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D2R2 - The Deerfield Dirt Road Randonnée

Dear Riders:

It is with heavy hearts that we announce our decision to cancel D2R2 2020 due to the risks associated with COVID-19. This was a very difficult decision to make. We entertained a wide range of creative alternatives to the traditional D2R2 event that we all love. But, in weighing each scenario, we realized that we couldn’t ensure your safety, or that of the volunteers, residents, emergency responders and local businesses that come together to make this amazing event possible.

To keep everyone safe, we respectfully ask that you wait to travel to this region and ride the dirt roads until it is safe to do so. On that note, we have created a couple of safe alternatives for you to experience D2R2 either on your own or virtually. While we won’t be able to simulate the camaraderie and character of D2R2 online, we can still give you some serious hills to climb! To that end, we are offering a DIY D2R2 Virtual Ride, and if you’re on Strava please join our D2R2 Club with a weekly leaderboard of total distance, longest ride, average speed, and elevation gain. (We’ll be watching and holding weekly raffles to send out swag to some of the lucky folks that make it onto either of the leaderboards!)

Fortunately for us, we can’t think of a better group of people to navigate such challenging times with. As a D2R2 rider, you are known for your grit, perseverance, and optimism in the face of adversity. You are well versed in making the best of a difficult situation. As we here at FLT navigate these unprecedented times, we are following your lead. We will not give up, we will keep our sights on D2R2 2021, and we will continue to protect and care for the land that makes this ride so special.

D2R2 is FLT’s biggest fund-raising event.  As a D2R2 rider, your support makes it possible for us to continue hosting this event each year. You also help us keep a strong and steady pace of land conservation in western Massachusetts. Thanks to you, FLT conserves about 1000 acres of land every year. This land provides food, clean water, clean air, and important habitat for wildlife. And it makes for some pretty nice gravel road riding!

These last few months have made it very clear that now more than ever, people need natural places for hiking, biking, exploring or quiet contemplation. Now more than ever, we need to protect farmland, support farmers, and ensure that we have access to healthy food. And, now more than ever, we need to focus on land conservation as part of the climate change solution.

In the midst of this global crisis, we are working to ensure that our pace of conservation remains strong by being creative and making the best of a difficult situation. But without D2R2, FLT is facing a significant shortfall. This pandemic has impacted all of us, and with a little grit and perseverance we know we will come out stronger for it. But in the short term, we need your help.

If you have already registered, we would like to encourage you to donate your registration fee to FLT, if you are able to do so. By doing this, you are ensuring that important lands will be protected AND that D2R2 2021 will be as amazing as ever. You will also receive a complimentary D2R2 2020 T-shirt, free registration into the DIY D2R2 Virtual Ride, and you will be qualified to register next year at a reduced rate ($75).

These are difficult times for everyone and we absolutely understand if you are not able to make a donation at this time. We are offering deferrals to D2R2 2021 or full refunds. (Please choose your options at the link below.)

We hope you will participate in our alternative D2R2 options, and we hope you will be in touch over the summer. We’d love to see photos of your rides and hear stories of your back-road biking adventures. We can’t wait to see you next year!

Be well. Stay safe. And keep riding! #D2R2

~Mary, Sandy & the D2R2 Bike Committee

P.S. If you have already registered, please refer to your registration page on Bikereg.com for available options. Please select your preferred option by Monday, June 22.
If you do not submit the form by this date, your registration will be converted into a tax-deductible charitable donation to the Franklin Land Trust, which we acknowledge with our deep thanks.

All pre-ordered merchandise for D2R2 2020 will be shipped to you later this summer.

The Deerfield Dirt-Road Randonnee was conceived in the 1990's as just a favorite dirt-road loop in the hilltowns of Franklin County, Massachusetts. Since its birth as an organized event in 2005, many have hailed D2R2 as the hardest, most beautiful, most fun, most traffic-free, most unique, and overall best ride that they have ever done. 

