HOT SPRINGS NATIONAL PARK, Arkansas — How many chances do you get to ride your bicycle through the lobby of one of the South’s grand old hotels?
In the case of the Güdrun – Northwoods Trails Mountain Bike Festival’s Slow Roll event, November 10 will be the fifth chance.
“We are super excited to be opening our Fifth Annual Güdrun – Northwoods Mountain Bike Festival with another Slow Roll through downtown Hot Springs,” Visit Hot Springs Trails Coordinator Traci Berry said. “The Slow Roll is a fun group ride for all ages and bicycles of all types. It’s a family favorite. You can ride your mountain bike, your road bike, your gravel bike, your cruiser bike or your EBike. Folks of all ages join the ride.”
Berry said registration for the Slow Roll will be limited to 100 entries. All ages are welcome, she said, but children under age 14 must be accompanied by a parent.
“Kids will be able to keep up,” Berry said, “as the average pace will be about 4 miles an hour.”
The Fifth Güdrun Festival will be held November 10 – 12 at Hot Springs’ internationally acclaimed Northwoods Trail System. Güdrun Early Bird Registration ends Monday [June 19] at noon. Riders register for each of the individual Güdrun events, including the Slow Roll. Registration is at https://www.bikereg.com/gudrun
The four-mile Slow Roll route begins with a meet-up at 4:45 p.m. behind the Hot Springs Convention Center on Church Street. The ride begins at 5 p.m. and takes about 90 minutes.
The route takes the group from behind the Convention Center north to Malvern Avenue then east to Spring Street, then onto Central Avenue and along World Famous Bathhouse Row. The ride will then take a right turn onto Fountain Street and onto the veranda of the historic Arlington Hotel and through the lobby. Riders will exit the lobby out the back down the valet parking ramp back out to Central Avenue. They then will continue north, taking a left turn onto Whittington Avenue, around Whittington Park with a stop by Parkside Cycle and then make their way back through downtown to 420 Eats Food Court for the opening night party. There will be bike parking available at 420 Eats.
Slow Roll participants receive a complimentary T-shirt, socks, koozie and a sticker.
“We also will have an award for the best Viking costume, in keeping with the Güdrun tradition,” Berry said.
She said people who sign up to be volunteers for the Güdrun Festival will receive a free entry for the Slow Roll. Volunteers may sign up at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0d4ba9ac2fa2ffc70-gdrun1#/
The Fifth Güdrun – Northwoods Mountain Bike Festival to be held November 10 – 12 at Hot Springs’ internationally acclaimed Northwoods Trail System, annually attracts competitors from across the country.
Registration is at https://www.bikereg.com/gudrun. Entrants register separately for each of the festival’s many events.
The first 200 entrants will be entered automatically in a drawing for the third annual Güdrun Getaway Vacation Package, which includes a staggering amount of free stuff, including a free stay at The Hotel Hot Springs.
“It is wild that we are approaching five years of Northwoods Trails,” Berry said. “It feels like we have done so much in a very short time — are we sure it has only been five years? We have grown our trail system from 15.7 miles with Phase 1 to 21.5 miles on city property today, giving us 31.5 miles of awesome trail just five minutes from downtown.
Berry said this year’s three-day Güdrun Festival includes:
Friday, November 10
• Spa City Running and Riding Expo — Noon to 7 p.m. Participants will join the Spa City Running Festival at the Hot Springs Convention Center to kick off a full weekend of running and riding in Hot Springs. Güdrun will have packet pickup for all participants and various vendor booths to visit.
• Güdrun Slow Roll Fun Ride — 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. “Put your Viking gear on, load up your bike, and join a slow roll, fun ride through downtown Hot Springs through the historic Arlington Hotel Lobby. The ride is four miles, beginning at Pleasant and Church Streets and ending at 420 Eats Food Truck Court
Saturday, November 11
• Gudrun Full Enduro — 9 a.m. start. The full enduro course will be 15-18 miles, taking racers through six downhill stages. The start and finish will be at the Cedar Glades Park hilltop.
• Gudrun Mini-Enduro — 10 a.m. start. The Mini-Enduro course will be approximately eight miles, taking racers through three downhill stages. Start and Finish will be at the Cedar Glades Park hilltop.
• Gudrun Waffles & Coffee Time Trial — 11 a.m. start. The Time Trial is a XC (Cross Country) short course race. Racers will ride the Waffles & Coffee Trail at Cedar Glades Park for one short 2.2-mile lap as fast as they can. The start and finish will be on the Cedar Glades Park hilltop.
• Güdrun Strider Race — 1 p.m. Spa City Cycling will once again design a fun course for the youngest cyclists. The course will be open for balance bike riders to ride all weekend with the race taking place Saturday afternoon. The race is free and will take walk-up registrations. It will be a timed race, seeing how many laps each rider can make in a given amount of time. The course and race location will be on the Cedar Glades Park hilltop.
• Güdrun Jump Jam — 2:30 p.m. The Jump Jam is a spectator favorite. Only open to 25 participants, the Jump Jam gives the participants a chance to show off their air-catching skills while being judged by their peers in the competition. This event will be at the Cedar Glades Park Jump Zone.
• Güdrun Dual Slalom — 5 p.m. The Dual Slalom has racers racing side by side on a double lane course designed to zigzag the racers back and forth down the hillside at Cedar Glades Park.
Sunday, November 12
• Attila the Hun XC Race – AMBCS — 8 a.m. Attila the Hun, now in its 31st year, is the final event of the festival and the last race of the Arkansas Mountain Bike Championship Series (AMBCS). The event has 42 categories with Novice, Cat 3, Cat 2, Cat 1, Clydesdale, EBike, and Single Speed options open to all. The start and finish will be located on the Cedar Glades Park hilltop.
“We will once again have a Güdrun Enduro Purse for the Pro and Expert categories of the Full Enduro,” Berry said. “Think you got what it takes to win your category in the Güdrun Full Enduro and Attila the Hun XC Race? Get registered and compete for the Güdrun Valkyrie (female) and the Güdrun Berserker (male) Awards. These awards will be given to the male and female with the best cumulative time in their Enduro and Attila Categories.”
For more information call Traci Berry at 501-321-2027.