“Four States” ACP 400km brevet - April 28 - Frederick, MD

The Four States 400km is a Lynn Kristianson route that provides plenty of training opportunities (read: hills). Traveling through four states, it forms a clockwise semi-circle to the southwest, west and northwest of Frederick.  This route was a DCR “regular” for many years, but had been “on vacation” til last year.  Starting at 4AM from the Frederick Days Inn in Frederick, Maryland, riders head south paralleling the Catoctin Ridge, before climbing over it.  After crossing Middletown Valley, riders head across the Potomac into Virginia at Brunswick. Climbing up to Lovettesville, they continue south to Airmont and then tackle the climb over the Blue Ridge at Snickers Gap. Just east of Berryville, the route turns north and enters West Virginia, traversing mostly level terrain - and many railroad tracks - to Shepherdstown, where several excellent brunch possibilities exist. Riders then head northwest, remaining in West Virginia and following the Potomac, climbing and descending to and from the many creek bottoms–this is a pretty tough section–before crossing the Potomac back into Maryland and a control in Hancock.

A tough climb up to Tollgate Ridge and series of rollers in the orchards north of town bring the riders into Pennsylvania and the beautiful Little Cove Creek valley. Heading north, they traverse an endless march of rolling hills to a final slow climb halfway up Tuscorora Mountain.

There is a fast descent to Cove Gap and then a few more rollers before a short breather north of Mercersburg. (Here, the route is roughly the reverse of the Michaux Meander until the end.)  The hills return in earnest through the orchards and farmland around Edenville. After the Cumberland Valley Business Park, the trip to an open control in Shippensburg follows less rigorous terrain through Amish farms.

After Shippensburg, riders will encounter the final climbs through the Michaux State Forest, up and over the false summit of Big Flat, and the truly popular descent into Gettysburg. Just south of Gettysburg, riders pick up the last 40 miles of the 300K route to return to Frederick.

Climbing is in the ballpark of about 15,000 feet based on repeated rides.

Last year’s cue sheets/GPS files are here  (subject to change after the checkout ride, of course).


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