BT 700 Bikepacking Tour 2020
The date for the 2020 Grand Depart has been set. Sunday July 12th from St. Jacob's.
The date for the 2020 Grand Depart has been set. Sunday July 12th from St. Jacob's. Can we make it even more grand than the first season? New exciting terrain has been added to the route and riders can now sign up for the BT XL which combines the BT 700 and GNR into an even bigger bike-packing adventure.
BT700 Grand Depart 2019
Photo Credit BT700
The BT 700 wanders along a mixed surface of gravel roads, rail trail, rowdy unmaintained roads and forest trail for a big 770km loop involving some of Ontario’s most awesome bike-packing terrain.
Off road terrain
Photo Credit BT700
This is a primarily offroad, unofficial, self-supported bikepacking ride that begins and ends in the Ontario village of St. Jacob’s. There is no registration (other than on the website), no support and no prizes – it is simply a ride where a group of bikepackers will gather together to explore some of the most exciting riding terrain in the region. In an attempt to minimize the amount of time riders spend with the rubber side down on pavement, the route utilizes roughly 85% unpaved surfaces. It should be considered a challenging mixed surface route and more mountain bike oriented than a pure gravel ride. Highlights include grand views in escarpment country, riding the shoreline of sunny Lake Huron, photogenic waterfalls, plenty of backcountry-style riding and all the butter tarts you can stomach. Last season it took riders between 2 to 6 days to complete the route – some were “racing” against the clock and some were simply leisurely touring to soak up the scenery. There are plenty of accommodation, re-supply points and other services along the route. But don’t let the fairly modest overall elevation gain – about 8,000 meters – fool you. There are plenty of steep sections that will challenge even the fittest of riders.
New for 2020 is the opportunity to take on an even bigger challenge by signing up for the 1,125km BT XL which combines the BT 700 with the new GNR (Grand Nith Ramble) bike-packing route that includes a bounty of trails along the alluring Grand and Nith rivers. Both routes start and finish in the same location.