With Day 4 behind us, all that sat between our riders and the End-of-Ride Party was 44 miles of riding. In total, those 44 miles featured 1,985 ft. of uphill riding and 4,209 ft. downhill from Idaho Springs to Denver.
Since we planned this year’s End-of-Ride Party to be slightly later than last year’s (4-8pm vs. last year’s 12-4pm), the riders were able to start biking a bit later than normal. They took it easy in the morning and were joined by Mike Snell, making 7 cyclists for the first time the whole ride.
Brunch was at Marion’s of the Rockies, a fun little greasy spoon with great – and, it turns out, accurate – Google reviews. Another change over last year was that we re-mapped this last day’s ride to primarily be along Hwy 40, as it’s the safest option when traversing on two wheels.
This new route took us along a path where bison live, and the riders took heed of the warning to stay back from the fence. The weather was playing tricks with us, and Saturday overall was a cooler day than usual, so jackets were on then off, then on, then off depending on the hills and the difficulty of the path.
As the cyclists crossed over Dinosaur Ridge near Morrison, the hustle and bustle of Denver and its surrounding areas came into view. With those sudden sights of large buildings, traffic, and city life came the bittersweet realization that 2017’s 226-mile journey was coming to a close. With magnificent mountain views and beautiful vistas, the multi-day ride is strenuous but rewarding, and returning to city life meant it was coming to an end for another triumphant year of giving back.
The Bear Creek Trail carried us in, described by Terri as a “fair ride” with its twists and turns meandering along the creek. The temperature finally seemed to make up its mind and got a bit warmer, so the cyclists pulled over at Bear Lake for snakes and rehydration as they stowed jackets for good.
Back in Denver, the riders arrived about 40 minutes early, so they stopped about a mile down the river from the End-of-Ride Party and had a celebratory beer at The Pint Room. Once the event volunteers were ready, they again hopped on their bikes and rode in to a warm greeting by friends, families, and supporters.
Overall, 2017’s ride went off without a hitch. There weren’t any major accidents or tire blow-outs, and the schedule was honed from doing the same route as last year. Stay tuned here for a post about our End-of-Ride Party, which was a blast!