Pics from Joe Viger Photography

48th Annual Mt. Washington Auto Road Bicycle Hillclimb Benefiting 

 Tin Mountain Conservation Center 

August 21, 2021

Open Registration is March 1st at 12:00pm. 

With so many necessary changes due to the pandemic, I feel it’s very important that you know not only how and when to sign up, but just as important: what you’re signing up for. Naturally, all changes for 2021 are to keep everyone safe. Radically reducing the slots for the MWARBH and completely changing the format of the MWC+ are in everyone’s best interests. Tin Mountain Conservation Center looking at essentially covering our costs this year. It’s a bridge year. The MWARBH and the MWC+ are our highest and third highest fundraisers respectively. Like virtually any fundraisers there are costs. I very much appreciate your understanding.

One thing that is NOT changing is the mountain. Mount Washington will still be the most challenging hillclimb. As my good friend says, “it’s an event that truly touches your soul to finish.”

I’ll bullet these changes and go into explanation only when I feel it’s warranted.

1. 200 spots for the MWARBH and 150 spots for the MWARBH Early Bird. The MWC+ will not resemble anything like it has in the past and we’re looking at some innovative options for 2021.

2. For the MWARBH ($250) and the MWARBH Early Bird ($150), we are asking that riders sign up for one. With limited slots, we’d like as many people as possible to have the opportunity to experience the Rockpile this year. Oh glory! We all need something to celebrate!

3. Those riders who have done 5 or more MWARBHs will get an email with a passcode on 2/14.  If you don’t get one and you feel should have, please email me (after checking all your email addresses and SPAM folders). Lifers will already be registered. It’s nice to be a Lifer.

4. Those riders who registered for the 2020 race will get an email with a passcode on 2/21. If you don’t get one and you feel should have, please email me (after checking all your email addresses and SPAM folders).

5. When the race committee comes up with a tangible plan for the MWC+ (meeting in two weeks), I’ll notify everyone and then set up a portal on BikeReg.

That more or less covers the registration. All on BikeReg, of course. As for what the MWARBH events will look like and our expectations:

6. The MWARBH Early Bird’s format doesn’t change from what it once was: the Practice Ride. It’s untimed, unsupported, but also a quieter, personal battle with the Rockpile. This year, we’ll either have a drive thru sign in, or a pop up small tent with lines painted on the ground to indicate safe distancing protocols.

7. The MWARBH Early Bird on 7/18, like the MWARBH, will expect all riders to have one support driver. In an effort to limit large numbers of people waiting at the top, we are asking each rider to have one spectator, who is also his or her support driver. We will not be facilitating ride sharing. Masks and social distancing will be expected at the top.

8. The MWARBH, the race on 8/21, will have a drive thru registration the night before and the morning of the event.

9. Parking will be staggered so social distancing can occur.

10. The race will be a time trial format. Starting at the same location as in years past. Riders will be expected to wear a mask until the start of their race and during the race be as socially distant as possible.

11. There is no tent. No lunch. Sigh. Huge sigh. No Hart’s Turkey Farm.

12. No awards ceremony. No finisher medals (might change). No cash prizes.

13. We will not be having a race to the Mile One marker.

14. Chances are all the buildings at the top of the mountain will be closed to spectators and participants. There will be portapotties.

15. Merchandise will be on sale through VOMax and we’re working on the design and should have that out by the end of the month.

16. All funds will be kept by BikeReg until the completion of the event. If we need to cancel due to COVID, refunds will be much easier this year.

So, good people, all of these changes are done to keep all of us safer. Heck, in a non-pandemic year, that’s a challenge given Mount Washington’s weather. We are all in this together and the race committee is working tirelessly to pull this off. I owe a huge debt of gratitude to them.

This event cannot be run without the approval of NH Dept. of Parks and Rec. And we got their approval for this year and that’s a way bigger deal than you realize. It starts there and then the awesome folks of Auto Road need to give us permission to run this event while they shut down their privately run business on one of the busiest days of the summer so we can run this event.

If we dwell on what won’t happen, we might also look at the opportunities that await. Registration itself is going to be an event. We could almost be sold out or even sold out by March 1st.  Little doubt we will have a waitlist. The MWARBH Early Bird, Practice Ride, whatever, that really hasn’t changed and that’s by far my favorite event of the year. The race is going to be a time trial up one of the most amazing mountains you can ride a bike. Way cool.

All this, and things could change for the better between now and then. Maybe conditions will improve and we can add more riders or spectators.

This bridge year allows us to do something and in the meantime help support Tin Mountain Conservation Center in the process. I strongly suggest you check our website for more information and email me if you have any questions.

The Mount Washington Auto Road Bicycle Hillclimb is known as the toughest hillclimb in the world with an average grade of 12% (extended sections of 18%) and the last 50 yards is an amazing 22%!

Elevation is not all you gain. Through such a challenge, one will find the experience is truly priceless.

Please make sure you understand our Disclaimers and Policies before you sign up for this event. It is highly recommended that riders research and purchase registration insurance upon registering for the event.

The race is open to anyone fit enough for the challenge. For more information and rules go here.

All schedules subject to change for the 2021 race.

Sunday, August 22nd Rain Date

Summit Weather
* Highest wind recorded 231 mph (372 kph) 12 April 1934
* Lowest Temperature -47 F (-43.9 C) January 1934
* Highest Temperature +72 F (22 C) August 1975
* Avg. Annual Temperature 26.5 F (-3.1 C)
* Avg. Annual Wind Speed 35.3 mph (56.8 kph)
* Avg. Annual Snowfall 256 inches (6.5 meters)
* Greatest Snowfall Season 566.4 inches (14.38 meters) 1968-69

Course map

 For current conditions go here

All proceeds from the race benefit Tin Mountain Conservation Center. A non-profit placing educators in every Mount Washington Valley school district, holding summer camps each season, and working with our communities through a variety outreach programs.

For up-to-date information please visit our Facebook page.

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