Join us June 11-16, 2023 for the 20th annual Grand Illinois Bike Tour (GIBT)! Our 2023 loop will tour northwest Illinois including the Mississippi River and the Quad Cities. We’ll start and end at Kewanee High School with overnights in Moline (two nights), Savanna (one night) and Rock Falls (two nights). Join us and invite your friends.
Choose among our daily mileage options for a total between 210 to 375 miles, consisting mainly of quiet rural roads as well as some paved trails around Kewanee, the Quad Cities, following the Mississippi River to Savanna and then to Rock Falls. Pick between our hotel and our modified, semi-independent (details below) group camping options. Enjoy evenings filled with good food and socializing with riders from around the country. Proceeds benefit Ride Illinois, a nonprofit bicycle advocacy organization, and support our mission to make Illinois better through biking.
Our fully supported tour basics:
The ride is limited to 130 hotelers and 190 total riders.
Registration will be available online on November 1. (If you would prefer a PDF, that can be printed and mailed to Ride Illinois, please email us.)
Why should you ride GIBT? We will let some of the riders in this year’s GIBT answer that with their favorite parts of the ride:
In our 2022 post-ride survey, riders rated GIBT 3.78 (out of 4) overall and 3.80 in value for the money. Want more details and more reasons why you should join us? Check out our Grand Illinois Bike Tour video:
Please note: To receive our discounted member rates, log-in to our membership portal.
Not sure if your membership is current? You can also log on to check! (Any questions, email us at email@example.com.)
Single Occupancy Hotel Rooms: $1,165 (Member rate: $1,130)
Double Occupancy Hotel Rooms: $915 per person (Member rate: $880 per person)
Group Camping (see details below): $330 (Member rate: $295).
*Please note that our online registration system allows for credit card users to donate the amount of credit card processing fees to Ride Illinois. PayPal does not have an option to donate processing fees.
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please read our revised for 2023 cancellation and refund policy below. It reflects stricter group cancellation policies now common at hotels. Be sure to get trip insurance!
The ride is limited to 130 hotelers and 190 total riders.
Registration will open online November 1, 2022 or email us to request a PDF registration form.
The tour begins and ends at Kewanee High School, with free parking for the week and post-ride showers available on Friday. Overnight stops will be in Moline (two nights), Savanna (one night) and Sterling/Rock Falls (two nights).
On each of the four days when we move to a new town, we offer a basic route of 47-58 miles with longer options of 62-74 miles. Ride at your own pace on quiet, rural roads and some paved trails. Enjoy plenty of time each day to explore the small towns and attractions along the route and in our overnight host towns.
The second and fifth days will be layover days, during which you can explore sites and other local attractions, choose between the route options we provide, or just enjoy the days however you wish.
Preliminary Route Mileages (subject to change)
Day 1: Kewanee to Moline
Basic Route – 54.6 miles, +1002 ft climbing (hotel) or 51.6 miles, +944 ft climbing (camping)
Long option – 73.8 miles, +1900 ft climbing (hotel) or 70.8 miles, +1842 ft climbing (camping)
Day 2: Layover in Moline
QC Trails Route – 43.2 miles, +1041 ft climbing (hotel) or 58.8 miles, +1324 ft climbing (camping)
(Shorter distances are possible by skipping parts of this route.)
Day 3: Moline to Savanna
Basic Route – 58.5 miles, +1081 ft climbing (hotel) or 53.5 miles, +884 ft climbing (camping)
Long Route – 67.8 miles, +1596 ft climbing (hotel) or 64 miles, +1400 ft climbing (camping)
Day 4: Savanna to Sterling/Rock Falls
Basic Route – 51.4 miles, +1416 ft climbing (hotel) or 53.4 miles, +1482 ft climbing (camping)
Long option – 71.1 miles, +1813 ft climbing (hotel) or 73.1 miles, +1879 ft climbing (camping)
Day 5: Layover day in Sterling/Rock Falls
Long Route – 58.3 miles, +1821 ft climbing (hotel) or 50.1 miles, +1674 ft climbing (camping)
Intermediate option – 44.4 miles, +1477 ft climbing (hotel) or 36.2 miles, +1330 ft climbing (camping)
Shorter option – 35.2 miles, +1125 ft climbing (hotel) or 27.0 miles, +978 ft climbing (camping)
Day 6: Sterling/Rock Falls to Kewanee
Basic Route – 47.3 miles, +1043 ft climbing (hotel) or 51.1 miles, +1087 ft climbing (camping)
Long option – 62.2 miles, +1476 ft climbing (hotel) or 66.0 miles, +1530 ft climbing (camping)
In 2022, we successfully switched our primary navigation method from paint-marks to RideWithGPS – supplemented with printed cue sheets and overall segment maps. Smartphone-based RideWithGPS provides audio instructions for navigation with the ability to add other cues about rest stops, points of interest, etc. Because it uses GPS signals, which are everywhere, it will work for you in places of poor cell phone coverage, too.
