A Taste of the Rockies - Canon City - 8/20/2006
 

Just more pretty flowers on the side of the road.

This is our first sighting of mountains.  It's going to be exciting!

Today was our first day of real climbing, since Day 3 and 4 back in New York state.  You always know when you've got a massive uphill because you have 2 lanes (so cars can pass each other) as opposed to just one lane on the opposite side.  It's crazy how I went from 36 mph on a downhill to immediately 6 mph on the following uphill.  Sucks.

Here I am just before going downhill into Canon City, Colorado.

When we coasted downhill into the canyon, we went to the tourist info place.  We asked the woman about the Royal Gorge and also about housing options.  I asked her if there were only these brandname motels and no mom-pop motels.  She said yes.  Then, I noticed 2 mom and pop motels just outside her window.  Then she tried to cover her ass by saying, "oh, I forgot about those."  Then, she admitted that since they didn't belong to the chamber of commerce (pay a fee (grease her ass)), she has no incentive to mention them.  What a bitch.  I felt really cheated that I was going her for help, not for sponsporshipped advertisements.  It's just so wrong.  Tourist info is supposed to help you, not only support those that grease them.  So wrong!  The thing is, when we were on the road, Canon City has 10-20 of these mom-pop motels.  How could she "forget" about seeing 10-20 mom-pop motels?  Bitch.  She just outright lied to me.

Anyway, today was a great day of riding.  We arrived at our destination city by 1:00pm, checked into our motel, had some lunch and was ready to play at 2:30pm.  That's ideally how every day of riding should be.  Here am I am on the road to the Royal Gorge.  Going to the Gorge was 15 miles of pure uphill.  It was awful.  Once we got off the main road and into the turnoff, it was 5 miles of dreadful, curvy uphill.

Once in the park, it was excellent.  The Royal Gorge was created back when when a bunch of water just split up the land, blah blah blah.  Read more about it in the above link.

After a bit, it started lighting and raining.  It was freezing.  By the way, have you noticed how every single afternoon in Colorado, it has rained?  We have.  And all the people around us have, too.  While it was raining, I ducked into a giftshop while Dave ran to our bikes to get some cold weather clothes.  When the rain slowed down, I ran into a trolly (ala San Francisco style).  On the trolly, I somehow had a conversation with the driver.  I asked him if he knew any of the park employees with a truck so I could hitch a ride back to Canon City for the night.  He asked around and asked me to ask around; if I didn't find a ride by 7:00pm, he would give us a ride in the employee bus back down the hill to Canon City.  Done.  This way, we can play more in the park without worrying about leaving the park in time to make it home before dark.

Here we are on the suspension bridge after the rain.  The bridge has every state flag.  I guess since I immediately went towards the Virginia flag, I still consider myself a Virginian over a New Yorker.  I couldn't tell you what the New York flag looked like if it kicked me in the face.  Dave was a little embarrassed that the Washington flag was raggedy.

 

Here's a view of the bridge and the gorge.

Here we are on the bridge with our bikes and the Colorado flag.

Here we are on the bus going home.  It's a shame that all that hard work of climbing up the hill to the Royal Gorge, we didn't get a reward of riding down it.  It's okay because it was really dark by the time we got home.  I'm not a huge fan of riding in the dark.