Distance - 64.2 miles // 103.3 km
Elevation - 5,668 ft. // 1,728 m
Est. Time - 4-5.5 hours
Difficulty - Hard ♦
Starting just south of Charlottesville, Virginia, this route takes on some of the classic gravel segments as well as some rarely ridden gems tucked deep in the back roads of the area. The ride starts by going up and over Heard’s Mountain, the only extended climb on the route. Enjoy a short twisting descent before another riser takes you to one of the most beautiful views looking toward the Blue Ridge Mountains and through Spring Valley Orchard.
After Heard's Mountain, be careful on the only big road of the ride and don’t be deterred by the small creek crossing it takes to turn onto Hill Hollow Road. The hidden gem of the ride, this stunning small gravel road will have you in wonder throughout as it twists and climbs through the dense forest.
The route meanders down four more stunning small gravel roads as you make your way back to the start and a pizza from Dr. Ho's Humble Pie.
Where to eat? After a ride like this, you're going to want Pizza, and Dr. Ho's Humble Pie is the place to go, located in the parking lot of the ride's end. If wine beautiful scenery is your ideal post-ride, just cross the street to Pippin Hill Winery for a glass of wine and enjoy the mountain views. Either way, make sure to refill properly and retell the stories of an incredible ride.
Where to stop during the ride? There are three gas station store stops available on this route. Greenfield (mm. 19.8), Schuyler (mm. 41.4), and Porters (mm 50 - continue on Route 6 past the Esmont turn).
What to look out for? About a mile after the store stop in Schuyler, look to the right and see if you can spot the old rock quarry. Jumping off the cliffs has been a favorite pastime of University of Virginia students for years.