In Minnesota, the Almanzo is synonymous with gravel racing. In fact, I would go so far as to state that gravel racing wouldn’t be what it is today were it not for Chris Skogen, and the hallowed gravel century. What started as a small ride with a group of friends ballooned into something that would draw riders, of all skill levels, from the Upper Midwest and beyond, to Fillmore County in southeastern Minnesota. On the Saturday of Mother’s Day weekend the population of Spring Valley swells by 50 percent, and spandex-clad, carbon-fiber riding enthusiasts might grab a stool at Elaine’s Diner
It began as an idea to gather some friends for an ambitious bicycle ride through southern Minnesota. Seven years later, Wilderfest has grown into full weekend of long distance rides and foot races.