CYCLING CAPITAL OF KENTUCKY

Welcome to the Official Cycling Guide to London, Kentucky. The City of London, KY is The Cycling Capital of Kentucky™ and boasts some of the most scenic and challenging routes you’ll find anywhere in the country. In addition, downtown London, KY hostsThe Redbud Ride, an annual ride that boasts over 1,000 riders from over a dozen states.

On this website, you find a collection of cycling routes for both Road and Mountain cyclists of all skill levels. We have also compiled a list of various cycling events in the London-Laurel County area and important information that we hope you’ll find helpful. Please don’t hesitate to contact us and let us know your thoughts!

Halloweenie - 25 Miles

The 25-mile Halloweenie Route is easy and very scenic. This is an “out and back” route. Most of the route is fairly flat. The route has one very short but steep hill leaving town on McWhorter Street. The route has one longish but very gently sloping hill up Slate Like Road on the return.

All of the Halloweenie is on country roads. The turnaround is at Slone Furniture on HWY 3630 (old HWY 3). Each October Sloan Furniture hosts a rest stop on The Thriller Ride

At the 25 mile point you are back in beautiful downtown London (The Cycling Capital of Kentucky ™), where there are local restaurants, a bike shop and lots of other things to do. Congratulations. You made it.

Halloweenie 2013 cue sheet PDF

Lake Trail - 5.4 Miles

The Lake Trail begins at a small parking area at the junction of KY HWY 192 and KY HWY 1193. The route is known as a great “beginner’s” trail. Much of the Lake Trail runs along Laurel River Lake. Laurel River Lake is a combination flood control, hydroelectricity generation and recreation lake. The lake was built by the US Corps of Engineers and is managed jointly by the Corps of Engineers and the US Forest Service. All of the Lake Trail is within the Daniel Boone National Forest. Part of the trail is adjacent to the Holly Bay Campground and Holly Bay Marina. The Lake Trail is a out-and-back trail that is 5.4 miles in each direction.

A great selection of other trails awaits mountain bikers who seek recreational challenge across rugged terrain in the Daniel Boone National Forest. Since most of the Daniel Boone National Forest trails were constructed primarily for hiking, most are narrow and sometimes steep. You should expect to carry or walk your bike along some sections of trail.

Many national forest trails are “multiple-use.” Mountain bikers often share the trail with hikers, horseback riders and off-highway vehicle enthusiasts. Please remember to Share The Trail.

Avoid riding trails during wet weather. This can damage trails by rutting the tread and eroding the soil.

Hopper Creek Route - 27 Miles

The Hopper Creek Route is a very scenic and moderately challenging 27-mile route through Southeastern Laurel County. The Route begins at the Crooked Creek Golf Club parking lot. Please park near the tennis courts. The route has constant rolling hills. None of the hills are considered “challenging.” All of the route is on lightly traveled roads with the exception of 0.3 mile on KY HWY 229. However, this part of 229 is relatively straight and flat. Cars will be able to see you from some distance away.

Thriller Route - 63 Miles

The 63-mile Thriller Route is very scenic with just the right mixture of flats, gently rolling hills, a few steep but very short climbs and fast down-hill descents. The steepest grade is 12% for just a few feet. At least three short hills have grades of 10%. The Thriller Route starts at the Laurel County Farmer’s Market on South Main Street in London. If you are here in the spring or summer, the Farmer’s Market is bustling with Laurel County Farmers selling produce. Follow the 63-mile “Dan Henry” markings out of town. At about the 6 mile marker you will start your steepest climb of the day. This short hill gradually increases in grade until it reaches 12% for a short distance near the top of the hill. At the 10-mile marker you will ride behind Hazel Green School. The school is an elementary school now but for several decades the Hazel Green Bullfrogs were one of the dominate high school basketball powerhouses in Kentucky. The tiny school actually won the Kentucky State Tournament in 1940 and reached the State Tournament Final Four three additional times.

At the 17.7 mile point you can stop at Sloan Furniture at Greenmount. This is a good place to fill your water bottles and is home to the first rest stop on “The Thriller Ride” each October. If you need food there is a small country diner less than 1/4 mile away.

At the 37 mile point you will pass Sustainable Harvest Farm on the left. Sustainable Harvest Farm, owned by former professional cyclist Ford Waterstradt, is the only USDA certified organic farm within more than 100 miles. Ford and his wife Amanda have welcomed all cyclists to stop and fill their water bottles and look around the farm. The Waterstradt Farm is also home to a rest stop on the mid-October “Thriller Ride.”

From mile marker 38 to 43 you will cycle on Pine Hill Brock road. Pine Hill Brock is lined with beautiful pleasure horse farms with black board fences. This rolling road is very scenic and photograph worthy. From mile marker 44 to 46 you will be challenged by some of the tougher hills that we have to offer. Maximum slopes on these 2 hills are 10%. However, the view from the top is well worth the effort. From mile marker 46 to 61 you will settle into constant rollers and beautiful scenery. At about mile marker 43 don’t be surprised if curious looking Texas longhorn cattle come to the fence on your left to greet you. Some of the larger bulls have horns longer than the width of a pickup truck. From mile marker 59-60 you will cycle through Levi Jackson State Park. If you are here during the month of October, take a side trip through the campground. The campers are known far and wide for their over-the-top Halloween decorations. From mile marker 60 to 62 you will be on US 25/Main Street. This is a busy highway. However, the road is wide with a center turning lane. It’s still best to ride in single file on this road. You will finish in beautiful downtown London, the “Cycling Capital of Kentucky ™.” There are local restaurants and pubs as well as a local bike shop to visit after the ride. Congratulations. You have just completed one of the most scenic routes in Kentucky.

