rockies

Its the climb…

Top of the Rockies

I wanted to start with some famous words that apply to what I did the past few days: [pullquote author="Miley Cyrus"]

Ain’t about how fast I get there Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side It’s the climb

[/pullquote]

So for the past few days we have been climbing the Rocky Mountains! How crazy is that? Friday was our ride into Estes Park and it was our first real taste of climbing the Rockies and it was awesome. We stayed at this amazing place called the Eagle Rock School, which is this awesome program that the American Honda Education Corporation (a non-profit subsidiary of the American Honda Motor Corporation) started. Everything is completely paid for by Honda and students are accepted on application. Its a school where students that have not had success in traditional programs can go to get a fully rounded education and learn about life.

As great as the ride to Estes Park was, the ride to Granby was something else. It was the long-awaited Trail Ridge Road. The highest elevation of any paved road in the US and we biked it. Starting at about 7500 feet in Estes Park, we climbed straight to a little over 12,000 feet! Trail Ridge Road goes through Rocky Mountain National Park which is absolutely beautiful and filled with tons of wildlife.

Like elk…

and beavers.

A view from the top.

We were higher than the timberline and there was still snow at the top. It was so cold that I had to put on my baselayer, jersey, gloves, shorts, leg warmers and a jacket for the second half. The descent was very long and its always a good feeling when you have to brake because a car is in your way! Haha!

Once Mark and I got into Granby (the first ones btw!) we went to this awesome local grill called Maverick’s where we had some of the greatest burgers in the world. I had a Gringo’s Green Chili Buffalo Cheeseburger and it was absolutely amazing and Mark had an Elk Patty Melt. Where else can you have elk and buffalo as a burger?! Only in Bike & Build.

Yum! Buffalo burger.

Another thing to mention is that Granby was the site of our Bike & Build prom!

This was my prom outfit that was bought at a thrift shop in Kansas. Of course I’m going to try and keep it, so maybe I’ll wear it again someday.

Kremmling, CO was where Bike & Build CUS ‘10 spent our 4th of July. It was also our first day to camp which ended up being an interesting experience. Apparently setting up tents in a lot of wind is a lot harder than one would think. We left Granby around noon since we only had a 27 mile day, but that might not have been the best idea since winds aren’t as bad in the mornings. We probably had gusts up to 30-40 mph and even though most of the ride was downhill, it didn’t feel like it. Still it was a short day and we of course ended our ride with food.

Some of us went to this place called Shake N’ Burger. Shortly after Mark and I decided to explore the town a bit and ended up at the Kremmling Fairgrounds where we caught the tail end of the Redneck Mudshuffle. Lets just say we’re both glad that we didn’t miss it. All these monster trucks going through huge piles of dirt and mud as a race?! Awesome.

Just one of the many photos I took at the Redneck Mudshuffle. I’ll probably post a video of it another day.

We ended the night with sparklers and a spectacular fireworks show. Walking back while eating some delicious gas station food, I could have sworn we got snowed on. It could have been a wintery mix, but I’m calling it snow…in July! Can this trip really get any better?

The past few days we’ve been riding along side my friend Kristine’s cross country trip called 4K for Cancer. It was really cool to hang out and talk to another group of young adults doing the same thing as us. We’ve parted our ways in Kremmling and we definitely wish them the best of luck on the rest of their trip.

Today we are in the beautiful resort town of Steamboat Springs, CO. The ride was absolutely gorgeous and we even had a sweet 7 mile 7% grade downhill, of course we had to climb a mountain to get it! Even though it was a freezing cold morning (34 degrees at around 6:30), it was great.

Colorado is so beautiful!

Once we got into the town, just as in usual fashion, we ate. This time we went for a little cheaper alternative and got some McDonalds. I’m not sure if people really comprehend how hungry we are after biking, so I think it’ll be best for me just to show you.

Before

After (and yes I did add 2 apple pies)

This ended up being a nice little snack of 2500+ calories. Yes, we do eat a lot. By the way if you were wondering, that was just for me. Mark also added 2000+ calories of his own.

With a very full stomach, we decided to check out the town where we found a ski lift that was taking people up this mountain. We decided to check it out and to our surprise found this alpine sled track that people were riding down on these roller sled. So with a little bit of luck and lot of charm, we were able to get 2 free tokens for myself and Mark!

Our free tokens!

Mark and I going up the lift.

Ready to roll.

Of course there is a video of the ride down and I will definitely post it up later. Now to figure out something to do tomorrow on our day off. Probably mountain biking or hiking, but we’ll see.