Wednesday, August 10, 2016

idaho springs to breckenridge

Sunday, 31 July, 2016
Many of us began the day by gathering for a kickoff from Peter. As the tour director he informs us of things to look out for on the road, weather challenges ahead, and implores us to be safe, and "take care of each other".
Then we were off. We took frontage roads, bike paths, and local roads that roughly paralleled I-70. The first 25 miles were  a gradual climb. Once we got onto US-6 we had another 4+ miles through some switchbacks to the top of Loveland Pass.
The morning was bright and pleasant. The traffic on US-6 was a little busy, but not too bad. From the Loveland Ski Area it's not a bad climb to the top. By the time we stopped for pictures at the elevation marker clouds and elevation had lowered the temperature, but it still was a great morning.
And with our climbing for the better part of 30 miles, we had earned ourselves a nice descent.

We still had a short climb up Swan Mountain once we were past Keystone. It's not long or steep, but towards the end of a ride it lived up to it's nickname, "the horrible hump". It did offer a nice view the Dillon Reservoir and Frisco beyond.
After a short descent, it was back on the bike path for a slightly uphill ride into Breckenridge. It's a pleasant enough ride that I was enjoying until the rain began.
The last 2 miles were in a cold rain that had me soaked to the bone. Luckily SherpaVille had my tent up and my bags dry. When the rain stopped I was able to find some lunch and some newspaper to stuff in my shoes and dry them out for the next day.

Lunch was at a pizza place with a guy from Colorado, one from the Pacific Northwest, and two each from England and Australia. It was a good day overall, and the next day looked good weather-wise, over some roads that I knew well, offering some classic Colorado scenery.

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