We will continue to help our riders make the switch to RideWithGPS, with steps including:
Sunday night: Moline’s Stoney Creek
Monday night: Moline’s Stoney Creek
Tuesday night: Savanna’s Savanna Inn & Suites
Wednesday night: Rock Falls’ Country Inn & Suites, and if needed, Super 8
Thursday night: Rock Falls’ Country Inn & Suites, and if needed, Super 8
Catered dinners will be provided at the hotels on Tuesday and Wednesday, with “on-your-own” dinners at nearby restaurants the other three nights. All hotels will provide breakfast in the morning. We will have evening receptions for hotelers on some nights.
Bikes will be kept in hotel rooms. One 40-pound bag per registrant will be accepted. Please, no oversized luggage!
Each year, a few riders want to sign up for double occupancy without already having a roommate in mind. Please email us and we can put you into contact with others in this situation, to find a roommate.
Contact email@example.com with any other questions regarding the hotel option.
While Ride Illinois is not able to fully organize and staff its GIBT camping option in 2023, we are partnering with some longtime GIBT campers to offer a more independent camping option based on groups of riders. Here is what is provided by Ride Illinois/GIBT:
Riders in the group camping option will sign up in small groups, with each group having its own vehicle. The group chooses its own size, perhaps based on the vehicle’s capacity.
Each group is responsible for its own luggage transport; camp supplies (including air pumps); snacks and drinks at camp; breakfasts all five mornings; dinners on Sunday, Monday, and Thursday; transportation to the Tuesday and Wednesday catered dinners at the hotels; and picking up repaired bikes. Each group is also responsible for their own group vehicle driving and task scheduling, as well as splitting their expenses (beyond the registration costs).
Ride Illinois personnel will NOT staff the campsites, although we would be available for emergencies.
The registration cost of this scaled-down camping option is $330, or $295 for members. (The cost for non-riders in a group is $120.) When registering, provide the group name as identified by the group vehicle’s owner. If you do not have a group, or your group is seeking additional riders, contact Bill Bellman (firstname.lastname@example.org) before registering, for help matching people to groups.
Events Bike Ride Services is back for 2023, offering other options for all riders including massages, bike cleaning, and transport for those leaving the ride early.
For campers: Tent, towel and chair rental is available, as is tent set up/take down.
Make arrangements with Glen Morey directly online at www.eventsbikerideservices.com, by email at email@example.com or call/text at 727-457-6994.
The Grand Illinois Bike Tour is the only multi-day ride in Illinois that specifically raises money to support the goal of a more bike-friendly Illinois. Proceeds benefit Ride Illinois, a nonprofit advocacy organization working to make bicycling better in Illinois.
We encourage all participants to fundraise a minimum of $150 on top of the registration fee to better support the costs of the ride and help propel Ride Illinois’ mission to make biking safer and more enjoyable statewide.
The fundraising program is optional but is strongly encouraged. Riders can also make a donation in lieu of fundraising. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Ride Illinois is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Donations supporting a rider are tax deductible. All donations from personal fundraising will be distributed to Ride Illinois and are nonrefundable.
Please review our 2023 revised Cancellation and Refund Policy – which applies for all situations including personal or family medical emergencies:
Hotel cancellation penalties that we incur (and pass along to those canceling) have become much more severe since COVID. Due to this, and the fact that each year many riders (>10%) have to cancel, we HIGHLY recommend that YOU get trip insurance! Third-party trip insurance is quite affordable for many medical and other unexpected situations leading to cancellation – and historically in almost every case, it cost less than the cancellation fee. Travelex is one provider option.
Finally, no refund will be given for:
Please note that the Grand Illinois Bike Tour is Ride Illinois’ largest annual fundraiser. The funds raised from the Grand Illinois Bike Tour helps us to continue our advocacy work to make Illinois a land of safe and enjoyable bicycling for all; and to promote bicycle access, education and safety.
2023 Velosophie – proposed readings: