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Mt. Evans CO. How experienced need I be?

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Mt. Evans CO. How experienced need I be?

Old 08-23-21, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
We rode Mt Evans yesterday, Aug 12. Made it in 2hr 30min moving time...
Kudos!
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Old 08-23-21, 01:51 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by friday1970 View Post
I just rode this up on the 11th of this month. What a tough ride for someone coming from the midwest. I stayed near Leadville for 3 nights to acclimate, and it probably wasn't enough. But after a slow slog and many breaks, I made it. Idaho Springs to the summit and back

At the top, someone asked about if I would need new brakes after descending. I looked at my pads and thought "Nah, I'll be good". From the summit to the lodge, my brakes took a beating. They were nearly worn down to the last 3mm or so.
But the descent from Echo Lake to Idaho Spings was pure bliss. Very fun, very fast
Ah... missed you by a day. We did pass one cyclist while driving from Idaho Springs to Echo Lake where we started. I was worried about my disc pads being worn, but checked them before leaving home and just checked them last Saturday, still have plenty of pad left. So I must not have been too terrified on the descent. <grin>

Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Yeah, it is a heck of a climb!! Each time I ride it, I know not to push it all all. It is the only climb I do that is 100% scenery and no pushing hard. After 12K, it just gets harder and harder to get enough O2 in anyway. Well done!
I can't wait to do it again next year. Also looking for other climbs out there in the Colorado area. Eyeing Pikes Peak at the moment for next year also. Hoping I can get at least three climbs next year.

One thing I seemed to notice but didn't really investigate thoroughly is that my legs never got tired. I was just getting tired of breathing so much. Several times I shifted several gears up to higher ratios and was comfortable pushing them to get a faster speed. However the occasional brief steep grades would push me back to lower ratios and I think the rapid breathing I was doing had me slightly confused as to whether I had energy for my legs and staying in lower gears than I really needed.
Originally Posted by teejaywhy View Post
Kudos!
Thanks!
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Old 08-23-21, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
Here are my metrics for my ride..
Congratulation's.

We all know how nervous you were and it was a good test of your ability to train and plan.
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Old 08-23-21, 02:18 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
Congratulation's.

We all know how nervous you were and it was a good test of your ability to train and plan.
Yeah, I was nervous that I was overestimating my ability. And more so that I might have been underestimating how much would be needed to go a seemingly short 14 miles mostly uphill.

The 40 mile route I was doing here turned out to be pretty good training. While I didn't ride it all out, I did ride at a high effort. And for at least a dozen times prior to going to CO.
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/37264860
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Old 08-26-21, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
We rode Mt Evans yesterday, Aug 12. Made it in 2hr 30min moving time.
I just attempted a summit from Echo Lake 4 days ago. I made it to 13,100' and had to abort due to 35+ mph gusty crosswinds that were blowing me into the lane of traffic (thankfully no cars were passing any of those times), as well as those same gusty headwinds on the steepest ascents almost stopping me in my tracks and my legs just not having enough granny gear to overcome the winds. It's disappointing not making the summit (though I've done it twice before, once from Idaho Springs), but for me I've recently learned to appreciate the preparation and journey, moreso than the avg. speed and/or final destination. Clichť yes, but it's my truth.

https://www.strava.com/activities/5836444268

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Old 08-26-21, 06:59 PM
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Some of us should try to do it as a small group next year. There is a restaurant at the base for after. That would be very cool.
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Old 08-26-21, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Some of us should try to do it as a small group next year. There is a restaurant at the base for after. That would be very cool.
I'd be up for that (pun intended).
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Old 08-26-21, 09:56 PM
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Suffering with others is FAR more fun than suffering alone! We should plan something and at least target a month- maybe June or July? I'm pretty flexible but a couple of us are local so anytime is good.
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Old 08-27-21, 08:18 AM
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I put a reminder on my calendar for next June, that should give me enough time to train for it and hopefully get a PR. Some consistent trips up Deer Creek Canyon to the schoolhouse should help.
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Old 08-27-21, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Some of us should try to do it as a small group next year. There is a restaurant at the base for after. That would be very cool.
I'm up for that. But I forget many things though. I'll try to let you know somehow. I'd probably make another thread like this when I'm in the planning stages of the next.

I'll be out to visit my son and D-I-L at least one more time this year, but I think it's already too late in the year to plan any one specific day for Mt. Evans. Or at least it is for me being that I don't like to take clothes for several seasons with me for the ride up.

I do plan to ride some more of the bike paths around Centennial, Littleton, Aurora and etc. while I'm there helping do reno work on my son's place.

