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Sep 7, 2022

This week we sit down with Mr. Tutti (AKA Kelly) from the Tutti Gravel Inn. Inspired by the Canadian landscape, Kelly set off on a journey to create a gravel cycling vacation inn in Clinton, BC Canada.  

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Automated Transcription, please excuse the typos:

Tutti Gravel Inn

[00:00:00] Craig Dalton: Hello, and welcome to the gravel ride podcast, where we go deep on the sport of gravel cycling through in-depth interviews with product designers, event organizers and athletes. Who are pioneering the sport

I'm your host, Craig Dalton, a lifelong cyclist who discovered gravel cycling back in 2016 and made all the mistakes you don't need to make. I approach each episode as a beginner down, unlock all the knowledge you need to become a great gravel cyclist.

This week on the show. We welcome Kelly Servin ski. From a duty gravel in up in Clinton, Canada.

The Inn opened up in 2019. Just in time for the pandemic to make it start a little more stunted than it would have liked, but I became aware of the end and began talking to Kelly about a year ago. And I was keen to explore, you know, what would it look like to create a gravel in many of you may know that over in Europe,

Bike hotels are quite prevalent anywhere. There's a bike hotspot. You can find a hotel that will cater to your needs. With little touches, like having a pump or an area to clean your bike, but just the general friendliness to guess rumbling through the door. Dirty and in their Lycra. Kelly gives us an overview of what his vision was and what inspired him to start to the two D gravel in, in Clinton, Canada.

Before we jump in, I need to thank this week sponsor. Logos components.

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I've personally spent a lot of time on wheels designed by Randall And most recently spent time on the 700 C version of the logos wheels. And I can attest they're completely bomber and on par with the best wheels I've ever written. So go check them out at If you have any questions after listening to that episode, 136. Feel free to jump into the ridership and talk to randall directly And or other riders that may have experience on the product With that said let's jump right over to my interview with kelly from d gravel In.

Kelly welcome to the show.

[00:03:16] Kelly: Thanks for having me.

[00:03:17] Craig Dalton: Yeah. I'm excited to get into the conversation and learn a little bit more about the 2d gravel in am. I pronouncing it?

[00:03:24] Kelly: Yeah. It's pronounced Tuti. So Tuti in Italian means everyone or all. So that's a nice word. It's cute, but it's also the spirit of our business. Everyone's welcome here to come gravel ride.

[00:03:37] Craig Dalton: Amazing. Well, let's start off by getting a little bit about your background as a cyclist, and then we'll transition to how you discovered Clinton and, and why creating this, this gravel specific in was in your, in your vision.

[00:03:51] Kelly: Yeah, I mean, pretty random for me with my sort of foray into cycling I loved motorcycles to begin with as a kid. I had a BMX bike, but primarily it was dirt bikes. Grew up in the prairies of Canada, I would say north of Montana. So the province of Saskatchewan. So. Farm country, that kind of thing.

Yeah, cut to the chase. I was out dirt biking with a friend and adventurous, young guys were 15 and we saw a couple of dirt bikers professionals in a, in a magazine high fiving in the air as they jumped and then. You know, we just thought, Hey, we can do that. and yeah, it didn't go so well.

So, yeah, you know, big crash totaled the bike off broke my right femur. My right, pinky finger, my wrist and my elbow in the crash. So, Yeah, my buddy got away a little less worse for wear. He broke his toe, but anyhow, just yeah, long story short bone specialist suggested getting into something other than BMX riding for rehab of the femur.

So he didn't say gravel bikes or road bike or anything like that. But he said, you know, what about these mountain bikes kind of thing? So, yeah, about the the bike that I could afford at the time. So the cheapest bike I could get my hands on that was halfway decent and yeah, started rolling and getting the femur going and then Yeah entered my first race after I was feeling, feeling better and all the cast came off and whatnot and ended up winning the beginner category and then yeah, was hooked and yeah, never touched a dirt bike again until just recently got one again.

But yeah, this was pretty random, but yeah, that's the way it goes in life sometimes. Right. Just like how we've ended up in Clinton. Just yeah. You never know how things are gonna. Shape up. So just the adventure continue.

