If social networks are any indication of cycling trends, gravel riding, gravel racing and all-around gravel adventuring is currently experiencing a surge in participation. And it’s becoming ever more apparent in Colorado.
According to a 2020 Colorado Department of Transportation safety white paper*, the state has over 105,000 unpaved lane miles (per the Federal Highways Administration) – representing over half of our roadways. A resource riders and event organizers are quickly realizing may be an untapped resource, including a small group of independent race directors making waves in the event world.
Launching this year, the Colorado Summer of Gravel is series of gravel events coordinated by four independent gravel races, hell-bent on showcasing the diverse terrain in Colorado. From May 2023-July 2023, these events feature some of the best gravel in the state.
May 2023: Co2uT
The series kicks off on the Western Slope in Fruita, Colorado at Co2uT (May 14). Featuring 100 miles of riding and 5000 feet of climbing over the Book Cliffs, it’s the perfect season kick-off and an ode for an incredible summer to come.
June 2023: Telluride Gravel Race
From Fruita, riders will travel to the mountains for Telluride Gravel Race (June 10). This 85 mile race boasts an impressive 10,400 feet of climbing and surreal views.
July 2023: Ned Gravel & FoCo Fondo
Wrapping up the summer, July gives riders a Front Range double whammy! First, Nederland’s Ned Gravel (July 8) features 60 chunky, challenging miles and climbing totaling 7100 feet of elevation.
And finally, the series wraps up in Fort Collins at FoCo Fondo (July 23), featuring rides from the family-friendly 12 mile “Here for It” route to the 118 miles and 7400 feet of elevation on the largely fast and draftable Triple Dog Dare You course.
To learn more about this new race series or register for any of the events, visit the Colorado Summer of Gravel site today!
*Unpaved Road Safety For Local Roads in Colorado by James Nall, PE and Joni Brookes, PE (April 2020)