Thursday, February 25, 2016

fremont, tennessee, battle mountain

Day 2 of the 2016 CRMBT takes a wonderful bike path from Breckenridge to Frisco, and Frisco to Copper Mountain. Then it follow two-thirds of a quintessential Colorado ride called the Copper Triangle. This ride takes place the first Saturday of August to raise funds for the Davis Phinney Foundation For Parkinson's. The route leaves Copper Village and head up Fremont Pass, 11,318 feet. From Copper it's about 11 miles of climbing, half in the 2-3% range, half with some spikes over 7%. I've climbed this pass a few times and though it deserves the Cat 1 rating that Peter gives it, I never thought it was that hard. It's relatively straight forward, some traffic, but not too much. And clean, wide shoulders that leave you to worry about nothing but keeping the crank turning.
One drawback is the lack of an awesome descent. It's kind of like the mountain just dumps you off of itself. There's one big sweeping switchback, and before too long you're still going slightly downhill, but you're pedaling to keep up your speed. You really don't lose all that much altitude because the next leg of the triangle is from Leadville to Minturn, and Leadville, at 10,152 feet is the highest incorporated city in the US.
The next part is among my favorite to ride in Colorado. Yes, it's beautiful, but there are dozens?, hundreds? of beautiful places to ride there. I love this section because for a little climbing you get a lot of descending. You're still trending downward the first few miles out of Leadville. Then you've got a little 5 mile climb up Tennessee Pass, 10,424 feet, gaining about 500 feet, with grades in the mid 2% range. You are then rewarded with a descent about 12 miles long, giving back about 1700 feet of elevation.
 Now you face another short climb, this time up Battle Mountain Summit with grades in the mid 4% range, gaining another 500 feet in under 2 miles. Your reward after this climb is another great descent, this one lasting about 15 miles, and taking you almost all the way to Minturn and past to I-70. All that will be left this day is a few miles on the frontage road up to Edwards. I'll turn in early on this night because the next day is a century day with no really high passes, but lots of varied terrain, and enough challenges on the way to make it a big day.

1 comment:

  1. With 8,000 ft of climbing and 100 miles day 3 could be 'tiring'. Although conditions vary and previous days cycling effect - it would be interesting to do a side by side comparison of this years days/ride with similar days in the past 3 years I have ridden. Day 6 could be similar to day we rode in to Golden but more miles and climbing?