[00:05:34] Craig Dalton: After those early sort of racing experiences, did you continue racing?

[00:05:38] Kelly: Yeah. Yeah. I I really loved it. I, I wouldn't say you know, yeah, it, it was interesting. I was a young guy trying to find my way in the world. Working night jobs you know, going to university, that kind of thing. Yeah, I really love cycling, you know, for the comradery of it, the people that you met, I met my best friends through cycling over the years and yeah, I did.

Okay. Like focused on cross country and, you know, had some, you know, halfway decent results, I would say here in Canada and Yeah, I really enjoyed it. You know? I wouldn't say I trained maybe the best, you know, the most proper way, but yeah, no, I had had some, had some good times out there but I had the foresight to pack it in and, and not just keep you know, continuing with racing, thinking I'm gonna keep improving.

I sort of saw the writing on the wall, which is. You know, just I thought I got as fast as I could get, so yeah, I ended up going tree planting. So, I did that for a number of years. I didn't complete university, unfortunately, as many, as many people haven't, but yeah, life took another turn and then went out tree planting.

Here in Canada, but also in Scotland as well for a couple of Springs. And yeah, planting is kind of, interesting too. It's you only get in, you only get out what you put in just like cycling. So, yeah, it's pretty hard work and whatnot, but yeah, I did that for a number of summers and then hadn't touched the bike for a long, long time, but again, the bike came back into my life and another sort of random.

Sort of way. Yeah, after I was done tree planting, so yeah.

[00:07:07] Craig Dalton: Yeah, it's funny. You mentioned tree planting. I had an employee of mine many years ago, who was a Canadian. Who was involved in tree planting and every summer she would ask for a leave of absence to go back to it. It was a

[00:07:19] Kelly: oh yeah.

[00:07:20] Craig Dalton: she loved it. She just thought it was just sort of this great experience.

And so it's funny to hear you mention that.

[00:07:25] Kelly: Well, you don't ride, you don't ride your bike too much when you're planting. That's also another thing, you know, I would always put a deposit on a bike before I'd head out to the Bush kind of thing in the spring and wouldn't get a chance to touch it till the fall and ride it for a little bit and then it would snow.

So, yeah. Did it for a number of years, about seven seasons. And then Yeah, got back into cycling with some of the mountain bike stage races that were happening trans Rockies and Lada and trans ALP and things like that. So, yeah. Then I hung up the bags in the shovel, so to speak with planting.

[00:07:55] Craig Dalton: Right, right on. Amazing. Yeah, it was funny as, as we were, as I was prepping for this conference this conversation I was thinking about and researching where Clinton was and wondering if in my trans Rockies mountain bike stage or ACE experience, I got close to Clinton and it didn't look like it did.

[00:08:13] Kelly: no, no. Yeah. You, you had been in well to the east of us who knows maybe you and I have crossed paths. Did it a couple of times? Yeah, 2005 and 2007 and yeah. Yeah, it was it was a great experience. So that just fired me up for, for cycling. Again, I'd always love cycling, always followed it while I was planting, but yeah, that really reignited my love for it.

It's it's still going these days. Trans rock still happening. They have a gravel event as well.

[00:08:40] Craig Dalton: Yeah, a hundred percent. In fact, I just will be prior to this when releasing, releasing an episode from trans Rocky's, gravel, Royal,

[00:08:48] Kelly: Hmm, awesome.

[00:08:49] Craig Dalton: a lot of those memories, you know,

[00:08:51] Kelly: Oh, for sure.

[00:08:52] Craig Dalton: experienced, they, you know, the daily recap videos, the camping experience, there's just a, a great way to spend a week.

[00:09:00] Kelly: Yep. Totally.

[00:09:00] Craig Dalton: So at what point did you discover gravel bikes, drop bar bikes.

