Cycling vacations create everlasting memories that help inspire and sustain healthy lifestyles. For many of us, it’s our favorite way to experience beautiful places, our favorite way to be invigorated in the great outdoors, and a fantastic way to share adventures with those who are special to us. We thought we’d share a few favorite rides from our intermediate and avid summer cycling vacations to help whet your appetite. Begin your dreaming here and, remember, these are dreams that really can come true.
This great ride provides expansive scenic reward throughout the climb up Cadillac Mountain, the highest mountain on the east coast of the US. It features a bald, granite-domed summit with spectacular 360° views over the islands and coastline of Downeast Maine. This epic option during the final day of our very scenic Acadia bike tour is perfect for both intermediate and avid cyclists alike with a max grade of 7.3% and an elevation gain of 1100’ over 3 ½ miles. Yes, those are Sojourn guests riding the gradual and winding road to the top – you can do it this summer too!
We have to confess, this epic (some say this should mean “extra pedaling if crazy”) ride option during our California bike tour is one of our favorite rides anywhere. The first 13 miles include 2100’ of climbing topping out at a max grade 14%. What awaits is fabulous a roller coaster ride across a ridgeline high above the sea featuring views that extend up and down the coast. Sheep and cows roam freely in the high pastures along this country lane during the early summer cycling vacation time frame, so much so that feels a bit like being in Ireland. This is one ride that we’re pretty sure you’ll yearn to do again.
Our new Finger Lakes bike tour features lots of beautiful country roads through rolling farmland and while the base rides are intermediate, we’ve included a couple of epic options for those who want longer miles and more challenging climbing. Our favorite is the day we leave the shore of Cayuga Lake for Skaneatles, a town that bears the same name as the crystal clear lake upon which it overlooks. When the ride splits from the shorter option, enjoy miles of rolling farmland punctuated by occasional climbs on quiet country roads featuring sweeping views. When you roll into town after nearly 50 miles you’ll have a big grin on your face – even before a dip in that lake.
It’s tough to pick a favorite ride from our tour in the Columbia Gorge region of Oregon and Washington so we’ll start on the day we enter the Gorge and tell you that it just keeps being gorgeous. When you first witness the Gorge, you can’t help but be transfixed. What unfolds before you is a natural wonder. Once you’ve absorbed the beauty of nature from your vantage point over 1000’ above the river, you’ll ride along the world’s greatest concentration of waterfalls – some cascading over 600’ to the road. Ride options range from 26-40 miles with elevation gains topping out at 3100’ of climbing, or you can choose an easy 14-miler in order to maximize your time at each of the waterfalls. Be sure to bring your camera on this one!
Our bike trip from Burlington, Vermont to Quebéc City is rated intermediate due to the daily mileage, not because of challenging terrain. In fact, with the exception of two “hills of note,” the terrain is quite level. One of our favorite rides of this summer cycling vacation is the longest day of the trip at nearly 90 miles for those who choose to ride the entire route from door to door. It follows a historic route through small French-speaking villages, along country lanes, and never far from the mighty St. Lawrence. The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow is beautiful Quebéc City, the most European of North American cities. Ride the entire route or shuttle portions to the final few miles where you’ll ride a bike path that follows the river into town. Toast the day with fellow riders at one of the top restaurants in the Old Port. Santé!
There are many great rides during our Vermont bike tours and one of our guest favorites is featured on both our Lake Champlain and our Vermont Bike & Brew tours. The ride winds along a beautiful river and past Middlebury College’s classic clapboard buildings that house their summer writer’s workshop under the backdrop of the Green Mountains. It climbs a “gap” in the mountains where Vermont’s Long Trail, which runs along the spine of the mountains from the Canadian border to the Massachusetts border, crosses the road. There are a few testy little climbs along the way but it’s a beautiful ride and one where wildlife sightings, such as this black bear and cubs seen during our very green summer, are not unusual.
Sojourn’s intermediate rated bike tours feature a mix of rolling and level terrain with daily mileage options ranging between 25-55 miles per day with longer or more challenging options available on most days. Because of the choice of ride options, intermediate trips are a great choice for cyclists of differing abilities who are traveling together. Avid tours average 55 or more miles per day over rolling, and sometimes hilly, terrain. All Sojourn trips are guided by experienced leaders providing van support. Call our office and we’ll help you find the perfect summer cycling vacation for creating your very own cherished memories.