What's the toughest challenge in cycling? For weekend riders looking to test their mettle, it just may be gravel grinding, an emerging style of cycling that's done on unpaved, backcountry roads covered in crushed limestone, granite, flint, or whatever rock happens to be around.
How does a man move and shape a culture? Our love of storytelling compelled us to find out, so we dug into the story of the Almanzo 100 gravel road race–the granddaddy of them all. We found that a single man’s passion for community has manifested itself in a bike race.
Dirt Rag Magazine
Fundraiser party will benefit Almanzo 100 January 5
The Almanzo 100 Gravel Race has been running since 2007 in Spring Valley, Minnesota, USA. The Almanzo attracts upward of 600 entrants, it is also demanding, featuring almost 8,000 feet of vertical climbing and one of the most beautiful, traversing through rural Southern Minnesota farm country – gravel style!
The Bicycle Blog of Wisconsin
Crushing Gravel? Preparing for my first gravel road race
Debut: Almanzo 100 Film. In short, Skogen founded this race and helped launch a movement of gravel-road races around the Midwest. Skogen’s initiative has inspired a half-dozen other race directors to create free or low-cost gravel bike events in the region.
Chris Skogen is the man behind the increasingly popular Almanzo 100 and Royal 162 gravel grinder races in Spring Valley, Minnesota. By “man behind” I mean he is the creator/promoter/race director of these races. On top of that Chris is a certified gravel grinding junkie himself. Recently xxcmag.com had the chance to chat via e mail with Chris about gravel, racing, and The Almanzo 100.
Spring Valley Tribune
Almanzo 100 founder speaks to Kiwanis members about the bike race
Race Faces: . These shots, from David Gabrys of Cycleture, were taken during and after this year’s race, a muddy, harsh 100-mile ride where more than 50 percent of the racers dropped out and did not make it to the end. Mud-caked and exhausted, these images give a peek at the toll the Almanzo 100 can take. —Stephen Regenold
Q & A with Chris Skogen: As we chat more, I discover just how much love Chris has for the sport of cycling and find out about his desire to share this with others. After the ride is over at Merlin’s Rest, Chris was kind enough to step outside and answer a few questions for the Musette.
This weekend i rode and finished one of the hardest and most fun races in my life: the Almanzo 100. It’s a 100 mile race on gravel roads in southern Minnesota, masterfully and stylishly organized by Chris Skogen.