Redbud Ride - Yellow Route - 23.5 Miles

The 23.5-mile Yellow Route is easy and very scenic. Most of the route is fairly flat. The route has one very short but steep hill leaving town on McWhorter Street. The route has one longish but very gently sloping hill up Slate Like Road on the return.

All of the Yellow Route is on country roads. There is water available at the McWhorter Church, located at the 11.7-mile point of the route. The church will be your turn-around point.

At the 23.5-mile point you are back in beautiful downtown London (The Cycling Capital of Kentucky ™), where there are local restaurants, a bike shop and lots of other things to do. Congratulations. You made it.

Redbud Ride - Orange Route - 34.4 Miles

The 34.4-mile Orange Route is fairly easy and very scenic. The route has a couple short but steep hills. The longest hill is only 0.25 mile long. All of the Orange Route is on country roads.

There is water available at the McWhorter Church, located at the 11.7-mile point of the route. At the 21.5-mile point you will climb the the steepest hill of the day. The hill is only 0.1 mile long but is very steep.

At the 34.4-mile point you are back in beautiful downtown London (The Cycling Capital of Kentucky ™), where there are local restaurants, a bike shop and lots of other things to do. Congratulations. You made it.

Century Plus Route - 59 Miles

The 59-mile Half Century Plus Route is challenging from miles 13 through 45. The first 13 miles and the last 14 miles of this route are a “piece of cake.” The route has two steep climbs. However, both are very short. The longest hill is only 0.25 mile long. Most all of the Half Century Plus Route is on smoothly paved and lightly traveled country roads.

The route begins in downtown London “The Cycling Capital of Kentucky ™.” The first 12 miles of the route are flat to very gently rolling. At the 12.7 mile point you will start a steep climb up Roy Black Road. This is actually a series of short climbs broken up by level spots. The hill is steepest at the bottom. At the 18.8 mile point you will enjoy flying down a 3.4 mile gentle downhill.

At the 22 mile point you will cross the beautiful Rockcastle River. This is a great place to take photographs from the refurbished Hwy 490 bridge. After the bridge you will turn right on Hwy 89. Hwy 89 has the feel of a bike path instead of a highway. At the 25.5 mile point it is best to walk your bikes across the WPA constructed historic bridge. The boards are spaced the perfect distance apart to catch those skinny road bike tires.

At the 31.4 mile point you will turn right on Hwy 2002 and will soon start your toughest climb of the day. The Tussey Hill climb starts with a 0.25 mile hill. After this hill you will have 0.1 mile to catch your breath before starting up a 0.1 mile hill that looks like a vertical paved wall. After this climb you can relax and pedal along gently rolling hills, a nice downhill and flat to gently rolling roads for much of the rest of your ride. However, the hills aren’t completely over by any stretch of the imagination. You will have two fairly challenging hills, one each on Moores Creek Church Road and Moore’s Creek School Road.

At the 39.2 mile point you will have the opportunity to stop at a country store/gas station (Liberty) that has great ham and cheese sandwiches or if you want a hot meal there is a roadside restaurant (Tucky’s) just 0.1 mile further. There is water available at the McWhorter Church, located at the 47.3 mile point of the route. You will finish in beautiful downtown London, where there are local restaurants, pubs, a bike shop and lots of other things to do. Congratulations. You made it.

Redbud Ride - Green Monster Route - 70 Miles

The 70-mile Green Monster Route is challenging but extremely scenic. The route has three steep but short climbs and many smaller hills. The longest hill is only 0.25 mile long. Most all of the Green Monster Route is on smoothly paved and lightly traveled country roads. The route begins in downtown London “The Cycling Capital of Kentucky™.”

The first 12 miles of the route are flat to very gently rolling. At the 12.7 mile point you will start a steep climb up Roy Black Road. This is actually a series of short climbs broken up by level stretches. The hill is steepest at the bottom. At the 18.8 mile point you will enjoy flying down a 3.4 mile gentle downhill.

At the 22 mile point you will cross the beautiful Rockcastle River. This is a great place to take photographs from the refurbished Hwy 490 bridge. After the bridge you will turn right on Hwy 89. Hwy 89 has the feel of a bike path instead of a highway. You will have the Daniel Boone National Forest on the left, the Rockcastle River on the right and will be following the Sheltowee Trace trail.

At the 25.5 mile point it is best to walk your bikes across the WPA constructed historic bridge. The boards are spaced the perfect distance apart to catch those skinny road bike tires. At the 31.4 mile point you will turn right on Hwy 2002 and will soon start your toughest climb of the day.

The Tussey Hill climb starts with a 0.25 mile hill. After this hill you will have 0.1 mile to catch your breath before starting up a 0.1 mile hill that has the look of a vertical paved wall. After this climb you can relax and pedal gently rolling hills, a nice downhill and flat roads for the next few miles. At the 39.2 mile point you will have the opportunity to stop at a country store/gas station (Liberty) that has great ham and cheese sandwiches or if you want a hot meal there is a roadside restaurant (Tucky’s) just 0.1 mile further. There is water available at the McWhorter Church, located at the 47.3 mile point of the route.

At the 57 mile point you will climb the last steep hill of the day. The hill is only 0.1 mile long but is very steep at the top. At the 100 mile point you are back in beautiful downtown London, where there are local restaurants, a bike shop and lots of other things to do. Congratulations. You made it.