Raleigh Choppers looked pretty sweet, although I never owned one.
So I sort of had a day off yesterday (meeting ended at 11). I was determined to do a pass ride, but it seems the weather had other plans, as the first drops fell just as I topped off my road bike tires. A sensible person would probably have put the bike away at this point, and teed up Tiger Woods 2008 on the PS2, but I had made my plan; I just needed to modify it slightly.
A little dark in Georgetown valley. OK I thought; the valley isn't the mission.
A few switchbacks up the light drizzle became a steady rain, and I deployed the gore-tex (pac-lite) jacket I'd packed for this mission. I opted to leave the Gore-Tex pants and neoprene gloves at home; a decision which would later come back to haunt me.
This seemed as good a time as any to snap some photos of wildflowers. This being far from my first rain ride, I correctly anticipated that I would be far too tired and frozen on the downhill for such folly.
The top of the Pass is only 11.75 mi from my house, (and 3,000 ft elevation gain) but between the rain, the 10lb heavier bike, the 22psi in the tires, and a whole slew of ready excuses, this ride had deteriorated into a death march, or if not death, at least extreme discomfort. Finally the last two switchbacks came into view, but sadly they weren't the last two. My memory had failed me; there were still two more switchbacks, and another 3/4 mi to go!
Finally I reached my destination, snapped the obligatory wildflower, trail sign, and panorama shots, and began my soggy descent.
There's a couple of 14'ers back there; trust me.
I took the descent much slower than usual to stave off the wind chill, but my hands and feet were numb in minutes. At least my core was warm (mostly), and I still had good feel and modulation from my discs, and the promise of a hot shower waiting back in the valley.
A bit of a misadventure, but a challenge was what I wanted, and Guanella did not disappoint! Looking forward to tackling this on the road bike in the not too distant future; hopefully under more favorable conditions.Edited by MT Skull - 7/16/15 at 10:01am