Cyclists breeze into Haywood with Blue Ridge Breakaway

A few hundred cyclers will test their endurance with the annual Blue Ridge Breakaway coming up August 20.

A spectrum of routes — 24 miles, 40 miles or 65 miles — will take riders over the scenic countryside of Haywood County. The longest route follows the Blue Ridge Parkway with a cumulative elevation gain of 9,600 feet.

The second annual ride is organized by the Greater Haywood County Chamber of Commerce and sponsored by MedWest.

Cyclists in last year’s event praised how smoothly the event was orchestrated and executed, including rider support and rest stops.

“The Blue Ridge Breakaway is without doubt one of the best cycling events in the Smoky Mountain region”, said Committee Chair Scott McLeod of The Smoky Mountain News. “The routes are just breathtaking as far as scenery goes, especially the portion on the Blue Ridge Parkway. All in all it’s just a great event that you don’t want to miss if you love cycling in the mountains.”

All routes will begin at the Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center. The Century ride will also include 30 miles on the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway with

Early registration for the two longer routes is $44, but goes up by $10 after August 12. Shorter ride is $29 or $35 after August 12. Register online, and find route descriptions, maps, and cue sheets.

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