I’ve had the Turas Mor on my radar the last year or two, but this is the first year it worked out. Advertised as a fun gravel ride with a classic vibe and free beer, what more could you want? A bit of a drive up from London to get to the town of Creemore, but Dr. Dave joined me and we even picked up vintage San Pellegrino jerseys together.
On arrival we knew we were in for good things. The weather was perfect, the town was lovely, we were given a free 6-pack of Creemore each, and there were lots of great bikes and vintage kits to be seen. Great turnout, with about 150 riders in our wave, doing the 60km classic.
The ride start was a bit stiff. Out of town it was straight into a 100m climb up the escarpment. This would become a theme for the day as we went up and down the escarpment…tough on the legs, but made for absolutely beautiful views! One thing that stood out on this ride is that unlike many gravel rides in the London area where you end up on paved roads for much of the time, this was about 95% gravel.
A benefit of the climbs was the incredible downhills! I hit a top speed of 78.8 kph on gravel road, which is dicey enough on pavement. It was thrilling, perhaps a touch dangerous, but an absolute riot. After the downhills we were into the first rest stop where we were greeted by local made granola bars, smoothies, devilled eggs, and a variety of other treats. We didn’t stop too long the first time though, feeling fresh we enjoyed the food and got rolling again. We generally had a couple of other riders with us the whole way, although I was a bit surprised at how many other riders were content to just do the ride solo.
The route took us through a really beautiful forested climb and around some fun, curving roads. We did hit a fairly long patch of fresh, soft gravel, which was a grunt and loose on the downhills, but it was also great hitting so many different types of road. The second rest stop was absolutely epic. Local chefs had laid out a beautiful meat and cheese spread, homemade breads, local maple water, and two were cooking fresh mini pizzas in a wood fired outdoor oven. We stayed at this stop quite a bit longer, and had a great fill of exceptional food.
The final stretch included the hardest climb, a straight and steep shot that you got to see coming for about 10 minutes. I dug in hard here and fell just seconds short of taking the Strava KOM. It was fun just cruising the rest of the ride and doing one solid effort.
Back into Creemore and we were rewarded with 2 free beers, a pulled pork lunch, live music, and some cool vintage cycling swag for shopping. An absolutely incredible vibe throughout the whole event, and great value for money compared to other rides. The absolute highlight though were the many incredible vistas offered up by escarpment country and truly best enjoyed on the pace of a bike.
Easily the best ride I’ve ever paid for and I can’t wait to do it next year!