Frequently Asked Questions
is the tour?
The 2013 bike tour starts in Albany on Tuesday, July 30 and ends in New York City on Sunday, August 4. Registration and orientation begins the afternoon of Monday, July 29. You
may also register on Tuesday, July 30, between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m.
should I sign up?
Beauty - National Heritage Area and inspiration for the famed Hudson River School
of painting. The ride includes
five panoramic crossings of the Hudson River, including the traffic-free Walkway over the Hudson.
Bicycling - Travel an average of 40-45 miles per day on back roads, designated
state bike routes and off-road trails, including the renowned Hudson River Trail
along Manhattan's west side.
- History - A region so pivotal to the country's history that it's called "the
landscape that defined America," with many key Revolutionary War sites.
- Outstanding art and history museums, plus the many remarkable
riverfront mansions of the Great Estates National Historic District.
- Wineries - Graced by the temperature-moderating
effects of the Hudson River, more than 20 wineries make the Valley one of America's
most historic wine regions.
Lights - Cross the George Washington Bridge and enjoy
a breathtaking view of the Manhattan skyline. Look out at the statue of Liberty from Battery Park. Spend an extra night or two on your own at the end of the tour to take
in the city sights.
- Parks & Trails Galore - Parks and trails are abundant throughout the Hudson Valley, and we will
be visiting as many as possible.
experiences - Visit
the Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site, West Point, Culinary Institute
of America, Olana – the Persian-style villa of Hudson River painter Frederic
Church, and Manhattan!
Leader & Support - Experienced bike tour leaders know what bicyclists need to have a safe, memorable and
- Fun - Energizing activity and camaraderie, as you meet
cyclists from around the country and the world.
organizes Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour?
Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour is organized by Parks & Trails New York, a
statewide nonprofit organization working to expand, protect and promote a network
of parks, trails and open spaces throughout the state for the use and enjoyment
of all. Parks & Trails New York organizes this bicycle tour to promote the
parks, trails, and historic sites of the Hudson Valley and economic development
through bicycle and heritage tourism. Funds raised will help support Parks
& Trails New York’s park and trail programs.
included in the tour?
- Wonderful scenic ride
- Carefully selected route
and itinerary, with an average of 40-45 miles per day.
- Daily maps and cue sheets,
with cultural and historical information
- Marked route
- Support vehicles for transporting
luggage, baggage, equipment, snacks, drinks, mechanical aid, and overall assistance.
- Expert bike mechanic
- Camping accommodations every
evening with showers and toilet facilities. Some campsites feature pools or
lakes for swimming. Or, if you
wish, you can stay at local motels and bed and breakfasts (not included in
tour-list provided). For easy
camping, check out the Comfy Camper option.
- Six hearty
breakfasts and four delicious dinners.
- Two refreshment stops daily
stocked with fruit, snacks and beverages.
- Entertainment and historical
presentations each evening.
- Visits to historic sites,
wineries, museums, and attractions, including the Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site,
West Point, Olana
– the Persian-style villa of Hudson River painter Frederic Church, and Manhattan!
- Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour
- Pre-departure information, including tour-specific information, reading list, packing list, training
suggestions and riding tips.
- Additional services (fee)
– Comfy Camper provides a tent and thick air mattress (includes set up and break
down), plus a comfortable camp chair and daily clean, fresh towels.
much does the trip cost?
The six-day tour costs $560.
Children under 18, who must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian, will
pay a reduced fee for the tour of $280. The fee for children
under 5 is $115. On 6/4/13 the prices increase by $50. The price for a non-cyclist/driver/participant is $290. You will
need money for lunches. You should also bring extra money if you
would like to make any purchases along the way (souvenirs, etc.)
and in the event that bicycle parts are needed.
I make a deposit and pay in full later for the tour?
No, payment for the tour must be in full.
I pay by credit card?
Yes. You can pay by VISA, MASTERCARD DISCOVER or AMERICAN EXPRESS.
I get my money back if I can't make the tour?
Refunds, less a $50 processing fee, will
be issued with a written cancellation request if received by 7/16/13. After
that, only credits for future tours will be issued, less a $50 processing fee,
with a written request if received by 7/27/13. NO refunds for shuttle or
jersey cancellations after 7/16/13. Prices increase $50 starting on June 24.
there a waiting list to sign-up?
To make the ride as enjoyable as possible, we are only accepting
a limited number of riders. When the ride is full, a waiting list will be started. Each
person that would like to be placed on the waiting list must provide
a registration form and pay the full fee. You will be informed when
you are registered. Each person on the waiting list must be available
to do the ride. If you are on the waiting list and are unable to
join the ride, we will return your check.
is the ride registration day?
