As a gravel cycling enthusiast, Rasputitsa Dirt is an unmissable experience with its 10th anniversary taking place at Jay Peak Resort. This year, the event takes a nostalgic turn, reintroducing parts of the original course, including the challenging Cyberia section, known for its deep mud and steep grades. Set against the stunning backdrop of Vermont's landscapes, the race is not just about endurance but also about embracing the unpredictable elements of early spring. Founded in 2014 by Anthony Moccia and Heidi Myers, Rasputitsa Gravel has a mission of cycling, community, and charity. The team at Strambecco considers Rasputitsa Dirt to be of 2024's Best Cycling Events in Vermont and one of the Best Gravel Cycling Events in New England. This year, the race has been moved up one week, and organizers anticipate more challenging conditions with higher chances of snow and mud, adding to the event's rugged charm. Participant reviews for the event are off the charts; many describe Rasputitsa Dirt as somewhere between an unforgettable experience and an absolute blast.
Event & Course Info
The Rasputitsa is unique in its single distance format for this year: approximately 53 miles with over 5,300 feet of climbing, ensuring that every participant experiences the full breadth of the challenge. The race, capped at 1,500 riders, will start in five waves, with timing from start to finish, allowing for a safe descent while maintaining the competitive spirit. Notably, the event emphasizes self-sufficiency, with no outside crews or support allowed on the course. Participants are encouraged to assist each other, fostering a strong sense of community and camaraderie.
Enhancing the event's festive atmosphere, the Pearl Jam tribute band, Five Against None, will perform live, promising a vibrant musical experience. The Rasputitsa event is not just about the race; it's a celebration of the cycling community's spirit, promoting inclusivity and unity. The organizers have taken significant steps to ensure a welcoming and safe environment for all, regardless of race, gender, or background.
Rasputitsa at Jay Peak Resort offers a compelling blend of physical challenge, community spirit, and natural beauty. It's an opportunity for cyclists to test their mettle against the elements, bond with fellow enthusiasts, and enjoy a weekend of exhilarating racing and entertainment. Whether you're a seasoned gravel rider or new to the sport, this event promises an unforgettable experience. If you like muddy off-camber descents, snowy hike-a-bike sections, and rough terrain, this is the event for you.
Area Accommodations & Things to Do
Recommended lodging is available on site at Jay Peak Resort, while other options include vacation rentals that suit a variety of needs from a stage coach inn to cozy cabins. Those that are up for early spring camping, check out one of the many one of a kind camping spots in the area.
The culinary scene in Jay, Vermont, and its surrounding areas is characterized by a charming blend of local flavors and farm-to-table dining experiences, offering a variety of fresh, locally-sourced dishes that reflect the region's agricultural heritage and seasonal produce. This area is known for its cozy, welcoming eateries and restaurants that serve traditional New England fare, artisanal cheeses, and craft beverages, providing a unique and authentic taste of Vermont's culinary culture. Local favorite include Jay Inn & Restaurant, Miso Hungry, and Chowhound Smokehouse.
Jay, Vermont, a picturesque town nestled in the Green Mountains, becomes a hub of activity as spring arrives. April, with its unique blend of lingering winter chill and the onset of milder spring weather, offers a variety of activities for outdoor enthusiasts.
It's an excellent time to explore the hiking trails around Jay. The Long Trail, America's oldest long-distance hiking trail, runs through this area, offering breathtaking views of the awakening landscape. The Green Mountains provide a range of hiking options, from leisurely walks to more strenuous climbs. The trails wind through budding forests, alongside melting streams, and up to scenic vistas that overlook the sprawling valleys below. Hikers are likely to encounter a variety of wildlife and blooming wildflowers, adding to the experience's allure.
Mountain biking enthusiasts will find plenty to explore on Jay Peak's network of trails that start to open up in April as the snow melts, offering a mix of terrains suitable for different skill levels. The trails range from gentle, rolling paths to more challenging, technical routes. Bikers can enjoy the crisp mountain air and scenic views of the surrounding landscape while navigating through the emerging greenery of the spring. The mountain bike trails around Jay provide a perfect blend of adventure and natural beauty, appealing to both experienced riders and those new to the sport.
Finally, if there is lingering snow, snowshoeing in the Green Mountains is an excellent activity at higher elevations with enough snow cover. The Green Mountains provide a picturesque backdrop, with trails suitable for all experience levels, from easy, scenic walks to more challenging hikes.
While Rasputitsa Dirt is the only event produced by its team, other premier gravel cycling events in the state of Vermont include the infamous The Overland from the team at Vermont Overland and VT Monster from Streamline Events.
For the multi-sport athletes out there, top mountain bike events in Vermont and the broader New England area, include the Fox US Open of Mountain Biking, the Vermont 50 MTB by Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports, two of the Best Mountain Biking Events in New England, and the Bear Brook Classic organized by State 9 Racing, as well as Wilmington Whiteface, a premier event from Life Time Events and part of the Leadville Race Series MTB. In addition, the Vermont Gran Fondo is considered by our team to be one of the Best Road Cycling Events in New England. Trail runners of the group will appreciate the epic Vermont 100 Endurance Race as well as the Vermont Overland Trail, produced by The Overland, both we consider two of the Best Trail Running Events in New England.