The original Valley Springs Motorcycle Club held hillclimb events on this property from the 1970s to just barely into the 1990s...but as time goes on, things happen, and the club shut down...leaving the hill dormant and unused. But that wouldn't be the end of the story...the club re-formed in 2010 to hold hillclimb events again on this legendary hill here in Bay City, WI. Prior to our 2011 event, this hill had sat unused for 20 years, after having been one of the most popular hills in the Midwest and hosting 3 AMA national championships. The hill sometimes referred to as “500 feet of mean” stirred powerful memories though, so eventually a group of long-time hillclimbers approached the landowner about the possibility of holding events again. Thus the VSMC was re-formed by a veteran group of hillclimb riders and supporters to put Bay City, WI back on the map, and in 2012 we hosted the AMA Hillclimb Grand Championship - which received a record-breaking 522 entries from 216 riders, hailing from 15 different states across the country, and competing on 11 different brands of motorcycles and ATVs.
There’s been a few changes since then...we’ve had several events, another AMA Grand Championship, and the land itself is now under new ownership. What hasn’t changed is the daunting specter of this hill...an unyielding presence daring you to just try it - in 2013, with little to no rain all summer long, the gnarly and dusty hill proved so difficult that fewer than 1 in 5 attempts made it to the top light. In 2014 (our second AMA Hillclimb Grand Championship), though, we’d had plenty of rain...and we put a dozer on the hill to groom it as much as possible...and the result was spectacular!
Since the original era of Valley Springs M/C came to an end, Dean Gerdes held the hill record at 10.261 seconds as the hill sat dormant for 2 decades...a record that still stood after our inaugural 2011 event. However, at the 2012 Grand Championship, Kirk Mueller of La Valle, WI set a blistering 9.465 second time on his Suzuki open bike to win the King of The Hill class - and that record stood until the 2014 Grand Championship - in 2013 the hill was so challenging that Kirk himself won the open class, on the same bike, with a time more than 5 seconds slower! But as noted above, the 2014 event was truly spectacular, with multiple riders besting the hill record, and ultimately saw Logan Cipala of Ellsworth, WI blow everyone away with a seemingly-impossible 8.511 second banzai run - very nearly a full second faster than the hill record from 2012! And that record still stands now, and seems to be an unbeatable score...then again, that's what we used to think of Dean's record...
In 2016, VSMC is expanding our horizons a bit by hosting a dual-sport event, that will cover territory within Bay City and into several neighboring towns. We're excited to get this event going, and have enjoyed great enthusiasm from landowners all over the local area to support the event. As it stands, we don't have plans to do anything other than hillclimbs and dual-sport events...but who knows for sure what the future will hold?
Thanks for stopping by, and we hope to see you at a VSMC event soon! Feel free to drop us a line if you have any questions or comments about VSMC or our events.
Hey Vern! Check these out!