Earlier this year, three riders set out to ride the Tour Divide route together, taking around forty days of riding to do it. They didn’t set off as part of the Grand Depart on June 2nd, but followed in their footsteps on the 15th. They were riding it for charity, and filming everything along the way. It wasn’t possible to post everything as they were riding – partly (apparently) because of rules on fundraising, and partly because, well, can you imagine trying to edit and upload videos while also riding 2,745 miles of terrain from Canada to New Mexico? Even if you are only (fnar!) doing 80 miles a day, as opposed to the 200 or so a day two week racers aim for, it’d be virtually impossible.
People tend to talk about bears, but there are plenty of other hazards on the route. In first few days alone they had to deal with bike theft (what a beginning!), getting lost, fallen trees, a trail washed out into a river, and knee issues. There’s a complete playlist here, and here’s episode one:
(No video? Try this link).
The Tour Divide is an ambitious bucket list item for many riders; if you want to see what it’s like to ride the route, there are forty-three episodes in total, covering their entire forty day trip from the town of Banff in Alberta to Antelope Wells, right on the Mexican-American border. Inluding rest days, they took 47 days over it. Here’s that playlist again, and while you might not be up to riding the Tour Divide route at this very moment, you’re all set for an epic skive with over four and a half hours of videos.
The last one is titled “Keith is Stuck in New Mexico”. Chipps did mention in response to that: “Yeah, people don’t realise just how far Antelope Wells is from, well, anything else at all”.
A hundred and ninety one people raced it last year (at least, the tracker page currently says 2016); you can see their results, poke at the whole route on a map, and idly daydream of doing it yourself over at the Tour Divide site.