[00:09:05] Kelly: Yeah, that's an interesting one. I mean, obviously we run our in 2d, gravel in here and we have guests coming, you know, now from all over Canada, Western Canada, I would say, and some Americans and Europeans and everyone has their sort of timeline, I guess when they've discovered I'll do in parentheses gravel cycling, but We don't get into any sort of, I would say pissing match type thing.

Just to use that, that phrase about who's been in it longer and all those sorts of things and how, how long ago we knew about it. But again, we grew up in the Prairie sort of area of Canada and there wasn't, you know, Sweet, you know, single track or anything like that out there. So you were riding farm roads and gravel roads on your mountain bike.

So, yeah, that's what we had to ride and you know, it it, it was awesome. You could just go and you could go forever as you know. So, yeah that was, you know, obviously back in the day, but I would say. For me the, you know, why I've, you know, set up here in our guest suite you know, in front of the bicycle that you see behind me, that's a bike I rode in Lero.

I've done it a couple of times. So, did it in 2012 and yeah, that, that event in Italy the original one had a real impact on me with gravel cycling was over there. I was a rep in the industry for a number of years. And yeah, I was over there and you know, just on some holidays and then thought, oh, you know, this, this Lero event looks cool.

Let's do that. And yeah, I just couldn't believe the, the passion and, and, you know, the dust flying on the gravel roads and, you know, the drop bar bikes and everything, you know, albeit vintage bikes. And I thought, wow, this is awesome. Like, look at this, look at the, you know, really it was about the passion.

Look at the passion people have for, for doing this and the landscapes and. You know, the serenity of it, just getting away from it, all getting off the paved surfaces. It's not mountain biking obviously, but it has some elements of you know, off-road riding clearly. Right. Which appealed to me. But then the speed of, of road cycling, which I, I, I went through my road phase too, I would say.

But yeah, I just didn't like being around cars, you know, just really liked being off the beaten path, so to speak. So yeah, I would say it was Laro that really. Just opened my eyes to, to these bikes, you know, really coming back to where they originated, right? Like they were ridden on gravel roads before all the, you know, roads were, were, were paved, you know, in Europe and north America, obviously.

So all these images we have in our guest suites of the geo Tolia, for instance, you know, The riders going over these gravel roads high in the mountains, you know, that's that really struck a chord with me. So I came back and told a friend of mine who owns a bike shop, a really successful bike shop in Squamish BC here, where we used to live for about 12 years that you know, Hey, This I didn't say gravel site playing for sure.

But I just said this, this, you know, Lero thing, this, this drop bar bikes on, on gravel roads is I, you know, it's gonna be something, this is, this is awesome. And Squamish is more well known for, for, you know, being maybe the best place in the world to ride mountain bike right now. And he kind of, he didn't laugh at me, but he is like, you're crazy, you know, that's, you know, but.

Yeah. And then here we are. So, yeah, it was Laro for sure. A hundred percent. That's the, the one in, in, in Tuscany first weekend of October is the best I think event I've ever I've ever participated in.

[00:12:23] Craig Dalton: Amazing. And tell me first off, I'm, I'm interested in how you first discovered Clinton, but for those of us who are geographically challenged for Canadians Canadian landscape, where, where is Clinton in the country and, and where is sort of closer by way points, people might be familiar with.

[00:12:40] Kelly: Yeah, I mean, I'll maybe with the geography where it's located the closest sort of major center would be a city called Camloops. So Camloops is you know, got a, a huge history with cycling, but Yeah right now there's a company called we one composite that we ride their, their wheels.

They produce carbon fiber wheels there. They're located there. Yeah, I mean, south sort of central British Columbia. Definitely not, not Northern BC, but we're about two hours. Say from Whistler. To give people an idea. So, yeah, you you're, you're definitely out of the populated areas of British Columbia.

It's really wide open terrain here at me and ride in every direction. So, yeah, that's where we're located. I guess the most famous spot would be, would be Whistler, you know, International, you know, mountain bike destination. So yeah, just a couple hours drive north from there, but yeah, totally different zone than than around a Whistler.

[00:13:36] Craig Dalton: How did you yeah. How did you find yourself there? And, and what did you discover on those first rides?

