Even those following American cycling from the periphery know by now that “gravel” is driving the sport much like stand-up paddleboarding did for paddlesports a decade ago.
The trend is being supported by an incredible and burgeoning network of races and pulling in a lot of pros and unexpected talent and building community that is more akin to the obscure trail running world than road cycling, more about the journey than the destination, well, for some of us at least.
Enter the Wasatch All Road, taking place August 28 in some of the least ridden, most spectacular and arguable most challenging un-paved roads in Utah, and launching from up-and-coming Heber City, just 30 minutes around the way from Park City and an hour from downtown SLC.
The long course of the unique race (Full Yeti) covers a full century (100 miles) with more than 12,000 feet of climbing, high into the Uinta mountains to the tip of Strawberry Reservoir, and back, before a downhill finish in Heber. The short course or Mini Yeti, a challenging 35 miles with 4K of climbing, still requires riders to climb the Wasatch Wall.
The host of the Wasatch All-Road Bicycle Race is Utah’s Ventum, founded in 2015 by a team of athlete-engineers and entrepreneurs set on creating the next “hyperbike” of the time, the Ventum One. Since then, Ventum has been creating high-performance bicycles with cutting-edge engineering including its new gravel bike, the GS1, that we have been testing. Accessibility to the mountains and trails throughout the Heber City area has been a huge benefit to the brand in developing bikes that can withstand some of the toughest terrains like the trails of the Wasatch race.
Limited registration spots are still available: https://www.thewasatchallroad.com/