This was my first time at the Civil War Century, but I have done other long hilly and mountainous rides including centuries, so I do have points of comparison. This was a truly awesome and memorable event. The support was outstanding and the whole level of organization was excellent. The Catoctin scenery was fantastic and we were lucky to have perfect riding weather. Since I was one of the few riders with PowerTap, I can also quantify the level of difficulty of this ride versus other rides. In fact, this course is very challenging, more than you would expect given the nominal 7200' of climb and 'mere' 2 or 3 mountain passes. What makes this ride especially hard is that the descents are quite short, and there are almost no sections that are truly flat. So, Mountain Mama with 9 mountain climbs and 12,000' of climb required ~3500 KiloJoules, while Civil War with 3 climbs and 7,200' of climb required 3900 KJ. That's a lot of work! I can't wait to come back next year. For the serious cyclist, I would put this on my 'must-do' list of rides.
Event was great. But, when I went to the check-in table they did not have me on the list. Fortunately, I printed out the active confirmation. They let me ride without a problem, but I was upset about the problem.
First year for us. There were lots of options - so kids and I split the difference and rode 55, 77, and 103 miles - depending on how we felt. Everyone finished and everyone was amazed at the toughness of the course. We were ready - having ridden 80 miles week before on Silver Comet (Georgia). The killer hills (291 and then the road immediately after) before bail out was most interesting. Probably longest continuous climb I ever rode. Loved the 3 battlefields, and - in general - loved the GREAT work of the BBC (THANKS !!) and the design of the ride !! ROCKING !!
Gene Parsons email@example.com
Runner for fun, canoe/kayak, backpack, tri neophyte, classic bicycle maniac, and scouter
Rode the century first time. It was a very challenging ride. Glad to see Philip Rosenberg's review as I am thinking of riding the Mountan Mama next year. BBC did an outstanding job of organizing the event. The route was the best marked of any I have ridden. I could have done the ride without a cue sheet. My only suggestion is to add some water only stops for the century. I am not a fast rider, averaged just a shade over 13/hr and I found that approximately every 25 miles made me have to stretch my water consumption a bit more than I would have liked to. I have ridden the metric century twice before. I have always had a good experience.
It was a great "killer" ride with that climb to the Blue Ridge summit! Despite the beauty of the surroundings, I was ready to bail out at mile 65...had talked myself into it on the way up...and then I came across a young guy riding a single speed up to the summit...I was suitably shamed and sucked it up for a finish of 38 more miles which were very enjoyable...even the last steep climb into Fairfield VFD rest stop was very short! One problem was the fresh gravel spread on parts of the route (e.g., after Gathland State Park - 28 miles). This was downright dangerous...someone did take a spill and broke his shoulder. Otherwise, support and organization (e.g., route markings) was excellent and your volunteers were angels along the way. Thanks for a great day!
I did the Century in 2006 and 2007 - before the registration was limited. Keeping the participation limited to 1600 was much more sane - rest stops where truly restful!
This year I did the half century with my 10 year old. Was hillier than I expected - some of the short but steep climbs had some of the folks walking their bikes up hill.
You might want to include the total vertical climbs in all cue sheets so that the less intense riders know what they are getting into.
I rode the century with my two son's 9 and 13. This was my 4th century and by far the best. Great climbs and fantastic marking. The rest stops, provisions, and organization were up to the usual high BBC standards. The beautiful clear, cool weather put this one over the top. Great views and comfortable conditions.
Once more thanks BBC for a job well done. We will be back next year ... maybe next time with my wife.
T H A N K - Y O U C W C V O L U N T E E R S
The BBC CWC was an incredible event. I repeatedly heard Thank You's from participants.
I am impressed with the CWC committee and the volunteer staff, which created such an incredibly successful event. It was fully apparent that the CWC was thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated by the participants.
How does a bicycling club put on such a hugely successful and participant-appreciated event? Certainly it is the committee's work and organization of all details. They handled tremendous logistics of having five fully-staffed rest stops, stocked with fresh food. The Columbia Amateur Radio Association and SAG team swiftly and efficiently tended to cyclists in need. The VOLUNTEER STAFF made the CWC event the memorable event noted by the participants.