[00:13:42] Kelly: yeah, I mean, it was again random. I just maybe keep using that word. Just was a rep in the industry, like I said, and you know, would travel from living in Squamish and around British Columbia to see, see my accounts and yeah kept coming up to this region that, that we call home now in Clinton, it's called the caribou region.

Of BC. And yeah. See my, my accounts up here and do some riding, do some races and then have a good friend that lives up here just north of us. And he's a pilot in with firefighting. So, and a cyclist as well. And he was always, you know, like, Hey, I know you live in Squamish, but you know, Hey, you should get up to the caribou.

It's awesome. Up here. Know for cycling. And again, he didn't say gravel cycling, but he flies over all these roads that we now ride. So he has a real bug in my ear, just, you know, Hey, come on, you know, just spend some more time up here. Cause I'd always be up here and through here, but just, you know, spend more time, not just, you know, an afternoon or a day, you know, so kept doing that, kept doing that.

And then. I would point back to really 2019, the fall of 2019 was up here shooting some photos with a brand called seven mesh who's from Squamish they're they're they're yeah, an awesome brand making some of the best clothing out there and yeah, just they invited me to come up, shoot some photos and I think it was really meant to be for me to be here at that time.

Yeah, it all clicked. I mean, the weather was clicking or out, you know, shooting photos on these roads, which I'd ridden before. And I looked over to the photographer and I just said, you know, like, this is awesome. Like, this is unreal. And, and really just to, just to sort of round this out, I was heading to Italy a couple of days after the shoot to go do the out route.

Stelio in Bo. I've been there many times. And I basically said to, to the photographer, I just said, you know, why am I going to Italy? Like this is paradise for gravel cycling. Not, not, not, not road riding, but gravel cycling. This gives me the same vibes as I get. Flying all the way around the world, going to our friend's bike hotel in Bormio and like this is amazing.

And yeah, that night I went back to where we were staying and I looked at real estate and pulled up the houses for sale in Clinton because. I saw Clinton as a, you know, the center of it all he could ride in, you know, every direction, in my opinion. And yeah, called a realtor, found a house that looked like it would fit the bill, a big old house, commercially owned.

And yeah, he picked up the phone and he met me there the next day and put an offer that day on it. And yeah, close the deal while we're in Italy at our friends bike hotel telling 'em all about gravel. yeah.

[00:16:27] Craig Dalton: What an amazing, amazing origin story there. Did you always have the idea that you were gonna call it a gravel in and make it this hub for adventure?

[00:16:35] Kelly: A hundred percent. We had some people say early on, you know, Hey, you're hanging your hat pretty hard on gravel. Like, you know, do you know what you're doing? And I said, well, Yeah. What makes this area special is gravel. Like we love mountain biking too. We have mountain bikes, but for me, what and my wife, Erin as well, what made this area special was gravel cycling.

And we wanted to stay specific to that. Anyone can, can ride any bike. As we say, you can ride a mountain bike. You can ride a gravel bike here. Unicycle, you know, whatever, I don't care. It's, it's just, just ride a bike. But yeah, we hung our hat on gravel because yeah, we wanna do to focus right on, on gravel cycling and building a community here around cycling because it's more of an industry community it's origins which is fine.

I've worked in industry back to the tree planting, so it's all coming back, back to together, but yeah, gravel That that's our focus. That's what we really love. It's really. Come on with me just the last number of years, I just love the solitude of it, just getting away from it all. So, and there's no bike hotels around really north America.

I mean, I, I can't, there is no other gravel cycling hotel that I'm aware of. I mean, there should be a network around and we wanna do stake our claim to that and, you know, say, Hey, let's, let's get this going. Like, let's. Have facilities for, for cyclists, let's create culture here with cycling you know, and good community sort of support and have some fun while we're doing it.

So, yeah, we hung our hat a hundred percent on gravel calling it 2d gravel in. So

[00:18:05] Craig Dalton: Yeah, that's great. Yeah. I think you're right in north America while I can point to a few kind of cycling specific hotels. It's nowhere near what you have in Europe and elsewhere in the world. And there's some subtleties. When you go into a cycling hotel or cycling accommodations, they just have the little things for you, right?

