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October 8th, 2022
Braintree, Vermont

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The Route

Hey, Braintree 357 participants!  

First and foremost we hope you and your loved ones have been healthy and happy throughout these challenging times. It has been a long road for so many, and we still need to stay focused on our collective health and well-being! Part of that focus is healing through riding bikes and being together in a safe manner. We host this event this year for just that healing together through our collective love of riding bikes. Read on...


The Braintree 357 - Circus Ride

There’s a twist this year....we’re stoked to bring back the iconic Circus Ride from the mid-90’s New England Mountain Bike Festival days in Randolph. What was once a famed old-school mtb ride now squarely falls into the new gravel/adventure bike norm. It has it all, some smooth gravel, rowdy woods roads, 2 mountain gaps, historic farmsteads, and amazing views all wrapped up with food, beer, live music, and a laidback Vermont vibe atop picturesque Braintree Hill! The Circus Ride is 38 miles and 6000'vert. 

There will be no podiums, no timing, no winners, no prizes...we will ride for the love of bikes and adventure! There will be a ton of high fives and congratulations all around! So grab your partner or friends and your bikes and come to Braintree on Oct 10th. 


>>> PLEASE NOTE: This loop will replace the 3,5,7 routes this year!  <<< 


But if you want to still join in the fun & the afterparty, you are welcome to sign up and do the 3,5, or 7 route on your own. If you choose to do this, there is no support, sag station, or directions.  You are on your own, but still a part of the festive atmosphere! 

So what is the Circus Ride and where did it get its name from? It was created in 1995 by one of Vermont's early MTB trail builders, advocates, and promotors Paul Rea. He, along with a few close friends in Randolph hosted the New England Mountain Bike Festival for many years. The Circus Ride was THE ride to do there. It was daunting, it was big, but it was wicked rewarding! No joke, in 1996 Mountain Bike Magazine ranked the Circus Ride as one of the top ten gnarliest trails in North America! WHAT?!?! Wow, how the times and trails have changed. As mentioned above this squarely falls in the gravel/adventure bike norms these days & that's a perfect fit for this event. 


The Circus Ride was named after the Circus that traveled from Randolph to Rochester up and over Randolph Gap and back again in the early 1900's. It was noted that the elephants pulled the wagons up to the ridge and then they switched them to behind the wagons to ease them down the steep mountain road. What a crazy adventure!! 


Here is the Circus Ride Route & Cue sheet;


A little about the route; It's an adventure ride!  Between a few smooth gravel sections lay some rowdy woods road segments. The woods roads will require good bike handling skills, focus, and strong legs. They are rocky, and muddy with multiple lines to choose from. A minimum tire size of 40mm or bigger is absolutely suggested, or an xc mtb would be well suited in this route too. We will have one food/aid station mid-way through with tasty snacks and cold drinks. There will be a moto sweep to make sure everyone gets back safe and sound. 

* 18.4 miles of rowdy woods roads (class 4)

* 16.4 miles of smooth as butter gravel road

* 3.2 miles of easy peasy pavement


AFTERPARTY; We are excited to host this again in person after a year off. The Braintree Meeting House just recently gave us permission to host it there again this year. It's a warm and welcoming venue that we all love! Our friends at Bent Hill Brewery will be there with their tasty beers, as well as a local tasty food truck. You can sit back and enjoy all this while live music rolls across the grounds. You will get a free beer and free food to fill your bellies!  We're lining up a great band this week and will post more details as this whole event has come together in a quick period of time. We are in 100% go mode now to give you the best adventure and experience we can come up with!   

What do you get for your entrance fee? You will receive 1 free Bent Hill beer of your choice, a fabulous plate of tasty food, a beautiful event t-shirt, an event sticker, and 


REGISTER TODAY- The field is capped at 150!

This event has come together super fast with venue approval just earlier this week. PLEASE feel free to reach out to me personally to answer any questions!

We will be posting updates in the coming days on FB and Bike Reg, as more details fall into place. We assure you this will be a great day with an excellent afterparty! 


Thank you & we hope to see your smiling faces on Oct 8th in Braintree! 



All photos by Chip Allen Natvig and Zac Freeman 

Photo Gallery

2022 Circus Ride Sponsors 

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Ride & Afterparty
Meet Zac Freeman
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