Climate Ride NYC-DC is a grand cycling adventure that connects two of the nation’s most important cities – New York and Washington, DC – by bicycle. From the exciting departure by ferry in Manhattan to the hero’s welcome and rally at the steps of the US Capitol, the east-coast version of Climate Ride is more than a bike trip – it’s an inspiring journey with 200 like-minded people who are united by their passion for sustainability, renewable energy, and bicycles - the ultimate carbon-free form of transportation.
On the NYC-DC ride, you’ll spend five days cycling through rich green countryside and historic towns. You’ll find out why they call New Jersey “The Garden State” as you cycle through the lush landscape. You’ll explore the historic Delaware River Valley, discover Pennsylvania’s Amish country, and pedal through horse country in Maryland before arriving at the Capitol in Washington DC. Evening programs and dynamic speakers combine with world-class riding to make this charitable event exciting, informative, and fun.
Climate Ride takes care of all the details, so you can focus on riding the 45-70 miles per day of carefully planned routes on back roads that meander through the countryside. It’s challenging yet doable, and you have all day to make it to the next rest stop. The ride has followed the same route between the two cities since the first Climate Ride in 2008, although portions change from year to year. The Climate Ride support team is always nearby to assist you, keep you happy and healthy, and make your ride worry-free and memorable.
Climate Ride NYC-DC includes camping facilities (riders must bring their own tents and sleeping bags). To see everything that is included, visit the Climate Ride FAQ page!
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The Day before the Ride
We will host a Registration and Welcome Reception for the evening of Friday, September 19th from 5:30 pm to 8 pm at the same location as the Ride Start (to be announced). You can drop off your bike, fill out any last-minute paperwork and join us for our kick-off party. It’s your first chance to meet and network with other Climate Riders, so we highly recommend attending.
The next morning, Saturday, September 20th, the ride begins! You should arrive at the Ride Start location (to be announced) between 8 am and 9 am to drop off your luggage, prep your bike and pack snacks. Give yourself time to get organized before a mandatory 9am safety talk. The ride officially starts at 9:30 am!
Day 1 - 45 Miles
Climate Riders will depart from Brooklyn's spectacular urban landscape, riding en masse through New York City.
A ferry awaits to transport our group across New York Harbor to Atlantic Highlands, NJ. After disembarking, we'll enjoy a tasty picnic, before hopping on our bikes and pedaling into rural countryside of the Garden State. Quiet roads weave past small farms on the way to tonight’s destination, Princeton, NJ, home to Princeton University. In the evening, we'll gather in a ivy-covered McCosh hall on the Princeton campus to hear from some of our expert speakers.
Day 2 - 68 Miles
Today brings more rural farming country, small towns, and historic landmarks. We depart from Princeton and continue along quiet, winding roads until we reach the Delaware River, the boundary between New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Our last stop before crossing the river is the charming town of Lambertville. Antique shops, restaurants, and art galleries line the avenues, and riverside cafes dot the river's edge. After crossing the river, we enter Lambertville’s sister city on the Pennsylvania side, New Hope. Soon we are pedaling along Pennsylvania’s quiet roads to Doylestown, where we will have a chance to try one of the local restaurants. We'll join the Schuylkill River bike path and pedal near Valley Forge, then on through Phoenixville, to our overnight stop at a local summer camp.
Day 3 - 69 miles
Today we’ll wind our way through Pennsylvania hill country into Lancaster County, famed for its quiet roads and epic cycling. Our day begins with rolling hills through French Creek State Park and a visit to St. Peters, a riverside hamlet composed of quaint homes and imposing granite boulders. After passing through a few more small towns, we turn to the south and enter quintessential Amish country. Here we'll share the road with horses and buggies. Silos and small farms dot the hillsides and valleys, and small Amish towns serve up ice cream and plenty of charm to visitors. Soon our route enters the rolling hills that flank the mighty Susquehanna River. Tonight we camp at a traditional Mennonite summer camp tucked in the trees.
Day 4 - 62 miles
We begin the day by pedaling across a long bridge crossing the Susquehanna River. The Susquehanna flows furiously in the springtime and is a mere trickle by mid-summer. After a few miles we enter Maryland and ride past beautifully manicured farms and stunning country estates. It’s hard to imagine that Washington DC is so close. This is the area that DC cyclists prize—the roads are quiet and curvy and the green countryside reflects the long history of the Mid-Atlantic region. Soon we enter the small towns that surround DC. Leave those tents packed, because tonight we have hotel rooms and cabins at a comfortable eco-retreat. We'll enjoy a delicious meal on our final night before pedaling into the nation's capital.
Day 5 - 60 miles
This morning we’ll rise early and head straight for the heart of Washington DC. After several miles winding through Maryland, we will stop for lunch in Silver Spring, Maryland before hopping on the Capital Crescent Trail, a popular rail-trail, created by the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. We gather at the tail end of Constitution Avenue, and then begin our final leg to the Capitol, passing the Washington Monument and rows of museums. We will congregate on the West Lawn, with the Capitol in the background, where we will make a statement about the need to move the nation toward sustainability and on a path to a renewable energy future. Our ride concludes near the U.S. Capitol and we all say goodbye until the next Climate Ride!