What is the “Dante’s Ride”?
Dan and Maggie on a tandem, Sam and I, maybe others, will ride Dante’s SuperWest October 1, 2016, unsupported. 18 climbs, roughly 9-10 hours, 120 miles, 140,000′. Anyone free to ride along, time TBA, see Facebook: “Dante’s Ride” for updates. See below for cue sheet and route links.
This is a challenging road bike route in Central New York, south of metropolitan Syracuse, which has a series of distinct hill climbs, averaging 3-11%, with some of the very steepest sections above 21%. The hills are between 0.6 to 7 mile long climbs. It has two “sides”, East and West, with each side about 70 miles and 7,000′ of climbing, and each with nine component hills. The ride has been a cult interest of a group of local riders, originally and informally known as “Team Dante’s”, but more and more cyclists have been expressing an interest in training on this amazing route.
A “Full Dante’s” Ride is a combined continuous ride of both East and West courses: 18 hills, about 140 miles, 14,000′ of climbing. It may take about 9-12 hours of moving time. What is a “Double Dante’s”?? – two complete Full Dante’s laps, 36 climbs, 280 miles and almost 28,000′, see below…. Originally attempted in 2012 with no finishers, it was later completed in about 24 hours, August 17-18, 2013 by Dan McCarthy and John Cico, and then repeated by them August 23-24, 2014, with Amy Reynders pulling them along. Most recently, August 2-3, 2015, Dan McCarthy made it three in a row, along with Dan Wnorowski, finally finishing the “Double” on his fourth attempt.
It is a great training route.
Many consider it hard, and some consider it “hard as hell”…
“Dante’s” comes from “The Inferno”, a classic written by Dante Alighieri, c1300AD, about his version of what Hell might look like. On the main gate is inscribed these words: “Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here”. He describes his vision of the nine concentric “circles of Hell”, at the center of which resides Satan himself. This ride has hill climbs which by some original accounts loosely resemble these nine circles, nine within each of the East and West “sides”. We have yet to find Satan anywhere on this magnificent course.
In the interest of historical accuracy…
Tom Baesl, MD, is the “father of the Dante’s rides”, much like George Washington is the “father of our country”. There are more states in the US now, as well as more hills in the Dante’s ride, but George and Tom got the ball rolling. Tom should be given full and complete credit as the originator of the key concept and overriding theme, that so much suffering could exist so close to our home. The current version of the Dante’s, true to Tom’s marvelous vision, beats the likes of the notorious Highlander, Triple Bypass, and Death Ride, and is both a physical and mental challenge. Dante’s evolved through test versions 1.0, 2.0 and the current 3.0 West and 4.0 East. Many have contributed suggestions, and there have been additions, and further revisions are underway (see “SuperWest” below). It is now 140 miles and 13,800+’ of climbing: 18 hills, all within a 20-30 mile radius of the “Nice and Easy” (how ironic) fuel stop and convenience store on the SW corner of route 92 and Enders Road just SE of the village of Manlius (the original starting, midway stop, and finishing point). It began as a training course for these other events mentioned above, and by most cyclists’ experience, is by now probably even harder than any of these.
See below for the route directions, and the maps and profiles.
Background info: First of all, there has been a lot of recent increasing buzz about these rides…. mostly, “What ‘the hell’ is this ride?”, “Why would one do this?”, and “Can I do this?”, “Is my bike right?”, etc. Just show up and try, and learn. You will not be disappointed, and you will be challenged. You will see average grades of >10% on some of these hills, and max grades to 21+%, again and again! You can do one hill, a few, or many, or all, fast or slow, it does not matter. It will grow on you. “Dante’s” has grown piecemeal with additions to Tom’s concept resulting from brainstorms from many of us, especially Gordon Stevens, Jon Loftus, Mike Zipprich, and others.
25 cyclists are now known to have done the whole thing, the “Full Dante'”, East and West, as a continuous ride in one day: including Dan W., John Cico, Chris Murphy, Dan McCarthy, Tom Bersani, Dan DeGirolamo, Finbar Scannell, Randy Hadzor, Aaron Vlasak, Amy Reynders, Dave Sutkowy, Maggie Manning (on a tandem with Dan McCarthy!), Sam Sampere, Dave Grieves, Ed Keplinger, Erika Zazzara, Kurt Werner, Brian Goetke, and recently Jason Kompf in June, and Jeremy Burton in July of 2015. Jason was the first rider from west of the Mississippi, Breckenridge, CO. And also: Matt Curbeau and Adam Kosmicki from MA in a fast ride with some rainy conditions testing their passion (https://www.strava.com/activities/337274154). On Dante’s Days 2015: Tom Macera, Pat McNeil, and Ray Falso completed the route.
