Spring has sprung with bright blue skies, the scent of lilacs in the air, and just-right temperatures of low to mid 70s. And if that’s not enough motivation to ride, then the winning of the lottery into the 32nd annual Ride the Rockies, a 7 day, 433 mile with 32,337 feet in elevation is just the motivation we needed to get back on the saddle.
Ride the Rockies will be different for us for several reasons.
1.We won’t be schlepping our own gear on our bikes. And, because there is a 70 pound per person limit per bag, we don’t really have to think much about what we bring. We already know how to live with less than that.
2. This tour will Eric’s first time to cycle in the Rocky Mountains. I’m excited to share the majesty and beauty of my “home” state as well as the thrill of some long downhills, not to mention the challenge of the long uphills (without panniers – mind you.)
3. This distances and elevation will be our most challenging – 7 days of back-to-back, 70-100 mile days with long climbs each day. I have to admit that I’m a little nervous. We were very comfortable with 50 miles or less per day on our touring bikes with tons of stops for food, pictures, naps, sight-seeing, etc. And, we didn’t have deadlines or defined destinations – if we didn’t want to push on, we didn’t have to. Ride the Rockies will push us to a different sort of limit.
Training officially began last weekend during gale force spring winds.
Sunday’s 40 mile ride from Palisade to Whitewater included winds in all directions but also the gift of a Front Range (Denver, Boulder, Colo. Springs, etc.) women’s cycling team who generously invited us to “hop on the train” and gave us the benefit of a draft until we couldn’t keep up any longer.
By the way, this “supported tour” is a warm-up for our planned self-supported cycle tour of Yellowstone and Grand Teton in July. Stay tuned…