2023 Belgian Waffle Rides & Quadrupel Crown of Gravel
January 25, 2023
11 min read
We are very excited to be presenting the largest gravel series in the world with seven Belgian Waffle Rides throughout North America that make up the Quadrupel Crown of Gravel Series. The Series commences on March 5, 2023, in Cave Creek, Arizona, and wraps up on November 26, 2023, in Queretaro, Mexico – both brand new venues for the BWR Unroad Experience. We have also added the spectacular Vancouver Island venue for BWR BC, which takes place on May 28 as the kick-off to summer in Cowichan Valley. The other four BWRs include the 4th annual BWR UT in Cedar City (August 26), the 3rd annual BWR NC near Asheville (June 10), the 3rd annual BWR KS in Lawrence (October 14), and the Monument, the 12th annual BWR CA, in San Diego. The Quadrupel Crown of Gravel Series will offer a cash prize purse for the Waffle’s top five performers, where riders take their top four scores from any of the seven BWRs they compete in. There are also awards for age group performers in both the Waffle and Wafer, and an overall podium for the top five Wafer Quad. All the Quad info can be found here: https://quadrupelcrownofgravel.com
What is most exciting about the Series is that each venue offers up a completely unique and immersive Unroad / Gravel experience, the likes of which cannot be found elsewhere. From the old growth forests of The Hell of the Great White North in British Columbia to the 6,000 feet of elevation of the central highland plateau region of Queretaro, Mexico, where the Infierno Del Sur will treat riders to the marvels of a romantic 16th century city replete with cobblestones and the largest prize purse of the entire Series. Each of the other venues are unlike any of the others, so riders who partake of all seven BWRs will experience something very different each and every time they attempt to survive the pedaling perversity that the BWR is famous for.
Below, please find details and links for each of the seven BWR venues, information about the Quadrupel Crown and what will be on offer at each one of these attractive tourist destinations. The 10 Reasons to do each of the BWRs of the Quadrupel Crown of Gravel.
BWR Arizona – Cave Creek / N. Scottsdale – The Hell of the North (Desert) - March 5, 2023
1) The course will be like no other BWR has ever been with flowing single-track trails, gravel roads, some asphalt and a massive variety of scenery. 2) Riders won’t want to miss out on the inaugural BWR AZ and the first event of the Quadrupel Crown of Gravel. 3) Wide-open spaces with access to pristine stretches of the Sonoran Desert. 4) Cave Creek Regional Park and its unfettered views, looping trails and hillsides filled with spring wildflowers. 5) Tonto National Forest’s Seven Springs and Bartlett Lake. 6) The official motto of Cave Creek is “Where The Wild West Lives.” It’s ranching history means its many trails criss-cross waterways, making it a cycling heaven. 7) Trails within the Cave Creek Regional Park are very popular because of the dramatic elevations, which offer spectacular views of the surrounding plains. 8) The McDowell Sonoran Preserve is a large, permanently protected, sustainable desert habitat that includes an interconnected network of bike trails accessed from multiple trailhead locations. 9) Explore the incredible trails and reach Pinnacle Peak for 360-degree outlook of North Scottsdale. 10) Discover Scottsdale’s beginnings in Historic Town's nine walkable neighborhoods, which offer variety of experiences by day and night.
BWR California – San Marcos / San Diego – The Hell of the West (Coast) - April 16, 2023
1) The original BWR, one of the largest gravel races in the world, is the most unique cycling event anywhere and one of only five Monuments of Gravel. 2) A brand new safer, yet technically challenging course that will test riders in new and untold ways 3) The BWR CA is mandatory for anyone seeking the Quadrupel Crown podium for overall or age groupers. 4) You will not need a super burly gravel bike for BWR San Diego, nor will you even really need tires wider than 40 mm. 5) If you like suffering, BWR champion, Peter Stetina, says “I’ve done a lot of classics, and I don’t think I ever suffered that bad in a decade of being a pro.” 6) Rub shoulders, elbows and tires with some of the greatest cyclists on the planet. 7) The most dynamic unroad / gravel course on the planet with a never-ending array of diverse terrain to cover over 26 unroad sectors featuring rocks, sand, water crossings, single-track, etc. 8) The most amount of Feed Zones with more aid and support than ever before. 9) A three-day festival of cycling celebration with riders of all stripes joining in the party atmosphere and choosing between one of three distances on race day. 10) The largest BWR Unroad Expo with 70 vendors, demo opportunities, family fun, music, beer, coffee and tons of people partying in Belgian bliss.
