I’ve been not so good with the daily posts, lot’s of stuff going on since we got here. We stayed at Julie’s brothers’ house in Avon until Tuesday. The day after the Firecracker, Julie and I rode to the farmers market in Vail. What a zoo! Elbow to elbow people, lot’s of food stands, trinket stands with the usual tourist junk. We grabbed a bite to eat at a restaurant away from all of the chaos of the market, then headed back to the ranch. Good ride, beautiful scenery and some good quality time with my female!
Sweet view from Steve's pad. He and his wife were kind enough to put us up and put up with us for a few days.
The next day Julie’s brother, Steve and I headed out for a couple of sweet mountain bike rides. We started off by doing part of a loop called the ‘A-10’ loop that threads its’ way through Beaver Creek. At some point we left the A-10 loop onto a trail that pointed skyward. Steve had mentioned that part of the trail had a lengthy hike-a-bike section. Whenever somebody mentions that, my enthusiasm perks up and I take it as a challenge. So we hit the bottom of the hike-a-bike and I took off determined to clean it. I made it about 20 feet before I began to quickly realize that riding up was not going to be an option. Hike-a-bike sections can kinda suck at times, however as Blood, Sweat and Tears used to sing, ‘What Goes Up, Must Come Down’! The descent was pretty sweet. I took the lead and continued downward and lost myself in mountain biking bliss.
A lot of the tread was pretty greasy, which made for some sketchy sections. Some parts of the trail were difficult to see with some of the vegetation covering parts of the trail. Whenever I encounter sections like this, I usually assume that the trail is clear and I just blow through it. While doing this, I sometimes think about how it would suck if there were to be a root or rock waiting to grab a hold of my front tire. As this thought was passing through the void between my ears, something reached out and grabbed my front tire. Next thing I know, I’m lying in the weeds. I took a look back up the trail and sure enough, there was a wet root, glistening in the sunlight tucked underneath some vegetation. No harm done thankfully, no lost skin, the bike was still intact. I picked myself up and continued on with the same level of reckless abandon. We finished the ride, loaded the bikes up and headed down the highway to Eagle for some more singletrack goodness. We did a 90 minute loop on trails that were very similar to the Telegraph Trails in Durango. The first half of the ride was all uphill. The second half of the ride was some of the best downhill trail that I’ve ever ridden. Very fast, swooping trails with a lot of opportunities to catch some good air.
Steve and Tina had scored four dukes to the Dallas Symphony Orchestra playing at the Vail Amphitheater. They were doing a tribute to the music of John Williams. They played the Star Wars theme song and it was very cool, kinda like being at the movie. There were a lot of older people there, yes, older than me and it smelled a lot like old lady perfume everywhere. Other than that, it was a pretty sweet show.
The next day, I dusted off the road bike and hit the road with the intention of riding to Frisco on what is mostly bike path. As I was rolling through Avon, I found myself following another cyclist on the road. We passed under I-70 and I saw a sign that said 36 miles to Leadville. I realized that I had missed my turn, however the road had a nice shoulder, so I continued on. Highway 24 to Leadville rolled over two mountain passes, Tennessee Pass and another, can’t remember the name. Leadville sits at a thin 10,400 feet, however the altitude didn’t really seem to bother me much. Once I hit Leadville, I stopped at a gas station, drank some water, ate some Fig Newtons and bs’d with another cyclist from Dallas. After about 10 minutes, I turned around and headed back. Sweet ride! After the ride, Julie and I loaded the Jeep up and hit the road for Durango.