Arrivals One Mile High
Stepping off the plane marked the highest elevation many of our group members had ever been to. From Louisiana, New York, Indiana, and California we all made our way to Colorado to begin our adventure. Our first night was spent at Cherry Creek State Park outside of Denver. There we learned to set up tents and cook on a camp stove. While a fine dinner was being prepared by Jean Pierre (James), our personal chef, everyone else got fitted on their mountain bikes. For a few group members spending the night in a tent was a first.
The next day we loaded up Wild Bessy all of our bikes and gear and made our way to Brown’s Canyon on the Arkansas River where we met our raft guides. Though the guides tried to trick us with their talk of the “Crayola Indians painting the hills red,” we were to savvy to be fooled …most of us at least. Mitch A. “Stutz” still believes irrigation pipes are gopher migration routes. Jordan decided to sit in the front of the raft and by the end of our ride through the canyon he was drenched and grinning. In the front of the other raft was Logan, who helped set a perfect paddling pace for his boat. During the rafting trip we had a few splash fights between our two boats, with Mitchell V. even daring to begin one by splashing Jeff, one of the leaders. He may have won that battle but there is still another rafting trip to come…
Don’t Tell Me Ride or I’ll Telluride
On our way to Telluride we stopped to do our first group grocery shop. Gregory continuously tried to sneak beef jerky into the shopping cart, but without any luck. After loading up on protein and carb loaded food to power us through our riding days, we finished the scenic drive into Telluride.
The next morning, our mountain bike guide for Telluride, Mark met us bright and early for our first day of riding. The group learned the ABC’s of a pre-ride safety check. Peter’s turn to be leader of the day fell on our first day of riding. He carried a multi-tool, walkie-talkie, and tire pump for the day. He also helped set a perfect tempo with Mark’s guidance and even got to radio the front of the group for that the back was stopped to fix a flat tire. We spent the day riding along the beautiful mountains outside of Telluride on varied terrain including jeep trails and many peoples first introduction to single track riding. Jordan and Sarah, the other leader had fun riding together with their clip-less pedals.
Our second day included more single track riding on more technical trails, as the group learned to ride over roots and rocks efficiently and maneuver through switch backing turns with style. Mark tried to shake Benton of his back tire but was unable, with Benton impressing us all with his riding ability. Jeremy rode in the middle of the pack, never missing the chance to ride up on of the playful berms on the sides of the trail. His accents around the dinner table have also had the group in stiches.
The infamous slickrock of Moab awaits us and we CAN NOT WAIT.