How do you know it's a race weekend in Leadville?
1. It's smells like the Front Range. Can you smell it?
2. The outside temperature is 65 F and people are walking down Harrison Ave in matching Patagonia Down Sweater jackets.
3. Restaurants are crowded with grumpy adult athletes that don't realize they just tripled the population of town for the weekend. 'Where's my fucking no fat latte and vegan muffin, I've been waiting for 2 minutes!'
So, I hide out, don't go to town and ride the opposite direction of any race activities. Low clouds on Saturday morning and the high probability of rain, all but squelched my ride motivation. With enough coffee, 10mg and some reggae beats, it's just a matter of time before it returns. Dressed for the weather, I headed out on a loop that I hadn't ridden from PB before, the Leadville version of the super dirty copper triangle. The ride starts out from town and climbs over Fremont pass before descending to Copper Mtn, where I'd start rolling the CT over Searle Pass, over Kokomo, into Camp Hale, up Tennessee Pass, then HWY 24 back to town. Skinny single-track at high elevation is what does it for me. The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The air that high is as clean as air gets, you can feel that shit. I thrive. There's a transformation from slothy human, to high altitude goatmarmot man.
I was stressed as I crested Fremont. The clouds were getting lower, temps were dropping and imminent rain haunted me. Will I make it over the passes above 12K ft? Will I get struck by lightening if I try? Riding stressed about the unknown can wear you down. But, I'm a dumb human, so I easily forget about logic and sensible decision making in a hurry when needed. The rains came and the rains went. There was snow, mud bogs and hike a bike. It's was ideal and not ideal all at the same time. Character building, that's what they call it, I think. Whatever.
This week I'm going to stick to ZWIFT for some super power intervals, bahahahahahaha.
When the bluebird chirped again, I headed east to ye olde mining district and the circumnavigation of Ball Mountain. That's a solid ride, my gray matter told myself as I scorched down Birdseye Gulch and off the chicken gobbler, to the big gobbler to the yeeaaaahooo landing.
Then I thought, is Mercury in retrograde? Must be.
So tight. Navigating Ball Mtn.
The smooth dirty dirty down Birdseye Gulch.
Sea monsters. I know those two.
Last week's rides- https://www.strava.com/athletes/18864