The Carolina Tarwheels presents 

BikeFest 2016

the 21st Annual

Rural Heritage Tour

Saturday, August 6

Check out the new site


The 2015 BikeFest logo

design courtesy of Bill Moss

 [The routes] [Support] [Fees & Dates] [Schedule] [Safety] [Visitor_Info] [Contact_Us]

Scenic rural vistas along quiet country roads.
Historic farmsteads and rustic churches.
The pastoral heritage of the Piedmont.

Make a difference.


Experience all this on the Carolina Tarwheels' BikeFest Rural Heritage Tour.  Tarwheels donates all proceeds, in excess of expenses, to bicycling related activities in our community.  In 2013 we donated over $16,000!  Recipients include Triangle Trips for Kids, Lewis Days (bike restoration for children of need), Kidical Mass, the Special Olympics Cycling Team, and the Carrboro Bicycle Coalition.

Description of the Tour routes.  The tour begins at the Superior Courthouse in downtown Hillsborough [map to Hillsborough] [BikeFest Parking Map_2015.pdf] and offers a choice of several rides: a 35-mile half metric, a 62-mile metric century, and a 100-mile English century. The 35 and 62 routes will have 2 rest stops while the 100 mile route has 4 rest stops. All 3 will have a water, soda, and cookies stop 10 miles before the end.

The 100 and 62-mile routes leave at the same time and direction, winding thru rural Orange County, and briefly into Alamance County. The first 25 miles is mostly rolling countryside. After the rest stop these 2 routes split in different directions.

The 62-mile loop, continues straight through northern Orange County and into Person County. This loop is flat to rolling countryside on roads with very little traffic.

The 100-mile loop turns left from the rest stop and proceeds into Alamance, Caswell, Person and back to Orange Counties. This loop is more challenging than the 62 mile route with numerous hills, however most of the climbs are less than 1 mile long. Estimated climbing is ~5000'. You will also ride on some of the best roads around, paceline riding at its best. There are two additional rest stops on this loop.

Just before rest stop 2 (the 4th stop for the 100 mile loop), the 62 and 100-mile routes re-unite and continue back to Hillsborough, with the 35 mile route joining for the last 17 miles over some very scenic flat to rolling countryside. There will be one final climb 2 miles from the end.

The 35 mile loop riders leave Hillsborough roughly 30 minutes after the 100 & 62 mile riders and travel though Hillsborough and out to Orange County on flat to rolling hills visiting 2 rest stops. After the first stop at mile 15, the 35 joins the 62 briefly and then rejoins both the 100 and 62 routes to the rest stop at mile 26. After this last rest stop, the route loops back into town for the last 9 miles which includes some hills near the end.

Free, family-oriented Historic District Fun RideFor those who want a much shorter ride, there is the Free Fun Ride, a seven mile tour of historic sites in and around Hillsborough. All riders will be provided with directions, and can ride the route at their own pace.  While there is no fee for the Fun Ride, all riders must still register.


Some details (food, water, support, photos)

The Tarwheels take pride in the volunteers who contribute time, energy, and the Tour's hallmark homemade cookies and baked goods. They have made the Rural Heritage Tour one of the most enjoyable bicycling events in North Carolina.  Refreshments will be provided at the end of the ride, but all riders are still encouraged to carry their own water bottles.

This is a fully-supported ride with rest stops, refreshments, and restrooms.  Routes are clearly marked and patrolled by SAG vehicles.  Mechanical support (i.e. repairs) is provided on a cost-of-parts-only basis.


Fees and Dates


      Pre-registration only until the earlier of Aug 4th or when 850 cap is reached.  No on-site registration!

In order to maintain the superior quality of BikeFest, maintain our reputation for putting on the best one day ride in the state, and allow parking for our participants, we are again limiting the number of registrants for BikeFest to 850 riders.


35, 62, or 100 mile ride (18 years old & over)

$30 (early registration, through June 30)
$40 (regular registration, July 1 onward)

35, 62, or 100 mile ride (17 years old & under)

$20 (early registration, through June 30)
$30 (regular registration, July 1 onward)
7 mile fun ride (all ages) free

     T-Shirt (logo at top of page, 50/50 cotton/poly, designed by a local artist, no ads)

(Click here to view BikeFest T-shirt designs from previous years then click your browser back button)

$15.00 (available through July 12)

You can pay by credit card or electronic check (bank debit), the price is the same.


Age Restrictions

Riders under 18 can ride without accompaniment but must have parent or guardian consent. Riders under 16 must have parent or guardian consent and be accompanied by the parent/guardian. Riders under 12 years of age must be accompanied by the parent/guardian and are limited to the 7-mile fun ride.

Refund & Cancellation Policy

BikeFest fees are NON-REFUNDABLE for any reason including, but not limited to, cancellation due to weather, vender non-performance, or rider withdrawal.  The BikeFest directors reserve the right to close or modify the routes as conditions dictate.


Schedule of Events


All rides
     Pick up registration packets either at the start of the ride at the Orange County Visitor Center or the day before between 3 & 5:30pm at The Clean Machine Bike Store, 104 West Main St, Carrboro, NC
62 & 100 mile rides
6:30am  check-in opens


mass start for 62 & 100 mile rides


latest start for 62 & 100 mile rides
35 mile ride
6:30am  check-in opens
8:00am   mass start for 35 mile ride        
8:15am   latest start for 35 mile ride        
 7 mile Historic District free fun ride
6:30am   check-in opens
9:00am   start for 7 mile fun ride            
All rides


Rest stops close. Out of respect for the volunteers who have given their day to provide a safe and fun ride for all, riders who are still on the road to the Welcome Baptist Church rest stop (approx 8 miles from the end) at 4pm will be asked to take the SAG to the finish.



ANSI, Snell, ASTM, or CPSC approved helmets are required. All riders will be required to accept a release form prior to the start of the Tour. The Tour will be held on public roads which will remain open to motor vehicle traffic. Each rider is expected to obey traffic laws and is responsible for his or her own safety. Earbuds, phones, and mp3 players must not be used while riding.  See registration forms for other requirements.

Visitor Information

The Town of Hillsborough is located near Chapel Hill and Durham, North Carolina. From points east and west take I-40 to Exit 261. From points north & south, take I-85 to Exit 164. Follow signs to the downtown historic district & the Orange County Visitor Center (map location click here).

The Hillsborough Visitors Center  919-732-7741

The Chapel Hill-Orange County Visitors Bureau  919-968-2060

For More Information

tarwheels logo



(and where to send
registration checks)
P.O. Box 111
Durham, NC 27702


BikeFest wishes to thank these sponsors:

Bronto email marketing - Durham, NC


Clean Machine bike store - Carrboro, NC


Questions? Contact Us

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