What Is (and Isn’t) Planet Ultra?
We’re a grass-roots, non-corporate endurance event production company. We host niche, super tough events; catering to the primarily hard-core segment of the cycling community that loves a challenge and comes for the ride, not the hoopla. Planet Ultra ministers to those who come for the sheer delight of cycling. Please don’t expect a shopping expo, start/finish line hoopla, lots of giveaways/swag, a finisher award** or other things you might find at the giant events with thousands of riders and big money sponsors. We’re not that.  We exist simply for the joy and love of riding bicycles.

**We don’t subscribe to the idea of participation awards. We DO believe in supporting charities that provide opportunities for athletes with physical challenges; and supporting advocacy programs that promote and enable safer cycling environments/communities. Instead of spending money on finisher trinkets that ultimately collect dust or are relegated to a box in the garage, we donate that money to these inspiring organizations which inspire others to get outside and ride. ♥

How Planet Ultra Works
Our Mission is to create for you fun and challenging endurance cycling events in the Southwest (CA, NV, UT). We strive to challenge you physically, mentally and spiritually, in an environment of friendly camaraderie, personal connection and community among motivated and adventurous athletes. We encourage you to push farther and harder; to get stronger, fitter, faster, healthier. On Planet Ultra, your bodies and your bicycles are both a means of transportation and a tool for self-discovery while exploring the whole panorama of roads, places, sights and sounds that the great outdoors offers.

Planet Ultra events are destination events, usually in fairly remote locations far from our home base in Washington, Utah. We’re not a cycling club with members to draw upon for event staff. When we host an event, we do all the planning, permitting, shopping and packing in advance and then transport everything, and everyone who is helping, to the remote location where the event takes place. So please be patient and understanding with our staff. We’re really stoked when everybody has a good attitude and especially appreciate when people pitch in and help at the events.

We realize there’s a huge amount of information here; and it may appear that we’re a bit hard-nosed…
Honestly, we’d rather not have published this page. However, from a liability standpoint, we must provide this information so everyone knows what to expect. The below policies and rules are consistent with our insurance requirements, and our obligations pursuant to numerous event permits. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Rules for Riding on Planet Ultra (in Addition to Everything Else On This Page and All Event-Specific Rules)

  • Your event is a ride, not a race.
  • Be safe and be courteous. We are stewards of our great sport of cycling.
  • Carry and/or wear the official event ID (number plate, wristband and/or helmet number) provided at check-in. Riders without the ID may be refused support. “Bandit riders” will be banned from future Planet Ultra events, as will the person who brought the bandit if we know who you are.
  • Carry proper identification, a cell phone and personal emergency contact phone number at all times.
  • Wear your helmet at all times.
  • Upon request, you must submit personal electronic proof of completion with a Strava or RideWithGPS link which came from your own route tracking device.
  • No headphones, ear buds, or other listening devices.
  • Know and obey all laws and all relevant aspects of the California Motor Vehicle Code. Riders who break laws and/or ride unsafely will be disqualified from the event.
  • Follow the basic rules for safe cycling: Ride to the right, single file. Stop at all stop signs and red signals. Protect and warn one another about road hazards and traffic. Don’t overlap wheels. Practice safe paceline and group riding etiquette.
  • DO NOT urinate in public view, or within 1/4 mile of any checkpoint. At aid stations, use the designated toilet facilities or portable toilets. (We apologize for even having to state the obvious, but some folks just don’t get it.)
  • When cycling at night, carry and use legal bicycle lights and wear both a left and right reflective ankle band.
  • Start your ride at one of the designated start times available for the event unless opting for the “Tourist” division.
  • Check in at each Aid Station (unless otherwise specified); AND at the finish line. If you withdraw, please let event staff know. We worry about you. Please don’t “go missing.”
  • If you go off course or you will not reach an aid station before the closing time stated on the route sheet, please immediately text or call Planet Ultra and let someone know where you are. If you don’t call/text before the aid station closing time, you’ll be considered as having abandoned the ride and you must arrange your own transportation.
  • Planet Ultra staff has discretion to require you to SAG forward if you’re significantly behind the closing time of any checkpoint, or for any other safety reason. If you refuse SAG, no further support will be given.
  • Planet Ultra Route Sheets are proprietary and for your personal use only while participating in the event. Please do not reproduce Planet Ultra Route Sheets for any purpose, including, but not limited to posting on the internet, or in any other public media, club newsletter, etc.
  • Results are FINAL 7 days after the event. If we’ve made a mistake posting your result, you must let us know within that time.
  • You’re expected to have read and be familiar with all Planet Ultra rules, regulations, policies and procedures on this page and elsewhere on this website.
  • Enjoy the scenery. Take photos and share them on social media.