Next year I am planning to do Mount Evans again and some of the other interesting climbs out there.
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Old 08-27-21, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Riveting View Post
I put a reminder on my calendar for next June, that should give me enough time to train for it and hopefully get a PR. Some consistent trips up Deer Creek Canyon to the schoolhouse should help.
I live pretty close to Deer Creek Canyon, in the Ken Caryl Valley. I'll join you sometime. That would be a great training ride.
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Old 08-30-21, 11:33 AM
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I am not a cyclist, but hope to become one soon. I have a 30 year old mountain bike that I sometimes ride and although I'm not in bad shape, I'm certainly not in cycling shape. I probably rode a grand total of 60 miles last year and 30 of those miles were up and down Mt. Evans when the road was closed to auto traffic.

I wanted to get to the top of Mt Evans and without a car, my only options were to walk or bike. Given I wanted to haul my amateur radio gear up there, I needed a backpack as well. So, I rode my 30 year old heavy mountain bike up from Echo Lake to the top. I should say, I rode it on the parts that I could and I walked it A LOT. I had a 30lb pack on, which didn't help. The moral of this story is that even a crazy old duffer like me who has no business trying to do this ride can make it to the top, even if walking some of it is required.

It took me 5 hours to get to the top (including al ot of walking) and 1 hour to get down.

I had fun and it has inspired me to purchase a road bike and start biking!
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Old 08-30-21, 12:14 PM
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Well done! That is quite the achievement!!!!!!
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Old 08-30-21, 12:47 PM
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ColoFatherOf3 That's quite a bit of determination you have there. 5 hours and probably over sixty pounds of bike + backpack + water or whatever else you took with you.

Since I had no prior experience on slopes any more than a ĺ mile long or so, I was fearing that I too would be struggling for 4 to 5 hours. Luckily I only had about 20 pounds or so to go up the mountain with.
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Old 01-29-22, 06:09 PM
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Iride01 , Chandne , Riveting , I am going to Colorado Springs area this August for a couple weeks, and I have my eye on some epic riding. I’m interested in Mt Evans and/or Pikes Peak.
For the locals, is one better than the other? I soaked up all the info in this thread about Mt Evans, anything different, prep wise, for Pikes Peak?
Are there groups that do this ride, that I could tag along with?
I’m most likely brining my Canyon Grail with me. I haven’t decided whether to leave the 32mm road slicks on it, or put the 40mm knobbies. Any thoughts on that decision?
Lastly, any epic gravel routes you’d recommend near there? I’ll be camping out of my van for the trip.
Thanks!
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Old 01-29-22, 06:46 PM
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Pikes Peak (which I have NOT done yet) is more difficult and steeper. I am not aware of any groups that do it regularly but on weekends, some do...especially for training. For Evans, the 40s will save you coming down unless you want to take it easy on the bad sections. I did it on 28s and 30s. It is better if you air down a bit- maybe to 70. I don't do any epic gravel but there is a lot of it near Colorado Springs. There is a Colorado Gravel FB page - Colorado Gravel Grinders. You absolutely should ask there. There is also some sweet gravel near Winter Park area- basically the Crooked Gravel ride route. Post again and I'll try to get more info but that FB page will be MUCH better than me.

I am up in Breckendrige almost every weekend after May-ish but if I can swing it, I'll join up and see if we can get a local group involved. There are always guys who will join.
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Old 01-29-22, 07:11 PM
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I've done both many times on a motorbike, but I've only done Mt Evans on a bicycle.
Pikes Peak pavement is excellent.

Mt Evans is horrible, especially in the Summit Lake area.
It has cracks across the road for much of the length, spaced maybe at ~20' intervals.
I think these cracks are caused by snowmelt tunneling under the road, then getting collapsed when cars drive over it.
The downhill ride is: THUMP...THUMP...THUMP...THUMP...THUMP...THUMP...
It makes you wish for full-suspension.
In the Summit Lake region, there are massive heaves in the road.
My most pleasant ride was on a 26" rigid-framed Cannondale with 1.25" slicks and suspension seatpost:

The fenders are useful for when I've been caught in the rain, which is ~50% of the time.
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Old 01-30-22, 11:20 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by sarhog View Post
I’m most likely brining my Canyon Grail with me. I haven’t decided whether to leave the 32mm road slicks on it, or put the 40mm knobbies. Any thoughts on that decision?
32 mm slicks should be more than adequate for either in August. They are paved roads and you intend to stay on the pavement don't you? Maybe I'm wrong since I've never used knobbies on anything I owned, but seems to me they'll just be working against you the entire ride.

I did Mt Evans on 25mm GP 5000 tubed tires and definitely no issue going up. The ride down, I wished I had wider. But not so much that I didn't enjoy the ride down and back to the start. Those expansion cracks are a jolt, but if you have a good bend in your elbows then they aren't a killer. TMK, the road on Pikes Peak has been resurfaced recently and "riding" it on Google Maps in street view it looks very smooth.

If you are use to doing long slow climbs on your routes near Greer, SC, then you should be good. Plan on your hydration and any other foods and things you will need. I taped a bottle to my top tube and down tube so I could carry four bottles and be self sufficient for the entire ride.

