Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 18 of 18
  1. #1
    @ Checkmate Cycling jbhowat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Denver, CO
    My Bikes
    CAAD 8 - Ultegra
    Posts
    1,622
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    7ish Day Bicycle Tour in Colorado - Self Supported

    Hi folks. My girlfriend and I did a car-supported tour in and around Yellowstone, the Tetons, and E. Idaho last summer. We camped all but one night (there really wasn't a place to camp in Victor, ID IIRC).

    We also did RAGBRAI last summer and are already planning to do it again this summer (I'm going to roll self-supported) as well as some one-day rides (Elephant Rock, Loveland CCBT).

    The people we did Yellowstone with last year were a lot of fun and are thinking about doing a S. Colorado bicycle tour this summer. It will be too early for us to go, though (my school doesn't get out until a week later... all of us are teachers, so we all have summers packed with "fun" plans).

    I asked my girlfriend if she would like to do something with just us since we won't be able to do the "teacher tour" this year. My time frame would be mid-late June.

    We would be self-supported.

    We would prefer to camp most nights if possible. 1 night out of 6-7 in a motel would be OK and possibly welcomed by the lady.

    I think a good daily mileage to average would be about 50-60, less if we have a lot of serious mountain terrain. Realistically one big mountain pass is going to really tire out my girlfriend. One per day and hopefully every other day. I've done RtR so I am familiar with several passes.

    We live just north of Denver (Thornton). We could start from there or farther south in Highlands Ranch where were family is.

    I have been messing around with Google Maps, but I'm not sure which roads are good for bikes, what is scenic, etc.

    Give me some suggestions. Starting in Denver Area and ending there as well. Out-and-back ok for segments, but would prefer a loop to mix-up the scenery.



    I'd also be interested in hearing about similar trips around Utah. We would be able to drive to the SLC area and then ride 6-7 day loop from there. Seems like Utah has a LOT of national forest, etc.
    Last edited by jbhowat; 01-26-09 at 04:14 PM.

  2. #2
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Denver, CO
    My Bikes
    Some silver ones, a black one, a red one, an orange one and a couple of titanium ones
    Posts
    15,028
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by jbhowat View Post
    Hi folks. My girlfriend and I did a car-supported tour in and around Yellowstone, the Tetons, and E. Idaho last summer. We camped all but one night (there really wasn't a place to camp in Victor, ID IIRC).

    We also did RAGBRAI last summer and are already planning to do it again this summer (I'm going to roll self-supported) as well as some one-day rides (Elephant Rock, Loveland CCBT).

    The people we did Yellowstone with last year were a lot of fun and are thinking about doing a S. Colorado bicycle tour this summer. It will be too early for us to go, though (my school doesn't get out until a week later... all of us are teachers, so we all have summers packed with "fun" plans).

    I asked my girlfriend if she would like to do something with just us since we won't be able to do the "teacher tour" this year. My time frame would be mid-late June.

    We would be self-supported.

    We would prefer to camp most nights if possible. 1 night out of 6-7 in a motel would be OK and possibly welcomed by the lady.

    I think a good daily mileage to average would be about 50-60, less if we have a lot of serious mountain terrain. Realistically one big mountain pass is going to really tire out my girlfriend. One per day and hopefully every other day. I've done RtR so I am familiar with several passes.

    We live just north of Denver (Thornton). We could start from there or farther south in Highlands Ranch where were family is.

    I have been messing around with Google Maps, but I'm not sure which roads are good for bikes, what is scenic, etc.

    Give me some suggestions. Starting in Denver Area and ending there as well. Out-and-back ok for segments, but would prefer a loop to mix-up the scenery.
    Denver to Estes Park (day 1) over Trail Ridge to Grand Lake (day 2) and on to Kremmling (Day 3). From Kremmling you could go north to Steamboat over Rabbit Ears Pass and return over Gore Pass. (Day 4 and 5). Or you could go to Walden and come back over Cameron Pass to Fort Collins (Day 4, 5, 6) to Ft Collins (this tour would be rugged and a little remote but on good roads).

    Or you could go south out of Kremmling to Dillion returning over Loveland Pass and along I-70.

