Bike Month in the Roanoke Region: Rides, Groups, and Guides
May is bike month. And it is packed with special events – such as the Night Rider’s Ball – as well as weekly gatherings on two wheels.
Whether you are a seasoned rider or just starting to get on a bike, there are plenty of opportunities to experience the road or trails. Here, we’ve compiled a list of ride options, cycling groups, and guides to help you get riding. (And if we’ve missed anything, let us know, and we’ll make sure to add it!)
- Wednesday Night Disco Race Series (all month): Bring your fat-tired friend and ride hump day away as you pedal through one of Roanoke’s finest trail systems; categories for beginners to expert riders.
- Women’s Mountain Bike Day, May 4: All women are invited to join a no-drop ride on Mill Mountain, followed by a social at Starr Hill.
- StarBomb, May 11: Dress in your craziest outfit and get ready to ride down Mill Mountain! The use of unusual bicycles, minibikes, and kids bikes is highly encouraged, and bike transportation to the top of Mill Mountain is provided.
- Night Rider’s Ball, May 11: Hosted by RIDE Solutions and 5 Points Music Sanctuary, everyone who rides a bike gets into the event free with music by Headtronics and The State Birds.
- Le Tour De Roanoke, May 28: Enjoy an evening of cycling and dining at Roanoke’s finest local gourmet eateries. Starts at Underdog Bikes with a Champagne Toast (provided by Underdog Bikes), head to River and Rail for Appetizers, ride along the greenway to Local Roots for a charcuterie assortment, and then downtown to Billy’s for your choice of dessert.
Weekly Bike Rides
Weekly bike rides feature different terrain – road versus trail – and social options. Look at each’s group’s listing to find a ride that best fits your experience level and the type of riding you want to do.
- Monday Shop Rides, start at finish at Downshift, 5:45 p.m.: Beginner-friendly greenway loop ride.
- Monday Night Mill Ride, start and finish at Deschutes Tasting Room, 5:45 p.m.: Easy going mountain bike ride for all paces and skill levels.
- L’Eroica Roanoke, start and finish at Deschutes Tasting Room, 5:45 p.m.: Road route with only a few stoplights and follows gorgeous country roads.
- Roanoke Dirt Riders, start and finish at Deschutes Tasting Room, 5:45 p.m.: MTB for all levels with rides to places such as Explore Park, Morningside Park and gravel alleys.
- Cardinal Bicycle Wednesday Night Ride, start and finish at Cardinal Bikes on Orange Avenue, 5:30 p.m.: Ride along the Blue Ridge Parkway and back through Explore Park for a roughly 20-mile ride.
- Thursday Night Special, start and finish at Roanoke Mountain Adventures, 5:30 p.m.: Group mountain bike ride on Mill Mountain with a no drop/party pace group; all ability levels welcome but keep in mind Mill Mountain is mostly intermediate trail.
- Franklin Freewheelers Ride, start and finish at Antioch Church of the Brethren in Rocky Mount, 5:45 p.m.: Everyone is welcome with no rider left behind.
- Saturday Road Rides, check event for routes, 10 a.m.: Three road ride options: beginner, under 20 miles; intermediate, 20-35 miles; and advanced, 35+ miles.
- Saturday Morning Bandy Ride, start and finish at Cardinal Bikes Grandin, 8 a.m.: Relaxed hour on Bandy Road loop (about 18 miles); no-drop ride with clear directions (great for beginners).
Keep up with upcoming events – or add your own (it’s free) – in the Roanoke Outside calendar.
The Roanoke Region is home to some of the best mountain bike trails and best road cycling in the nation. From Carvins Cove and Douthat State Park to the Blue Ridge Parkway and the back roads of Franklin County, you are sure to find the ride that is right for you.
Whether you want to hit the trail on your own or with a guide or experienced cyclist, the Roanoke Region is packed with opportunities for the perfect day on two wheels.