17 May 2008

Hot Sulphur Springs

According to my route maps, the rest of Colorado is supposed to be downhill apart from one cheeky mountain so today I wanted to put some good miles in.
I was packed and out by six this morning since I woke an hour before the alarm and grabbed a gas station breakfast burrito for sustenance. The bike path continued in various forms to Silverthorne and it was a shame to leave it and rejoin the main road although traffic was light.
Coolest Reservoir Ever
From a Different Angle
The first stop was 40 miles away but it was largely downhill so I was in town by mid morning. I stopped into the local bike shop where John, the owner, let me use a few of his tools. The sleet and snow really took its toll on my bike and when I was at the top of Hoosier Pass I had to scrape ice off the brakes as they weren't working at all. I tightened the brakes, adjusted the gears and pumped up my tires before heading off.
Colorado River
Mountain Reflection
Big Cow in Kremmling
There was a dilemma of routes ahead at this point as I could have saved myself 20 miles by taking a shortcut but I wanted to go to a town on the main trail so I stuck to the official path. The town I wanted came around super fast and was called Hot Sulphur Springs.
Byers Valley
Me soaking in Sulphur Springs
As the name suggests, the town is based around a series of natural hot water springs which one bathes in so with time in the bank I paid my $16 and soaked in a series of pools between 98 and 108 degrees (not Celsius).

Feeling refreshed I set off for the last 55 miles of the day with plenty of time for what was in theory a downhill section apart from one climb back up to about 9600 feet at another continental dividing point. I went over a few smaller hills including one called 'Shadow Mountain' which would be my first port of call if I were a local sheriff investigating any missing kids, axe murders or general villains.
Back into the mountains
Frozen Plant in the Waterfall
From the top of the mountain pass I coasted down to the crap town of Rand which had a restaurant and shop (both closed) and then dug deep for the last 20 miles to Walden where I am now. The roads were a bit rubbish on the final stretch with little bumps every 20m which stop you from building any rhythm.
Savage Bear Attack on Sunburn Victim
It is remarkable the changes in weather you get at different elevations so that you can be in a snowstorm one day and then getting a sunburnt face in a hot spa the next before climbing back into icy mountains! For now though, my tent is up and a diner in town is beckoning my hungry tummy so I shall go and remedy that. The snap is of a cool waterfall on the way to Rand which had some cool stalactites(if they are the downward ones).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear you're still up and at it. What have you learned so far?

Your Uncles will be together here in Texas come mid-June, probably around the time you get home! Diane