 

  • The courses will use the narrowest, oldest, twistiest, quietest, and most-scenic roads available.
  • A range of courses will provide access to novices as well as challenge the world's strongest riders.
  • D2R2 will never offer prizes for anything other than gags, nor will finish results ever be presented like it was a race.
  • The course is not marked. Riders will use cue sheets to navigate the route. Official RideWithGPS routes will also be available.
  • Riders shall cover the course in a self-sufficient manner, without motorized crew vehicles.
  • The organization will put as much effort into its food offerings as it does the ride itself.
  • D2R2 is a key fundraiser for the Franklin Land Trust's efforts to conserve land in the region. The staff and board of directors of the FLT sincerely thank you for your participation!
     
    “At the Deerfield Dirt Road Randonnée, or D2R2, you start whenever you want and navigate your own route, you won't get a prize for finishing first, or grief for finishing last—and, by the way, you will fall under the spell of the most beautiful hard roads you've ever ridden.”

MIKE MAGNUSON for Bicycling Magazine

What is D2R2?

Each August thousands of bicyclists descend on Franklin County to participate in the nation’s largest dirt-road cycling event, the Deerfield Dirt Road Randonnée. Hosted by Franklin Land Trust (FLT), last year the ride attracted cyclists from 26 states and 5 countries.

This year, which marks the 15th anniversary of the event, promises to be the best yet!

“D2R2,” as the ride has been nicknamed, offers EIGHT dirt-road courses ranging in length from a 12 mile Family Ride to the 180K challenging course. All routes begin at Old Deerfield and thread through agricultural land and forests in western Massachusetts and southern Vermont. The short course has a flat run up the Green River valley, whereas the long course is regarded as perhaps the hardest century ride in the world.

What originally started as a strict randonnee in 2005, has now evolved into a series of rides showcasing the beauty of the area while still adhering to its randonnee roots. Randonneuring is a vintage French format in which riders are challenged with hard courses but encouraged to keep the atmosphere social. There are no prizes, and riders start in small groups around the suggested start time pacing themselves to arrive at rest stops during operating hours. The randonneuring style also engenders a level of self-reliance – riders must navigate the course and perform their own repairs.  

One of the things that makes this event so unique, according to Sandy Whittlesey, Ride Designer, is that it attracts cyclists from a wide range of disciplines, from competitive road racers to recreational riders and mountain bikers. “D2R2 has a very egalitarian culture. Nobody cares how fast you are, what your background is, or what you’re riding.” Whittlesey has resisted suggestions of turning D2R2 into a race, or marking the route to make it easier to navigate. “We started the event with a stubborn insistence on the non-competitive, self-reliant style – if you wanted a race or a guided tour, there were lots of those out there. As a result, we ended up with an incredibly cool, friendly, strong group of participants, and we feel very lucky to host such a fun crowd every year.”

In the past thirteen years, D2R2 has grown into the largest fund-raising event for the Franklin Land Trust, with entry fees being boosted by merchandise sales, raffles, and corporate sponsorships. The Franklin Land Trust (FLT) is a non-profit organization in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts that conserves farms, forests, wildlands, and other natural resources in western Mass. In many cases, conservation restrictions aimed at encouraging agriculture and forestry are the conservation tool of choice, where FLT holds the restriction, and the land remains in private ownership. Because FLT isn’t being asked to purchase the land, the result is far more land being conserved per dollar: last year, each rider at D2R2 effectively helped to conserve an entire acre of land – something that surely makes all the steep hills and bumpy roads seem well worth it.

This year’s event will take place on August 15, 2020.

Learn More    Register

Course Options

D2R2 includes courses to suit any rider. 180K, 160K, 115K, 100K, 50 mile paved route, 40-mile Green River Tour & 12 mile Family Ride and a Mystery Ride.

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Bring the entire family!

Each year, more and more riders are bringing their families along for the ride. Some participate in the Family Ride while others enjoy the bounty of area attractions including Historic Deerfield, PVMA's Memorial Hall Museum and Indian House, Shelburne Falls, Yankee Candle, Art Galleries and so much more.

Camping | Lodging | Area Attractions

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