Registration will be on Monday afternoon, July 29 from 2:30 – 4:30
p.m. Please come to the registration area and drop off your bicycle
and bags before returning rental vehicles or taking your car to
long-term parking. You
may also register on Tuesday, July 30, between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m.
Old and young are welcome to join us on Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour, as long
as they can reliably ride or be towed behind a bicycle for an average 40-45 miles
a day. Please consider your child's ability to bicycle this distance daily. We
will provide sag wagon rides to the day's endpoint for physical or mechanical
breakdown, but not on a daily basis. Since children under 18 must be accompanied
by a parent or adult guardian at all times, if the child is too tired to continue
bicycling, that will end the day of touring for the guardian too. Sorry, tour
staff is not available to provide babysitting services. Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour route has been carefully selected for optimal
bicycling but, especially as the tour approaches NYC, some busy roads are inevitable.
Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour allow child carriers, tandems or trailers?
many miles does the tour average?
average of 40-45 miles a day seems like a lot!
You can bicycle 40 miles in four hours or less of actual biking, leaving plenty
of time for sightseeing and visiting historic sites. Sag wagon rides are available
for physical and mechanical breakdowns.
miles a day doesn't seem like much!
Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour is designed for relaxation, enjoying the scenery,
learning about the history of the Hudson Valley and just plain FUN! Ride at a
leisurely pace, take time to see the sights, and finish the week rested. If you
really want more miles than the 200 miles the Pedal provides, optional rides
will be available during the week.
sort of terrain will we ride on?
Elevation changes on Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour are moderate, with a maximum of 500 ft. of change on any given day. See a simple elevation chart and a more detailed elevation chart and maps. The route has been carefully selected for optimum bicycling but some busy roads are inevitable. Training tips are included
in the Rider Handbook(2013 version available in March.)
How hilly is the ride?
The ride is moderately hilly. See elevation chart more detailed elevation chart and maps.
do we stay?
Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour is a camping tour. Each night, as your trip winds
down for the day, you'll set up camp at the official campsite and get to share
your adventures with other cyclists. Trucks will transport all of your baggage
each morning to that evening's campsite.
are the campgrounds like?
Each night's campground will have a Hospitality Tent where riders can get information
about the town and tours available and the next day's routes and tours. Most Tent Cities will be located on
school or college grounds. Some will have swimming pools available to riders.
Restrooms and showers will be provided each night. Supplemental port-a-johns
will be provided where needed. Alternative shelter will be available in the event
of an emergency (e.g. high winds, electrical storm).
my luggage and bicycle be safe?
Thefts of baggage or bicycles are extremely rare. The usual culprit is someone
who mistakenly picks up a bag thinking it is his or hers. Your bags should be
distinctively painted or decorated with ribbons so you can find them easily.
All bags must have name tags. We urge you to lock your bicycle when you are not
riding it. Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour does not guarantee the safety of your
baggage, bicycle, or other equipment.
if I don't want to camp out?
If you prefer alternative lodging, you can make your own arrangements to stay
in a hotel, motel or bed & breakfast. See the Rider Handbook for a list of accommodations near tent cities. If you do choose alternative lodging,
you will be responsible for transporting yourself to and from the tent city at
the end and beginning of each day, and in order to participate in meals and activities
occurring at the tent city. Upon arrival at each night's tent city we will provide
you with a list of transportation options (taxis, buses, etc.).
do we do during the day?
Each morning, a truck will be waiting for your luggage. You are then free to
travel the established route, riding at your own pace, stopping along the way
to admire the attractions, and arriving when you wish. Parents and minors participating
together are required to stay together during the day's ride. Along the way you'll
find smiling faces with snacks, drinks, support, and repair vehicles to take
care of all your daily needs.
do we eat?
At the beginning and end of each day's ride, Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour and
the host communities will provide a delicious and nutritious meal except for
one evening when you will be able to enjoy the local eateries. Non-meat meal
options will be available. Rest stops with snacks, drinks and fresh fruit will
be provided twice daily. Lunch is on your own.
What will we eat?
Breakfasts: You can expect an assortment of scrambled eggs, bacon and/or sausage, juice, coffee, cereals, toast, fruit, bagels, and pancakes/French toast/waffles - which will vary slightly from location to location.
Rest stops: There is a morning and afternoon rest stop each day. The rest stops are stocked with fresh fruit, crackers, snack food, water and Gatorade.
Dinner: Standard fare is chicken, rice, pasta, veggies, etc. - there has always been a wide variety of food items. A non-meat option is available at every meal for those that register as non-meat eaters. If you prefer to eat out, a listing of restaurants is available at each night's tent city information booth. The location of each night's city islisted in our Rider Handbook.
A note to those with food allergies: Unfortunately, other than vegetarians, we can't accomodate riders with specific dietary needs due to the number of participants
and the wide variety of food allergies.
there be a non-meat meal option?
