Aspen-Redstone, CO: How many burritos can you eat in one day? - Colorado Independence - CycleBlaze

July 1, 2014

Aspen-Redstone, CO: How many burritos can you eat in one day?

We agreed to leave late this morning because it was an easy day. Our internal alarm clocks must be set, because we were awake earlier than planned. We had agreed to leave at 8 AM, but left some early. Oren, Ken, Bill, and I all followed Jacinto's directions down to the bike path. We had easy cruising through town. It didnt seem as if we were riding through town as we were riding along the creek.

There had been some discussion about riding up the honking hill to McClain Flats Road to see the good view, or to stay down low on the dirt Rio Grande Trail by the river. Bill had made noises about taking the high road. When we got to the intersection, suddenly he was fine with riding on dirt. The dirt piece is well packed. I can do it just fine on my 28cm tires.

When we got past the dirt section, Oren stopped his bike and turned to me incredulously and asked why had I taken Spoon's group up to the high road when this one was so beautiful? I was left temporarily speechless by his firm opinion. I sputtered out a reply and we continued on. I hadn't been to Aspen to spend the night since the St. Moritz raised their prices way up. It had been ~18 months. In that time the Rio Grande Trail had been continued on and paved on the section that runs by Woody Creek Tavern. It's nice and wide. Now it isn't necessary to get on the county road at all. I wonder if that cut down on Woody's business?

There were several spots we probably should have stopped for photo breaks, but it's really hard to stop when you're riding ~18-20 mph while hardly pedaling. It was fairly cool through the first shady section, but now we were out in the trees, the guys stopped to take a layer off.

They were planning to stop at the grocery for breakfast items for the morning. I wanted to go to Dos Gringos for a burrito. As we got closer to town, they got hungry and decided to join me. We've been in some real touristy towns the last few days and they charge tourist prices. Breakfast burritos were $5.95. We all had one and then decided on a second burrito to carry for lunch in expensive Redstone. More discussion and it was decided that burritos were good for breakfast also, no need for the grocery store.

We back tracked to Snowmass Road, which runs past the high school. It's a lower traffic way to hook up to the bike path heading to Redstone. The path is only 5 miles, but it is great while it lasts. I only made one very small navigation error getting us to the path.

I warned the guys that I'd eaten an entire burrito and now we were heading uphill, I would be moseying along, go right ahead. They didn't get much ahead of me, but I didn't feel pressured to keep up. It seemed we had the smallest of tailwinds, which was appreciated.

The closer we got to Redstone, the more of an upward slant the road took and the slower I cycled. I also got warmer. Huh. I haven't been too warm the past two weeks. It has been nice to ride in cool temperatures.

I took the first turn into Redstone and cycled down the pleasantly shaded Redstone Blvd. The guys were at the Crystal Manor Motel - the sign on the door said check in at 3 PM. It was only 1:30 PM. We decided to retire to the city park to eat our second burrito in 16 miles. Is that a record?

Oren announced he'd been having serious shifting issues with his bike, he thought it was cable related. Since we had a stiff pass tomorrow, he'd like his shifting to work. When would Jacinto be here with the truck to take the bike back to Carbondale? Cell phones don't work in Redstone, I had to use the office phone. I got ice, but forgot to ask about wifi. Of course, then the office closed for the rest of the afternoon. The sign on the door said "Back in a few minutes." Ha.

While we were at the park, everyone had an ice cream. There was much amusement over Bill and Ken buying the same size of ice cream, but Ken's ice cream and a pop was $5. while Bill paid $5. just for the ice cream. They all agreed it was very good ice cream.

Jacinto showed up just as we were getting in the rooms after lunch. He and Oren took off. Jacinto and I decided to have Chinese take out from Carbondale rather than going to the only dinner choice, $$$ Redstone Inn. It seemed they were back in no time. Oren announced that both of the bike shops were too busy to fix his bike, they'd have to go to Montrose or Gunnison. I was just getting very confused over that when he admitted he was just joking, that the mechanic had adjusted both derailuers for $10. Oren was very happy with the service and gave him a nice tip.

Ken locked himself out of the room and Bill was suspiciously quick using a credit card to get him back in. I asked where he learned that skill, but no straight answer was forthcoming. Hmmm. Bill did volunteer he had also studied safe cracking.

They picked up Chinese for us and Oren and zipped back to Redstone. I don't know where Bill and Ken are eating. We ate our dinner already, but left it outside on the picnic table. When Jacinto went to gather it up, a magpie had eaten through the box and flew off with a chunk of meat. I'll bet the bird was sad Jacinto came out so quickly.

We went over routing for tomorrow. We are doing country roads between Paonia and Crawford, I don't want to get lost. It shouldn't be too hard. We've cycled that road several times the other direction, the country should be familiar. I warned the guys that the lodging in Crawford is very basic. It's one of those towns were we just have to be happy to have a bed.

We'll have two hard cycling days in a row. Tomorrow over McClure Pass and then uphill to Crawford. The next day we go over Hwy 92 on the back side of the Black Canyon. That's the road where Spoon almost gave the bear a ride on his handlebars last year. Then we'll get a rest day. Whew. It will feel good, I'm sure. Although I do think our legs are really tough from all of this riding up and down passes.

For some reason I can't get the photos from the phone to the computer. I'll try one more time, but we might have to wait until tomorrow.

Four cyclists ready to leave town. One cold guy with a coat and a coffee.
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At the Rio Grande Trail bridge in Basalt. Isn't it cool looking?
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Oren enjoys a burrito at Harpo's favorite burrito place. Dos Gringos in Carbondale.
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Mt Sopris backdrop. On the way to Redstone.
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This is the last time I saw Oren on the leg to Redstone. The next time I saw him, Oren had a big ice cream.
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Today's ride: 46 miles (74 km)
Total: 135 miles (217 km)

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