BWR BC – Cowichan Valley – The Hell of the Great White North - May 28, 2023
1) Vancouver Island is the tourism capital of BC, with wild beauty: lush rainforests, salmon-spawning rivers, lakes, and wind-swept rocky ocean beaches! 2) Cowichan Valley is home to many wineries, breweries, cideries, distilleries, restaurants, bistros, bakeries 3) See the world’s largest hockey stick! (62.5m, 28,000 kg). 4) Cowichan Valley has over 170 mtb trails, almost 200km (mainly on 4 mountains: Mt. Tzouhalem, Maple Mtn, Cobble Hill Mtn, & Mt. Prevost – all of which are featured on the course) & world-class singletrack. 5) Ride over the Kinsol Trestle – one of the largest wooden trestles in the world (44m high & 188m long). 6) Courses uses part of the Trans Canada Trail, longest trail in the world. 28,000-km trail across the country. 7) Chance to see some typical Vancouver Island wildlife: cougars, bears, elk, toads, beavers, killer whales, and yes you will see a sasquatch! 8) Ride past indigenous totems nestled in the rainforest. 9) Family vacation destination centered around year-round outdoor recreation. 10) Experience the laid-back island lifestyle with a legion of bike-minded people. Bonus: Forbes lists Vancouver Island as one of the best places to visit in 2023 – it has the most temperate weather in Canada and one of the most diverse ecosystems on the planet!
BWR N. Carolina – Asheville – The Hell of the East - June 10, 2023
1) This is the hardest BWR course of them all – elevation gain, terrain and overall strain. 2) This is the most communal of all BWR experiences, with a dominant portion of the field staying at the race venue, Kanuga Resort. Makes for music festival like atmosphere. 3) Asheville is known as “Beer City USA”, hosting a massive concentration of breweries! 4) Tour the Mills River Sierra Nevada Brewery, the Disneyworld of breweries. 5) Renowned Blue ridge Parkway – 46-miles without a stop sign or light are at the backdoor of Sierra Nevada! Called America's Favorite Drive - a ribbon of road that weaves through the region’s vibrant living traditions, including Cherokee life and agricultural history to Southern Appalachian crafts and music. 6) The area has one of the highest concentrations of summer camps across the USA, and the ride actually goes through Falling Creek, perhaps the best with its 900 acres of mountaintop terrain and an insane cyclocross course that will surprise and delight. 7) If you love climbing, this course features over 100 feet of ascending for every mile. 8) The course features access to the Green River Preserve and all of its glorious 3,400 acres of lushness that’s home to a spectacular wildlife preserve. The scenery is breathtaking. 9) Enjoy the DuPont State Forest, a huge state forest with hundreds of miles of multi-use trails. Also Last of the Mohicans and the first Hunger Games movies were filmed here. 10) Ride through Pisgah National Forest, originally part of the 87,000-acre Biltmore Estate, which is now over 500,000 acres, and includes five peaks over 6,000 feet in elevation.
