Easter Hill Country Tour FAQ's
What is Easter Hill Country Tour (EHCT)?
Easter Hill Country Tour is a three-day bike tour based out of Kerrville, Texas over Easter weekend. Originally hosted by the Lubbock Bicycle Club in 1974, it has been hosted by bicycle clubs in rotation. Host clubs are now the Fort Worth Bicycling Association, Houston Bicycle Club, and Bike Austin. The clubs act cooperatively to pass along useful information to one another, but there is an underlying friendly rivalry to plan the prettiest routes and best overall ride experience.
Where is EHCT held?
EHCT is based in Kerrville, Texas and uses a variety of routes that start and end at the Schreiner University in town. Kerrville is in the heart of the Texas Hill Country, about 45 miles northwest of San Antonio. The Friday Ride will start in Fredericksburg, Texas, which is approximately 23 miles northeast of Kerrville.
What’s different about this year’s event?
When the ride originated decades ago, there was little to offer participants in the Kerrville area. Now Kerrville is a vibrate community with many choices for recreation activities and food selections, therefore we will not be offering a Saturday evening dinner event.
The other change is that Saturday’s ride selections will not offer a Century Route. Recently, there has been a reduced interest in this longer ride, which is costly to support for so few participants.
Lastly, the Sunday ride will be unsupported. We will offer routes for those who choose to ride, but no Rest Stops, or SAG will be offered.
How do I get to Registration at the University?
Onsite registration is located at the Schreiner University’s CCAC Lion’s Den located at 2100 Memorial Blvd. Go to the Register page for directions and a map of Kerrville with the University’s location.
What is the cost for one day?
The cost of the event covers three days of riding in the beautiful Hill Country. So whether you choose to ride one day, or all three, the cost is the same.
If I missed your online extended registration deadline. Is there a chance to register late or on the day of the event?
You can still register at the event. Hours for onsite registration are on the Register page of the website.
If I register and am unable to attend is the registration fee refundable?
Unfortunately there are no refunds. The ride will go on rain or shine unless it is not safe.
If I register, would it be possible to receive a copy of the ride routes in advance? I understand copies are not available on the website.
Maps will be available for pick-up at registration. Also Ride with GPS routes will be available to registered riders after mid-March.
I can not ride, would it be possible for a friend of mine to pick up the packet for me?
Yes, as long as you have signed the registration form.
Which parking lot do we meet at Schreiner University? There are twelve lots from A to L..
Registration is at the student center in the CCAC building and there is a parking lot there. For the ride you will see the lots with cars with bikes. Please park wherever space is available.
What kind of bike should I ride? Also what kind of gradients can I expect?
Most riders are on road bikes and we recommend a bike with a triple or compact for lower gearing. There are plenty of steep climbs. Some are 13% or more.
What are the ages allowed? Are there any discounts for kids to ride the short routes?
We do not have an age restriction. A parent must sign the registration form for a minor. Keep in mind that the terrain is very hilly and can be challenging, even on the short routes. There are no discounts or special pricing for children. We believe our pricing is very fair and economical for a three-day ride.
Are the routes hilly?
Kerrville is situated in one of the prettiest parts of the Texas Hill Country, and the routes are laid out to showcase the scenery and roads. The geological history of this area tends to produce small, intimate valleys with steep hillsides capped with Edwards limestone. The hills tend to be relatively short (compared to long mountain passes like Colorado), but are often steep. Some are quite challenging.
Routes are selected to use small back roads as much as possible; when it is occasionally necessary to access bigger roads, the only ones used are those with broad shoulders for safe, enjoyable cycling.
Is there a baggage shuttle?
No baggage shuttle is needed. You'll return to your room or campsite each day.
What lodging accommodations are available?
The EHCT has negotiated very competitive rates at the YO Ranch Resort Hotel and at the Inn of the Hills Hotel & Conference Center. When contacting these hotels, be sure to mention that you are with the Easter Hills Country Tour to guarantee that you get the special rate. If you book on line, please reference Easter Hill Country Tour as well. Or you may choose to stay at one of the other many excellent quality motels and hotels in Kerrville. Many EHCT participants camp at Kerrville City Park (formerly Kerrville State Park). For more information go to the Meals and Lodging page.
What equipment do I need to enjoy EHCT?
A well-maintained bicycle is, of course, the requisite starting point. Almost all participants use a road bike, since the local roads are generally excellent; there is no real advantage to a mountain or hybrid bike (which are generally slower). Since you will be spending some part of three days on the bike, it should be comfortable. Basic safety gear (helmet) is needed, as well as basic tools (spare tube, patch kit, tire levers, simple tools, tire pump or CO2 inflator). All routes are carefully mapped, with cue sheets on the back of each map, so a basic cycle-computer is helpful to keep track of mileage. Some cyclists prefer to use GPS devices to track their progress.
There are no start times posted. When do the rides start?
There is no mass start time for any of the rides. Most riders arrive at the start point between 8am and 10am. Many riders contact other riders at Thursday packet pickup and arrange to meet at a particular time. Rest stops will close at the posted times. Start early enough to reach the rest stops by the posted close time.
My packet contains several sets of maps. How do I decide which to ride?
Maps offer a variety of route distances. Riders may choose the distance they prefer. Friday’s ride will originate out of Fredericksburg.
How will signage be for EHCT?
There will be maps/cue sheets in riders’ packages and in addition, there will be colored navigation arrows on the roads before and at all turns. Route arrows can occasionally be washed off by heavy rain or worn off by traffic. If in doubt, the cue sheet is your most reliable information.
Will there be rest stops at EHCT?
There will be rest stops approximately every 10-15 miles on routes on Friday and Saturday. All rest stops include water, snacks, and porta-cans. The Sunday ride is unsupported and will not have rest stops.
What time do rest stops close?
Rest stop closing times will be posted on your ride maps. Please start your ride early enough to ensure the rest stops are still open. Rest stops will close at the posted times.
What about SAG support?
Please do not arrange for your own SAG vehicle. There will be several roving SAG vehicles on each route each day, generally less than 20 miles apart. SAG's will have small first aid kits, spare tubes, patch kits, floor pumps, water/sports drinks/bonk bars and can move you and your bike to the next rest stop. If you are bonking, the rest and fuel may be enough to get you moving again. Our SAG vehicles can take tired riders to the next rest stop only. If your bike is broken, we can get you both back to town. SAG support will be available Friday and Saturday. The Sunday ride is unsupported and will not have SAG support.
Can I use credit or debit cards to register for EHCT?
Yes. Payment by credit card will be accepted both online and in person at Kerrville.
Can I get digital maps in advance to download into my bicycle GPS?
Yes. Digital maps will be available around mid-March for paid-registrants.
What happens if I have a bicycle problem?
Hill Country Bicycle Works has shop locations in both Kerrville and Fredericksburg.
What happens if the weather is bad?
The Tour is held rain or shine (unless clearly dangerous to do so). We regret that no refunds can be made for weather-related reasons (unfortunately, significant expenses will already have been incurred). In it's 42-year history, EHCT has never lost the whole event to weather. Please check your favorite weather app prior to starting your ride.
Are there Mountain Bike trails?
There is a new four mile bike trail that requires the purchase of a day-pass in Kerrville - Schreiner State Park Trail - http://www.kerrvilletx.gov/index.aspx?NID=1279. However, this is not part of the Easter Hill Country Tour event.