the Tour de Chequamegon will be a self supported ride. We will ride as a group and you'll need to have your camping provisions and repair gear on hand. You don't have to carry your cooking supplies or meals (with the exception of ride fuel), we'll meet the group at camp and have meals and refreshments ready. Fyxation and the Bike Fed have done the recon and below are some helpful tips and details about what to expect on the ride.
Note the daily mileage is not very long, but with the hills and soft gravel, it is still a good ride. We did that intentionally so we can sleep in a bit, ride at a conversational pace and have plenty of time stop along the route for photos and relax next to the lakes when you get to the campgrounds. Of course if you want to crush it, there are hundreds of miles of gravel forest roads in every direction, so feel free to go explore and get some extra miles in. Everyone is expected to carry their own water, tent, sleeping gear, clothing, and incidentals, but you don’t have to bring food. All food and beverages will are included in the price.
We hope everyone will stick together in a group and we will lead the ride at a conversational pace. People should however bring the route on a GPS, Garmin, Phone App like RideWithGPS, etc. You can also draw the map on paper, use theRideWithGPS cue sheet and follow mileage on a cycle computer to know when to make turns. Be aware there is no electricity, so your phone or Garmin must last the entire trip. I use a Shutter Precision hub dynamo and Bush + Müller Luxo U dynamo powered light that will also keep my phone charged. I then have the route downloaded to my phone from RideWithGPS because their is no cell coverage for much of the route.
On our very rainy recon trip to scout the route (read soft gravel), I rode a Fyxation Crusher carbon gravel bike with 36mm tubeless tires at 48psi and loved it. You can find a more detailed description of my prototype bike and personal build on ridinggravel.com. Since that review I have swapped the front wheel for a Stan’s Notubes Crest Mk3 built around a Shutter Precision PD-8X-M dynamo hub with 12mm thru-axles and Mequon-made Wheelsmith spokes (natch). That powers a Bush + Müller Luxos U dynamo light and usb charger (from Peter White Cycles). Steve took the new Fyxation Quiver Disc with 40mm tires run at a similar pressure.
Seriously though, bring any bike of any brand you have that rolls well on soft gravel. You can bring a cross bike, hybrid, mountain bike, fat bike, touring bike, etc.
Google bikepacking gear list for three days and you will find plenty of different suggestions. Below you can see what I typically bring, but you don’t need to bring a cook stove, kitchen kit or coffee making stuff. Fyxation will handle all that. I typically just ride in Swrve Knickers and Ex Officio boxer briefs, but I also bring a kit to change into if I want. For our reconnaissance trip for this route, I brought a Borah Teamwear complete Spring Classics Series Cow of Wisconsin kit, including bib shorts, long-sleeve wool jersey, short sleeve jersey, long sleeve OTW midweight jacket; Marmot Precip rain jacket with hood, a pair of cycling tights, lightweight pants for around camp (I pack Club Ride jeans) a couple pair of socks, very small and lightweight tent, sleeping pad, sleeping bag (choice varies depending on weather forecast), bike pump, extra tubes, multi-tool, pocket knife (only if cooking since tool has a small knife), toiletries, helmet, camp towel, three water bottles and a small flask of good rye whiskey.
You do not have to bring food for the camping trip as breakfast, lunch and dinner on the ride are included. When you register, please select any food preferences for vegetarian, vegan or gluten free. Each afternoon, the crew from Fyxation will arrive at our campgrounds ahead of us with cold beverages and hot meals, so you only need to carry your fuel for the day’s ride. In the morning Fyxation will provide camp breakfast and something for you to take with you on your ride for lunch. The Bike Fed will bring a supply of hydration mix and Bonk Breaker bars too.
We are hoping to round up a couple local speakers to share some wisdom about the forest with us while we sit around the campfire. We will have some craft beer and other non-alcoholic beverages, but this is NOT a raging party with bike jumping through the fire. Feel free to bring a book or go hike or ride around the camp sites and explore a bit.
Cost $300, price includes campsite fees as well as all beverages and meals on the trip, catered by Chef Heather from the Brick House Cafe. The optional Thursday evening pre-ride get together at the Sawmill Saloon in Seeley and the post-ride pizza party at The River's Eatery in Cable are not included. Register at the link below: