Updated: June 1, 2018
What is the Firefighter 50 bike ride? The Firefighter 50 bicycle ride is a cycling event to raise funds for the Pleasant Valley Community Fire Department in Westminster, MD 21158. Our goal is for you to have a FUN day of cycling and enjoy the great riding in Northern Carroll County, Eastern Frederick County, MD and Adams County, PA. The Firefighter 50 cycling event is NOT a bicycle race.
What’s New for 2018? We constantly review all aspects of the Firefighter 50 event and search for ways to improve your experience. For 2018 we have modified both the half and full century routes. This year we have modified the first 30 miles of the 50 and 100-mile loops. In addition, we have changed our t-shirts from cotton to the new high tech type with moisture-wicking fabric. Plus we have added some Water Stops on the 50 and 100-mile loops so you will have either a water or rest stop approximately every 15 miles. To keep you cool we will have over 4000 lbs. of ice available.
Where is the event located? The Firefighter 50 bike ride starts and ends in a small village called Pleasant Valley, Md. that is about 6 miles West of Westminster, MD, about 35 miles NW of Baltimore, Md. and about 20 miles NE from Frederick, MD. Easy to get to from Baltimore via Interstate 795 and US RT 140. Or US 15 and Md. RT 140 from Frederick MD.
Our address for your GPS or MapQuest is 2030 South Pleasant Valley Rd Westminster, Md. 21158
Do you have a website? Our event website is www.firefighter50.com.
What about parking: We have hundreds of paved parking slots located on the Pleasant Valley Community Fire Company property. During the morning of the event, we will have fire department personnel to direct you. We also have several overflow parking areas within 1/8 mile of the Pleasant Valley Fire Station. Parking will NOT be a problem for you.
What about bad weather? We ride rain or shine. Typical morning temperatures in July are a morning low of about 70 degrees and afternoon high temp of about 84 degrees.
Can I get a refund if I am unable to attend? The refund policy for the Firefighter 50 bike ride is a modified NO refund approach. We totally empathize with participants that there are many factors that could cause a rider to cancel. We do offer same day event registration if your plans are in question. We will work with you ( on a case by case basis) to do a registration transfer to another rider(s) or a registration deferral the following year. If you have to cancel and have ordered a t-shirt or cycling jersey, we will make them available for you to pick up at the Pleasant Valley Fire Company for up to seven days after the event. if for any reason we have to cancel the event ( weather/safety issues/state of emergency etc) we will do a registration deferral to the following year. No money will be refunded.
Why no rain date for the event? We will ride rain or shine. When you organize an event like the Firefighter 50 you have to get date specific, formal written approval from the Carroll County MD Public Works Engineering Department; the Maryland State Police in both Westminster MD and Frederick MD; the State of Maryland Highways District 7 Administration; the Sheriff Departments in both Carroll County, Md. and Frederick County, Md. and local property owners. To fully coordinate a new ride date from these agencies/individuals can take up to four months. We also have food vendors and many volunteers dedicated to a specific date and facilities reserved. It is very, very difficult to change the date. The Pleasant Valley Fire Company Firefighter 50 Working Group begins planning this event at least 9 months before the actual event.
Will the route cue sheets be posted online? We will post the final route cue sheets and GPS related data on our website when the routes have been formally approved by local and state agencies. All routes are subject to last minute changes based on emergency situations. Prior to July 15, 2018, our cue sheets will be provided on our website as DRAFT only. If you are using a GPS for navigation be aware that the event cue sheet is the final authority for the route. Depending on what GPS you use there may be differences on how he GPS interprets the route.
Are any roads being closed for this event? NO roads will be closed for the Firefighter 50 bike ride.
What is the cost to register: Mail in and Active.com registration cost is $35, same day registration is $40 per rider.
Where does the money go that is generated by this event? All money raised (100%) by this event goes directly to the Pleasant Valley Community Fire Department. All fees are fully tax deductible.
How do I register for the Firefighter 50? You can register for the Firefighter 50 online via Active.com or by mailing in a registration form to the fire company or you can register the day of the event from 630 AM- 9 AM. The Firefighter 50 cycling event does NOT sell our rider lists or share ANY rider information with anyone PERIOD.
What about SAG and food: We will have at least five SAG vehicles constantly on the routes with a SAG coordinator directing the support from the fire house .Each SAG vehicle will have plenty of COLD drinks and snacks for the riders, just give them the thumbs down sign and they will stop and serve you. Our SAG support will be from 730AM to 500 PM. The SAG vehicles will have a large Red/Yellow SAG sign on each side of the vehicles so they can be immediately identified. Our goal is to have a rest stops about every 15 miles on the 50 and 100 mile routes. Portable toilets will be available at all rest stops. We will provide tea and coffee and donuts prior to the ride at the Firehouse at no cost to you. Back at the Pleasant Valley Fire Hall we are planning an “all you can eat” Firefighter lunch for you after your ride. You will dine in air-conditioned comfort in our large dining hall. We currently plan to serve pit beef, veggie burgers, spinach salad, pasta salads, assorted summer fruits, local ice cream a variety of cold drinks plus other items are being added. This year we also have an ice cream sundae bar available for lunch.
