Tour de Wyoming Kicks off Sunday, July 14 in Thermopolis
July 11, 2019
Nearly 350 cyclists and volunteers will be sightseeing, via the seat of a bicycle, areas of the Bighorn Basin during the 23rd running of the Tour de Wyoming bicycle tour. The six day event, which attracts cyclists from across the nation as well as international riders this year from Norway, Australia and Canada, kicks off on July 14 in Thermopolis.
Tour Director Amber Travsky said this year’s route circles the basin and takes a brief foray into Montana to spend one night in Red Lodge.
“We are cycling where dinosaurs once roamed,” Travsky said. “That is our theme, as depicted in our commemorative jerseys and shirts.”
The cyclists and volunteers gather July 13 in Thermopolis before beginning pedaling the next day. The route covers 365 miles with overnight stays in Basin, Cowley, Red Lodge, Powell and Meeteese. The cyclists return July 19 to Thermopolis.
“We strive each year to show off the state to our riders who come from across the country, although about half are from Wyoming,” Travsky said. “We also add some Wyoming-based live music entertainment most evenings to enhance the tour experience for everyone.”
Live music, where the community is welcome to attend the free concern, is slated for July 15 in Cowley with Jalan Crossland and July 17 in Powell with Aaron Davis & the Mystery Machine out of Jackson.
According to Travsky, the overnight communities are the backbone of the Tour de Wyoming. Community groups step forward to provide meals, which they use as fundraisers, and allow use of community facilities where riders typically camp for the night, although many prefer heading to local motels.
This year riders come from 35 states and three foreign countries. Nearly half of the riders are from across Wyoming with 16 communities represented. The community with the largest group of riders is Laramie, with over 52 riders and volunteers. The mean age of the riders is 57 years, with a range from 11 to 80. There are 38 riders age 70 and over.
Entry into the Tour is by a drawing from registrations made in February. The drawing is needed to keep the rider numbers at 350.
The Tour de Wyoming is put on as a fundraiser for Cycle Wyoming, a non-profit corporation based in Laramie. The organization promotes safe cycling across the state.
“We are 100 percent volunteer-driven,” Travsky said. “From the 20-member planning committee to all the people helping at the rest stops, everyone donates their time and energy to put on this event.”
Information on this year’s Tour de Wyoming can be found at tourdewyoming.org.
Day 1 (July 14): Thermopolis to Basin
Day 2 (July 15): Basin to Cowley via mostly county roads
Day 3 (July 16): Cowley to Red Lodge, Mont.
Day 4 (July 17): Red Lodge to Powell
Day 5 (July 18): Powell to Meeteetse
Day 6 (July 19): Meeteetse to Thermopolis