The camaraderie among volunteers, who were fully engaged with their surroundings, materials, supplies, needs, and other people. They related with cyclists and other volunteers. The one-on-one connection between each other gave this event its exceptional life, like no other.
It is the members and volunteers that made the Civil War Century the incredible event. Thank you CWC volunteers.
Georgia Glashauser, President 2010, Baltimore Bicycling Club
This event was one of the better organized rides I've attended. Roads were well marked and the rest stops were 'rider ready'! I particularly appreciated the club's attempt to address certain boorish rider behaviors. Overall, I did not encounter too many folks behaving in a discourteous manner however some behaviors-such as riding 2 abreast, passing too close, cutting me off for an inside left side pass at a busy intersection-did cause me to wonder if some folks do not comprehend the meaning of courteous???? Aside from being unsafe as well...anyway, we could all benefit from remembering it's a bike ride, folks. Lighten up. Great ride, by the way.
This is the 3rd time I have ridden the century. In 2005, I broke a spoke and then my derailleur got caught in the spokes and bent the frame. Because I live so close I went back home and got another bike. I could not ride the route but I improvised and made my own ride back to my house. I came back and rode again in 2007 but I do not like riding with 6,000 people. There are too many @@@holes and egos when you have that many people. When I rode again yesterday, I enjoyed it a whole lot more. The rest stops were less crowded and the volunteers were outstanding as usual. I cannot say enough about the job the BBC does with this ride and all the wonderful volunteers that make it happen. And I have done alot of rides- Mountain Mama, Mount Mitchell, Bridge to Bridge, Blue Ridge Extreme, Cumberland Century, Cannonball Century, Cheat Mountain Challenge, Hilly Hellacious 100, and many more. Thanks again for all your hard work and efforts for another wonderful ride. I'll be back again someday but only if the weather is nice. I do not like to torture myself in bad weather!!
It was another great Civil War Century yesterday! The weather really cooperated and we experienced blue skies, almost cool temperatures, very low humidity and low winds all along the route. Thanks to all the volunteers, particularly Mary Menne who was at the site long before dawn organizing everything! The route had little tweaks from past years, but is still very much along the lines of the original route that Phil Manger put together for BBC in the lane 1990's. The Ritchie Road climb off of MD 491 is still tough and many ar longing for the return of the entire MD 491 route up to Cascade, without the turn onto Buck Lantz and the Skunk Hollow gravel. If one continues riding straight on MD 491 and bears right onto Royer Road, you make a right back onto the course at MD 550 just east of Cascade. Give it a try next year!
All the best to everyone involved!
Thank you for organizing such a memorable cycling event. This was my second CWC, the first being in 2008. The metric century route was well managed and clearly marked. The rest stops were properly spaced and provided a colorful respite with excellent snacks and drinks. Your volunteers deserve considerable credit for their camaraderie, friendliness and commitment to making this a successful event. Keep up the good work.
Beautiful course - did the half century- with a few rather challenging hills. The volunteer staff were absolutely wonderful- I needed an ice pack at the first rest stop and a gentleman ran, got a ziplock bag, filled it and all with the nicest attitude! The food was yummy- I overate! I wish some of the more "elite" riders used the "On your left" when approaching from behind but that's not the BBC's error. LOVED the entire day. Whoever ordered the weather should be commended,too. Oh- was stung by a bee after receiving my delicious cup of ice cream- first sting in over 25 years. Wow! Those little bleeps hurt!
Thank you- see you next year.
This was my first Civil War Century ride. Having done the Livestrong Challenge in Philly 3 weeks prior in the rain I was looking forward to ideal weather conditions. And it did not disappoint. Great conditions. Well organized event. Roads were clearly marked. Volunteers were awesome. The century ride was challenging due to the amount of climbing from the start and did not let up until 85 miles later. Very rewarding even for us old guys over 50. And traveling through the civil war history on 9/11 made the ride and event even more special and meaningful. Job well done. Can't wait till next year. Next up- Levi's GranFondo Ride in Santa Rosa, CA. in October. See you there