They've got a, a place where you can wash your bike. They've got pumps, they've got tools and the staff is always well versed in what are the local roots and local highlights. So I think it's a great concept. And I'm, I've been big on the podcast about talking about gravel travel. And a lot of times that gets couched in a conversation about a particular event.

So you might go to Colorado to go to S B T gravel or up to Canada for trans Rockies, gravel, Royal, but in some ways, traveling to a place like Clinton and, and you're in is even a better use of your time because unlike a race where you might be thinking, gosh, I don't know whether I'm gonna be like complete it, or I have aspirations of going really fast.

Obviously you're gonna be super focused and you're not gonna do a lot of riding. In the days leading up to the race. But if you go on a gravel cycling holiday, all you're gonna do is ride. You know, you're gonna go up there for four days and you're gonna pick four mega roots and just ride as much as you possibly can.

[00:19:23] Kelly: Yeah, that's true. We, we love racing and we will put on a race here next year. We do a char, we did a charity ride here called caribou gravel rush. So yeah, we love organized events and, and things like that. But yeah, first things first we wanna create a good community sort of. Spirit here around cycling.

Everyone's in favor of what we're doing. Everyone's really supportive, lots of high fives and, you know, thumbs up and whatnot from the ranchers and people like that. So, But yeah, you definitely can come to a place like ours or some of the other hotels around the world and yeah, you can spend your money in a little different way.

You can ride, you know, to a lake and go jump in the lake, chill out, have some beers. But yeah, we can also provide people with some pretty big rides that , you know, we don't try and blow smoke. Obviously we need to promote our business. But yeah, we've got some rides here that are truly epic. I mean, that's an overused term in my opinion.

Yeah, we, we have some epic rides here that definitely can punish you and spit you out the other side if, if you're looking for that, but there's also rides here that, like I said, you can just go on a nice. You know, fairly chill ride and, you know, go through some ranches and see some, some wildlife and things like that.

So, but yeah, racing's awesome too. Just just different, same but different, right.

[00:20:41] Craig Dalton: Yeah. I've had the benefit of looking at your website and looking at a map and getting a sense for where Clinton is. And you've spoken a little bit about. You know, the remoteness of the in, if someone was coming for two or three days, how would you describe the type of riding you would suggest? Let's just sort of make the assumption that the group is relatively fit and, and up for, you know, three, four hour, five hour rides, what would you be preparing them for expectation wise, if you were to say like, these are the three route I would have you go on during your three day.

[00:21:14] Kelly: yeah, there's definitely some classic roots. I mean, there's, you know, I. Pick my favorite roots and just say, Hey, you should really go here. You know, this is a must do. Just like if you were to go somewhere else, I mean, the trainers is, is incredibly varied. So what we like to do is yeah, suggest roots for people.

A lot of them have never been here. We are, we do have a lot of return guests, but for people, for instance, that have never been here. We love blowing them away because we know what's out there. And they don't right. They just maybe see photos or something like that or heard things, but we know what's out there.

So we love it. When we send people out on a route and say, Hey, you're gonna go here. You're gonna see this, this, this, and this, and we're really stoked to, to hear what, what you say when you when you come back and that's what makes it all worth it for us when people roll back in here and, you know, Hey, we're, we're you know, self-conscious about it.

Let's be honest. We want people to have a good time. And we're like, Hey, what did you think? And people like their eyes are just like wide open. Like that was the best ride I've ever done. Or that was amazing. Or, oh my God, I didn't expect that. So, yeah, we've got it all. Truly, we've got really more desolate sort of wide open desert-like kind of roads.

Out here. We've got roads going through the mountains lakes and things and yeah, lots of randomness it's really mixed here. So, what we do try to prepare people for is just to say, Hey, you know, what do you like? What kind of riding do you like? Do you like descending? Do you like megas deep climbs?

You like suffering? What do you like? And, and then we try to do the best we can to create custom roots for our guests. Yeah, we love doing that because again, we have the knowledge we live here day in, day out. We know all the ins and outs, all the little secret spots, we know the ranchers and so on.

