Gearing up for a Colorado Ride

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5 replies [Last post]
Anonymous's picture

"Hey Folks,

I have been riding for a couple of years now and each year, so far, I have set a big goal for myself. First year was the MS150, seccond year was to do a full Century the Escape NY Century was my seccond this year... Great ride by the way!

So this year I found a prety sweet sounding ride out in Colorado:

So I know by now that the distances will not be a problem. A total of 540 miles. Here is the killer part: 50,000 feet of elevation over the whole week. I know there is the issue with high elevation out there. Something that We don't have an issue with here in New York.

I was wondering if some of the more seasoned riders could suggest a workout plan. I know I have to adjust my diet a bit... I am open for many suggestions. Thank you. and Happy New Year to all!"

Anonymous's picture
Sam AA (not verified)

"Thanks for providing the link Rob. This seems an awesome week of riding for little money. I will put it on my calendar. If someone would care to tell us also about the effect of heat. I presume it is very hot down there in July. And what is the best way to transport the bike if you are not driving and you would rather avoid flying?

Anonymous's picture
Bill Vojtech (not verified)

I did a ten day tour in Colorado years ago. We always planned to be off the road by 2:00-3:00– there was always a half hour of rain. The sun would come out after and due to the dry weather, the roads were dry in minutes.

The first day or 2 were tough as far as breathing goes. Three steps up to the cabin we were staying in got us out of breath. Our first day was flat/downhill and under 20 miles. But we aclimated quickly and the passes were ok with low, (at the time 42T front, 34T back), gears.

Snow by the road side in July, at higher elevations. But we were in shorts and comfortable.

Anonymous's picture
Jay (not verified)
Storm King, Mohonk & Skyline Dr

3 good climbs not too far from NY -- I had knee surgery before I did Colo (my 50th state of cycling) so I checked out my knee on them before. Make sure you have right clothes which will wick off sweat on a cold day before April--I had a problem with this altho I cycled throughout the winter each year.

I did my Colo tour in the summer and there were extreme temp changes from hour to hour as the elev changed--hail in summer, prepared. We got down to a town and all we wanted was soup--the locals were enjoying ice cream cones!

Also we did Loveland Pass the 2d day & many riders had minor altitude problems--this made it one of the most difficult cycling days of my life. Perhaps if you are going to be at hi alts right off the bat, it might be a good idea to gradually acclimate by arriving a day or two early.

Anonymous's picture
fred steinberg (not verified)
Hi altitude riding

I didn't read the details but I've done several tours in that area and elsewhere out west and advise training in 'Gunks, Catskills, Bear Mountain etc, wherever you can find long climbs of several miles.

But nothing will accommodate you the gagging feelng in you chest when your exertion exceeds you aerobic capacity, whether it is at 5000', 7000' or 10000'+ plus.

So increase your aerobic capacity and gear your bike as low possible so you can reduce the load on you lungs.

Learn to drink slowly: one gulp, swallow, breathe, repeat or you'll gag.

In the Rockies you can count on T-storms after 2pm.

I've been sleeted upon atop Loveland and Trail Ridge in July (12000'), where you'll most likely ride.

Invest in a serious jacket/rain shell, gloves, etc and have it with you so you can stay dry immediately. You do not want to get wet up there. The sag will always be somewhere else when you are wet and cold.

This applies anywhere, anytime you are over 5000'. Last Wednesday the 'Christmas Ride' 60mi out of San Diego (CA) was hammered by hail, sleet, rain and snow between 4000-5500'. Only our sag vehicles and the kindness of motorists plus the high level of preparedness and experience of the riders made it an adventure rather than a disaster. The prior and next days provided ideal weather. You never know.

Good luck.


Anonymous's picture
Rob Maynard (not verified)

I am indeed planning on flying out there a couple of days prior to the start of the ride. I am a OnePass member of Continental so I'll be able to load my bike in a case for no additional cost. Good advice about the rain gear thanks. I live here in Orange County so I am familiar with 17A From Warwick over to Bear Mountain, Skyline Drive in Ringwood and DeKay Rd also in Warwick. I guess now's the time I have to reaquaint myself with them... on my bike... Which I am glad to announce will be getting some new wheels as of Thursday: Mavic Ksyrium SL. No more paired spoke rims for me!!!!!

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