Planet Ultra reserves the right to disqualify any rider who violates any of the above rules, or for any other safety violation or other unsportsmanlike conduct, without warning.

The Purpose of These Events
We, the people of Planet Ultra, do declare that the point in participating in a double century, tour or ultramarathon race is to have as much fun and adventure as possible!

With the exception of the Hoodoo 500/300, the King of the Mountains Century Challenge and our Gravel Grinder Cycling events, Planet Ultra events are intended to be non-competitive. Although generally speaking we’re not racing – we understand that some riders want to know how they’re doing compared to others, so most (but not all) Planet Ultra single day events are timed, with results posted after the event. Caveat:  Double centuries may be timed using timing software, but not timing chips. That said, if riders continue to do unlawful things like running lights and stop signs in order to shave a minute or two off their finishing times, we’ll be forced to stop timing the events where this is a problem. Please let’s keep it fun and fair.

Registration and Entry Fees
Be sure and read all the information on our Registration Page and understand our cancellation policy.

Event Staff / Volunteers
Planet Ultra is recruiting enthusiastic volunteers to make it a spectacular day for the riders. No experience necessary! Volunteer positions include registration, food prep, aid stations along the route, roving SAG and finish line. Discounts available to riders who recruit a friend!

Come Prepared – Be Fit For Your Event and Be Ready For All Conditions
Please be in shape for the event. Riding a double should be taken very seriously. Completing 200 miles requires determination, commitment and significant physical training. If you cannot complete a moderately hilly century within 7-8 hours, you’ll struggle finishing any double century within the time limit. An “I can do it” attitude is a wonderful plus, but only if you’ve trained and are already conditioned for the particular challenge.

Bring adequate clothing for cold and wet weather if that’s in the forecast. Take responsibility for your well-being. It’s simply not possible for us to provide SAG/shuttling for riders who aren’t well dressed for the current conditions. When rainy or especially cold weather is forecasted, we will spot check riders at the start and ask you not to start if you’re not prepared for cold or wet temperatures later in the day.

Time Limits
All events have a fixed time limit for receiving support along the route; listed on that event’s web page and on the event route sheet.

With the exception of double century riders opting for the Tourist division* (NOT available for all DCs), riders must complete the course within the time limit to be listed as an Official Finisher and to receive California Triple Crown credit. This time limit will be based on distance and difficulty, and will be calculated based on the earliest starting time.

Generally speaking, depending on the difficulty, double centuries have a 16-18 hour time limit; and the course closes at midnight.

If you finish the course after the cut-off, or after midnight, you will not be included in the final results. If you don’t check in at the finish line, or don’t ride every mile of the designated course, you’ll be listed DNF. Finisher results will be posted on the website shortly after each event. Results are FINAL 7 days after the event. If we’ve made a mistake in posting your finish, please let us know within that time.

Please keep in mind that nearly all athletic events establish a time limit to provide a standard to measure accomplishment. The Planet Ultra Grand Slam and California Triple Crown are huge accomplishments that require hard work and serious training and commitment. They mean so much because they’re earned with sweat and determination. Without standards for completion, they have no meaning. Allowing finisher credit to riders who miss the time limits or don’t ride the entire course is unfair to those who do.

