to the Casino.  Dinner is on your own.

Stage 2: Sept 14th GP to GM 85 miles
Stage 2: We will leave the casino at 9am and traverse the northern border of the US and Canada (you will almost be able to smell the poutine, we are so close). There are no sources of potable water on the northern part of this route. I know this because I ran out of water and ended up having to drink untreated lake water. In a few more days we will find out if I have been living right.  I will set up a aid station around Greenwood Lake.  There is well water access on the lower third of the route at the kimball lake campground, and this will be marked on your cue sheets.
Oh Canada!

Stage 3: Sept 15th Lutsen Figure-8 65 miles
Stage 3: Depart GM at 9am and start running the ridges south. We will actually ride in a large figure-8 so I will set up a aid station at the crossing. 
This is a subtle reminder that we will be in a very large, very remote place.  It took them 12 years to find these guys and the crash site is less than 20 miles from a US highway.  Know how to navigate and Be prepared!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Recon 2013

Went up north with family this weekend to hammer out some unknowns on the route and donate some blood to some of the locals. Much gnar was had and questions got answered. Final route recon is in a few weeks. Then I will send out the route files. I also tried digitizing some maps for distibution, and have figured out how to use google maps offline with a smart phone in airplane mode so it does not kill your battery. All this will soon be revealed. Patience, weedhopper.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


As a means of confirming that I got your registration email, your name and info should end up here within a day or two. You will recieve further instructions via email within a few days.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Gravel Conspiracy 2013: Laurential Divide

It's Back.
September 13th-15th, 2013
Price: Free
75 Co-Conspirators will depart from Grand Marais, MN for 3 days of gravel and dirt road bike riding through the beautiful Superior National Forest, skirting the southern edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. Each night will be spent at a resort, campground or public house.

There is no sag, there is no support, no one will come to get you if you get a flat. At times you will be 40 miles from the nearest gas station.
You could get eaten. Bugs. Bears. Cougars (not the sassy, middle-aged kind either).
We would be sad, but its a reality that you have to face. This endeavor is not to be taken lightly.

The Route
Each Stage will be between 60 and 100 miles, and will consist of predominantly Forest Service and logging roads. Note: We will not have the wide open Gravel "superhighways" like "the Grade" last year. Think a healthy dose of double track.
  • The First Stage will end The Grand Portage Casino
  • The 2nd Stage will end in Grand Marais, MN
  • The Final Stage will bring riders back into Grand Marais.
Note: This years course is going to be especially rugged, poorly marked,  and will cover some very mountainous terrain.  You MUST Have a GPS that allows you to follow a GPX or a TCX course. Cue sheets are only a tool of last resort.
My experience has been that too often in one day events, you get to ride with and meet a lot of really interesting people, but as soon as the race is over everybody climbs into their cars and goes home. I wanted to put on a low key, challenging event, that gave riders a chance to hangout in a beautiful locale, after a full day of riding.
Yay bikes!

Sound Great? Good!

Registration will open May 1st. All the details are here.

Got Questions? There is a good chance that they will be answered here