The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic mountain bike stage race organizers set the race's dates for 2013. It will happen from May 26 to June 1 next year. Deep lush forests, cold mountain creeks and and rocks await racers in Pennsylvania.
"Trans-Sylvania Epic is a different focus from other stage races. This one is about community, the tribe, about getting people together who want to ride bikes. It is fun! The Average Joe can get through it and not be destroyed," said racer Rich Dillen (Team Dicky), a veteran of more than a dozen different mountain bike stage races when asked about the TSEpic.
In 2013, the Trans-Sylvania Epic will offer a wide range of options and make it possible for for all levels of riders to take part. Solos and duos looking for the thrill of competition have seven days of fast racing to look forward to on challenging singletrack filled courses. Mountain bike lovers looking to ride in a more relaxed vacation-like way can do so through the "Experience category" where stopping to take in the beautiful views of rolling green ridges stretching into the distance is encouraged and rewarded. And groups of racers from beginner to elite can band together in an Epic Team and choose their own adventure in ways that allow all participants to make the week fit their lives, fitness, goals and abilities.
Riders can look forward to improvements to camp and some new and revamped courses in 2013.
"We take a little different view of things here regarding our courses," said TSEpic co-organizer Mike Kuhn, "and mix up a little of everything into the week." The changes in focus - from wide open fast dirt to the fastest cross country course in North America at Allegrippis to the IMBA-style build of the Nittany Mountain Bike Association trails in Rothrock to raw old school trails from RB Winter - offer different racers an opportunity to excel and showcase the breadth of great riding in Pennsylvania.
The shorter than death-march courses offer fast racing and exciting competition and the bonus of lots of time to hang out at camp and recover with post-race beverages and new found friends. "I think the biggest thing going with TSE right now, and I know I'm not the first to point this out, is the variety of the stages throughout the week. [Trans-Sylvania] is an excellent representation of what mountain biking is in Pennsylvania. And it is good." said Scott's Aaron Snyder.
Over the coming months, the Trans-Sylvania Epic will be rolling out some changes to the courses and even the flow of the week. Co-organizers Ray Adams said, "We like to think about this sort of like they do at the Tour. You won't see the same stages year on year. You might see a mountain top finish next year. You might find the ITT at the other end of the week as the final stage. We may bring back the enduro-style stage from years one and two. We're always looking for more great trails. Lucky for us there are hundreds of more miles of singletrack within the Rothrock and Bald Eagle State Forests to go explore and put to together into fun challenging courses. There is so much here we could run from camp for two weeks!"