Dead Man Gravel

Race Information

We are offering three different course options: Tungsten, Gold and Silver. Each race offers unique challenges but also a lot of fun. We designed each course to highlight the beauty and grit of the Peak to Peak area. On each course you will find a little of everything. Some pavement, steep climbs, and well maintained gravel roads. The climbs will challenge you, the descents will make you smile and the views will take your breath away!  

All races start and finish in Chipeta Park, in the heart of Nederland. Each course offers something a little different as well. The Silver course is geared a little more towards the beginner based on its shorter distance but still offers a great challenge. If you prefer a little more road and some faster speeds, then the Gold Course is for you. But if you really want a challenge and to push yourself and your bike then the Tungsten Course is where you need to be.

Silver Course

At about 20 miles and 2,200’ of climbing, this race is no slouch. Starting at Chipeta Park you will head north on the Peak to Peak to HWY and climb for about a mile before turning right onto Ridge Rd. which turns into Cold Springs Rd. This section is a lot of fun with a few punchy up hills and fast descents. At the end of Cold Springs you will hang a right onto the P2P again for another long road climb to CR103 which is guaranteed to be one of your most fun descents ever. You’ll keep that downhill train rolling for 4 miles before tackling the last hill of the course. It’s a grinder for sure. You will turn right onto CR126 and grind for 3 more miles before turning onto Caribou Rd for a 3 mile downhill to the finish!

Gold Course

The Gold Course is one step up from the Silver Course. It is about 41 miles with just under 5,000’ of climbing. This course really has it all. You start at Chipeta park and immediately start climbing into the Big Springs neighborhood. You head up Big Springs Dr and then turn right up Peakview Rd. You’ll climb about 300’ in the first mile! You will then roll along the Peak to Peak HWY for about 3 miles when you turn onto Tolland Rd in Rollinsville. Enjoy this section of gentle uphill gravel road for 5 miles along the gorgeous South Boulder Creek.

Then the real fun begins as you turn left onto Mammoth Gulch and climb a rocky Forest Road for more than 4 miles and top out at 10,400’! From here you’ll hit Elk Park Road. Don’t get distracted by the abandoned mines or breath taking scenery as it can get pretty sandy and loose through here, so watch your speed. But then you will hit Apex Ghost Town and Apex Valley Rd as you cruise 5.5 miles downhill. From here you will turn South on the P2P before a quick left onto Hughesville Rd. for another punchy climb. You will then head North on the P2P Hwy. This is a long ~6 mile road section but it is still a challenge! Then you will turn right onto South Beaver Creek which is one of the most fun descents you can ride. Enjoy those 4 miles of downhill before you hit a grinder of climb on CR97 which will take you up to Magnolia Rd where the rolling hills sneak up on you. From there you will pop back into Big Springs Neighborhood and trace your steps back down to Chipeta Park with a fast and fun mile long descent to the finish.

Tungsten Course

This is the premier event of Dead Man Gravel. Is it the most challenging gravel race? You decide! It is 66 miles and has 8,200’ of climbing. For the first 21 miles this course is the same as the Gold Course  (see above). You start at Chipeta park and immediately start climbing into the Big Springs neighborhood. You head up Big Springs Dr. and then turn right up Peakview Rd. You’ll climb about 300’ in the first mile! You will then roll along the Peak to Peak HWY for about 3 miles when you turn onto Tolland Rd in Rollinsville. Enjoy this section of gentle uphill gravel road for 5 miles along the gorgeous South Boulder Creek.

Then the real fun begins as you turn left onto Mammoth Gulch and climb a rocky Forest Road for more than 4 miles and top out at 10,400’! From here you’ll hit Elk Park Road where you will have to use some caution as it can get pretty sandy and loose, so watch your speed. But then you will hit Apex Ghost Town and Apex Valley Rd as you cruise 5.5 miles downhill. You will turn South onto the P2P and make an immediate left onto Hughesville Rd. (1.5 miles and 700′ up) before heading onto Missouri Gulch Road. You will climb a tough 3.5 miles and get back up to just shy of 10,000’. When you’re legs are about to give out, start your descent as the road turns to Gamble Gulch and this is where you can let the dice roll. For the most part you can let it rip but be aware there are some spots that you need to watch out for as it is a minimally maintained county road. At the bottom you’ll pop back onto the P2P in Rollinsville and grind back to Nederland. 

From Nederland you will continue North and hang a right onto Ridge Rd. and continue onto Cold Springs Rd. You will head back onto the P2P Hwy to Sugarloaf Rd. for about 6 miles when you hang a left onto Sugarloaf Mtn Rd. You’ll grind here and continue West onto the iconic Switzerland Trail. Enjoy this railroad grade uphill for another 6 miles. Then you will cross the P2P Hwy for a super fast descent for down CR103 and back onto the P2P. After 4.5 miles you’ll hang a right onto CR126 and grind again on the last climb before flying downhill for 3 miles to the finish!

 

COVID Protocol

Our number one goal is to keep you, our volunteers/staff and the local community safe. We have worked extensively with state and local agencies as well as other race directors to create a safe and responsible event. Below are a number of ways that we are doing that. These are guaranteed to change as the guidance from the state and local level will continue to evolve. Final information will be provided in the forthcoming Race Guide.

  • We will offer several packet pickup options to spread everyone out over several days.
  • All participants will be required to wear a face covering at all times while at the start/finish area, aid stations, shuttle vans, etc. You will not be required to wear it during the race.
  • All volunteers will be wearing a mask and gloves at all times.
  • Hand sanitizing stations will be available at aid stations and throughout the start/finish area. 
  • There will be scaled down post race activities at the start/finish area.
  • At aid stations, gloved and masked volunteers will fill your bottles and food will be prepacked. 

Equipment Recommendations

Tires

You will need gravel tires for sure! A minimum tire width would be about 35. But a higher volume tire will make it a lot more comfortable. (We won’t be measuring, but if you flat four times that’s on you!)

Shoes

There’s a good chance you will be walking at some point. Road shoes are STRONGLY discouraged.

Nutrition

There will be no Feed Zones on the Silver Course, one on the Gold Course and two on the Tungsten Course. There will be several water stations along all courses. Please plan accordingly.

Lights

Because of the road sections and for safety reasons front lights are recommended and rear lights are strongly recommended.

Tools

At the Feed Zones there will be basic maintenance tools available and possibly a mechanic or two. Please be able to self rescue if you flat or have a mechanical issue on the course. There will be limited on course support.

Helmet

Do we really need to say this? Of course a helmet is required, 100% of the time.

Apparel

It is July in the mountains. Be prepared for warm weather. An afternoon thunder/rain storm is always a possibility. Plan accordingly.

Bikes

A gravel bike is recommended (duh!) but we are all about riding what you got. Mountain Bikes are great, road bikes are less great but can handle the Silver Course.

Where to Stay

Boulder Creek Lodge is right next to the start/finish area and is the best option for staying in Nederland.

Call and mention Dead Man Gravel and get special pricing.

Airbnb is also a good option for finding housing in the Peak to Peak area.

All other hotels are located in Boulder, about a 25 min drive from Nederland. 

Where to eat

Nederland has great places to eat:

  • Crosscut Pizza
  • Ubon Thai
  • Salto Coffee
  • Busey Brews
  • Backcountry Pizza
  • The Mineshaft
  • New Moon Bakery

And places to drink:

  • Knotted Root Brewing
  • Very Nice Brewing
  • Gold Dirt Distillery (in Rollinsville)