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Vermont Gravel Grinder Bike Tour | Great Freedom Adventures
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Gravel Grinder Bike Tour

Gravel Grinder Bike Tour

per person

vermont-cycling-tour-2-great-freedom-adventures

New! NH & VT Gravel Grinder – Sparkling Rivers and Radiant Ridgelines

Gravel grinders, races or rides on dirt, asphalt and gravel roads, are the fastest growing segment in cycling. Riders on the manageable Rivers and Ridgelines Gravel Grinder Bike Tour pedal a combination of dirt, ancient and paved roads that draw the rider into untraveled countryside for a rare experience.

Discover landscapes of brilliant summer and fall colors that make ridgelines glow and rivers and lakes sparkle in shades of green, red and gold. This region of Vermont and New Hampshire boasts radiant beauty.

It’s also loaded with a tremendous network of dirt and gravel roads that transport riders right into those postcard-perfect scenes. In fact, Vermont has more dirt roads than paved ones and we’ve spent over 30 years exploring the gems in this region.

Bike under a canopy of green or multi-colored leaves, alongside rushing streams that cascade down the hillside, past nearly obscured stone foundations from buildings long gone, through wildflower meadows that sway in the breeze and past working farms redolent with the smell of freshly cut hay – and sometimes manure!

This tour also passes farms and scenes that are quite literally on postcards, calendars and in books worldwide. Biking these ancient dirt roads allows riders to experience the real Vermont and New Hampshire in a way that is totally immersive – and invigorating!

Tour Highlights:

  • Explore the backcountry of Vermont and New Hampshire on a gravel grinder bike ride comprised largely of serene dirt roads
  • Discover tiny hamlets and visit country stores
  • Improve your climbing skills on some of the most scenic terrain in New England
  • Explore unique shops and eateries in the vibrant towns of Hanover, Norwich and Woodstock
  • Visit award-winning King Arthur Baking School, Store and Café
  • Stay at fine country inns
  • Enjoy exceptional meals of local, seasonal foods
    1

    Day 1

    vermont-cycling-tour-7 Meet in Norwich, VT at the Norwich Inn then set out on the easiest day of riding on the tour. Bike to the award-winning King Arthur Baking School, Store and Cafe, a dream spot for those who like to bake – or to eat baked goods – and be treated to your choice of the mouth-watering options. Then, ride across the Connecticut River to Hanover, New Hampshire, home to Dartmouth College. Admire the handsome campus and the bustling town filled with upscale shops and eateries. Pedal along the river to the classic New England town of Lyme, NH. Stay at the wonderful Lyme Inn in the center of town – a quintessential country inn. Enjoy a delicious dinner at the inn. Biking Mileage: 14
    2

    Day 2

    vermont-cycling-tour-14-great-freedom-adventures Warm up the legs while pedaling easy New Hampshire terrain, then cross over the Connecticut River back into Vermont. Ride past lakes and streams and into forested wildlife management areas. Watch for deer, moose, grouse, turkeys and more along the way. Reward your climbs and descents with lunch at locally famous Worthy Burger. Enjoy a grass-fed beef burger, hand-cut fries and a craft beer, with more options for all tastes. Those not ready to cry “uncle” for the day can add some mileage on the route to Norwich. This Vermont town was first settled in 1763 and boasts fine Georgian, Federal and Greek Revival homes. A classic New England church, featuring a steeple housing a Paul Revere bell, guards the town green. Relax at the historic Norwich Inn on the porch rockers, in the spacious common rooms or in the pub, perhaps with a Jasper Murdock Ale brewed on-site. Enjoy a wonderful dinner at the inn. Biking Mileage: 29 or 46
    3

    Day 3

    vermont-cycling-tours-12-great-freedom-adventures Easy riding transitions to a gradual uphill before dropping down into the White River Valley. Cross the river then climb to reach ridgeline routes that are among our very favorite and that offer sensational views to distant peaks. Pass farmsteads with extensive fields that open up wide vistas to multiple ridgelines extending far into the distance. It’s a stunning backdrop for the picturesque barns, farmhouses and ponds in the foreground. Descend from the ridge for easy cycling to the town of Woodstock. Pedal through the covered bridge, around the town green to the fabulous Blue Horse Inn in the heart of town. Take a dip in the pool or sip a beer, wine or iced tea on the porch while reminiscing about the beauty – and the accomplishments – of the day. Dinner is on your own with many excellent options just a walk away. Biking Mileage: 31
    4

