2024 ROUTE HIGHLIGHTS
GOBA offers seven days of scenic cycling on paved, low-traffic roads. Support includes food stops about every 15-20 miles; SAG, mechanical and medical services; and pavement markings and maps (digital and paper).
The new format, introduced in 2019, proved popular and has returned in 2024. We’ll have only 4 host communities, allowing more “optional loop” days and a little less time setting and breaking your campsites.
Among the highlights:
PLACEHOLDER FOR ROUTE HIGHLIGHTS
NEW in 2024!!
Our friends in Eaton will offer their 20th annual single day bicycle tour – Buckeye Bridge Ride – on the first Saturday of GOBA. So, this allows GOBA to expand the cycling opportunities in 2024 to offer an EXTRA DAY of riding and/or a new weekend-only option! The Buckeye Bridge Ride starts right in GOBAville at the Preble County Fairgrounds and supports the scholarship fund for the Preble County 4H.
“GOBA +1” will allow GOBA riders to check-in on Friday evening and enjoy the Buckeye Bridge Ride on Saturday. The registration cost for “GOBA +1” only adds an additional $30 fee, which is passed directly to the Buckeye Bridge Ride.
“GOBA Weekend” is a new offering for those that may want to try their first overnight cycling weekend, or those not able to spend a whole week on GOBA. “GOBA Weekend” riders will enjoy Saturday’s Buckeye Bridge Ride, camp in GOBAville, and then enjoy GOBA’s Sunday loop ride. These riders will enjoy the GOBA infrastructure and whatever meals are offered during the weekend. They’ll get a glimpse of GOBA’s unique atmosphere…hopefully to return for a full week of GOBA in the future!
Although you’ll want to register through GOBA, here’s the Buckeye Bridge Rode website for more information on their ride.
- FOUR “MANDATORY” DAYS: Riding on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday is required as we move from one overnight town to the next. Friday’s route is approximately 50 flat miles and the other three routes will have shortcut options at approximately 20-35 miles.
- THREE OPTIONAL DAYS: Cyclists can choose to pedal more miles or take a break and explore the host towns. You won’t want to miss the two optional/loop days from Eaton Saturday and Sunday. Tuesday’s loop ride from Oxford will offer a century and Thursday’s loop ride from Hamilton will offer a metric century (100km/62 miles)
- TERRAIN: Mostly flat, with some climbs out of river valleys and a few small hills around Hamilton, Oxford and on the optional century route. A good workout, but nothing extreme.
- MILEAGE FOR THE WEEK: Minimum about 160, maximum about 400.
The TENTATIVE daily route itinerary as of 11/22/23:
Saturday, June 15: Eaton
— If you sign up for “GOBA +1” or the “GOBA Weekend” you’ll ride the Preble County 4H’s Buckeye Bridge Ride. 15-75 mile options.
Sunday, June 16: Layover day in Eaton (optional loop)
— 29/50 miles (722/1,167 ft climbing) – to the northeast with a lunch stop in Brookville.
Monday, June 17: Eaton to Oxford
— 27/49 miles (957/1,462 ft climbing) – Longer option loops into Indiana
Tuesday, June 18: Layover Day in Oxford (optional loop)
— 52/100 miles (2,286/3,870 ft climbing) – west into Indiana with a lunch stop in Rushville, IN. This will be the most challenege day.
Wednesday, June 19: Oxford to Hamilton
— 20/51 miles (963/2,253 ft climbing) – Southeast to Hamilton with the longer route looping into Indiana.
Thursday, June 20: Layover day in Hamilton (optional loop)
— 27/61 miles (878/2,220 ft climbing) north to visit Metroparks and nature preserves.
Friday, June 21: Hamilton to Arcanum
— 51 miles (1,594 ft climbing) straight north
Saturday, June 22: Arcanum to Eaton
— 30 miles (418 ft climbing) to finish where we started.
Route details and mileages are approximate and subject to change.
- Preble County Fairgrounds – Eaton, OH
- Tri Community Center and Park – Oxford, OH
- Butler County Fairgrounds – Hamilton, OH
- Ivestar Park – Arcanum, OH
Food stops on GOBA are offered mostly in conjunction with nonprofit community groups as well as some restaurants. In some locations, there is not an “official” food stop, but the route goes through towns where riders can find convenience stores, etc. for FOYO (food on your own). We try to limit the number of FOYO stops, though this year the pandemic and shortages of volunteers have led some community groups to turn down selling food and drinks, though they’ve been generous about letting GOBA set up portable toilets and a water station at their properties.
The food stop hours that community groups set are calculated on when a rider who leaves the GOBA camp between 7-9 a.m. might reach the stop if riding at an average speed of around 16-18 mph. Riders who leave before 7 a.m. and pedal fast might find that stops are not open when they arrive. Similarly, the closing time of each stop is based on the 5 p.m. cutoff time for support on the routes.
Best advice: Be sure to carry a little more food in your pockets and fluid in your bottles than you think you might need!
For a two-page pdf that lists the food stops in a grid, CLICK HERE. Also, the clicking on the food icons in the RWGPS maps also shows more details about each stop. Note: The online pdf of the grid was updated … (placeholder)
DOWNLOAD THE GOBA MAPS – Let’s Ride!
**FINAL Route details and GPS files (below) are released a week prior to GOBA so we can ensure all roads are open & safe. See the “Route Highlights” in the left column of this page for more descriptive details of the week’s routes.
**NOTE – 2023 Routes below as a placeholder for 2024 routes:
Each day’s Ride With GPS files for your bike computer or phone are hosted on Ride with GPS.
EASY-TO-PRINT PDFS FOR PAPER MAPS
TUESDAY: 50 miles to Willoughby
WEDNESDAY: 50 miles to Kent
THURSDAY: 50 mile loop to the southeast
FRIDAY LOOP 1: 55 miles to Burton with Geodesic Dome!!
SATURDAY: 38 miles to Jefferson / Finish
FOOD STOPS: PDF GRID THAT LISTS THE STOPS (updated June 17)
SAFETY SHOW: The footage may be vintage, but the advice in this GOBA Safety Show video at https://youtu.be/lgOO_wT2Ri4 is just as relevant today as when it was filmed circa 1990. (Thanks to David Jeffords for digitizing it!) The Safety Show will be offered Saturday and Sunday during check-in at GOBA camp in Jefferson before riders hit the road for the 34th annual Great Ohio Bicycle Adventure.