I am new to the area and signed up for Columbia (5/22) and Eagleman (6/12) but have not gotten a place to stay for either race yet. I know the pickings must be slim at this point but I'd greatly appreciate any recommendations for affordable places close to the race sites.
Hi all, I'm interested as well for eagleman accommodation suggestions, thanks a lot.
I plan on just driving up the morning of the Columbia tri. Not too far away, and there won't be any traffic at that hour of the morning. At worst, you may want to find a hospitable Maryland DC Tri member to host you the night before, if you live out in Fairfax or something.
Eagleman is another story. Haven't done it, but remember hearing about people grousing about it, since there's only a few hotels in that area. May want to try scanning through the board to look at the threads from last year.
I am not racing this year. In past years, I've stayed in Salisbury, Maryland. Hotels are cheaper and the drive to Cambridge is easy early on race morning. Lots of other racers also stay out there. The other cheap option is camping at the school in Cambridge. A few DC Tri folks have done this in the past.
I agree with the above - Columbia is close enough that most people just drive in that morning. Note that you have to show up there on Saturday to register and rack your bike, so it's two trips in one weekend, if that makes a difference for you (e.g., if you lived in Dumfries).
Like Kevin, I stayed in Salisbury last time I raced Eagleman, and it worked out well. I
very doubtful you'll find anything in cambridge now but you can try the B&B's in easton, md... it's only 20 minutes away...
For hotels, you have a couple options: if you try in Cambridge, you'll have to look for multiple night stays. A lot of the time if you try for one night, it'll show no rooms available but if you try for two nights, you might see a lot of availability. But beware of Cambridge hotels, they jack their rates way up because of the race. You can also try Easton or Salisbury for cheaper options.
The camping option is nice. I did that two years ago. The school is really close and you have access to the gym for showers and restrooms. I even saw people sleeping inside the gym on mats.
The final option is finding a group of people to get together and rent a house. That's the cheapest, most luxurious option. Last year a whole group of us rented a house for the weekend and stayed until Monday and avoided the insane traffic heading back to DC post race on Sunday.
Those are basically your options.
Columbia - agree - just drive race morning, but allow plenty of time - parking was congested last year.
Eagleman: DO NOT stay at Tidewater Inn in Easton - complete disaster as they booted the majority of Triathletes out of the hotel with no notice - with offer of another hotel further out and this was a great big darn hassle. I missed the race as a result. AGREE - stay out is Salisbury. Also, the bridge traffic on the way home is AWFUL - took me 2 hours to get back over the bridge after the race. If you have the time, nice to kick back and stay over the extra day.