Nearly all cycling events all have one thing in common, maybe even two.
Certainly the format, culture and characteristics of each can be extremely unique, not to mention the broad spectrum of bikes and skills required. Gravel events have surged across the US, bringing a fresh energy to our sport not seen perhaps since mountain biking in the 80s. It should be safe to say that everyone entering the gravel scene comes from a former cycling discipline, most often road or mountain. So it comes as no surprise that race organizers have pulled from prior experiences to create events that resemble known formats with a gravel bent. For example: DK200 = Double Century, Grinduro = Enduro World Series, BWR = Paris-Roubaix.
And while these are certainly amazing and massively popular events drawing grinders from all over the world, what would a gravel inspired event look like?
Defined courses and race formats are the two common themes you will find in nearly all events. Should gravel be any different? Does an event exist that embodies adventure, exploration, camaraderie and that post-ride stoke?
A year ago we set out to create an event that would be true to these things we love about gravel. Hunt of the North would not be a race, nor would it involve a set course. Instead, riders would become hunters of gravel, literally. Departing from a single location at a set time to locate and ride five carefully selected dirt sections across North County San Diego to locate and retrieve one piece of unique gravel from each. Encouraged to go in teams of two or more, riders would be expected to mark their own course and return to the start by a set time. Post ride festivities would be enjoyed by all, from the fastest to the slowest of riders who were given recommended distances of 40-60 miles.
On June 9, 2019 we were thrilled to have enjoyed another successful adventure, the 2nd annual Hunt of the North. Thanks to all of our volunteers, sponsors and partners who supported our vision and to the riders who took on the challenge and embraced a new kind of cycling event.
Today we present to you the official 2019 Hunt of the North Photo Gallery, all photos courtesy of Explore With Chris. Enjoy!
All photos courtesy of Chris Cox, @explorewithchris
We would like to thank all of our event Sponsors and Partners for making the 2019 Hunt of the North a success.
CANYON US for providing an incredible venue and hosting the event
ENVE for donating two G Series gravel handlebars for the raffle and having Brandt MC the start
Wahoo for donating a top prize ELEMNT Bolt for the raffle
WTB for letting us take over their Instagram page for a day and donating a few sets of gravel tires for the raffle
GU Energy for providing nutrition support at the start and aid station
Rouleur Brewing for all the post-ride beers and crafting a special Hunteur Ale for our riders
Eliel Cycling for the raffle prizes, our Hunting kits and helping with event set-up and tear-down
Orucase for collaborating with us on our very first phone case / gravel bag
Velofix San Diego North for the amazing on-course rider support
Staff / Volunteers
The event was also made possible by some of our amazing volunteers and staff. Thanks Lexie, Ryan, Chris, Laura, Edgar, Sammy, Matteo, Amy, Esther, Marci, Jennifer and Michael!
You can find limited edition Hunt of the North gear now on sale. All proceeds go directly back to creating more Gravelstoke events and goods. We are sold out of mason jars, where all proceeds went to the San Diego Mountain Bike Association. Thanks!
You can view the entire Explore With Chris event gallery via the link below.