CTR Impressions

Posted by on Jul 30, 2013 in Bike | 4 Comments

My fingers aren’t working very well. My hands are still swollen like a catcher’s mitt. But I wanted to get down a few thoughts about the Colorado Trail Race before they burn away forever. I will have much, much more to write about this grand adventure, but that will have to come with time. For now, this will do.

The race was far more difficult than I ever imagined.

Hike-a-bike has a new meaning. A new, terrible meaning.

The Colorado Rockies are immeasurably big. Utah’s mountains, while dramatic, just do not compare in scale.

Yoohoo is the greatest drink ever made, but I might never consume another one.

I would have quit had it not been for Ty, Cameron, Jeff, and Ian. Especially Ty.

A gas station breakfast sandwich tastes better after 10 hours in a pack than it does “fresh”.

It’s impossible to feel grumpy while surrounded by wildflowers.

Aspen trees have a soul-lifting quality that is tangible and real.

Flowy singletrack is fun, even with loaded bikes, tired legs, and 500 miles already ridden.

Sargent’s Mesa is a cruel, devilish place that I never want to see again. Ever.

I’d return to the San Juan mountains today, if I could.

It is possible to cry, laugh, and curse, at the same time.

I don’t like Ponderosa forests. Too dry, too thick.

I love being above 10,000′.

Gummy bears are magic.

People are good. Especially bartenders in rural Colorado.

A knowing head-nod or glance from a through-hiker is empowering.

After a few days, the smell goes away. Or stops getting noticed. Either way…

Coasting into the Waterton Canyon parking lot was the greatest moment of my (bike) life. By far. Nothing has ever compared to that, and I suspect that nothing ever will.

Will I ride the CTR again? No. Probably not. But never say never.

More to come, eventually.

P.S. Thank you to all of you who sent text messages and Facebook comments, made phone calls, and otherwise sent good vibes my way during the race. It was very motivating knowing that so many of you were watching my blue dot creep across the map. Thank you!


  1. 1speed
    July 30, 2013

    Adam – Congrats on completing such an epic adventure! I’ve been following your blog for a while now and was very curious to see how it would go for you given your earlier trepidations and recognition of what you were facing. I followed your blue dot all week! Well done, and can’t wait to read the full write up!

  2. carey lowery
    July 31, 2013

    Wonderful synopsis. Can’t wait for the big picture.

  3. Ryan Trimble
    July 31, 2013

    Smiles and goosebumps.

  4. walter
    August 2, 2013

    Congrats!! Sounds like you had an epic journey/race. Enjoyed your overview. Can’t wait to hear the full story. Hope you will also be able to go over a some equipment items that worked and those that didn’t work.

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