BWR Utah – Cedar City – The Hell of the South (West) - August 26, 2023
1) New Course - this year will feature novel sectors that are sure to surprise and delight new and old racers alike. 2) Perfect Weather - The end of August is the perfect time of year to visit Cedar City. Average highs are in the 70s and lows in the 50s. The start will be cool, but not cold, and the finish at Main Street Park should be a tepid mid-70s with a nice breeze washing through the lovely grounds that are basecamp for this unique course that combines the desert and mountains in the most delectable of ways. 3) Pablove Breakfast Burrito Ride - EAT A BURRITO, SAVE A LIFE: The day before the race, meet up at the Unroad Expo at Main Street Park and enjoy a little course preview benefiting the Pablove Foundation and kids living with cancer. Riding with friends, the smell of bacon in the morning and supporting a great cause. What more do you need to get excited about the Breakfast Burrito Ride? Oh, and who doesn't want to recon the final sector anyway? 4) Terrifically Terrible Terrain - The BWR UT has a parcourse that is quite the juxtaposition to the ones we have in CA, NC, MI and KS. BWR UT is truly an unroad/gravel race broken up with roughly 10 road sectors and a roughly half the climbing of San Diego. Regardless of the vital stats, the BWR UT race will offer up the same type of insanity, challenge and the unparalleled experience that has made the BWR notorious and noteworthy. Plus, it’s got some altitude... 5) Bryce Canyon - One of the five National Parks in Utah. The Canyon has more than 14 hiking opportunities. Each with their own unique views and access to the park. Visitors to Bryce can find a hike for them no matter how much experience they have. The park also offers opportunities for horseback riding, bird watching, camping, and much more. 6) Zion National Park - Like Bryce Canyon, Zion National Park provides hiking, camping, and other activities for visitors. However, Zion is known as one of the premier national parks in the country. Zion provides opportunities for rock climbing, cycling, canyoneering, and more. Visitors with an interest in adventure can go to the extreme in this park. When you come to Cedar City, know there is something for everyone in nearby Zion National Park. 7) Kanarra Falls - When you come to ride in Cedar City you can easily visit the beautiful Kanarra Falls, which is just off the course. The falls lie in a slot canyon. Hikers have to traverse the narrow canyon floor and climb a short ladder in order to get to the falls. The hike is relatively difficult, so inexperienced hikers had better travel in a group. 8) Cedar Breaks National Monument - The early Paiute people called Cedar Breaks National Monument the “Circle of Painted Cliffs” referring to multicolored stone ridges of this naturally carved amphitheater. Time seems to stand still here and that’s really quite a good thing. 9) Party with your Pals - Four years ago, The BWR UT was the first ever Belgian Waffle Ride held outside of California and TJ Eisenhart has been with us ever since. Now, with his help, it’s become a punctuating moment on the gravel calendar. Along with the Belgian Waffle and Wafer Rides, the accompanying Unroad Expo will feature live music, a beer garden, lots of waffles, and all sorts of fun that will exemplify the wonderful familial largess of the great state of Utah. 10) A popular vacation destination among outdoor enthusiasts! Cedar City offers many outdoor activities for visitors of all ages. It's a great place to visit, teeming with natural wonders, exciting history, and gorgeous natural landscapes. Cedar City has proven to be a warm and inviting place to visit and race one’s bike with access to the outdoors, entertainment, and views you can’t find anywhere else.
