Biking Base Camp: Harrisonburg

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Cycling Harrisonburg. Photo by Jennifer Bell.

Mountains and valleys make for exciting biking opportunities of all kinds, and Harrisonburg is one of the Shenandoah Valley’s best biking base camps. In fact, it’s the “Bicycle Capital of the Shenandoah Valley” and has been designated an IMBA Bronze Level Ride Center.

Harrisonburg is home to world-class cyclists who have recognized the incredible terrain the immediate area has to offer. Renown athletes like 16-time USA Cycling National Team member Jeremiah Bishop have invested in the cycling community. Bishop founded one of the area’s most challenging cycling races, the Alpine Loop Gran Fondo, which includes 11,000 feet of climbing. Bishop’s accolades include bringing home the gold medal in the 2003 Pan American Games and being hailed the US National Champion of Short Track and Marathon Mountain Biking.


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A new assembly and retail facility is coming to Harrisonburg in 2023 thanks to another resident cyclist. Timothy Rugg is a member of Team USA who recently competed for the 2023 UCI eSports Cycling World Championship, an elite event that includes only 100 cyclists worldwide. Rugg is a spokesperson for Lauf Cycling, a brand of ultra-lightweight gravel bikes, and he has lured them to Harrisonburg, their first facility outside of Iceland.

Other athletes who find themselves quite at home in Harrisonburg:

  • Abe Kaufman – pro cyclist; 4th place in 2022 Tour Divide (a 2,700-mile race from Canada to Mexico)
  • David Landis – pro cyclist; trail guide designer for destinations around the world; designed TransVirginia550 Bike Route in 2017; 20 place in the 2022 Tour Divide
  • Amanda Presgraves – professional USA Triathlete; 3rd place in the 2022 XTERRA Off Road Triathlon; authored The NonRecipe Book

Cycling Outfitters

There is much to know before you go, and a seasoned outfitter is your best source for information. Harrisonburg is fortunate to have several authorities who are at your service:

  • Take Aim Cycling is your go-to for National Forest biking. They’re one of the only a few outfitters who are permitted to lead such excursions in our area.
  • Bluestone Bike and Run specializes in shoe fitting and bikewear. Their new bike brands include Cannondale, Transition, Forbidden, E-Dash, GT, and Surly. They’re also a Thule Rack Systems dealer. Servicing is available.
  • Rocktown Bikes is the host of Rocktown Rambler, plus a source for multiple lines of Specialized bikes. Biking fitting and servicing available.
  • Shenandoah Bicycle Company welcomes you to shop their bikes – Trek, Kona, Ibis, Salsa, Electra, and Surly – while you sip “an adult bevi” like their on-tap beer or cider from Pulp, their little cafe. SBC offers custom bike builds and rentals, as well as servicing.
  • If you’re ready to try an e-bike tour of Skyline Drive, Burg E-Bike Tours is ready. You can even enjoy an e-bike wine tour. It’s four hours with three winery stops across 20 miles.

Ready to Ride?

Take note of these annual bike races and special events.

For more excellent tips, ideas, routes, and more, visit this cycling resource created by Harrisonburg Tourism.

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