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  1. #1
    thomas masini lives
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    C Springs to Ft Collins

    Hello,

    I am looking for a safe cycling route for a minitour from Colorado Springs to Fort Collins. If you have any suggestions or can point me towards a guide book that might show a route, please respond.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Crankenstein bmclaughlin807's Avatar
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    http://www.amazon.com/Road-Biking-Co...e=UTF8&s=books

    I bought this book a few months ago... come spring time I plan to be cycling a lot of the routes.

    It shows routes from Colorado springs to Denver, and Denver to Ft. Collins. I'd check to see how easy it would be to link the two routes, but my book seems to have disappeared in the clutter. Hrmm... I know it's around here somewhere.

    Probably buried under my computer stuff.
    "There is no greater wonder than the way the face and character of a woman fit so perfectly in a man's mind, and stay there, and he could never tell you why. It just seems it was the thing he most wanted." Robert Louis Stevenson

  3. #3
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    I read that book last summer at my library. There were a few others in print. I would recommend checking out your library.

  4. #4
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    You might also check out the roads that Elephant Rock uses, those would get you a good deal of the way from the Springs to Denver. From Castle Rock, there are good roads that will get you the rest of the way, on either the East or the West side of I-25. Once in Denver, get on the Cherry Creek trail to get through town, use the Platte River Trail north into Thornton. Then, I'd use Washington to get up to highway 7, take that to 287 and head North (you could also use less traveled roads that parallel 287)
    Hot's good. Cold is good. Up, down. Those are good, too.

  5. #5
    Senior Member oilfreeandhappy's Avatar
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    Hello Gadeux,
    I rode this exact route, round trip, last summer. I took some different routes coming and going.

    This CDOT map is a must. It's pretty accurate.

    http://www.dot.state.co.us/bikeped/M...Bike%20Map.pdf

    Here's what I'd recommend.

    I took Hwy 83 North from Colorado Springs to Franktown. This was the least pleasant part of my trip, as the road has a rather small shoulder. The CDOT map wasn't real helpful on this count, as it showed a "less than 4 foot" shoulder. This is true, it was more like 1 foot. The road was surprisingly heavy with truck traffic. There was also a lot of road construction, small shoulders, and heavy traffic in North Colorado Springs. If I had it to do over again, I might pursue a longer route through the mountains. But this is by far the most direct route, and I must admit, I've been on worse roads. I would recommend pulling over if you see a Semi bearing down from both directions. If you go this route, bring a lot of water. From North Colorado Springs to Franktown (50 mi), there are no services and no water. However, you can stop at Castle Rock State Park and get water there, but at this point you're fairly close to Franktown. If you enter the State Parks (Cherry Creek and Castle Rock) by bicycle, it's free admission.

    The Cherry Creek Trail can be picked up a little North of Franktown, South of Parker. Go North on Parker Road (83), from Franktown, until you see a sign for the Cherry Creek trail, directing you to the left. It runs parallel on the East side of Parker Road. I wasn't able to stay on the trail the entire time, because of construction, but if you're lucky, it will take you all the way to Cherry Creek Reservoir.

    Here's a bicycling map of Denver for $3.95.
    http://www.mapsco.com/cgi-bin/Mapsco...duct/PGC-99125

    If you're like me, you'd probably rather get a free map. I found this Bike Trail map. It was accurate, but it did show some sections that weren't completed yet.

    http://www.denvertrails.com/LargeMap...Large5050.html

    I rode all the way through Denver on Bike Trails. The Cherry Creek Trail (get off at Colorado Blvd and go a few blocks south for a nice breakfast or lunch at Wild Oats or other restaurants) goes from the Reservoir all the way downtown, where you can connect with the North Platte River Trail. Throughout my rides on these trails, I saw a lot of wildlife.

    Take the North Platte River trail to 104th Street (it's supposed to be extended to 120th Street in 2007). Go East to Highway 85, and head North. This is a loud road, but there is a nice wide shoulder. Once I got as far North as the Highway 60 turnoff, I exited Highway 85, and took a quieter route. Hwy 60 West to Milliken, Hwy 257 North to Windsor. There are a couple of nice routes to Fort Collins from here. The main Windsor road turns into Carpenter road at I-25. Take Carpenter West to Timberline Road, North all the way into South Fort Collins. Or you can take County Road 5 (far West side of Windsor) along the scenic Poudre River to Harmony road, and head West into Fort Collins. Enjoy the bike trails and nice bike lanes throughout Fort Collins. You can hardly go wrong anywhere you ride.

    Overall, this is a nice bike trip, especially from Cherry Creek Reservoir to Fort Collins. And if you can plan I-85 on a Sunday (I did this on my way to Colorado Springs), the truck traffic isn't near as bad, and the ride is much more pleasant.
    Last edited by oilfreeandhappy; 01-23-07 at 08:53 PM.
    Jim
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    oilfreeandhappy,
    How long did it take to get from Denver to FortCollins? I live near the exit of the Platte trail at 104th ave. This could be an interesting trip for me this spring or summer.
    Just a rough estimate like how many days.
    danka

  7. #7
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    Going through the Black Forest is an alternative to riding on Hwy 83. I've lived in Colorado Springs for 30 years. Haven't ridden Hwy 83 in the last 20. Going through the Black forest will about 10 miles.

