Saturday, August 08, 2009

A Recovery Ride—And Retrospective

The Copper Triangle left both of us a bit trashed. The day after the ride was the worst we both felt after a cycling event in some time—legs of cement and that no energy feeling. There literally wasn’t any strength left in the legs, especially for hiking or climbing. So, we opted for a nice relaxing day of exploring Frisco and Breckenridge. The next day, however, things were back to normal and we both felt surprisingly well. We decided to have a nice leisurely breakfast in Copper Village, let the temps warm up a bit and then go for a ride. The original plan was to drive down to Frisco, take the bike path back to Copper Mountain and then return the way we came. That would give us about 15 miles or so for a nice recovery ride, and our last ride in the high country. Feeling pretty good, we changed plans in Frisco and decided to follow the bike path back over to Breckenridge. We figured this would be a much more scenic ride, as the bike path back to Copper Mountain just follows I-70…As it turns out, we made the better decision.

You couldn’t ask for a better day for a bike ride. The air was cool, the sky was a brilliant blue and dotted with white puffy clouds, and best of all, there was very little if any wind. We parked the car at the Frisco marina on Dillon reservoir and went in search of the bike path over towards Breckenridge. After some meandering about, we finally hooked up with the path. The initial portion of the path that follows along Highway 9 cuts back into the Aspen forest just above and to the west of Hwy 9, and eventually drops you out again paralleling Hwy 9 towards Breckenridge. This is where you get your first view of the vast Breckenridge Ski area. I was struck at just how close to the tree-line you are over on this part of the valley. Focusing back on the path in front of me, I was impressed as to how many people of various cycling flavors you see on this path. It was just plain cool seeing so many people on bikes!

Frisco Bike Path Video

A long straight shot takes you right into the heart of downtown Breckenridge and along the Blue River. It was fun to stop and watch everyone just taking it all in by the shore of the river. Bobbie even got to dip her toes in the frigid water. Hanging around for awhile, we got to talk to the “flower” lady whose job it is to keep all the pots of flowers fresh and nice looking for the tourist—and there are a ton of these flower pots all over Breckenridge. Reluctantly, we left Breckenridge behind and retraced our pedal strokes back to Frisco where we would dine on some yummy New York, Colorado hot dogs.

Colorado is definitely one of my favorite places to visit. The high-country, however, does take bit of getting used to and I recommend about 5 days of acclimation, especially if you are going to do any strenuous activity above 9,000 feet. Maybe next time we can get a little more time off and get here a little earlier for some Copper Triangle preparation.

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