And yeah, we just, we love that. So, Yeah, people can, can really tick off a lot of boxes you know, here, and they can also discover some boxes, so to speak that they didn't new existed. Like there's a ferry here where you can take a, you know, a cablecar ferry across the most important river, major river called the Frazier river here in BC and go to the other side of the river and, you know, Like that's part of your ride.

There's, there's not many places or really anywhere that I know of that you can do things like that. Just mid ride and it's free. And, and it's just yeah. What an experience that is. So,

[00:23:39] Craig Dalton: Yeah, that's quite an, that makes for quite an adventure, for sure. You know, one of the things, obviously across north America, you've got lots of places that are flatter with undulating Hills. I'm assuming in that region of Canada. The climbs that you're encountering are, are fairly substantial in nature.

[00:23:55] Kelly: Yeah, there's some for sure. I mean, this wouldn't be like, you're maybe going you know, to the Alps or the Domine or something like that in Italy, you know, but there's some really steep climbs here. There's a one climb in particular that, you know, it's marked in half kilometer. Or, you know, miles to, to people following in the us in, in, you know, half sort of, segments like that, because you're going so slow but such beautiful scenery.

I mean, you're just crawling along, you know, suffering away, looking at the scenery around you. So, yeah, and it can get hot here. You know, it's a really diverse sort of. You know, ecosystem or environment, I guess we have here, so really mixed bags. So, yeah, I mean, it's just there are some tough climbs around, there's lots of rolling terrain, but for people that like to climb that sort of you know, puff their feathers out like that, that they love to climb, then definitely we can provide that.

And there's many stratas segments here to, to go chase down. So for sure, there's some Hills here.

[00:24:53] Craig Dalton: What would sort of be the, the longest climb you could get in front of, in terms of feet or meters of,

[00:24:58] Kelly: Oh, yeah. I would say maybe about the, the, the toughest one around is to say about doesn't sound like much about a 10 K climb. So, but the grades are just really, really steep. It'll take most people, some people would walk it to be honest, we've got some Hills like that. So about 10 K and Yeah, just really steep in grades.

But lots of switch back so that, that goes and you know, Softens it a little bit, at least you can turn a corner or two and have a look and, you know, be tough to go and take photos and pull your iPhone out and take a photo on, on that one. But and there's lots more here, right? I mean, we don't profess to know it all.

I mean, we we love, enjoy enjoying to get out there to to explore and find new roots and new climbs and new places for our guests to ride. So, yeah, there's probably some more out there that. We haven't ridden yet, but yeah, we just keep pushing, but yeah, there's some big Hills for sure.

Climbers are welcome here.

[00:25:56] Craig Dalton: And let's transition now and let's talk about the, in itself. If you could just give us a little bit of an overview of like how many people you can accommodate, what, what the experience looks like, you know, are you, are you dining exclusively at the end or does Clinton have other restaurants to offer and other activities?

[00:26:14] Kelly: Yeah, like I said, it's a big old commercially zoned house. So yeah, we can accommodate really big groups. We've got two guest suites at the moment soon to be three. So our main guest suite that I'm in now is a five bed, two bath guest suites. So completely separate and private from the others.

We've had up depending if we have couples. So we've had up to 12 guests in here. And then another adjoining suite that's again, separate is a nice little one bed, one bath. So we've had, you know, up to four in there depending, you know, just there's a sofa bed in there as well. So we keep expanding and so that that's there.

And then we've just built a hundred square foot, little Bunky, as we say. Outback. So a little tiny house. Some people would sort of maybe refer to it as that. So which will, will accommodate another two people when it's complete. So, yeah, we've had really big groups, so yeah, I mean really depending on, on who it is and if it's couples or singles or whatever, you know, we're approaching, you know, really, you. 1516 guests quite comfortably just in this property. So, and then, yeah, we, we do have our eyes on expansion all all the time, but this house has a, has a really neat story behind it as well. I'm not sure if I mentioned this to you, but we got a message on Instagram, maybe about a year and a half ago.

