"A great challenge...and the scenery was nearly peerless!"
2022 GRIT RESULTS:
Walla Walla is famous for its road riding, but the locals have been venturing into the Blue Mountains for years to get their fix of first class gravel roads. Allegro Cyclery is delighted to showcase the vast network of gravel roads in the scenic Blue Mountains on Sunday September 11th, 2022 for our annual gravel race, the Walla Walla Grit, affectionately known as "THE GRIT".
If you've gotten a taste of the Grit before, you know you're in for a challenge. You know the camaraderie is worth it. You know the climbs aren't playing around, and that the vistas make it all worthwhile. We have a blast every year and we can't wait to make it happen again (check out the 2021 Results) . We hope you'll join us for the 2022 edition!
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Check out a sneak peak of the signature Cottonwood Creek climb! Footage captured by our friends at Mainstem Malt:
All three courses stay together for the first 24 miles, which includes the iconic (and challenging) Cottonwood Creek climb. It could be hot, but we will be climbing up into the mountains, so come prepared and err on the side of caution.
Registration: Please visit our registration page on https://www.bikereg.com/Confirmed/50477.
Staging: Walla Walla Airport Industrial Park - Parking and staging will be across the street from Quirk Brewing. 425 B St, Walla Walla, WA 99362
When: Sunday September 11th - 6:00 AM Long Course, 8:00 AM Medium Course, 9:00 AM Short Course
Price: $45 (short course), $55 (medium course), $65 (long course) for registrants before June 30th. Registration increases by $15 after the 30th!
Routes: We have cue sheets available, and the course will be clearly marked. Want to be awesome and prepared? Download the .gpx and have it ready on your device or cell phone!
Tire Choice: These courses can be completed on Cyclocross, Gravel, or Mountain bikes, though the Gravel Bike designation would probably be the best fit. Last year the narrowest tires we saw were 28mm on the Short Course. That rider had 3 flats and shredded a tire. Learn from his mistakes! Everybody has their opinion on gear and we respect that. But our opinion is wider tires will make for a more pleasant ride.
Both the Short and Medium Courses are roughest on the climbs and have relatively smooth gravel on the descents. 700x32 is the narrowest we would go, but a 40mm tire might just be perfect.
Long Course riders - we strongly recommend at least a 35mm tire. We think 50mm is the right choice. Be wary of rough roads between the third and fourth aide stations. Wider tires feel better on your rattling bones. You have been warned. The Tiger Canyon descent has legit pinch flat material (both washboard and some chunkier sections rocks), plus this is definitely goat-head territory, so if your wheels/tires are compatible we'd recommend running tubeless.
Gearing: There is a lot of climbing on these routes. Analyze the course profile and come prepared with the gearing that will work for you. We had several folks wish they had installed better climbing gears on their bike. Our 2 cents: Make sure you have a 1:1 ratio at a minimum, but if you can do better, go for it. We think 24t in the front and 36t rear feels really good on this course. Don't have a bike that fits the 'gravel bike' designation? Bring your mountain bike and laugh at your friends as you spin a nice cadence up the climbs! We had several mountain bikes in all 3 categories finish the course in 2018.
Learn from the words of 2019 riders:
"I heard elk bugles on cottonwood! It was awesome!!!!! Really really enjoyed the route."
"I had 650b x 47mm tires and went into this course with extreme confidence in the tires. I had friends who miraculously finished on 700x33, and I am still unsure how they did it." (Long Course Rider)
We Provide: 3 clearly marked, stellar gravel courses, well-stocked aid stations interspersed throughout, and a unique, limited WALLA WALLA GRIT bandana (for fashion, first-aid, and keeping that neck outta the sun). Finish times for all participants will be posted in the traditional fondo fashion. We will have limited roving support on course. It is our intent to make sure everybody is well cared for. With that said, you should come into this ride planning to be self-sufficient. Proper clothing, flat fixes, mechanicals, nutrition between aid stations; it's all on you or the benevolence of your fellow riders.
Warning: This is a hard ride. All three courses have steep sections some might walk up without proper gearing. Courses are designed for experienced cyclists and are not for the faint of heart!
We'll see you out there!
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