Friday, July 17, 2015

I failed

I rarely set a goal that I don't reach. This tour I've been able to reach or exceed all my expected daily goals and that's felt nice. Tuesday, I did not.

I left Steamboat Springs after checking mail in the morning. It was about 10:30. My goal was Kremmling, about 80 miles away and very doable based on the mileage I was doing and the way I felt at the end of the day Monday. About 12 miles short, I quit. I just couldn't do it anymore.

The day was beautiful. The ride out of Steamboat was very nice. Lots of people road cyling, I passed about 25. The climb to Stagecoach State Park looked steep on the profile but wasn't bad at all. I met Ellen and Elmar, two travelers from Holland who've been touring for the last 22 months! They seemed to having a great time but complained about the rain they've encountered in Colorado. I warned them about Wyoming wind without being too negative. This is their website.

The climb to Lynx Pass was gradual and easy. Then the ride go tougher. After another climb to near another pass, you go through roller coaster terrain. Steep descents and steep ascents. Then it is  a long, fast drop to Radium and the Colorado River. There were two more big climbs left, less than 15 miles to Kremmling. I made it through the first and shorter climb. About a third of the way up the second one, I consulted the map, looked at the time and decided that Kremmling was not going to happen. I had about nine miles to go, it was 6:30 and I was tired. I had climbed over 6,200 ft this day.

So I made the decision to quit, to call it a day. I turned around and rode back about down the hill a short distance to a BLM Campground and river put in called Pumphouse. It was a really nice place, busy with people getting on and off the river. Nice campsite.

The next day, I finished the ride to Kremmling. It took me over 1.5 hours to ride the 8 miles or so to town, that's how steep it was. I had breakfast there in town and then began the bike to Silverthorne. The Great Divide takes you behind the Williams Range and over Ute Pass but I took the direct route, HWY 9 in order to meet up with my friends Ryan and Wendy by early afternoon. HWY 9 had some construction that I had to fight and was more traffic, but it was a pretty ride along the Blue River.

Ryan and Wendy met me a Pug Ryan's Brewery in Dillon. We unloaded my bags into their car. I was virtually weightless. Ryan rode with me to Breckenridge, a nice 18 mile ride along bike paths over Dillon Dam, through the town of Frisco and into Breckenridge. We cleaned up, ate Mexican and had a great time visiting.

On Thursday, I rested. I took my bike in for new brake pads and derailleur adjustment. Got a haircut. Strolled the town. In the afternoon, Greg King, the brother of my friend and former co-worker Lisa, picked me up. We went to pick up a care package Lisa had sent and I got to stay at their house near Hoosier Pass. Like Lisa, Greg is a great person. It sure beat staying in the hostel last night.


J Smilanic said...

I saw the title of this blog post, as well as the first few lines and thought you had given up on the whole trip! Glad to hear you're still going. Wish I was in Colorado.

Bicycle Junkies Elmar & Ellen said...

Hi! Hope you are enjoying the mountains in Colorado. It's beautiful over there! We are now in windy Wyoming, but still having fun!

Stay safe!
Elmar & Ellen