  8. #8
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
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    Can't you ride through the Air Force Academy anymore? That's the way I'd go, from AFA South gate to North gate, on the bike path to Monument, Palmer Lake, Larkspur, Castle Rock then to Littleton, Golden Boulder and Ft Collins.
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

  9. #9
    staring at the mountains superdex's Avatar
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    According to the RMCC newsletter I got earlier in the week, AFA is just now back open to ride through....

  10. #10
    Beauty Everywhere snowy's Avatar
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    Yes its now open to ride through. We have friends that live in the springs and they have been riding roadbikes through there.
    "RIDE FAST TAKE CHANCES!"

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  11. #11
    Senior Member oilfreeandhappy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DataJunkie
    oilfreeandhappy,
    How long did it take to get from Denver to FortCollins? I live near the exit of the Platte trail at 104th ave. This could be an interesting trip for me this spring or summer.
    Just a rough estimate like how many days.
    danka
    I actually rode from Fort Collins to Cherry Creek State Park in one day, and I went through Ault, which added about 20 miles to the trip. You can easily make your trip in a day, and be at the Fort in time for dinner.
    Jim
    Make a BOLD Statement While Cycling!

  12. #12
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shifty
    Can't you ride through the Air Force Academy anymore? That's the way I'd go, from AFA South gate to North gate, on the bike path to Monument, Palmer Lake, Larkspur, Castle Rock then to Littleton, Golden Boulder and Ft Collins.
    The bike way through the Air Academy is very sandy so plan accordingly. It's mostly hardpack but has bad patches. If you are doing it with a road bike, it'd be better to go through the AFA to the north gate and then go out the north gate to a bike way that parallels I-25. This will take you to the frontage road, eventually. Go up to Monument (you could cut to the west on Baptist Road to get away from the I-25 buzz) and then follow CO105 all the way to Sedalia. You'll have to take US 85 along here...not the most pleasant of rides but doable. Once you get to C-470, go west about a half a mile and pick up the Platte River Trail which you take all the way through town to 104th. It gets more involve from there. I plot it out on RouteSlip later and post it.
    Stuart Black
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  13. #13
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute
    The bike way through the Air Academy is very sandy so plan accordingly. It's mostly hardpack but has bad patches. If you are doing it with a road bike, it'd be better to go through the AFA to the north gate and then go out the north gate to a bike way that parallels I-25. This will take you to the frontage road, eventually. Go up to Monument (you could cut to the west on Baptist Road to get away from the I-25 buzz) and then follow CO105 all the way to Sedalia. You'll have to take US 85 along here...not the most pleasant of rides but doable. Once you get to C-470, go west about a half a mile and pick up the Platte River Trail which you take all the way through town to 104th. It gets more involve from there. I plot it out on RouteSlip later and post it.
    Okay. Here's 'a' route. You'd use pretty much the same route from Colorado Springs to Erie but when you get past Erie, the route is boooooooooringly straight. I mean the last 50 miles or so is absolutely due north...Yuck! If you want more variety, you could go further west into Boulder. It would be more interesting. Look at a map and try to head over to Hygeine and then north. By the way, I'm not positive that the road I mapped is paved all the way. If it isn't go a mile east or west and then head north.

    Finding someplace to stay might be difficult. There is a campground on I-25 on Tomah Rd near Larkspur (about 40 miles) and there is a campground at Chatfield (about 75 miles). There is also a state park near Longmont at I-25 (east of the route on CO119) called Barbour Ponds that should have camping. I would not suggest doing stealth camping anywhere along this route since you'd be on private land and that's frowned on...highly! And stealth camping within Denver would just be asking for trouble

    Hope this helps. If you want tips on how to go west into Boulder, just ask.
    Stuart Black
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    Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
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    An Good Ol' Fashion Appalachian Butt Whoopin'.

  14. #14
    Senior Member bikedaddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute
    Okay. Here's 'a' route. You'd use pretty much the same route from Colorado Springs to Erie but when you get past Erie, the route is boooooooooringly straight. I mean the last 50 miles or so is absolutely due north...Yuck! If you want more variety, you could go further west into Boulder. It would be more interesting. Look at a map and try to head over to Hygeine and then north. By the way, I'm not positive that the road I mapped is paved all the way. If it isn't go a mile east or west and then head north.

    Finding someplace to stay might be difficult. There is a campground on I-25 on Tomah Rd near Larkspur (about 40 miles) and there is a campground at Chatfield (about 75 miles). There is also a state park near Longmont at I-25 (east of the route on CO119) called Barbour Ponds that should have camping. I would not suggest doing stealth camping anywhere along this route since you'd be on private land and that's frowned on...highly! And stealth camping within Denver would just be asking for trouble

    Hope this helps. If you want tips on how to go west into Boulder, just ask.
    Stealth camping is one of my favorite pastimes... too bad the campfire and sing-a-longs always give me away.

    Seriously though I'm greatly enjoying this thread. When I get my road bike I am looking for rides between the Fort and the Springs and anywhere inbetween.

  15. #15
    Senior Member oilfreeandhappy's Avatar
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    I'm glad RouteSlip was mentioned. I logged my ride there last summer, but forgot the name of the website. Anyhow, I logged in, and found my route:
    http://www.routeslip.com/routes/4033
    Jim
    Make a BOLD Statement While Cycling!

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