*Mindful that some folks prefer to “tour” an event and not feel pressured by the stated time limits, at some Planet Ultra DCs, you may opt to participate as a “Tourist.” Tourist riders have until midnight and/or a total of 20 hours to complete a course and get finisher credit.

Routing and Navigation
Planet Ultra route sheets include lots of information to help riders navigate . For example, we’ll let you know if a turn is at a stop sign (SS), traffic light (TL) or T-intersection (T-int). We know riders prefer course markings; but many of the towns/cities/counties specifically forbid it, and in some areas traffic makes it unsafe. For these reasons we will no longer be course marking on double century routes. 

We trust that as a seasoned endurance rider, ready and willing to ride 200 miles, you’re proficient at reading a route sheet and/or you’ve invested in a GPS based cycling computer and/or have a smart phone into which you can upload the route . Your entry fee includes access to RideWithGPS downloads for your GPS device or your smart phone.  Please understand and take responsibility for navigation.

Planet Ultra provide maps and download-able files via RideWithGPS.com. Each event page will have a link and we will send a special invitation to all registered riders a few days before the event.

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 can’t guarantee that the route sheet will be 100% accurate. Though not anticipated, last-minute routing changes may be required.

Proof of Completion of Full Route (every inch of it)
Please plan on tracking your ride with either a GPS or smart phone app. If you have neither, now is a great time to make that investment (or borrow from a friend). Every rider must be ready/willing upon request to submit their own personal electronic proof of completion with either a Strava or RideWithGPS link.

If you use a GPS device, and it fails (which they can do), or your phone battery dies (which it can) you must accept responsibility for that.  Please plan for all contingencies, and have a backup plan for tracking your ride. Carry an extra battery pack if you’ll be out longer than your device batteries last.  

Riders may NOT “tag” each other on Strava activities. We will spot check riders who finish together to make sure each individual submits their own proof (and yes, it’s possible to determine if two people are sharing an activity).  Any rider who tags someone else so THAT person has “proof” of completion will be DQ from the event, along with the tagged rider. We apologize for having to be strict on this issue; but this has become a big problem. We feel strongly about maintaining the integrity of these events. Sadly, a few bad apples have spoiled the honor system previously maintained for Planet Ultra and the California Triple Crown. 

Support Provided
Checkpoints are located along the route (about 30-40 miles apart, depending on terrain) and clearly marked on the route sheet with opening/closing times. At checkpoints, you can expect to find a wonderful variety of pre-packaged nutritious and caloric foods and beverages. Our typical fare includes bananas, PB&J sandwiches, energy bars, granola bars, fruit bars and various other treats.** Plus, at one designated “lunch stop,” we’ll usually have Subway sandwiches or similar, chips, cookies and soda. No one will go hungry on Planet Ultra; but please remember that it’s impossible to guarantee you’ll get exactly what you want. If you have specific needs/desires, we do offer a drop-bag service.

**Our food choices are intended to be portable, so you can eat on the bike. Generally speaking, all of our food is pre-packaged for sanitary and other health reasons. We avoid serving anything that would cause the Health Department to raise an eyebrow. Speaking of being sanitary, we ask that riders not handle powdered products. Our friendly volunteers will serve it with their clean hands.

Several SAG vehicles will be out roaming the course. Please note that tech service along the course is complimentary; parts are not. Please bring some extra cash for a tire, tubes or CO2 cartridges just in case.

Usually SAG vehicles will have a floor pump and basic tools. However the SAG drivers will likely not be expert mechanics – so please do your best to bring a properly tuned, fully functional bicycle, as well as your own supplies, ability, and desire to happily make any repairs needed along the way. Please don’t bring fancy racing wheels to Planet Ultra events. No carbon rims or tubulars: We can’t fix ’em. We’ve had so many riders DNF because of wheel problems. We sincerely do not want you to be another statistic.

