JT's plan (this is where we should have intervened as JT's plans ALWAYS involve getting up at some ungodly hour) was to roll out of SD at 3 a.m. (did you know there is a 3 a.m. where people are awake?) drive to Curt Gowdy so we can ride all day Friday, go to Ft. Collins and ride bikes around to a bunch of the breweries and then do a ride in the Snowy Mtns. west of Laramie on Sunday to return late Sunday night. Sounds rad, lets do it!
I rolled out of NSS Headquarters around 3:10 in the luxurious mini-van ride of John M. The plan was to meet up with the northern Ramblers at Mule Creek Jct. and if we left around the same time, our ETA would be the same, although since Jay was pulling a "camper" for us to stay in (more on this in a minute), we could leave a touch later and still meet up at the right time. John and I got to MCJ and after a couple phone calls, we found they were about 20 minutes out. As we see the crew roll into the rest area, I see that Jay is not pulling a camper at all, but a small house! Seriously, this thing looks like a semi-truck rolling down the highway. No shit, we're gonna be living in luxurious digs for the weekend! I just feel bad for Jay's family as I am sure there is no amount of air-freshener that will clean up the smell in that 5th wheel from having 8+ guys creating a fog bank of pit-stench, sweaty cycling duds, nut-mist and ass-gas.
|NW Gowdy Ride|
|Nick, why is your crank arm off your|
|SE Gowdy Ride|
Saturday's plan was to get up, have a big breakfast, saddle up the troops and roll down to Ft. Collins, in a car of course, get the bikes out and ride from brewery to brewery, taking tours and sampling the finest barley, hops and malt the fair city had to offer. The liver is an evil organ and must be punished!
|Starting the Odell Tour|
|John looks kinda happy...|
|Sampling one of many...|
|Beauty in a barrel!|
|John mesmerized by the|
beauty that is Woodcut...
|John getting all hoppy!|
|John & Ginger Bear having fun.|
|What an AWESOME tour!|
|Jay and the Ice Cream-Stout float.|
|Nick rolling the stone.|
|This is the way I'm doing a bike tour|
|Leaving the Fort and scaring kids|
along the way.
|Snow Mountains Ride|
|The Crew before rolling out.|
We were up early Sunday to hook up with Bobki and Writer to head up into the Snowy Mountains for a more or less downhill run back to a little town called Centennial. I had a bit of uneasiness about this ride as when I've been on a Writer led ride before there was a lot of bushwhacking and general being lost involved. Thankfully there was none of that involved on this day. The day started at over 10,500' on a ripping descent to a little mountain lake called Bear Lake, which at 10,000'ish feet looked super cold. And JT could have told you how cold it was as he stripped down, jumped in, swam out about 30 feet or so, did one of those double breath gasps for air that you do when it is so cold your testicles are crawling up into your lung cavity for warmth, turned around and swam back to shore. When asked, JT said he almost died out there. We continued on our descent when Writer decided to get all rad and wheelie through some scrub when we were looking for the trial and rip his rear derailleur off. Some trialside voodoo was performed and we had Writer back up and running, with a lot less gears, but still running. We continued on to Centennial without getting lost, which was a nice surprise.
|Ginger Twin powers activate!|