Dante’s going viral?
This route has trained some of us very well for other challenging rides, like the Highlander (http://www.highlandercycletour.com/), Triple Bypass (http://www.teamevergreen.org/triple) and Death Ride (https://www.deathride.com/), the “Bumps” Northeast Hillclimb Series (http://www.hillclimbseries.com/), and for Dan McCarthy, La Ruta de los Conquistadores (http://www.larutadelosconquistadores.com/info/) (Dan has done the La Ruta event at least 12 times). This course has been gradually assembled and has been growing over time, and it is a demanding giant now. Usually you can do a “Half Dante’s” (East or West) in a half day, often each on back to back days, so it is manageable, and so to not mess with people’s training schedules. Again, each is about 70 miles, and 7,000′, or 4.5-6 hours. These are moving times, and do not include breaks. When we have done a Full Dante’s, usually start at 5-6am and do the West first, followed by the East; estimate 10-12 hours riding time. It is best to build up to this a little at a time, and in a piecemeal fashion. An easy bail-out point on the East route is to continue down Peck Hill Road instead of the left on Palmer, continuing right on South Eagle Village, back to 173, left on 173 and left on Enders, back to the starting point, and you still have done a very respectable ride of some 30 miles of three awesome hills: Gulf, 13-Carry’s-Fenner, and Stanley!! From the West, you can bail from the top of Frank Long Road, and descend down Sweet Road to Broadfield and Pompey Center Road, and back to Enders and back to your car, or from Apulia Road South after coming down Eager, and climb back up Pompey Hill via 20 East to Palmer, and Clark Hollow, then to Newell Hill Road and finish down Henneberry and continue the tail of the West course. Re: gearing: I know of some people, who did the entirety (Jeremy Burton) or just the harder West side with “normal gears”, 39 up front. A 39×25 (ratio 1.56), represents a big challenge on the steeps. Dodge, Frank Long, Carrys Hill, Stanley, Case Hill, Ortloff, Newell, and Hitchings are bears with such gears (all with 21%+ sections). If you want to make it easier, and if you do not have a triple (which makes it much more manageable), consider a compact: 34×25 = 1.31, to 34×31 = 1.10. I typically use 34×28 = 1.21.
Double Dante’s- a bigger test, nightime climbs:
For the dark, we use lights for East-West combo 6pm-6am (sunset approximately 8pm, sunrise 6am). We use redundancy: spare lights, spare computer, spare Garmin, spare phone battery, tools, tires, tubes, etc. Headlight and front and rear bike lights are required. Riding in the dark is super dangerous! The roads, as always, belong to the cars.
Self-support suggestions: Sunoco (route 11/20) in Lafayette (West), Pompey Mall (route 20/91) (East and West), Kinney Drugs in Cazenovia (Main Street, route 20) (East), Nice and Easy in Manlius (Enders Road/route 92) (East), Jamesville Depot Sunoco (Apulia Road/route 173) (West).