I'd say from a guy just, you know, following us and, you know, said some nice things and. All that. And at the bottom of the message, he said I'm not sure if he knew, but I grew up in the house and I was like, wow, we grew up in the house. I was like, mm. We knew who we bought from. And it wasn't a gentleman.

It was a, it was an older lady. And so I was like, wow, I gotta look at this. Guy's his profile. So, go to his profile and I almost dropped the phone because. Having worked in the bike industry. I knew some of the, the people in the industry I'd never met this gentleman, but it turns out it turns out it'd be a guy named Peter valence used to be a brand manager at Rocky mountain bicycles.

And then now is current global vice president of product at Cannondale. So, I mean, it still gives us goose bumps and, and whatnot. That he grew up here. His family did a pottery business here, which we knew about the pottery business, but I never ever thought it would be the same, the same family.

So, Peter was just here earlier in August, which was a big, you know, milestone for us, what a cool experience to have him and his entire family and their kids here where they grew up and So, yeah, that's the story of the, in a lot of people call it the, in now we, we noticed that after, you know, three years in business is our third year in business.

So it's a bit of the, the history on the, on the property. Yeah.

[00:28:52] Craig Dalton: cool. And then as far as like, as far as, are you doing a bed and breakfast style where you're serving breakfast and dinner or what? What's the story

[00:28:59] Kelly: You know, with the, the name Tuti, I mean, obviously we love Italy. We've had a lot of great times over there and, you know, not just cycling, I mean, you know, food. So, we offer woodfired pizza. My wife Erin makes the dough homemade. We get vegetables and. Things that we need locally from, from farmer's markets and ranches and things like that.

And so we offer that if guests wanna book that with us, they, they can add that on to their stay. We have a, a coffee bar out back with a rocket espresso machine another Italian sort of touch there. If people want, you know, great coffee in the morning, we can do that. Each suite has its own kitchen.

So, you know, some people like to cook and we wanna, we want to. Facilitate that as well. But then that's kind of where we end things because we also want people to, to go and support some of the local businesses here that we have in Clinton. It's a small little village. It's 600 people ish. At the moment, there's a few little restaurants and, and things like that.

So, our attitude is that yeah, obviously come stay with us and we stay gravel specific and, you know, look after people in that regard and a few other little things, Woodard pizza and, and coffee. But we also want people to go to, you know, Check out some of the, the other places in town, there's a pub right across the street.

Yeah. We love when our guests go over there, have some beers and we don't have the attitude that, you know, Hey, these are our guests, you know, don't go to other businesses or whatever, because. That's just not you know, our attitude and our spirit behind you know, our business. So, and yeah, it's great.

People come and, you know, stay with us and then, yeah, they're free to do what works best for them. And we kind of like the ALA carte sort of, way of doing things. Hey, you might not need coffee or whatever, you know, or wood fired pizza. That's cool. But if you do, Hey, we can, we can work that out. So

[00:30:46] Craig Dalton: And then are you, are you offering rental bikes there or are people bringing their own

[00:30:50] Kelly: Yep. People bring their bikes. But yeah, we do have rental bikes yeah. To name, drop our, our bikes or land yachts bikes from Vancouver. They're a great supporter of our business. We've been with them from day one using their bikes. We've got some custom bikes for ourselves, but yeah, they make some great Rental bikes for us and for us to get rental bikes as a small business at this time when there's such a bike sort of crunch, so to speak.

Yeah, they pulled out all the stops to get us six bikes this year, really beautiful steel steel bikes, and yeah, it's great. We can You know, have our guests, you know, have an experience on their bikes if they've never tried one of their bikes, but we're getting internationals as well now.

So, some of those folks we had our first Italian fly over here and he was here for five days and yeah, he rented a bike cause he didn't wanna travel with one. So bike rental's big for us. And yeah, E E gravel is something else we really want to get into as well. Because I think it's It's such a great thing to get more people on bikes, you know, and great for storytelling too, with brands because yeah, they're just fantastic for sure.