    If you want to do a mountain bike tour (a different kind of adventure but very doable), go up Coal Creek Canyon (not the best riding but it's okay) to Rollinsville. Go over Rollins Pass (there a little hike and bike over Needle's Eye Tunnel) to Winter Park. From Winter Park follow 4-bar-4 road over Ute Pass (there are several Ute Passes in Colorado) to the Green Mountain Reservoir area (I don't have a good designation for the road but I can get it). Go south on CO9 to Dillion and on to Breckenridge. Follow the Boreas Pass road to Jefferson and then south to Tarryall Res. From there go south to Woodland Park (some road riding here) and then come down off the Rampart Range on Mt Herman Rd into Monument. Head north along CO105 or Douglas 18 to Castle Rock. You can go over to Franktown from Castle Rock and pick up Cherry Creek and the Platte Trails to get back home. It's more ambitious but very pretty. I did this route about 20 years ago.
    Stuart Black
    Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
    Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
    Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
    Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
    An Good Ol' Fashion Appalachian Butt Whoopin'.

  3. #3
    @ Checkmate Cycling jbhowat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Denver, CO
    My Bikes
    CAAD 8 - Ultegra
    Posts
    1,622
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Thanks for the suggestions. I'll be on a touring bike though, and she'd be on a road bike, lightly loaded. Neither of us currently owns a mt bike.

  4. #4
    Biker
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    New Mexico
    My Bikes
    One or more from each decade since 1960s
    Posts
    125
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Colorado rides

    I scouted possible routes from Fort Collins to Albuquerque NM in several forms, but alas never made that ride. Going out of Denver through Evergreen and Buena Vista is doable but only with good weather. My absolute favorite option was to get someone to drop me in Leadville and bomb toward Antonito, Espanola, and Albuquerque. Its just getting to Leadville on a bike that was the problem. The grand circle through Rocky Mountain NP should be high on your list and it is doable if you are in shape. Happy riding. tom

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Boulder, CO
    Posts
    6,994
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Here's another option - drive to Gunnison and leave your car there:
    Gunnison - Lake City - Creed - Pagosa Springs - Durango - Silverton - Montrose - Gunnison
    ...

  6. #6
    Senior Member thebarerider's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Norman, OK
    My Bikes
    Trek520
    Posts
    471
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I did something similar last summer, with a lot of help from valygrl, cyccommute, and others on this forum. I suggest checking out Leadville and the area surrounding it. It is beautiful; and, if you want to spend one night indoors, you should check out the Leadville hostel. The owners are great; the food is great; and the people who stay there are great. It's also much cheaper than a hotel.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Zang's Spur, CO
    Posts
    6,081
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Here are some solo one-day rides I did last summer, with start/finish in Broomfield:

    http://www.dim.com/~ryoder/

    If I was going to do a multi-day ride, I would definitely do Trail Ridge Road!
    I've tried Mt Evans twice, but was too wasted to get beyond Echo Lake.
    I'll probably do that as an overnight ride next summer.

  8. #8
    Dumpster cyclist
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Durango, CO
    Posts
    237
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Darn! Valygrl took my suggestion! Well, part of it anyway.

    I was going to suggest Denver to Durango, via 285 to Monarch pass, to Gunnison, to Lake City and Creede, over Wolf Creek and to Durango. It's a one-way trip, but maybe you could drop a car off or take a bus back or something. I did this trip last fall, and it was fantastic. Easy 50-mile days, and the only time you do two passes in one day is over Spring Creek and Slumgullion, which are conjoined. Some of the passes on the route could hardly be considered such. Red Hill pass was much smaller than some of the hills we went over.

    I thouroughly enjoyed it. We went from Durango to Denver, but my favorite part is definitely between Pagosa Springs and Monarch pass. Well, between there and Denver is really fun too though. The whole thing is great. Watch out for wind North of Fairplay! The only time I've seen a loaded touring bike riding sideways and not falling over was as a storm was blowing in next to us right outside of Fairplay.

    This post got me all excited! I love touring in Colorado, I hope you guys find a really cool trip to go on. Post whatever route you end up taking, and let us know if it was good!
    My latest feckless undertakings:
    http://www.erictomczak.webs.com

  9. #9
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Denver, CO
    My Bikes
    Some silver ones, a black one, a red one, an orange one and a couple of titanium ones
    Posts
    15,028
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by jbhowat View Post
    Thanks for the suggestions. I'll be on a touring bike though, and she'd be on a road bike, lightly loaded. Neither of us currently owns a mt bike.
    You could do something similar to the mountain bike tour on parallel...or nearly...paved roads. Go up I-70 to Empire and over Berthod Pass. Follow US40 around to Kremmling and then CO 9 to Dillion. You could get over to South Park over Hoosier Pass. Come back on US285 through Conifer or continue south on US24 to Woodland Park and Manitou Springs. Back to Denver along the I-25 corridor.