Provided below is a Summary of the Planned Rest/Water Stops for each Route:
On the 50 and 100 mile loops we will have either a water stop or rest stop approximately every 15 miles. On the Dirty 30 and 35-mile road loops we will have a rest stop approximately half way into the ride.
What about Technical Support: Race Pace Bicycles of Westminster, MD will be providing technical support at the Fire Station. At Loy’s Station Park in Frederick County Bicycle Escape from Frederick, Md. will be providing Technical Support.
What do you plan to provide to the riders at the Loy’s Station Park Rest Stop and the other rest/water stops? We will provide plenty of assorted ice cold drinks; Gels in assorted flavors; Honey Stinger products, power bars, pretzels, seasonal fruits, fig bars, pizza. boiled potatoes and much more. We strive to provide a variety of products to support our riders.
What if I have a medical problem during the ride? If you have any medical emergencies during the event PLEASE call 911 to get immediate professional help.
Tell me about t-shirts: You can purchase a Firefighter 50 t-shirt in two ways. When you register online or on the mail-in form just specify the size you need and we will reserve you one. The cost of each shirt is $15. If you register on the day of the event we will have a LIMITED number of t-shirts for sale. If you sign up the day of the event we can’t assure your size will be available. We have strived to design our Firefighter 50 t-shirt to be unique and represent not only this cycling event but also our Firefighters in general. The t-shirts for 2018 are the high tech type with moisture-wicking fabric. If you are unable to attend the event and have ordered a t-shirt we will be unable to mail to you. If for some unseen reason you have ordered a t-shirt and we are unable to provide on event day we will gladly refund your money.
For 2018 we will have a limited number of our past year t-shirts for sale at $5 each
What about the 2018 Cycling Routes: For 2018 we have four great routes.
WE ARE OFFERING A ROUTE FOR ALL LEVEL OF CYCLISTS IN 2018 FROM THE NOVICE TO THE VERY EXPERIENCED RIDER
LOST VALLEY CENTURY LOOP: (102.8 miles) This 102.8-mile route will take you from Pleasant Valley, MD to Eastern Frederick County MD near Thurmont, MD. Beautiful mountain views and great cycling. Low traffic roads with minimal cycling on any major roads. We then travel northeast into Adams County, PA. We cycle into Carroll Valley, PA and then climb via South Mountain up to Blue Ridge Summit, PA. after cycling in the Michaux State Forest in PA. For your information, the Michaux State Forest has been defined as a BIGFOOT hot spot for BIGFOOT sightings in Pennsylvania per the National BIGFOOT Researchers Organization. We then utilize the Lost Valley (after you cycle this section you will understand why they call it the Lost Valley) in Northern Frederick County MD to return to Emmitsburg, MD. With over 5400 feet of climbing we recommend only experienced riders attempt this century loop. You will encounter all types of cycling situations, some that may not be suitable for the novice riders. PLEASE do NOT make this your training ride. The Century route was developed by local cyclists and they hope you LOVE the loop!
FIVE ALARM RIDE 50 MILES: (53.9 miles) This 50-mile loop is a beautiful route taking you from Pleasant Valley MD into Eastern Frederick County MD. You will get great mountain views but will not be cycling any major climbs. This loop has about 2500 feet of climbing.
BRUSH FIRE LOOP 35 MILES: (34.9 miles) Our 35 mile Brush Fire Loop was developed for the novice cyclist. No killer climbs but YES some rolling type climbs. Beautiful route with a full rest stops at mile 4.4 and mile 25.8. We have included a rest stop at mile 4.4 because that is the way the routes intersected plus if you have forgotten items you can obtain them before the major portion of the route is encountered. On this loop we cycle in Carroll County MD and Adams County PA. The ride is several miles longer than in previous years but we have eliminated some climbs. A beautiful and FUN ride.
THE DIRTY 30: (30.8 miles) The Dirty 30 is a 30.8-mile route that will have you cycling both paved and gravel/dirt roads in Northern Carroll County, MD. This is a great loop for cross bikes or mountain bikes. We do NOT recommend this loop for bikes with the smaller 700×20, 700×23. A number of road cyclists have done this loop on 700×25 tires with no problem. This route has the typical “rolling type” climbs that are common in Carroll County, MD. The gravel/dirt roads are kept in excellent condition .With road names like Turkeyfoot how can this not be FUN.
All of our routes are considered DRAFT until formally approved by all local and state agencies thus some routes may change as we get closer to the ride date.
Rider Safety: Your safety is our NUMBER 1 concern. With this in mind we require you to wear a helmet during the ride. NO helmet, NO ride, NO exceptions. We will also make available cycling safety sheets for all riders to review. PLEASE for you safety no head phones or other devices that may distract you, we are cycling on public roads with NO road closures.
I need more information: Please call 240-357- 0593 or email David Yonkoski at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information. As we proceed with the event approval process some of the data on the FAQ’s may change as it changes I will update the FAQ’s.
2018 Firefighter 50 Event Volunteer