Disclaimer: SAG means “support and gear” – not immediate transport. If you’re injured, sick, or some other emergency comes up, we’ll do our best to quickly get you to the finish line; but we can’t guarantee how long it will take. If you’re is just tired, came to the event unprepared, or just don’t want to continue, please plan on having to wait a long while or spend the better part of the day in a SAG vehicle. Our SAG drivers need to be on the road helping people who are riding. It’s much more fun to get there under pedal power! You should be tired during and after a double century. Tired as you may be, you’ll feel better the next day if you don’t quit.

Finally, please remember that over a 200 mile course, it’s impossible for drivers to be everywhere at all times. A SAG vehicle may not be anywhere near you when you have a problem or decide you need a lift. Best to ride to the nearest checkpoint and let someone know you need SAG (especially at night, when it’s harder to see you if you’re not actually riding).

What to Bring
Please come prepared for any possible mechanical failure or contingency. At the very least, you must carry a spare tube, pump, patch kit, basic tools, water bottles, money, personal and medical identification, cell phone, money, credit card, and a good attitude.

If you have special or particular nutrition needs, please bring drop bags or plan to carry what you need.

Personal SAG Vehicles
Not allowed without prior approval! If you bring one, you will 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 to any rider, 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 helping, please have them contact us and join our volunteer staff.

Riding at Night
As required by law in every state, all riders riding in hours of darkness must have a legal front and rear lighting system and have reflective gear on their body and/or bicycle facing in all four directions. This means a white headlight that can be seen from 300 feet and a red taillight (non-blinking) secured to the bicycle and visible from 500 feet; and riders must wear both a left and right reflective ankle band. The more reflective gear and additional lights, the better! Be visible! This is mandatory – and NOT NEGOTIABLE. We’re very, very serious about safety – so please note: Riders who fail to comply with this policy will be listed as DQ in the ride results.

Riders who start in daylight but expect to finish in the dark may have their lights and other reflective gear delivered from the start line to a pre-determined checkpoint on the route. Please bring your lights and reflective gear to rider check-in in a bag marked with your name. Riders must collect their lights at the checkpoint. If you don’t pick up your gear, it may be available at the finish line at the end of the night. If your stuff winds up in Utah, we’ll ship it back to you – but do expect you to cover the cost. Generally speaking, we’re not responsible for things left at checkpoints.

Riders who start before daylight will carry their lights throughout the ride. Please note: The extra weight of the lights on your bike makes absolutely no difference in your performance on this type of event. We promise.

And speaking of carrying things, please don’t ask our SAG drivers or volunteers to carry your jackets or other personal things back to the finish line. There’s a good chance you won’t get them back; and we simply can’t be responsible for that. So please come prepared with a roomy bag to carry your extra things.

Start Times for Double Centuries
To accommodate timing the events, Planet Ultra double century events will usually have two start times – one at first light (“civil twilight“) and one pre-dawn. Start times mean mass start times. If you leave at any time other than a designated start time, you may not get a finishing time in the results.* (The Spring Solvang Double Century is the exception, with an open start window.)

Riders who require more than 14 hours to complete a double century are encouraged to start before dawn. Anyone capable of finishing a double century in under 14 hours must start in daylight. Please note: Checkpoint opening and closing times are generally based on the daylight starting time and are calculated using an average speed range of 11 to 20 mph. This means that if a faster rider leaves early, they’ll likely get to the first checkpoint before it opens. Please plan accordingly.

*Mindful that some folks prefer to “tour” an event and not feel pressured by the stated time limits, you may now choose during registration to participate “Timed” or “Tourist.”

Planet Ultra Grand Slam: “Four Rides / 800+ Miles”
On Planet Ultra we like to encourage riders to challenge themselves and test their endurance and strength on a variety of different courses. We have a wonderfully diverse offering of events – some sort of flat, some super hilly. We’ll test riders’ legs on climbs, their lungs at altitude and make riders dig deep on seemingly endless climbs under the blazing sun. To recognize those hardy souls who conquer four Planet Ultra ultra events in a calendar year, we created the Planet Ultra Grand Slam. After finishing four events, riders rare acknowledged in our newsletter and on the website, and are eligible to purchase the Grand Slam finisher jersey.

Wow! That was a lot! Thanks for reading!