Meeting day: Villa Grove - Climbing and Cruising in Central Colorado - CycleBlaze

June 20, 2014

Meeting day: Villa Grove

The crew is slowly heading our way. Oren had a two day drive. He is overnighting in Dodge City, KS. The Kansas City crew is leaving in the wee hours and driving hard, as is Tom Swanson of Tucson.

We had much discussion as to the starting point. I find Villa Grove to be a very charming wide spot in the road. For a town of 10 buildings, it has two good restaurants. What's the chances of that? When we stayed there last year Spoon's crew failed to see the enchantment. Perhaps it was because we had stayed in deluxe digs in Del Norte the night before. At any rate, they didn't like the town and didn't want a long day the first day. So - they are actually starting in Poncha Springs, 20 miles and one pass down the road. What they are missing the first day they will have to make up the last day by riding an 80 mile day with a pass at the end of the day.

Tom S. and Oren are both planning to join us for dinner at the Steel Horse Grill before moving on to Poncha. We'll see how Spoon's crew does on the drive, if they make it in time to eat with us or not.

Temperatures look mild, but not too cold for the week. Some chance of rain. It could be mighty fine Colorado riding!

We will see you in a few hours, guys!

PM - We finally took off at 2 PM. Jacinto was watching the World Cup games and I was getting organized. Cathy left town early with the thought she would get to town and ride her bike up Poncha Pass towards Poncha Springs. In the meanwhile, Oren would ride from Poncha Springs toward her. Then they would ride to Villa Grove together. It was all lovely in theory. But then Cathy found out how strong the headwind was and decided she'd rather go over to the Steel Horse Grill and have a snack. In the meanwhile, poor Oren was had driven two days long, hopped out of the car and on to his bike and taken off pedaling like a madman to Villa Grove. He was looking in vain for Cathy, who was happily sipping wine at the restaurant.

We passed Oren, slogging away against the wind, just a mile out of town. We hurried to unload the bikes and check the tires spin freely, etc. That's always a concern. Just as we finished up, Oren popped around the corner. Not five minutes later, Tom Sherman appeared - having made the long drive from Tucson.

They went on over to the restaurant to join Cathy while we got situated. Our meeting time was 6 PM - we were ten minutes late and everyone was there. It had been a couple of years since we'd seen Tom and Ginny Newman - they looked the same except Ginny was much slimmer.

We were disappointed the grill no longer offers BBQ half chicken - but did order and tried one of every IGA beer they had. By the time we finished those - it was all good! Jacinto loaded Oren's bike up and gave him a ride back to the motel in Poncha.

We hadn't heard a word from Spoon's crew after the report that they'd left Cal at the women's prison in Canon City. I'm presuming they made it to town.

Now I need to be sorting through stuff. Ginny is going to stop by in the morning for our gear and I'm supposed to have it ready to go. Cathy and I have agreed to ride together, provided she will poke along with me. We are leaving about 7 AM. Tom Newman is shooting for 8 AM. Jacinto is going for 9 AM.

I'm sure Spoon's crew will be out the door at dawn, although they will have a 22 mile/one pass advantage on us since the are starting in Poncha Springs.

Almost to the top of Independence Pass at 12,095 feet. There's still snow in late June. Brrr!
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We will be back to Twin Lakes in about ten days to check out the free beer offer. I wonder what we have to buy?
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Jacinto is ready to be there. Only another hour to Villa Grove.
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