Sunday, September 03, 2006

Riding to the top of Mt Evans

Today dawned as a gloriously sunny day here in Colorado so I decided to ride up to the top of Mount Evans. The weather was just perfect, it was 60 degrees on the way up and 71 degrees on the way down. The cold was not a factor though due to my riding gear and this time I remembered to attach the windshield onto Gretl which helped cut down on the wind while on highways and such.

It was a great twisty road up from I-70 and Idaho Springs all the way to the summit. A couple of those hairpin turns near the top I had to take in first gear! $3 at the ranger station near Echo Lake gets you a pass and off you go to the top. Luckily there were not a lot of cars going up or down as I went up to the top. Only one car went over the middle of the road towards me but a few beeps and she moved back on over. This was good since I did not have anything to stop me from going over the edge!

I saw many bicyclists chugging their way up from Idaho Springs all the way to the top, an amazing show of stamina on their part. I can only imagine what kind of a nice ride it must be for them on the way down. Hope they've good brakes!

The parking lot at the summit was full most of the time but I managed to snag a parking space for Gretl with no fuss. I then hiked up to the very top of the mountain to take pics, took three and of course the camera batteries died at that point! I had a spare set on the motorcycle thanks to my loving wife but I did not go and hike back up to the top. Once was enough and I was breathing pretty hard the first time I got up there! It's 14,264ft at the top and the air seemed quite thin to me for a while until I caught my breath.

The hike up caused me to heat up and I had to open up the mesh jacket and liner on the way down to cool off a bit. Note to self, carry a soft cap with the motorcycle, that way you don't need your helmet on to keep your head warm! I am sure the people there were wondering who this guy was with the motorcycle helmet on but oh well.

The ride down was as enjoyable as the ride up, I took highway 103 down to I-70 though instead of heading back to Idaho Springs. Quite a twisty road in itself and very much fun to ride though one must keep in mind that some of the curves are quite intense! But I made it down fine, took the highway home from Bergen Park. This has to be one of the better day rides I've had so far in my short motorcycling life!

The rest of the pics I took on this trip are here

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