GPX files current Dante’s routes/courses (thanks to Dick Rozanski):
Dante’s West – GPX Data
Dante’s East – GPX Data
Overview of Dante’s (hills in bold): Dante’s West (3.0): Manlius at 92 and Enders: Broadfield to Henneberry to 91 to Frank Long to Gates to 173 to Apulia to Coye-Eager to Apulia to Dodge to 20 to Hitchings to Kingsley to 80 to 20 to Case Hill to Cook to Barker to Otisco to Tully Farms to Webster to 11A to Ortloff-20 to Palmer to Clark Hollow to Newell Hill to Berry to Kelly to Berwyn to 20 to Henneberry to Brown Gulf to Watervale to Number 2 to Pompey Center to Alliance Bank…
13.5 ave mph
44.7top speed mph
52 ave cadence
4:59:17 ride time (7/4/2010)
Dante’s East (4.0): Manlius at 92 and Enders: 92 to village to North Street to Duguid to Rte. 5 to Gulf-Palmer to 173 to Dyke to Olmstead to 13-Falls-Carrys Hill-Bear Swamp-Nelson-Larkin-Buyea to East Road-Bingley to 13 to Rathbun toStanley to Peth to Peck Hill Road to Palmer to Route 92 south to Rte. 20 west to Gulf to Oran Delphi Road to Rte. 20 east to 13 to Burlingame to Cobb Hill Road to Dephi Falls to Number 5 to Pompey Center Road to Number 4 toCemetary to Henneberry to Number 2 to Pompey center Road to Alliance Bank…
15.7 ave mph
48.6 top speed mph
64 ave cadence
4:27:54 ride time (5/14/2010)
The whole route, East and West (3.0):
13.7 ave mph
48 top speed mph
57 ave cadence
10:15:09 ride time (7/26/2009)
Dante’s West (3.0) Directions:
|Latitude||Longitude||Leg (km)||Total (km)||Height (meters)||Type||Name||Directions|
|42.99266||-75.958||0.13||0.13||238||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Enders Rd|
|42.99071||-75.9608||0.32||0.45||218||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Pompey Center Rd|
|42.98895||-75.9609||0.2||0.65||224||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Broadfield Rd|
|42.97451||-76.003||3.88||4.53||328||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Henneberry Rd|
|42.90088||-76.0121||8.39||12.92||526||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Academy St|
|Turn right on 91|
|Turn right on Frank Long|
|Turn left on Gates Rd.|
|42.99257||-76.0451||14.51||27.43||238||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at NY-173/E Seneca Turnpike|
|42.99172||-76.0714||2.29||29.72||187||Right||Turn Right||Turn left at Apulia Rd/South St Continue to follow Apulia Rd|
|42.9807||-76.0747||1.27||30.99||196||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Coye Rd|
|42.96213||-76.0858||2.61||33.6||301||Straight||Straight||Continue on Eager Rd|
|42.90712||-76.0772||6.24||39.85||277||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Apulia Rd/Jamesville Apulia Rd|
|42.88922||-76.0882||2.23||42.08||270||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Dodge Rd|
|42.89203||-76.0999||1.08||43.15||373||Right||Turn Right||Slight right at Cherry Valley Turnpike/Ryter Rd/US-20/US Route 20 Continue to follow Cherry Valley Turnpike/US-20/US Route 20|
|42.90966||-76.1967||8.45||51.6||197||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Hitchings Rd|
|42.88521||-76.1933||2.78||54.38||461||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Kingsley Rd|
|42.88409||-76.2198||2.17||56.55||416||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at NY-80/State Route 80|
|42.91037||-76.2211||2.98||59.53||337||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Cherry Valley Turnpike/US-20/US Route 20|
|42.90646||-76.1852||3.05||62.58||183||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Case Rd/Case Hill Rd|
|42.87383||-76.1836||3.71||66.29||390||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Cook Rd|
|42.87304||-76.2001||1.35||67.64||405||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Barker St|
|42.86252||-76.201||1.28||68.92||400||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Otisco Rd|
|42.85841||-76.148||4.67||73.59||191||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Tully Farm Rd/Tully Farms Rd|
|42.88246||-76.1551||2.82||76.41||163||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Webster Rd|
|42.88314||-76.1419||1.08||77.49||189||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at NY-11A/State Route 11A/Syracuse Tully Valley Rd|
|42.88987||-76.1435||0.76||78.25||189||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Ortloff Rd|
|42.89323||-76.1317||1.12||79.38||305||Right||Turn Right||Slight right at Cherry Valley Turnpike/US-20/US Route 20|
|42.87716||-76.0857||5.01||84.39||270||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Palmer Rd|
|42.8782||-76.0784||0.61||84.99||280||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Clark Hollow Rd|
