Each of the Capitol courses at the inaugural Carson City Off-Road will challenge and reward every rider while delivering awe striking views:
Fat tire criterium
The Fat Tire Criterium course around downtown an Carson City’s West side will start and finish on Carson Street before passing the Brewery Arts Center on King Street. Riders will then head north on Minnesota before taking a left onto Telegraph and heading toward the Governor’s Mansion. Riders will take a right onto Robinson to make their way back downtown. The free “Klunker Crit” takes place at 6 p.m. today. Riders need a bike, a helmet and to register at the blue Epic Rides tent on Carson Street in the expo. The expo opens at noon on Friday. The pro criterium kicks off at 6:30 for the women, with the men following at 7:15 p.m.
The Fun Ride this afternoon maximizes the fun factor with 15 miles and 2,380 feet of climbing, highlighted by the Ash to King’s trail network. Riders will climb four miles from downtown Carson City up King’s Canyon Road to the Ash to King’s trailhead, where they will climb two more miles on singletrack before hitting the King’s Comfort Station for a refuel if needed. After the refuel, riders point their bikes downhill for the next seven miles, all the way to the finish.
Capitol 35 riders will cover 35 miles and 5,850 feet of climbing. After pedaling out of downtown, the course follows King’s Canyon Road uphill for 12 miles, topping out at Spooner Summit. After ducking into the woods on singletrack along Spooner Lake, riders will hit the first comfort station for a refuel. After four more miles of climbing on North Canyon Road, riders will hit the second comfort station overlooking Marlette Lake. A brief descent before the final pitch to the top of Marlette Peak will offer amazing views of both Marlette Lake and Lake Tahoe.
Riders then loop around the Tahoe Rim Trail briefly before hitting Sunflower Hill Trail, aptly named for all the sunflowers that will surely be in bloom during the ride. After hitting Lakeview Road, riders will encounter the final comfort station before descending a rather steep and loose fire road to Secret trail, a singletrack that links riders up with Creek Trail, finishing by descending on Lower Ash Canyon to Jack Rabbit trail. After popping out on Foothill Road, riders have 2 miles of pavement descending past the Governor’s Mansion and back into downtown.
The Capitol 50 begins by climbing 12 miles to Spooner Summit and hitting the first comfort station. As the pass by Spooner Lake, they will climb four more miles to the second comfort station overlooking Marlette Lake. After a brief descent, one more climb up to the Tahoe Rim Trail will surely put a sting in the legs, but the jaw dropping views of Marlette Lake and Lake Tahoe from the Tahoe Rim Trail will numb the pain.
After a few rolling sections along Tahoe Rim Trail, riders are rewarded with 4.5 miles of world class singletrack descending on Tahoe Rim Trail and the recently completed Snapdragon Trail, ending at the fast and flat Red House Flume Trail. After crossing Franktown Creek Road, riders will enjoy incredible views of Washoe Valley nearly 2,000 vertical feet below before passing the third comfort station. A fast, steep and loose fire road descent delivers riders to Secret Trail singletrack, which connects riders over to the Ash to King’s Trail, where the third comfort station is located. Make sure you’re fully refueled, because at this point Capitol 50 riders have one more push uphill for about three miles on Ash to King’s Trail, but after cresting the top and passing the fourth comfort station, the final five miles are all downhill, with super fun singletrack ending back at King’s Canyon Road, and a high-speed downhill romp all the way back into town.
WHERE TO WATCH
King’s Canyon Road: Whether standing at the start line in downtown Carson City or heading up the hill on your bike ahead of the start, King’s Canyon Road climbs for nearly 15 miles to Spooner Summit, providing numerous spectating opportunities along the road. Spectators can also catch the Capitol 50 riders returning at the end of their journey as they pop out onto King’s Canyon Road from the Ash to King’s trail network and race downhill back into Carson City.
Spooner Summit: For those who don’t have the energy or time to pedal, just jump in the car and head up Highway 50 to Spooner Summit, where you can watch Capitol 35 and 50 riders duck into the woods and ride singletrack along Spooner Lake. There will still be plenty of time to get back into the car and head down to Carson City for the finish.
Marlette Peak: For those who want the ultimate view, drive to Spooner Summit ahead of the event start and pedal up both North Canyon Road and all the way up to Marlette Peak on the Tahoe Rim Trail. Not only will you get to watch riders peak out after 20 miles of climbing, but you’ll also have a double lake view of both Marlette Lake and Lake Tahoe.
Ash Canyon: Only a short pedal from downtown Carson City, spectators can catch the Capitol 35 riders as they return to town on Lower Ash Canyon trail and the Capitol 50 riders as they make their final ascent on Ash to King’s.
Start/Finish line: Watch the start of each Capitol event and the Fat Tire Crit on Carson Street in the shadow of the historic Capitol Building. Don’t forget a noisemaker! Speaking of noisemakers — hold on tight to leashed pets. The start of each event can be quite exhilarating, causing four-legged friends to run and hide.