In 2007 I joined my brother-in-law for the 2nd annual Tour de Kota, which is no more. But on the first day that year, standing on Main Street in some small town in southeastern SD, my brother-in-law, Bruce walks up to a guy wearing a Ride The Rockies jersey to ask him about that ride. He gets the idea that we should go to Colorado and ride a tour in the mountains! At the time it sounded really hard. By week's end when I dragged myself into Mitchell after 400+ miles of SD rollers, the idea of a week long tour in CO was preposterous.
Colorado Rocky Mountain Bike Tour. On the 3rd day I set a personal record for how slow I could ride without falling over, 3.7 mph on the last stretch of the climb up the western side of Independence Pass. (This record would be shattered in 2014 on Pikes Peak). By week's end I had been hot/cold, wet/dry, fast/slow and overall exhilarated that I had made it up and over all the climbs on CRMBT 2008.
We had so much fun we were back with a few friends in 2009 to ride a different loop. Again I was forced to push myself past what I thought I was capable of. I took time to rest and take lots of pictures, realizing that a bicycle was the perfect vehicle for exploring remote corners of this beautiful state. I couldn't help but notice that in addition to seeing the tour organizers again, many of the volunteers at the aid stations were back. And many of the riders too.
But I still wish I could be there. I'm hoping that they will share lots of pictures and stories of the ride. And I'll plan on joining them for CRMBT 2016. Peter, make it a good one!