|42.87662||-76.0773||0.22||85.21||280||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Newell Rd/Newell Hill Rd Continue to follow Newell Hill Rd|
|42.88162||-76.0504||2.8||88.01||439||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Berry Rd|
|42.8832||-76.05||0.21||88.22||447||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Kelly Rd|
|42.88452||-76.031||1.56||89.78||441||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Berwyn Rd|
|42.89654||-76.0181||1.71||91.49||498||Right||Turn Right||Sharp right at Cherry Valley Turnpike/US-20/US Route 20|
|42.89652||-76.0182||0||91.5||498||Straight||Straight||Head east on Cherry Valley Turnpike/US-20/US Route 20 toward Berwyn Rd Continue to follow Cherry Valley Turnpike/US-20|
|42.89936||-76.012||0.6||92.1||528||Left||Tuern Left||Turn left on Henneberry Rd|
|42.94967||-76.001||5.75||97.85||385||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Brown Gulf Rd|
|42.951||-75.9828||2.12||99.97||284||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Watervale Rd|
|42.94991||-75.9823||0.13||100.1||283||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Number 2 Rd W|
|42.95446||-75.9574||2.27||102.37||336||Left||Turn Left||Turn left at Pompey Center Rd|
|42.99071||-75.9608||4.05||106.43||220||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Enders Rd|
|42.99266||-75.958||0.32||106.75||237||Right||Turn Right||Turn right at Cazenovia Rd/NY-92|
|Climb||Total Distance||AverageGrade||Steepest Grade||LongestDistanceof > 12%||Number of Climbs> 12%|
|1 – Broadfield / Henneberry||6.2 miles||3 %||15 %||0.1 mile||1|
|2 – Frank Long||0.9 miles||11 %||22.7 %||0.1 mile||4|
|3 – Coye / Eager||3.8 miles||4 %||15.6 %||0.1 mile||2|
|4 – Dodge||0.6 miles||11 %||19.8 %||0.1 mile||4|
|5 – Hitchings||2 miles||8.3 %||17.5 %||0.6 miles||3|
|6 – Case (initial climb)||— 1.0 miles||11.4%|
|Case (total climb)||2.7 miles||5.5 %||20.5 %||0.5 mile||3|
|7 – Ortloff / US 20||1.4 miles||7.4 %||19.4 %||0.2 mile||2|
|8 – Newell Hill||— 1.6 miles||7.6 %|
|Newell Hill / US 20||4.8 miles||3.3 %||19.6 %||0.2 mile||6|
|9 – Number 2 Road||0.6 miles||9 %||18.8 %||0.4 mile||1|
Dante’s East: Note: Dante’s East recently was upgraded at the suggestion of John Evans, who noticed a “glaring flat spot”, Pompey Hollow Road to Route 20, and also an obvious solution. We always thought the East side was “anemic”, and John showed his Dante’s qualifications by suggesting that the course be changed to add a hill up 92 to Cazenovia, then over 20 headed west (another small hill), and then descend back down to the intersection of 20 and Pompey Hollow and continue on the 3.0 version back up 20 West to Pompey, etc. This added about 600 feet and to keep the nine hill- nine “circles of hell” concept intact, rather than drop a hill, we merged the “mini” Number 4 Road Hill with Cemetary Road as one hill, the 8th of the West nine. East side directions (v.4.0): The East course still has 600′ less climbing than the west side, and therefore, remains a kinder and gentler beast, but is also around 70 miles; 4 to 5 hours ride time (9 HILLS in CAPS): 92 to Manlius village, right on Academy, left 173, right on North St to Duguid to route 5 east (Fayetteville), right on GULF-PALMER #1, left 173, descend to Chittenango, hard right at bottom on Dyke, right on Olmstead, right on 13, left on Falls, straight through four corners to Carrys Hill Rd (13-CARRYS HILL #2), straight at top onto Bear Swamp Rd., left on Nelson then immediate right on Larkin (you are on Fenner Hill), right on Buyea, right on East, cross Nelson, to Bingley (big descent) back down to right on 13, back to Chittenango Falls, left on Rathbun, left on STANLEY #3, through to right on East Lake Rd, then immediate left on Peth, right on Peck Hill Rd, left on Palmer, descend to left on RTE’s 92 (#4), to Cazenovia, right onto 20 (up short hill then long down 20 EAST hill), crossing Oran-Delphi climb up 20 WEST (#5), left at top on Gulf, descend to Oran-Delphi, left on Oran-Delphi Rd, right onto 20 EAST #6, up to Cazenovia, right on 13, right on Burlingame to Cobb Hill Rd, descend to right on Delphi Rd. and descend to Delphi Falls, straight through to NUMBER 5 RD #7, climb to top and right turn and still Number 5 at top, descending to right on Pompey Center Rd, left on NUMBER 4 / CEMETERY #8, cross Ridge Rd at top and descend to right on Cemetery, top out at Pompey Hill, cross 20 and long descent down Henneberry, right on Brown Gulf, descend to right on Watervale, then quick left onto NUMBER 2 #9, last climb, and descend to left on Pompey Center, right on Enders, STOP at 92, Alliance Bank on right. Refuel at Delphi Falls if necessary, about 55 miles.
