Steamboat Springs to Leadville, CO (snow! pedal faster!)

October 4, 2007

We woke up to that fluffy white stuff on the ground for the second time now in the last week!  (Gotta pedal faster!)

At the campground here, we met, David from South Africa, who also biked Alaska, Canada and Wyoming this summer.  He got smart, (as Pat says) and bought himself a BMW motorcylce to ride around now and is also planning on going to the tip of South America!  Hopefully, our paths will cross along the way again somewhere and it sure was fun sharing stories of our adventures so far with you, David.  Thanks for the friendship!

We spent the wet, soggy day soaking in Strawberry Hotsprings, where we ran into friends, Jessie and Dave from Carbondale, who were biking in the area!  At first it was such a surprise and our brains could not comprehend, why they would be here, so far away from home (we had forgotten, it is only 3 hours home from here, it seems like years ago and it certainly was a long bike-ride to get back to our State!)

The next morning Ralph headed south while Pat, stayed behind to nurse a bad cold, (her legs sure didn’t mind getting the break, while her mind kept telling her what a beautiful fall color ride she is missing!)  Well, I just drove slowly and took as much in as possible, but still not the same!  Ralph followed the Great Divide Route south of town, through the broad ranchland valley with mountains on either side full of Aspen dressed in there fall colors, then climbed thru the mountains on a small dirt road to Lynx pass.  It started to rain about 10 miles before the top, so it was a soggy, muddy ride.  I set up camp under a huge Spruce tree and was glad to have both my and Pat’s sleeping bags with, (woke up to another 3″ of snow!)  I cooked breakfast on the dry spot- under the tree and melted snowballs for water, then headed down the pass.  The road was really muddy, so I hopped on a deserted backcountry highway, winding thru mountains, with fall colors and valley white with snow. 

I went over Gore Pass, (northeast of Vail), then dropped down into a big arid valley to Kremmling, then on to Silverthorn.  The Gore range was an incredible looming backdrop to the West.  I rode the bikepath to Frisco, got a room at a motel with a huge hottub, where I soaked!  I headed west on the bike path out of Frisco, the next day, and several ladies out on a morning walk stopped me to ask questions, (everyone has been so friendly in Colorado, it’s great to see good hospitality in our home state!) 

I stopped at Cooper Mountain to check trail conditions for the ride I wanted to do up and over to Camp Hale, but found out there was up to 6 inches of snow on the higher reaches of the trail.  I decided to ride the paved road over Fremont pass (11,318′) to Leadville.  Colorado sure puts on a show this time of year!!  WOW!  The views are now an incredible view of the Mount of the Holy Cross in the distance and hugh treeless slopes all around me!  The snow is certainly accumulating on the higher peaks, and bright colors below!! 

Pat met up with me in Leadville, and we wondered around the historic town and had a fine Italian dinner at a great restaurant here!  I plan to ride the Colorado trail south of here to get lower down and hopefullly not muddy or snowy!  More rain/snow is suppose to come this weekend, (Oct. 5 and 6)!!  Gotta get goin!

Bike On!  Ralph & Pat   



One comment

  1. Still following your progress! What a great time you are having. Doug just got back from a week camping trip near Dawson Creek – had a great time. Look forward to hearing more about your adventures.

    Doug and Ev

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