If you don't know how well your lungs handle elevations over 10,000 feet then you might stop and pick up one or two of those little O2 canisters. They have them in the convenience stores nearby and other places in CO. They are about the size of asthma inhalers so they don't take up much room and don't cost much at all.

Not sure about Pikes Peak, but if you aren't use to how weather changes in high altitudes, you might want to make sure you do your trip in August or earlier in July. On a good day you are dealing with three different temperature zones. Warm to hot for your start, cool and comfortable, and then cold at the top. So those two months will usually have the most predictable and stable weather.

Even when I did Mt. Evans in August, when I got to the top, it started snowing. Just on the top, from a silly looking little cloud that wasn't very big. And it was blue sky everywhere else. Well, actually smoky. I was out there when the brush fires in other states were making Denver the worst air quality of any city in the US. It was also an issue that after generating all my own heat for the ride up that I didn't immediately put warmer clothes on when I stopped at the top for an hour. The cold really sneaks up on you and once you realize you are cold it's almost too late.

July and August will be the times I'll be looking to do Mt Evans and Pikes Peak. No firm dates yet. I tend not to plan actual dates of something much more than a couple weeks out. Though I am hoping to get out there to the Denver area at least 5 times this year since my younger son is there now.

Last edited by Iride01; 01-30-22 at 11:43 AM.
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Old 01-30-22, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Pikes Peak (which I have NOT done yet) is more difficult and steeper. I am not aware of any groups that do it regularly but on weekends, some do...especially for training. For Evans, the 40s will save you coming down unless you want to take it easy on the bad sections. I did it on 28s and 30s. It is better if you air down a bit- maybe to 70. I don't do any epic gravel but there is a lot of it near Colorado Springs. There is a Colorado Gravel FB page - Colorado Gravel Grinders. You absolutely should ask there. There is also some sweet gravel near Winter Park area- basically the Crooked Gravel ride route. Post again and I'll try to get more info but that FB page will be MUCH better than me.

I am up in Breckendrige almost every weekend after May-ish but if I can swing it, I'll join up and see if we can get a local group involved. There are always guys who will join.
Thanks for the intel on Pikes Peak vs Mt Evans in respect to the difficulty differences. Iíll most likely have the gravel tires on it to facilitate both road and gravel rides. I joined the Facebook group that you mentioned as well.
Thereís a possibility that Iíve secured an entry to SBT SGVL, in which case Iíll be in Colorado (or thereabouts) from August 1st until the 15th.
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Old 07-12-22, 02:55 PM
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Iride01 Chandne Riveting My trip is still a go! I actually arrive in Colorado Springs on July 26th, but I’ll be camping and doing touristy stuff with my wife until August 2nd. She flies home then and the bike part of my adventure begins…
I am available to ride August 3rd and 4th, and again from August 8th thru the 12th or so. If any of you guys know of a group attempt at either of these 2 climbs (Pike’s Peak and Mt Evans), or any other cool gravel (or road) rides near Colorado Springs or Canon City area, let me know. I plan to bring a road wheelset (32mm slicks) and a gravel wheelset (42mm Pathfiner Pros) with my Canyon Grail.
Thanks!

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Old 07-12-22, 03:24 PM
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I've done both Mt Evans, and Pike Peak on a motorcycle over the past 2 weeks.
Mt Evans pavement is worse than ever.
I didn't want to do over 25mph on the upper half.
I recommend a full suspension mtn bike for the descent.
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Old 07-30-22, 04:46 PM
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Originally Posted by sarhog View Post
Iride01 Chandne Riveting My trip is still a go! I actually arrive in Colorado Springs on July 26th, but I’ll be camping and doing touristy stuff with my wife until August 2nd. She flies home then and the bike part of my adventure begins…
I am available to ride August 3rd and 4th, and again from August 8th thru the 12th or so. If any of you guys know of a group attempt at either of these 2 climbs (Pike’s Peak and Mt Evans), or any other cool gravel (or road) rides near Colorado Springs or Canon City area, let me know. I plan to bring a road wheelset (32mm slicks) and a gravel wheelset (42mm Pathfiner Pros) with my Canyon Grail.
Thanks!

Oh heck, I cleared my subscription notifications globally and had somewhat forgotten this thread.

So have you actually ridden Mt Evans yet?

I'm worried I won't be able to get out there again before the road is closed for weather to motor traffic. And that probably will coincide with my confidence dwindling in my ability to handle the vastly different starting temps and the temps at the peak.

I've spent most of June in CO. But unfortunately couldn't take my bike. I am trying to convince my wife to go in a few weeks but she's resisting. Looks like if I get out there at all, it'll just be Mt. Evans I climb. Though I've been riding a lot, I'm still not confident of my sustained power to get me up the steeper grade of Pike's Peak.

Best to you for whichever you get to do. Or both, but if you do both, then I'm jealous! <grin>
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