Colorado Trail MTB Bike Tour
Day 15 - Day Off - Gunnison
August 4, 2006. We had a quiet day off today. Yesterday's big ride and rough trail conditions wore us out, and both bikes and bodies needed a little recovery time.
After breakfast, we headed out to Gunnison, which is just South of Crested Butte, and about 45 miles of scenic winding road away from our camp at Buffalo Pass. The drive was pleasant, and we did the usual day off chores: laundry, grocery restocking, mexican food and bike parts.
Gunnison is a great little college town, and everywhere we went there was a good vibe to the place. People are friendly, they love the outdoors, and are friendly to cyclists.
There is a great bike shop in town called Tomachi, and they carry lots of high-end bike stuff, with an emphasis on mountain biking over road biking. The greatest thing about it was that all the bike mechanics were female, and they knew their stuff. We believe in equal opportunity wrenching!
The Blue Iguana cafe is a great local mexican food place, and the food really was good. Somehow everything tastes better when you're on some kind of road trip/bike trip/mission, and this was no exception.
When we got back to the camp, Rooney was there. He and Shawn had left with Phil last night to go and pick up their vehicles in Buena Vista, where we'd left them parked in front of the park four days ago. Rooney had to take Bill to the airport in Colorado Springs, then he headed back to join Shawn for a hike up Mt. Elbert, the tallest peak in Colorado, today.
They had a good hike, and, according to Shawn, Rooney was unstoppable going up hill. It didn't seem to matter if he was on a bike or hiking... They had reasonably good weather and made the summit. Rooney had come back to camp to pick up Bill's bike, but we couldn't talk him into staying on for the rest of the trip. Just as we couildn't fathom how fast he was climbing even at altitude, he couldn't fathom how we were riding this whole thing, Denver to Durango.
Phil had gone for a short bike ride, climbing up the final descent we'd come down yesterday. He was back at camp when we got there as well.
The most important thing we had to do back at camp was to get our bikes ready for riding again. The mud was caked on chainstays and seatposts an inch thick, and none of the bikes were going to ride well in that condition. We spent a good couple of hours cleaning, lubing, and re-adjusting the bikes before dinner.
We made an early dinner and were out by 9 p.m., which has become pretty normal these days. It started raining again about then, and kept on doing so for most of the nght.
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