    If you are willing to drive to a start point, I'd suggest starting in Pueblo or Canon City. Head west up the Arkansas River to Monarch Pass and Gunnison. Follow parts of Valygrl's route to Creede and come back through the San Luis Valley (see the Sand Dunes and alligator farm while there). Come back over Poncha Pass and back to Canon City.
    Stuart Black
    Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
    Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
    Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
    Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
    An Good Ol' Fashion Appalachian Butt Whoopin'.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    430
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    My perfect Colorado Tour is based on a different scenery

    Starting in Denver to to The Wynkoop and Flying Dog. Ride to Golden and do the tour at Coors. Then to Boulder for a visit to Boulder Beer and Avery Brewing. Ride through Lyons stopping at Oskar Blues, then head up to Fort Collins for Odells and New Belgium. Ride back to Denver and stop in Longmont on the way for some Left Hand.

    It's only about 150 miles for the whole trip, but as you can see it's not a tour thats too conducive to a fast pace.

  11. #11
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Western Colorado
    My Bikes
    Salsa Vaya Ti, Specialized Ruby, Gunnar Sport, Motobecane Fantom CXX, Jamis Dragon, Novara Randonee x2
    Posts
    1,603
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    If the west slope appeals to you we have done a 7 day tour out of Grand Junction that goes around the Uncompahgre Plateau. There are no major passes. The biggest climbs are Dallas Divide and Unaweep Canyon.

    The route we did is: GJ-Delta-Montrose-Ridgway-Placerville-Naturita-Gateway-GJ. Mileage is 20-70 miles per day. 300 miles total.

    I can provide more info if you'd like.
    Gunnar Sport
    Specialized Ruby
    Salsa Vaya Ti
    Novara Randonee x2
    Motobecane Fantom CXX
    Jamis Dragon

  12. #12
    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Zang's Spur, CO
    Posts
    6,081
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by jmichaeldesign View Post
    Ride to Golden and do the tour at Coors.
    Why would you want to do that???

  13. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    430
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
    Why would you want to do that???
    I'm a homebrewer so it would be fun to see a brewing system that large. I'm sure they'll have something halfway decent to drink.

  14. #14
    Dumpster cyclist
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Durango, CO
    Posts
    237
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by jmichaeldesign View Post
    I'm a homebrewer so it would be fun to see a brewing system that large. I'm sure they'll have something halfway decent to drink.
    Homebrew > Coors

    I'm a homebrewer as well. I wouldn't visit any breweries bigger than New Belgium.

    Sorry to get off topic, I just had to say something...
    My latest feckless undertakings:
    http://www.erictomczak.webs.com

  15. #15
    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Zang's Spur, CO
    Posts
    6,081
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by jmichaeldesign View Post
    I'm sure they'll have something halfway decent to drink.
    Your optimism needs to be tempered with reality.
    We are talking about *Coors*!
    I know people who have worked there.

  16. #16
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Denver, CO
    My Bikes
    Some silver ones, a black one, a red one, an orange one and a couple of titanium ones
    Posts
    15,028
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by eofelis View Post
    If the west slope appeals to you we have done a 7 day tour out of Grand Junction that goes around the Uncompahgre Plateau. There are no major passes. The biggest climbs are Dallas Divide and Unaweep Canyon.

    The route we did is: GJ-Delta-Montrose-Ridgway-Placerville-Naturita-Gateway-GJ. Mileage is 20-70 miles per day. 300 miles total.

    I can provide more info if you'd like.
    Another westish slope ride would start in Glenwood Springs and loop back through Aspen, Leadville, Minturn and Eagle. You could come back to Minturn over Tennessee Pass or go on to Copper Mountain over Fremont and back to Vail via Vail Pass. All of it would be on good roads or on bikeways.
    Stuart Black
    Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
    Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
    Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
    Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
    An Good Ol' Fashion Appalachian Butt Whoopin'.

  17. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    430
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
    Your optimism needs to be tempered with reality.
    We are talking about *Coors*!
    I know people who have worked there.
    By halfway decent I mean one of their Blue Moon brews. I know its still not great, but free beer is still free beer.

  18. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    74
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've done Conifer to Durango via a pretty tame route. I found Kenosha, Trout Creek, and Poncha Passes to be easy and scenic. The upper Arkansas Valley is nice riding and Salida is a good stop. The San Luis Valley is not everyone's idea of great scenery. If I did it again, I'd stay on the east side and include the Sand Dunes. The Valley had me plenty rested by the time I got to Wolf Creek Pass, which is really worth the effort. Durango is a great destination, but I wish I had avoided going straight there from Pagosa Springs on 160. That stretch of highway was the worst part of the trip. I've since learned of some alternate approaches that sound way better. I'm using Michael Seeberg's book Road Biking Colorado: A Statewide Guide to plan this summer's tour. It covers everything. I'll take a warmer sleeping bag, too. I keep forgetting how cold it is at night in the mountains.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •