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!