May 19, 2018
Poison Spider School
9664 Oregon Trail Rd. Casper, WY 82604
2018 will mark the 6th year that bikes have been around the Rattlesnake Mountain Range! The 120 mile course starts at 7am at Poison Spider School (about 8 miles west of Casper) and travels on 10 miles of pavement before the road turns to gravel. For the next 40 miles, riders are mostly going uphill along loose gravel, dirt and hardpack gravel as you travel to the first aid station (at mile 51) and the first turn of the race. Riders loop around the western edge of the mountain range and will begin to descend Southeast towards Pathfinder reservoir. Enjoy these 25 miles on mostly dirt road with a mix of gravel and larger cobble road with a few long sections of sandy road with great views and rolling hills. It is VERY rare to see any human life this far out in the middle of nowhere. In 2013, I did not see one single vehicle in the 105 miles of gravel. In 2014, we saw 2 vehicles the entire time. Riders will find themselves at hwy 220 around mile 85 and you can enjoy 5 miles of smooth pavement on wide lanes with rumble strips. Aid station number two is at mile 90 and is our turnoff to Old Oregon Trail Road to the Northeast. The next 30 miles are glorious! You’ll point yourself northeast and go uphill slightly on good gravel road for 6 miles followed by a crazy fast 8 miles of descending along mostly dirt road. Pedal your way the final 15 miles back to Poison Spider School on mostly dirt road and BAM, you made it!!
Strava link to 120 mile course: https://www.strava.com/routes/206572
The 60 mile race also starts at Poison Spider School at 7am. Racers travel for 3 miles on pavement before turning on the Historic Old Oregon Trail Road. For 30 miles, riders will pedal pedal pedal uphill along huge fields of sagebrush, dried up creeks, jackrabbits, antelope and two historic sites. At hwy220, riders will have an aid station to grab a bite to eat before turning around and heading back to the school. It’s mostly downhill at this point and generally the wind is always at my back when I return home on this route. The road surface is primarily dirt and can be treacherous in the rain. But when it is dry, it is smoking fast. This is the same exact route that hundreds of thousands of immigrants traveled by in the mid 19th century. There are around a dozen different locations along this route where you can actually stop and see ruts made from the wagons that traveled the trail. Enjoy the history, the views and appreciate the mode of transportation you are gifted with in 2018!
Strava link to 60 mile course: https://www.strava.com/routes/206561