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  1. #1
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    Difficult Distance Decisions

    I've been on two charity centuries over the past month that have offered distance options with some very curious, some might even say cruel decision points.

    The first was the MS 150 Colorado ride, which had an option to stretch the day one 100 miler into a double metric. The turn for the longer ride came at mile 97, the point at which you could virtually hear the music and literally taste the beer if you closed your eyes.

    For me, the choice was deferred to mile 98. I had sighed in a bit of relief when my riding companion at the time and I had breezed by the 97 mile mark and skipped the left turn that would have tacked on another 27 miles. Then, about a mile down the road, he says he had not felt that good at 100 miles for years, and as soon as we got to the turn off, he was going to take it.

    Next time Iím keeping my mouth shut, instead of pointing out that we had already gone past the turn. Cursing him repeatedly was the only thing that made the mile back to the turn, and the 27 more miles in the hot sun bearable.

    Last weekend, I rode the SOS Outreach River Ride, which launches from Avon Colorado and follows the Eagle River west for ten miles, turns north for some fifteen miles of up and down, and then follows the Colorado River west and south for another 40 plus until you're back at the Eagle River again, 32 miles west and 2000 ft. of elevation below the place where you start (and finish if you're doing the full century). No big deal until you discover that there is an ice cream truck parked next to a fleet of air conditioned resort buses ready to take whisk you and your bike to the finish party and a hero's welcome.

    No ice cream, and no air conditioned bus for me, although this time I have only myself to curse and blame.

    Are there other rides out there that offer similar choices and, if so, how has the 50+ gang reacted?

  2. #2
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Looks like a great route. As you know we came the opposite direction from what you did on Hwy 131 and through State Bridge from Steamboat to Avon. I've done it the same direction as you and it seems like a fairly long coming out of State Bridge towards McCoy. Where is the dirt road section on the loop? Is it from Burns to Doseto or part of the section as you are heading back east from Doseto towards Avon? I'm thinking that might be the only section I haven't done with the various BTC and RtRs out that way.

    Very rarely have I made a decision to stray from the intentions at the start or the ride. If I were faced with those decisions I'd probably be upset with myself for making either choice........
    Ride your Ride!!

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    The dirt section is on the Colorado River Road, which branches off of 131 just northwest of McCoy and runs for a bit more than 20 miles, then turns to asphalt for the rest of the way into Dotsero. It was better/faster than gravel, except for washboards and some loose stuff on a couple of the steeper descents.

    I definitely recommend putting the Colorado River Road on the bucket list. It's technically stimulating, visually stunning, and even as part of an organized ride, it felt remote. There was a stretch, coming off a ridge, where the river meandered to my left, bounded by red rock cliffs, the road wound through a green valley, and there were snow capped peaks on the horizon. Over a three mile visible stretch of road, every half mile held a solitary rider.

    Unfortunately, I was experimenting with a new (for me) hydration technique of carrying a bottle in my right rear jersey pocket. Right before I shoved off, the pocket camera I've been carrying had lost its place. Sorry.

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