by Eva Potter
If you’re looking for a summer cycling event to challenge your endurance and strength as you ride over rolling and scenic terrain, then get ready for a great time at Holiday Valley’s newest event. Cycling Weekend is slated to take place June 6–8, 2014, with basecamp at the Inn at Holiday Valley and long rides along winding and sometimes difficult inclines, but the views will be worth it.
“We are targeting experienced cyclists who are comfortable riding 30–100+ miles per week and are able to ride 25+ miles per day,” said Katie DiDonato, general manager of the Inn at Holiday Valley and one of the event’s organizers.
This weekend of cycling fun is geared toward level 2 and 3 riders — athletes who can handle these distances as well as the terrain of Holiday Valley and the surrounding area.
According to DiDonato, it’s important for participants to remember that riding 25 miles in the this area is challenging.
“Ellicottville is very scenic but not very flat,” she said.
Subject to fine-tuning, tentative plans for the weekend begin on Friday, June 6 with a “short” 25-mile ride that afternoon starting from the Inn at Holiday Valley. An evening welcome cocktail reception will follow.
Saturday will offer two course options – one more difficult than the other. A 40-50-mile group ride will include hill climbs, while a less strenuous course that eventually meets back up with the group will be just as scenic but without the more difficult elevations. Riders will enjoy a light lunch along the route.
Saturday afternoon will offer plenty of free time to play and explore the shops and restaurants in the village. If you still have physical energy to expend, then stay on the Holiday Valley grounds and explore the Sky High Adventure Park’s Mountain Coaster, Aerial Park or Climbing Wall. That evening, the group will gather for a dinner at John Harvard’s.
The real treat comes Sunday morning when riders will be transported back in time on an idyllic, 60-mile ride through Amish Country, including a complimentary breakfast at the Inn to start your day.
A sag wagon will accompany all rides, and low-key coaching and tips will be provided along the way to improve your riding.
Known for its epic riding, DiDonato said, “The goal is to increase awareness of the fantastic cycling in Ellicottville area. We will feel the weekend is successful if the participants return to ride with friends.”
Each rider will also receive a goodie bag with a booklet of route maps from the weekend’s rides along with other suggested Ellicottville area routes.
Two-night packages cost $259 per person including tax. For more information or to make a reservation, call 1-800-323-0020 or (716) 699-2345.