    Day 4

    vermont-cycling-tours-18 Today’s ride includes several climbs though many of them are on the shorter side. And of course there are also some exhilarating downhills! Along the way riders will see scenic farms that have been in the same family for generations including Jenne Farm, reputed to be one of the most photographed farms in the world. You may recognize it from a poster, wall calendar or maybe from the movies Forrest Gump or Funny Farm. Roll back to Woodstock on a tame downhill and give the legs a well-earned rest. Enjoy dinner together at a top Woodstock restaurant. Biking Mileage: 29 or 36  
    5

    Day 5

    vermont gravel grinder great freedom adventuresHead back to your start in Norwich traveling gorgeous country roads and passing scenic farms such as Sleepy Hollow, recently owned by Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry. The setting is another favorite of photographers who come from near and far to capture the picture-perfect farmstead. Cross the Appalachian Trail a couple of times before dropping down to the White River. A last climb brings riders back to Norwich where delicious food and congratulations await! Biking Mileage: 16 or 24   Please Contact Us for the detailed itinerary, elevation gains and arrival and departure information.

    The Lyme Inn, Lyme, NH - 1 Night This luxury inn is a quintessential New England country retreat, frequented since the days of the stagecoach. Beautifully appointed rooms blend historic elegance with modern luxury while posh bathrooms feature Italian marble. The inn boasts two restaurants, both featuring seasonal fare prepared by an accomplished chef who uses fresh, local, high-quality ingredients.

    norwich-inn-r Norwich Inn, Norwich, VT - 1 Night This Vermont country inn has been welcoming weary travelers since 1797. Great Freedom Adventures guests stay in spacious and beautifully appointed new rooms featuring gas fireplaces. Inn amenities include an alehouse, dining room, a wine cellar housing one of Vermont's largest selections of wines, a microbrewery and a fitness center.
    Blue Horse Inn, Woodstock, VT - 2 Nights Built in 1831, the riverfront Blue Horse Inn is a handsome Greek Revival mansion that contains large, luxurious, and beautifully appointed rooms. Elegant, yet relaxing common spaces provide the perfect opportunity for chatting by the fire, enjoying a glass of wine or curled up with a book. Sensational breakfasts are taken in the dining room or on the covered porch overlooking the pool, gardens, Ottaquechee River and Middle Covered Bridge. The inn is in the heart of Woodstock Village, walking distance to shops, galleries, restaurants and theater. Inn amenities include a heated outdoor pool, a library and a fire pit.  

    2019 Dates

    July 14-18  |  October 9-13

    2019 Prices

    $1,895 per person, based on double occupancy. Single Supplement: $595

    Trip Length

    5 days, 4 nights

    Start/Finish

    Norwich, VT

    Daily Mileage

    14-29 (14-46 with longer distance options)

    Cycling Level

    Moderate - Challenging. Challenging with longer distances.

    Terrain

    Flat to rolling along the rivers with hills outside the river valleys. Some short and long hills each day. Dirt and paved roads.

    Bikes: You may bring your own bike or use one of ours while gravel appropriate supplies last. GFA bikes are high quality, lightweight, available with either drop or straight handlebars and are equipped with computer, mirror, waterbottle, handlebar bag, map case and seat pack with essentials. What’s Included:
    • 4 nights accommodations
    • 5 days of bicycling
    • 4 breakfasts
    • 3 lunches
    • 3 dinners
    • 2 guides
    • Vehicle support
    • Daily snacks and drinks
    • Maps and cue sheets for each day's ride
    • Tax and gratuities for meals and any side excursions
    • High-quality bike jersey
    • Use of featherweight, high visibility, reflective vest
    • Waterbottle
    • Dedicated service throughout your tour
    Frequent Adventurers, GFA alumni, may deduct 5% from the tour price. Please contact us for youth and group rates. Custom dates and duration are available for groups of six or more. Please Contact Us for detailed itinerary and arrival and departure information.

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