[00:31:53] Craig Dalton: Yeah, it's so nice. You know, on a, on a family holiday to be able to pair up maybe incompatible riders with one on an e-bike and one on a pedal bike. So that's certainly a good option. Speaking of international travels, if someone's coming to the, in internationally, where do they fly into and how long of a drive is it from that airport?

[00:32:12] Kelly: Yeah, I would say most people would fly into Vancouver. We've had a few people fly into Seattle and then cross the border and then come up that way. Just say from Vancouver. You know how traffic can be, but you know, four or five hours kind of thing, you know, a really, you know, beautiful drive with options.

There's, there's a couple of different ways to, to get up here. A lot of people would probably choose to go up through Whistler. And come this way. And we get some mountain bikers too, that are cyclist. Let's call 'em cyclists, not just mountain bikers, but people that are riding mountain bikes and they ride gravel too.

Right. So they come up through Whistler, you know, maybe do a ride and then continue on to Clinton. So I'd say Vancouver, but other than that cam loops would be just over an hour away. And it's a, it's a fairly good sized regional airport with really easy access.

[00:33:01] Craig Dalton: Yeah, that makes sense. I certainly see the value of stopping off at Whistler for a few runs on the way that would, that would be

[00:33:09] Kelly: bet. Yeah. I mean, yeah, we're we, we mountain bike too. So, I mean, of course we, we focus on gravel, but we're cyclist. And yeah, mountain biking's great. Gravel's great. It's all great. So yeah, I mean, a lot of our guests do other disciplines of, of cycling. But to us, I mean, our sales pitch on gravel to people that maybe haven't tried it yet is you know, this isn't just, I guess our opinion, this is our, you know, three years in business meeting, a lot of people, you know, guests coming to stay with us and, you know, chatting about what they think gravel is or whatever, over a few beers and the backyard having a campfire.

Really gravel. I've not seen another discipline in cycling some, you know, someone you could correct me if I'm wrong, that really could, it can, you know, pull in people from all different You know, disciplines of cycling, you know, the roadies, get it, the triathletes are, are, you know, maybe not wanting to go to Whistler to go ride the bike park, you know, for the most part, but Hey, gravel, they get it.

They love the speed, you know, suffering, whatever it is. We've had iron man, you know, triathletes, come here, this love suffering. These guys are crazy what they do. So, you know, and then mountain bikers, get it, you know, too because they love being off road. You know, most mountain bikers. Aren't. Riding on, on highways and things like that.

So, and then a lot of new people, it's just incredible. We'll see you know, new cyclists here buying their first bike, excuse me. And you know, we're just, you know, doing some research and, and whatnot and say, Hey, like, you know, you've cycled a lot before you're new to cycling. It's like, Nope, I just bought a gravel bike.

My friend told me that's what I should get because they're awesome. And it looks like a good time. And, you know, we get a lot of people from urban centers. So, yeah, gravel bike. I mean, yeah, you can use it for, of course gravel cycling but you know, commuting, urban assault, bike, packing, whatever. So they're very versatile.

So that's, that's really been a, mindblower seeing people for their first bike to go and, and buy a gravel bike. So truly to us back to that rant is gravel cycling. I truly believe is, is the center of cycling, you know, put that out there, but that's what we've, we've seen, you know, that's what we've seen with our guests.

[00:35:14] Craig Dalton: Yeah, yeah. A hundred percent. I mean, I agree with all those points and it's just it's such an inviting part of the sport that gives you the versatility to go wherever you wanna take it. So I'm certainly sold. Obviously, everybody listening to this podcast is on the same page. Kelly totally appreciate giving me the overview of the in.

I think it's an exciting concept. As I said in the opening, like I do really love the idea of gravel travel and I think from everything I've seen from where you're located, I don't doubt it's gonna be some great riding up there. So I look forward to getting up there and I wish you well,

that's going to do it for this week's edition of the gravel ride podcast. I hope you enjoyed that conversation with Kelly and learning more about the riding in Clinton, Canada, and the two D gravel in big thanks to our sponsor logos components and their new omnium wheel set. Check them out at

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