Cruise through the Bike Capital of the Shenandoah Valley
Harrisonburg is the Bike Capital of the Shenandoah Valley. Come and see for yourself why the riding is so beloved, the roads cherished, and the experience casual and friendly. Casually cruise the backroads of the Shenandoah Valley while you meander between farms and over rolling hills. This is a paved road riding experience suitable for nearly any bike but most often ridden on a relatively skinny tire road bike or hybrid.
Day 1: Start your morning with breakfast and coffee before you hit the road. Grab your delicious goodies in historic downtown Harrisonburg either at Heritage Bakery and Cafe in the Hardesty-Higgins House Visitor Center or the Little Grill Collective just north on Main St. Once you are fueled up and ready to ride, be sure to select a route that best suits your riding style, ability, and sense of adventure. There is something for everyone in the Shenandoah Valley so make sure you don’t go too big on the first ride and remember there are plenty more rides for you to do the next time around. Harrisonburg is lucky to be surrounded by beautiful agricultural farmlands with a mountain backdrop. You can look at a nice collection of routes around Harrisonbug on Bike the Valley.
Feeling like a short ride? How about a 13 mile ride north of town?
How about riding some hills? (1500’ of climbing) and 27 miles up against Massanutten Mountain? IF that sounds like a good time then maybe you should try the Keezletown Loop.
Consider heading southwest of town on your first ride towards Montezuma and Dayton. You can either drive or ride to the start of this route in Montezuma. If you drive to Montezuma, the ride will be about 19 miles (Montezuma Cruise), if you bike from town, your are looking at closer to 33 miles round trip route with a bit more traffic.
When you return be sure to stop in our local bicycle shops, Bluestone Bike and Run, Rocktown Bicycles, and Shenandoah Bicycle Company. While you are at it grab lunch or dinner at any one of our great downtown restaurants. The local cycling community loves Cuban Burger, Billy Jacks, Clementine, the Golden Pony and Bella Luna. For dessert, be sure to checkout Bella Gelato or Kline’s Dairy Bar.
Spend the night: Want to be able to walk downtown for dinner? Then consider staying at one our downtown bed and breakfast establishments. Stay at either the Joshua Wilton House or the Stonewall Jackson Inn or look at the multitude of hotels in town.
Day 2: Want to try something a bit more challenging? Then head northwest from Harrisonburg into the rolling hills of Singers Glen. The Harrisonburg to Singers Glen Loop is about 25 miles and with over 1500’ of climbing, it will take most intermediate cyclist 2-3 hours to complete while also allowing time to stop and take in the pastoral views and hilltop vistas. Still looking for more challenge? Longer with more climbing? Then try the Hopkins Gap to Fulks Run Loop. At 52 miles and over 3,000’ feet of climbing plan to spend 4-5 hours or more on this ride. Especially if you stop in Broadway for lunch or at take in the views along the route.
Thinking about jumping on a group road ride? Take a look at the weekly ride offerings from the Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition.
Notes on how best to navigate through these bicycle routes:
- The routes are posted online through a service called Ride With GPS. Ride with GPS also has a smartphone app that allows you to navigate through the route with your phone. You can find the app at the Apple App Store or on Google Play.
- If you prefer to go with paper then you can print out cue sheets from Ride With GPS
- If you have a Garmin device or other GPS equipped navigation device you use, you can download either GPX or TCX files from Ride With GPS to import into your own device.