Yes, non-meat meal options are available for breakfast and dinner for those who sign up for this option. Lunch is on your own.
will I need to bring for the tour?
A multi-geared, better quality bicycle with tires in excellent condition will
make the tour much more enjoyable. We recommend using a road bike. We have found
that older tires cause many tire repair problems. If in doubt, we recommend getting
new tires for the ride. You must have a helmet - you won't be allowed on the
ride without one. You'll need a small tent and other basic camping gear,
sleeping bag, etc. Camping equipment rental, plus set up and breakdown services,
is available from Comfy Campers. Bring proper clothing for all weather conditions. Everything
you take should fit into one large or two small bags that combined weigh less
than 50 pounds. An odometer on your bike will be helpful, as all route directions
use mileage. For more information, see Preparing
for the Ride.
many bags can I bring?
As a guideline, everything you take should fit into one large or two small bags that, combined,
weigh less than 50 pounds.
Think about the baggage claim at the airport. If it's too heavy for you to carry, it's too heavy for the volunteers that handle your bags.
Parks & Trails New York provide transportation at the end of the ride to
the start point in Albany?
A shuttle from NYC to Albany on Sunday August 4 is available for you and your bike for an additional fee of $80. The shuttle
will depart from NYC at 4:00 p.m. and will arrive in Albany around
7:00 p.m. If you choose this option, you can park your car in Albany
(long-term parking available--see below), bike to NYC and take the
shuttle back to Albany.
do I get my bike to the ride?
There are many options for getting your bicycle to the starting point in Albany.
For many people the best option will be to ship their bicycle ahead of time via
is the long-term parking?
Long-term parking is available in Albany for all participants of the bike tour
at the start location. Please note that PTNY is not responsible for any damage
or theft that may occur to your vehicle while in the long-term parking lots,
although we don't expect any of these things to happen. No valuables should be
left visible in your parked car. Please come to the registration area in Albany
before parking your car in long-term parking.
Note: We are offering a shuttle from NYC to Albany for an additional
fee of $80. You can park in Albany, bike to NYC, then take the shuttle back to
if my bike breaks down?
Mobile mechanical and sag wagon support will be available to riders every
day to help fix the problem or get rider and bike to a place where the problem
can be fixed. The rider is responsible for all repair and part costs.
if I can't bike the whole way one or more days?
Bicyclists are expected to have a fitness level that will allow them to bicycle
all the miles every day. However, we understand that sometimes there are physical
breakdowns, and sag wagons will bring riders that have broken down to the Tent
City at the end of the day. See Preparing
for the Ride for training tips.
can my family reach me in an emergency?
In an emergency, family members can contact Parks & Trails New York from
9 to 5 workdays at 518-434-1583 or Al Hastings, Ride Director, at 607-423-2769.
If all else fails, contact the Police Department in the Tent City Community.
I'm not riding, do I have to register?
Everyone must register and pay the entry fees for the event, whether they are
riding or not. Everyone will receive a wristband at registration that allows
access to all tours, campsites and meals.
can I get more information about some of the areas we will be biking through?How
can I volunteer?
Check out the following websites: Albany, Columbia County, Hudson
River Valley National Heritage Area, Dutchess
County, Orange County, Rockland
Count, New York City.
Both riders and non-riding participants can volunteer to help out during the
ride. Volunteers will receive a free or discounted registration and riders will
still be able to bicycle part of the time.
There are many volunteer possibilities available for volunteers including
sag and luggage truck drivers, rest stop help, route supervisors,
route checking, photographer, and more!!
If you are interested in volunteering, review the volunteer job descriptions, fill out and return the on-line form (which will be available January 20, 2013), or call 607-423-2769.
have past participants said about the tour?
should I sign up?
- I loved the bike tour.
- Best organized ride I’ve been on – details were great, road markings great, meals superb.
- Fun trip – nice people.
- Well done! Good campsite locations, good rest stop locations, good food, good tour options.
- I loved the scenery and historic houses to visit.
- The people were so friendly and nice.
- Great ride! Thanks to everyone.
- It was tons of fun.
- A fine trip with lots of interesting things to see and do, and great people to share the journey.
- Truly memorable.
Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour will be six days spent with companion
cyclists learning about the history of the Hudson Valley and enjoying
its scenery. Riders will enjoy time cycling and touring with family
members, renewing old friendships and making new friendships. Cycling the Hudson Valley Bike Tour is an opportunity for you to enjoy this
beautiful region of New York State in a truly unique manner and
at your own pace. Riders can enjoy the quaint villages, panoramic
river crossings, and historic sites along the way. If this sounds
good to you, your family or a friend, sign up today and begin making
plans for a memorable trip through the Hudson Valley on bicycle.
Questions? Check out the 2012 Rider Handbook (2013 version available in March), give
us a call at 518-434-1583 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.