The thing about a century ride (100 miles) is that it takes a while, even under the best conditions. On this particular morning we had a 104 mile route with 12,095 foot Independence Pass somewhere in the middle of it. Knowing that taking a lot of pictures, and, oh yes, the ride, would take me a good part of the day, I was up early eating breakfast in the dark, and on the road by 6:00am. Even after the sun was up, it was behind a ridge, and the road was in the shadows for the first hour. It was also cold, uphill, and into a headwind. Other than that, it was perfect. Mt Yale, Mt Oxford, and the rest of the Collegiate Peaks range were our companions all morning.