BWR Kansas – Lawrence – The Hell of the Mid-West - October 14, 2023
1) This is the greatest unroad/gravel course in the world according to many of the greatest gravel racers of all time. This course is ever-undulating, 90% unroad, features numerous and lengthy cyclocross tracks, single-tracks, double-tracks, water crossings and a finish with 5-miles worth of sinuous and sexy twists and turns of the most fun kind. 2) You can visit the coolest bike shop in America, Sunflower Outdoor and Bike Shop, the host of the BWR. Because of Dan Hughes, Matt Gilhousen and Joe Schmalz from Sunflower, this edition of BWR KS will have quite a few interesting features to it, but the actual pre- and post-race fun is unparalleled here. 3) And when you do finish, you will receive a most magical badass malt beverage from Free State Brewing, to celebrate the accomplishment as both a refueling opportunity and trophy! Don’t let the smooth taste fool you. 4) The profile of BWR KS is most akin to the Belgian spring classics! The parcourse features a series of never-ending undulations over narrow, sinuous gravel roads and trails, with 6,500 feet of climbing yet virtually no straightaways. 5) Lawrence, Kansas is one the most amazing cycling-friendly cities in America! From the sweeping winds of the nearby hills to the challenging local relief of the glaciated northeast hills, and from the urban trails to the lakeside trails, Lawrence offers a challenging and scenic backdrop for riders of all ages and levels. The weather this time of year promises fall perfection! 6) Dorothy's trancelike repetition of the phrase “there's no place like home” condenses the meaning of what home means for each of us. Home is a place we associate with familiarity, love, a safe place, a place of origin. Kansas may not be your home, but it will feel like it is, and you’ll want to move here. They literally shut down the main street for the day for the expo and racing. 7) There is a feature in this course that is unlike anything anyone will ever do in a gravel race. Once Waffleurs have ridden nearly 90-miles, they will have the most incredible wild ride through the 6.5-mile Slengenwinkel Doolhof sector, the most deliciously diabolical and dirty detour ever devised for a ‘gravel race’ and more fun than any ‘cyclopath' could ever conjure on their own. 8) You deserve one final romp in the hay before you have to commit to four months of sitting on a trainer in the basement! Here’s your chance to rub elbows and tires with famous, world class cyclists from all over the globe, like the Dutch Mafia, Nicholas Roche, Rebecca Fahringer, Nathan Hass, Peter Stetina, Griffin Easter, Whitney Allison, Alexey Vermeulen, Flavia Oliveira Parks, Australian WorldTour rider Tiffany Cromwell and Adam Roberge, who are descending on this glorious town for another last hoorah for the year. 9) The Saturday night concert will be bumping and you won’t even remember you raced that day. We’ve enjoyed concerts from Michael Franti, Get Up Kids and G Love & Special Sauce, and this year promises a headliner that will bring the street down. 10)This race is in honor of Steve Tilford, one of the greatest American cyclists of all time, and a resident of the town. These races were created just for Steve, and we know he is looking upon us all with a smirk the likes of which only he could emote. He knows this course is going to destroy people, make them want to cry and otherwise force people to do things they would never do; like dismount, walk their bike or simply quit… just the way he likes it.
BWR Mexico – Querétaro Mexico – Infierno Del Sur - November 26, 2023
1) The final unroad/gravel race of the year in a beautiful old-world setting! 2) The largest prize purse of all BWRs and the finale for the Quadrupel Crown of Gravel Series! 3) Perfect weather in November at an exotic location with average daily temperatures of 76 degrees. Querétaro enjoys year-round hot, dry weather. The climate is ideal for taking part in a variety of outdoor sports and activities and for taking in the culture, architecture and scenery. 4) Cheapest lodging of an BWR with villas averaging $40 per night and direct flights to Querétaro fromm many US airports. 5) Santiago de Querétaro, or just Querétaro as it’s known, is a colonial city steeped in Mexican history. The Spanish took control of the city in 1531 and designated it the “third city of New Spain”. It was here where the fathers of Mexico’s Independence Movement met in secret to discuss the overthrow of their Spanish rulers. The Mexican Constitution, written in 1917, was composed here. 6) The feel here is Baroque. Take time to browse its churches, its mansions with their graceful balconies, the myriad of tree-lined plazas and the quaint colonial side streets and alleyways. You will find that the historic colonial center is pristinely well kept and maintained. 7) Hot Springs: Surrounding Querétaro are a series of beautiful small towns like Tequisquiapan and San Juan del Rio. This area is one of Mexico’s natural hot spring regions, which are a very popular attraction. 8) Wine: In recent years, the state of Querétaro has become one of Mexico’s top wine-producing regions, and wine and cheese tours are one of the highlights of a visit to this area. 9) This buzzing city in the center of the country has more cycling routes than any other part of Mexico, which is why we choose our first Mexican BWR location as Querétaro. 10) Cobblestones: Overlooking the striking Bernal Rock, the city of Querétaro is a pleasant mixture of splendor and history. From its architectural gems painted along the cobblestone streets to the presentations of unique rock formations, the city’s culture is mirrored through its diversity of attractions. Querétaro is one of Mexico’s hidden surprises, bursting at the seams with mystique and timeless legends.