Bicycling the TransAmerica Trail

Cycling Across the US, Coast to Coast

Bicycling Adventure #3

54 days, 3,783 miles, Jul-Aug 2010

Ray Jardine

2010-08-09Colorado page 25 of 54

Day 25, Colorado

From Kremmling to Breckenridge

I started out at dawn, pedaled through the small town and followed SR 9 to Green Mtn Reservoir in a light rain. The road had no shoulder, and as time went on, the traffic increased. But with the pretty scenery I enjoyed the ride, at least during the breaks in the traffic.

Green Mtn Reservoir

While riding along the thought occurred to me that throughout this trip there have been very few places to stop and get out of the rain or wind. And such a place was not likely this morning. So what did I find, a little further on, but a nice sheltering spruce.

It feels good to get out of the rain for a few minutes under a nice sheltering spruce.

A few miles out of Silverthorne.

The closer I got to Silverthorne the more nice homes I saw. It was such a beautiful place to live, and no doubt the prices of real estate were sky high. About a mile from town I got onto a paved bike path that was fun. What made it fun? It didn't go straight, but had lots of fun curves.

Stopped at a convenience store in Silverthorne.

Once in town I left the bike path for refreshments, then got back on it, crossed under the I-70 freeway, and that is when the real fun began. The rest of the day was pure magic.

The bike path starts with climbing Dillon Dam.

The bike path switch-backed up to the Dillon dam, and I pedaled with lots of other bikers. This part was very beautiful and well worth the price of admission, but it was all free.

I stopped to take a photo of Dillon Reservoir, when a biker pulled along beside and kindly offered to take my photo with my camera.

He introduced himself as Larry, and asked where was I going. My bag on the rear rack was a giveaway, he had pedaled the Northern Tier. I said I needed to find the P.O. in Frisco, six miles further on. "OK," he said, I'll take you there."

Oh man, I wish I had a helmet camera for what came next. "Lightning" Larry was a fast rider, and the bike path was nice and curvy. I had to work to keep up, but man did we have fun! I stayed about two feet behind him, and off to one side.

There were many other people on bikes, some slow, some fast, but everybody kept to traffic right, out of each others way. And the scenery? It was outstanding.

Dillon Marina

Along the straight stretches we talked of life in these parts, and he invited me to stay at his house. But I said that I needed to be moving along. So when we reached the P.O. I thanked him for the "guide service," then he had to leave.

Lightning Larry at the post office.

In many ways, the ride with Larry was one of my favorite parts of the trip so far.

At the P.O. I picked up a small package from Jenny, and then sent a few things back home.

Downtown Frisco, looking west to the Ten Mile Range, one of the few mountain ranges in Colorado I didn't spend a summer teaching wildness classes.

Back on the bike path, this time for the 9 miles to Breckenridge, and this also was a lot of fun.

I stopped for snacks in Breckenridge, and found it crawling with tourists so didn't linger.

So I hit the road, and started up the hill to Hoosier Pass, 11,542 feet, the highest on the entire route. But it did not look good. Black clouds were moiling against the mountains, and I could see the odd bolt of lighting. I was not about to go up there in these conditions.

So a mere two minutes above town I found a nice place to camp. It was 150 feet off the road, and nestled in the lodge-pole trees and perfectly hidden. Never mind the surrounding expensive condos and what have you.

So I set up camp, in a light rain, then fell to sleep in a heavy rain. All was good, except for a startling bolt of lightning that hit the trees close by.

Towards evening, dodging the bursts of rain, I walked two minutes back to the last gas station for something to eat, like a regular tourist..

In all, a very fun day!

Update 2016: The area of my stealth camp has been developed with more condos. Very sad to see such a beautiful natural place bite the dust.

Miles pedaled today: 56

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