Just as beautiful, but significantly more challenging than the Spring event!
A spectacular double century route in Southern California’s most popular cycling region!
191 miles with 10,300′ of climbing!
We’re working on a NEW ROUTE FOR 2013. Please stand by for details!
New for 2013: Century option! Click here to learn about it!
Click here to see 2012 Results. Please note that overall ranking is based on “gun” time – meaning either your 6am start or 6:45am start time. Age group rankings are based on “chip” time – meaning when your number was entered into the timing software.
Click here for results from prior years.
Includes post-ride dinner at the Starting Gate Restaurant in the Marriott. You may choose between four menu items: Mediterranean Chicken & Linguine; Vegetarian Pasta; Burger & Fries; or Soft Tacos with your choice of chicken or beef. All dinners served with iced tea or coffee.
Until August 31: $109. September 1-28: $119. Thereafter, until midnight Thursday before the event, you may make an online reservation using the Register Now link and pay $130 at the door. Please read our registration and cancellation policies.
If you prefer to pay by check or have a ride voucher, click here for the mail-in form. The post-ride meal is not included with Ride Voucher entries. If you’d like to purchase the meal, please send $15 with your entry form and voucher.
Start/Finish Host Hotel:
Our host hotel is the Santa Ynez Valley Marriott located at 555 McMurray Road in Buellton, 800-638-8882. The Marriott has a Planet Ultra rate of $169 per night, which expires September 16th. Our overflow hotel is the Days Inn in Buellton, (805) 688-8448, at $110. If you prefer to be in Solvang, please stay at the Royal Copenhagen Inn, 1579 Mission Dr.; 805-688-5561. It’s right in the middle of town – and a good bargain.
Friday from 7-9pm or Saturday from 5:30-6:30am in the Marriott. Please do your best to check in Friday evening, especially if you want to start early.
If you’re staying at a hotel in Buellton other than the Marriott, please leave your car and ride to the start. If you’re driving to Buellton Saturday morning, please be respectful about where you park. Allow enough time to find proper parking; and please don’t park in the Marriott lot.
How To Get There:
Use Hwy 101 to get to Buellton from either north or south. Click here for a map.
“Mass” start at 7am. Riders who need more than 14 hours may start at 6:00am*. If you start early, please note that checkpoint opening and closing times are based on the 7am start and are calculated using an average speed range of 11 to 20 mph. *If you start at 6am and finish the ride in under 12 hours – you will be listed as DQ in the results. We’re serious folks – the early start time is for riders who really need it.
17.5 hours based on the 6am start. Course closes at 11:30pm. Riders who finish after 11:30pm will be listed as Unofficial Finishers.
Twilight begins at 6:46; Twilight ends at 18:44. Sunrise is at 7:11; Sunset is at 18:19
Lights and Gear Drop:
If you leave your lights at the start, your bag will be waiting for you at the 2nd to last checkpoint. If there’s any chance that you’ll be out past sunset, you MUST have both a headlight and a taillight attached to your bicycle, and you MUST wear a reflective ankle band on both legs. If you start in the dark, plan on carrying your lights all day. We do encourage you to carry your lights yourself. That way if you need them, you’re guaranteed to have them. Rest assured that it is a MYTH that an extra pound on your bike will slow you down in any significant way for this type of riding.
Lunch Bag Drop:
Because we know some folks have special dietary needs (or are very particular about what they want), you may bring ONE lunch-sized brown paper bag (like the ones you took to school in 2nd grade; and absolutely no larger) filled with your special foods. Drop the bag off at the start, and we will deliver it to the lunch stop. These bags will be discarded when the lunch stop closes. So please make sure you pick up your bag, or don’t care that you won’t get it back.
Routing and Navigation:
Planet Ultra route sheets include lots of information to help riders navigate the course. For example, we tell you if a turn is at a stop sign (SS), traffic light (TL) or T-intersection (T-int). We know that riders prefer course markings; however, many of the towns/cities/counties specifically forbid it. Further, your Planet Ultra staff travels to the event destination the day before to make everything happen; so we can’t mark the course in advance. If we have the manpower, we’ll do our best to mark the course (unless it’s forbidden by our permits, otherwise illegal, somewhere that locals would be really upset about it, or the turn is at a place that’s very obvious, like a big green highway sign). Our experience is that riders get lost whether the course is marked or not; and fewer riders get lost when they’re mindful of where they are on the route sheet. Please understand and take responsibility for navigation.
