User login

BRC - Route Descriptions

Back Roads Century Route Descriptions



We offer six routes of varying mileage and challenge so cyclists of all levels can enjoy the beauty of riding through the Northern Shenandoah Valley.  

All routes except the Century Route are largely the same as last year, although we made a few changes after the Yankauer Rest Stop to avoid crossing a busy road and to simplify the route.  All routes take you to the Finish/End of Ride Party at Popodicon Mansion on the Shepherd University campus.

The Century Route has been substantially changed from last year to by-pass bridge construction on Kabletown Road.  The first rest stop will be at Jefferson County Fairgrounds, together with the Metric, Half-Century, and Long Meander Routes.  While we had to cut some of the roads along the Shenandoah River (including the Moulton Park rest stop), we added some lovely rolling miles with broad views of the Blue Ridge and Shenandoah Valley that should keep you smiling.  We also eliminated some elevation gain early in the ride to keep your legs fresher for the rollers along Ridge Road.  See the route details below.

The Century, Metric Century, and Half-Century Routes are moderately challenging rides designed for fit cyclists looking for a physical challenge. These routes all include a few short but steep climbs that require strength, stamina, and proper gearing. Please see the detailed route descriptions, maps, and elevation profiles below to make sure these are the routes for you.

We are again offering three shorter routes, the Short Meander (29 and 25 mile versions) and the Long Meander (47 miles), for riders looking for shorter rides with less climbing. These routes are suitable for casual riders, families with children, or anyone looking for a mellow bike ride. These routes all feature a fully-stocked rest stop at the Yankauer Nature Preserve where you can enjoy a short hike on the Preserve’s trails or just relax for a bit before heading back to Shepherdstown and the post-ride party.  The Long Meander also stops at Jefferson County Fairgrounds for the first rest stop.  These routes can be shortened by about 6.8 miles after leaving the Yankauer Nature Preserve Rest Stop if you are looking for a shorter ride.

All routes end at the historic Popodicon Mansion for a scenic backdrop for your well-deserved meal and entertainment. After you have recovered from the ride with the fantastic party at the Mansion, we hope you will wander into Shepherdstown before heading home.



Route Descriptions:

2018 BRC Century – 100.4 Miles, +3954 feet 

The Century route (red markings) showcases the very best of the northern Shenandoah Valley. Offering views of the Potomac River, the Blue Ridge and North Mountain, apple orchards, and rolling farm land, the Century is a mini-tour of the Valley. There are no long or sustained climbs on the route, but there are plenty of rollers and several short, steep pitches over 10% (and one or two over 15%) to make you earn the views and descents. Last year’s riders described this as a hilly route, so train accordingly so you can enjoy the ride! We will have rest stops every 20 miles or so to keep you fueled and fresh.  As noted above, the first 35 miles of this year's route are different than last year's in order to by-pass some road work, so please pay attention to the new cue sheet and route markings.  The route still offers plenty of sweeping views and rolling terrain, and has a bit less overall elevation gain as well.

Back Roads Century Map




2018 BRC Metric Century – 64.4 miles, +2845 feet

If you don't want to tackle a full hundred miles but want to claim a century, try the Metric Century (green markings) route.  The route offers much of the sweeping views of the Potomac, the mountains, and the Shenandoah Valley as the 100 mile route.  You can also enjoy the tomato sandwiches at the Henry Arena Rest Stop to keep you fueled.  This route also features several short, steep pitches over 10% (and one or two over 15%) to keep you honest. Three rest stops will fuel your body and the views will keep you inspired.

Back Roads Metric Century Map




2018 BRC Half Century – 52.1 miles, +2400 feet

Half the miles but most of the views, the Half Century (blue markings) allows riders to enjoy most of the views and beautiful countryside as the Century route without so many miles. This is also a hilly route so be prepared to work for those miles. There are no long, sustained climbs, but there are several short, steep pitches over 10% (and one or two over 15%) to make you earn the sweeping views and fun downhill sections. Take your time, enjoy the scenery, refuel at the three rest stops, and you will have a great day.

Back Roads Half Century Map



2018 BRC Long Meander – 47.4 miles, +1554 feet

For riders looking for a slightly longer route without all of the hills on the Half Century route, we have a Long Meander (yellow markings) that gets you out into the rolling farmland south and west of Shepherdstown with views of the mountains at a comfortable distance. We will have two rest stops to keep you fueled and fresh before you head back to Shepherdstown and the post-ride party. 

Back Roads Long Meander Map



2018 BRC Short Meanders  – 29.2 miles (+976 feet) or 25.1 miles  (+870 feet)

The Short Meanders (orange markings for the 29 mile route and purple markings for the 25 mile route) route loop northwest of Shepherdstown through gently rolling farmland to Yankauer Nature Preserve where you can refresh your body at our stocked rest stop at around 15 miles and refresh your spirit with a short hike or stroll through the Nature Preserve. The route wanders back to Shepherdstown for more sightseeing, shopping, and the post-ride party at Popodicon Mansion.  Both routes can be shortened by about 6.8 miles by following the Half Century route (blue markings) back from Yankauer Nature Preserve.

2018 Short Meanders Maps and Elevation Profiles

Back Roads Short Meanders Map


User login