Saturday, June 14, 2014

RTR Days 5 and 6

Day 5--Avon to Breckenridge

I stayed at the Comfort Inn in Avon because they know how to serve cyclists.  The Triple By Pass comes to Avon and many cyclists ride through here.  They had my room ready at 1:30 and had a free breakfast ready at 5am.
On the road at 6am.  It is really cold and while the is sun is up, it is behind the mountains.  I will ride in the shade until almost Leadville hours from the start.  The first peak is Battle Mountain.  There is no marker on Battle Mt. so I took some pictures at and near the peak.  Most were dismal.

Bridge Near Battle Mt
Climbed on up to Tennessee Pass (second peak) arriving there about 10am.

Here I am at Tennessee Pass in June 2007.  Can't believe it has been that long.

Coming down from Tennessee Pass it final got warm enough to put away the wind breaker.

Fremont Pass is the usual pass when coming from south Colorado to get to the I-70 bike path.  If riding from Leadville it isn't that much of a climb.  But coming from Copper Mt. Resort or from Avon it is a long climb.  Here are pictures from 2007 and 2005.

This year the Fremont Pass sign is buried in snow so here are some pictures of the view from Fremont.

One last picture from Fremont Pass.  This is one of many vehicles bringing riders to the top.  It always surprises me how many people come to RTR with no intentions of doing all the climbs.  Of course there are reasons such as husband/wife/kids dividing the riding and setting up camp duties.  Or the ride is just too much.  But I always wonder how honest these people are with everyone back home.
Unloading Bikes after a Ride to Fremont Pass
I have already posted about the descent and the blowout as well as the hotel issues in Breckenridge.  

Day 6--Breckenridge to Golden
Breckenridge to Golden Elevation

I have climbed Loveland Pass (11, 990) at least 5 times and it is always an intimidating mountain.  Everyone of the previous times I have descended in the rain.  This was the first time I had good weather.  

I delayed starting until 6:45 because I wanted it to warm up a little.  Once again the initial route was in the shadow of the mountains and it was cold.  About half way up there was a water stop at Arapahoe Basis ski resort.

At times on the climb up to the peak there was a ten foot wall of snow on the mountain side.  But the work climbing was hard enough that I didn't need to put on my windbreaker.  
There was a line to get a picture from a better angle for I just took a quick picture and headed down.

Here is the same angle but at the sign in 2007.

After that there was a quick descent to Loveland Ski Resort.  It took me 1:45 to climb to Loveland Pass and 8 minutes to descent to Loveland Ski.  After that we entered the I-70 bike path and continued the descent.  I hate the bike path.  It is narrow and multi-use.  There are families and hikers on that path so you have to be really careful to keep  on the path and not hit someone.

The final big climb of the day was Floyd Hill--the steep hill from Idaho Springs to Genesee.  After that it was up Lookout Mountain, see Buffalo Bill's Grave and then down the steep side of Lookout Mountain to Golden.

Overall I rode 456 miles and climbed 27,915 feet.

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