Route Sheets and GPS Files: Route sheets are available in excel format to registered riders if requested via email between two weeks and five days before the event. We cannot guarantee that advance route sheets will be 100% accurate. Though not anticipated, last-minute routing changes may be required.
You may also download a map and GPS file from RideWithGPS.com. Please note that advance route sheets and gps files are provided as a courtesy and you use them at your own risk. Planet Ultra does not guarantee accuracy. Please further note the following very important caveats:
Personal SAG Vehicles:
Not allowed! If you bring one, you’ll be disqualified from the event without a warning. The definition of a personal SAG is any vehicle (motor or otherwise), anywhere on the route, operated by someone other than Planet Ultra staff, that is providing any type of aid, assistance, or motivation, or taking photographs, or simply out cheering. Please understand that our permits simply don’t allow dozens of extra vehicles on the roads or at the checkpoint locations. Imagine the traffic from all those cars! If you’re bringing someone with you who wants to be out on the course, please have them contact us and join our volunteer staff.
NOTE: Route sheets will be available as an excel file to registered riders if so requested via email between two weeks and five days before the event. However, we cannot guarantee that the route sheet will be 100% accurate. Though not anticipated, last-minute routing changes may be required.
(Route is expected to undergo a major overhaul for 2014 – so this description is likely no longer accurate, as it’s the 2012 route.) Riders will do a quick, easy warm-up on the back roads of Solvang, Ballard and Santa Ynez before joining the traditional route on Foxen Canyon. After the first checkpoint in Sisquoc (mile 32.1), the scenery changes!
The first big climb of the day is Tepusquet Road. This is a meandering 9 miles of climbing – with a few steep pitches in the 8-10% range. The five mile descent is a blast! Enjoy the ride! At the bottom riders hang a left on Highway 166, where they’ll roll along to the second checkpoint and fine refreshments. The route continues down 166, then hangs a right on Thompson Road, heading towards San Luis Obispo via Nipomo and Arroyo Grande. This part of the route will be familiar to veterans of the Spring event. After the third checkpoint (“lunch”) at our usual park in San Luis, riders will continue straight onto Tank Farm Road, and then work their way south via the quiet and beautiful Prefumo Canyon Road. This is the second big climb of the day – and it’s a quad buster! Bring some gears – as you’ll need them for the occasional 12-16% grades. Less than a mile down from the summit, there’s an unpaved section of road that’s totally ride-able, with an abundance of caution (meaning “slowly”). About a mile later after the pavement resumes, comes a very rewarding descent. Then the route once again meets up with the original route at San Luis Bay Road, winds back down Avila Beach Road, ultimately continuing south through Pismo Beach, Shell Beach and on to the fourth checkpoint at Guadalupe.
The route then diverts off Hwy 1 on Black Road which becomes the awesome Lompoc-Casmalia Road. Then comes the third big climb of the day, up Hwy 1 and the challenging Vandenberg Grade. After a nice descent to the edge of Lompoc, riders come to the last checkpoint at River Park Campground. From there they’ll make their way back via the beautiful, rolling Santa Rosa Road (usually with a super strong tail wind), and Hwy 246 back to Buellton.
191 miles with about 10,300′ of climbing. This route is significantly more challenging than the Spring route – with substantially more climbing and many steep pitches. Riders should expect to require a bit more time on the bike between checkpoints. As such, if a rider is concerned about riding 40+ challenging miles between water/food stops, then a camelbak or other hydration system is recommended.
Volunteers: We always need volunteers! To provide a little incentive, when you volunteer for a Planet Ultra Double Century event, you receive a discounted entry into any other Planet Ultra single-day event. If you work for 2-6 hours you’ll receive a Voucher for 50% discount on a Planet Ultra single day event. If you work 6 or more hours you’ll receive a Voucher for 75% discount on a Planet Ultra single day event. So please contact us to let us know when and where you’d like to help. Please note that the intent of our discounted entry offer is to encourage riders themselves to give something back to the sport they love. However, we also appreciate when riders bring along family and friends who they’ve recruited to help out; so we’re offering a one-half ride credit to the recruiter if the volunteer doesn’t want the ride credit. Ride credits must be used within a year of the date of volunteering and must be redeemed during the early registration period.