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Classic Barry County Gravel Roads.
Legendary Yankee Springs Deep Lake Singletrack.

Mountain bikers have been climbing up and careening down the legendary Yankee Springs bike trails for over 30 years. More recently, they’ve been joined by bikers hammering the nearby gravel roads of Barry County and the Barry Roubaix race. Never have the two merged together until now at the Lord of the Springs bike race.

A day may come when the courage of men fails, but it is not THIS day.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

All activities begin and end at Camp Manitou-Lin, just north of the top-ranked Deep Lake mountain bike trails. Camp Manitou-Lin provides us a check-in and awards facility and a 3-mile lead-out to the singletrack trails. No back-ups!


  • 30-35-mile singletrack+gravel race (ages 14+ due to riding on open-to-traffic roads but exceptions may be granted)
  • Beginner/youth race TBD
  • 2-mile kids race (free, under 14)
  • 1/4-mile kids push/balance bike loop (free, medals to all)

Course Markings
All race courses will be marked with directional arrows. The 30+-mile course will have volunteers or sheriff monitors at most or all intersections in addition to arrows but racers are still responsible for crossing when safe to do so.

Surface Type
xx% of the race course is on dirt. Here’s the breakdown in surfaces.
Gravel: xx%
Singletrack: xx%
Two-track (Sager and Basset Lake Rds): x%
Pavement: x%

Bike Type
Mountain, cross, gravel, fat, tandem. Each bike type will have advantages and disadvantages on the course. Traditional road bikes are not allowed due to rugged singletrack and two-track trails. If you are unsure about cross/gravel vs. mountain, we recommend bringing both bikes and completing a full course (Tues, Thur or Sat. to get correct race-day flow) on each under various conditions between now and race day. If you choose cross/gravel, just be prepared for a fairly punishing ride on the singletrack trails. If in doubt, we recommend the mountain bike for safety and comfort (with not too knobby tires and a locked out shock for gravel sections if you are looking to increase speed).

Biker Type
A first bike race can be intimidating. We hope to create a low-key vibe (like at our adventure and trail races) and encourage those of you who might not normally participate in a bike race to give this a try. We want to get more people bike racing (lower impact on your joints and it’s exciting), create a larger, unified group of trail lovers of all types so we can advocate for our trails, and grow membership in the West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance which creates and maintains most of our great area trails.

We’ll Help You Get Ready
We may offer an on-trail bike skills clinic at Deep Lake to help you get ready for Yankee’s roots and rocks. Clinic waiver. We’ll also provide online tips on how to race, bike set-up, fuel and hydration and more.

See the registration page.

The board is set, the pieces are moving. We come to it at last, the great battle of our time.


  • Check-in: 8:00-9:45 am (no Friday/early check-in), Camp Manitou-Lin, main reception center
  • 30-35-mile Start: 10:00 am (mass start), Camp Manitou-Lin
  • 6-mile Beginner/Youth Start: 10:15ish
  • 2-mile Kids Race and Push/Balance Bike Start: 10:25 & again 12:15ish, Camp Manitou-Lin property (so family members racing in the 26-mile race can finish and bike with/watch their kids)
  • 30-35-mile Awards: TBD, likely 1 hour after first finishers arrive

You are welcome to bring a tent for your group or team and set it up near the check-in/start area in the campground. No charge,  no reservations needed. No team competition this year but maybe in the future.

Pre-Race Support
West Michigan Bike & Fitness will provide pre-race neutral support at their tent near the start/finish. You are on your own out on the race course (although call us to arrange pick-up if needed due to mechanic or medical issues).


  • Camp Manitou-Lin cabins
  • Deep Lake Campground: A limited number of beautiful campsites within a one-minute bike ride of the start/finish will be available through the Yankee Springs Recreation Area. Reserve them here.
  • Other options: search at another Yankee Springs campground, near Gun Lake (southwest) or in the city of Hastings (east).

Race organizers reserve the right to cancel the event in the case of extended severe weather or any emergency situation. The Deep Lake trail drains extremely well so we do not expect cancellation due to muddy trails. We will do everything possible to get the event in, but refunds are not available if it is cancelled due to significant costs we must pay in advance of the race (not to mention this is my full-time job so food on the table is important). We will offer a small discount for next year’s race if the race is cancelled.

Aid Stations
Aid stations will be available at the start/finish and at the 16 Mile mark (Whitmore at Chief Noonday Rd, at Yankee Bill’s/Blarney Stone restaurant). Ambulance and Metro Health Sports Medicine team on site, paramedic at aid station.

Roads will NOT be closed for the race. You are responsible for obeying the Michigan Vehicle Code as it applies to bicycles. We will provide police or volunteer monitors at most intersections but if limited with volunteers, some of the low-traffic intersections may not have a volunteer. All turns will have signs, although if a sign is stolen the morning of the race it is your responsibility to know the course. Bring the cue sheet from online or load the gpx file. Please follow their direction (but check for vehicles yourself).

This race is professionally chip-timed by Epic Race Timing. Results will be posted at finish line and on Epic’s website shortly after the race.


  • Road bikes not allowed due to rugged terrain.
  • No bike swaps mid race! 🙂
  • Music via headphones/earbuds is not allowed.
  • Other rules and guidelines to be sent in race updates as the race approaches.
  • No electronic or non-traditional bikes

Shirts & Merchandise

  • Lord of the Springs stainless steel pint $10. Available at the race.
  • Looking for our Michigan Adventure Racing gear (sweatshirts, shirts, pints, headwear)? Contact us and we’ll have it at the race for you.

Food & Drink
We will provide cut fruit, bagels and other snacks at no charge. Alcohol is not allowed to be sold on camp property. If you choose to drink, be discrete.

Post Race
Awards will be given out at a ceremony following the race. We may need to do this prior to everyone finishing so people can get home. We will likely do a small raffle BEFORE the race so you can pick up your prize at check-in. That way people still biking won’t miss out if the raffle was afterwards.

Charity Partner
Our charity partner is Camp Manitou-Lin’s youth scholarship fund. We will also provide some funds to the West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance for building and maintaining our great multi-use trails.

Questions? is a great place to ask questions and get answers so others can learn from your question. For questions specific to you, email Mark VanTongeren, race director.

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