Gravel Fondo is a type of bikepacking event in which riders traverse a course on unpaved roads and trails.
Example usage: 'I'm competing in a Gravel Fondo this weekend!'
Most used in: North America and Europe.
Most used by: Endurance cyclists and bikepackers.
Comedy Value: 4/10
What is a Gravel Fondo?
A Gravel Fondo, also known as a ‘Gravel Grinder’, is a type of cycling event that combines the challenge of a road race with the adventure of off-road mountain biking. It typically involves a long-distance ride of around 40 to 100 miles, with a mix of paved and unpaved roads, including gravel, dirt, and other off-road terrain.
Gravel Fondos have gained in popularity in recent years, with the number of events increasing rapidly. According to the Gravel Cycling Association, there were over 500 Gravel Fondo events in the United States in 2019, up from just a handful in 2011.
The events are known for their relaxed atmosphere, often with scenic routes, and for the camaraderie among riders. They are a great way to challenge yourself, explore roads and trails that you might not have ridden before, and meet other cyclists..
Gravel Fondo: Where Did the Term Originate?
The term “Gravel Fondo” is used to describe a cycling event that combines aspects of road cycling, mountain biking, and cyclocross. It is a relatively new term and was first used in the early 2000s in the United States. It is derived from the Italian word “fondo”, which means “long ride”.
Gravel Fondo events typically take place on unpaved roads, gravel paths, and trails. The routes are usually longer than those for road cycling events, and usually involve a combination of flat, rolling, and hilly terrain. The events are usually timed, with participants competing against the clock rather than each other.
Gravel Fondo events have become increasingly popular in recent years, with a growing number of events taking place around the world. The events are a great way to explore a region’s back roads, test one’s endurance and skills, and enjoy the camaraderie of fellow cyclists.