Old Stats from Dante’s version 2.0 (Thanks John Cico):
|Beg Alt||End Alt||Total Ascent||Beg Mi||End Mi||Total Mi||Avg Grade||Max Grade|
|Broadfield – Henneberry||702||1,700||998||3.21||10.90||7.69||2.5%||12%|
|Hitchings 1st Half Mi||651||1,032||381||35.53||36.08||0.55||13.1%||17%|
|Total Ortloff / 20||659||1.29||9.7%||17%|
|Totals West Course Climbs||4,996||17.85||5.3%||21%|
|Total Falls / Carries||814||2.32||6.6%||18%|
|Totals West Course Climbs||3,385||9.06||7.1%||19%|
|Grand Total West + East||8,381||26.91||5.9%||18%|
Dante’s “SuperWest”: even better with 18 climbs, 14’000′ in only 120 miles! Added Colton, Bush, Henderson, Lords, Barker, Dutch, Moon, Churchill-Stanton and Oak to the west.
Cue sheet at: https://ridewithgps.com/trips/10877921
Dante’s SuperWest Cue Sheet:
|Rte 92 and Enders Road||Nice and Easy/NetBank||L||0.0|
|Pompey Center Road||L||0.2||0.1|
|20 West||Pompey Mall||R||8.1||5.3|
|4||Frank Long Road||R||29.3||2.5|
|91… Taylor Road||Reverse direction||33.3||0.3|
|Apulia Road/South Street||Jamesville Sunoco||L||38.3||2.0|
|20 West||Lafayette Sunoco||R||46.6||0.7|
|8||80 East/Lord’s Hill||L||53.8||1.3|
|10||Case Hill Road||R||63.1||1.9|
|11||Dutch Hill Road||R||67.3||0.3|
|Otisco Valley Road||R||74.3||2.5|
|13||Moon Hill Road||L||78.7||2.1|
|Church Hill Road||R||80.5||1.0|
|14||Otisco Lake… Church Hill Road||Reverse direction||81.0||0.5|
|Otisco Valley Road||DR Convenience||R||88.8||2.5|
|15||Oak Hill Road||L||91.0||2.2|
|Tully Farms Road||L||99.0||4.5|
|16||20 East||Lafayette Sunoco||R||102.5||0.6|
|Clark Hollow Road||R||106.0||0.4|
|17||Newell Hill Road||L||106.1||0.1|
|Cherry Street||Pompey Mall||Straight||110.0||1.1|
|Brown Gulf Road||R||114.0||3.5|
|18||Number 2 Road||L||115.4||0.1|
|Pompey Center Road||L||116.8||1.4|
|Colony Drive||Nice and Easy/NetBank||R||119.5||0.2|
“Double Dante’s Days”, August 1-2, 2015:
What is a “Double Dante’s”?? – two Full Dante’s laps: 280 miles, 36 climbs, 28,000′, 24 hours.
This is an unofficial and informal bike ride for fun, not a race. There is no leader, no map, no fee, no registration, no insurance, no support, no sanctioning, no tracking, no medals. You are responsible for yourself. You ride on your own, at your own pace and at your own risk. Start anytime, do what you want. It is you vs. the climbs.
For updated info on the Aug 1-2, 2015 ride see Facebook: “Dante’s Ride” (author Ed Keplinger).
This was another great day with some solid efforts, some adversity, and some big success stories once again! Many turned out to do what they were able to do, and support those attempting the FD and DD.
Informal and tireless 24 hour support was provided once again by Maggie Manning, with assistance from Kara Johnston, Jeremy and Lauren Burton, and Beth Wnorowski. Weather once again was perfect.
“Double Dante’s Days”, August 23-24, 2014:
Informal and tireless support was provided once again by Maggie Manning, with assistance from Kara Johnston, Jeremy Burton, and Dan Degirolamo. Weather again was perfect.
“Double Dante’s Days”, August 17-18, 2013:
What is a “Double Dante’s”?? – two Full Dante’s laps: 280 miles, 36 climbs, 28,000′.
A second Double Dante’s attempt was scheduled noon, August 17- noon August 18, 2013. Over a dozen participated, and the entire DD route was completed by Dan McCarthy and John Cico. What an effort by all!
Weather info (updated August 17, 2013): THERE WERE PERFECT CONDITIONS- Mostly sunny/partly cloudy, high 79f 17th-81f 18th, low overnight 54f, 10% chance precipitation; winds light and variable: E 3mph 17th… S 4mph 18th; humidity 80% 17th-61% 18th. Near full moon.
(Note: traditionally, there has been a kit provided free by the author for completing this ride, i.e.- Full Dante’s, as defined above). If you have done it, and want the fame, send me your ride report, GPS data, and I will send you a kit, while supplies last.)