Friday, August 31, 2012

First meeting

I met my first long distance biker yesterday. We met near Climax, CO, at the top of a pass around 11,300 ft. I was taking a break and eating lunch when he came rolling up. Its pretty obvious who is touring and who is just out for the day, given all the gear bags on the bike and the type of clothing. It turns out that Sam had left New Hampshire about 6 weeks ago, and he is also headed west. He was in a bit of a hurry though, since he was trying to spend the night with a friend in Aspen, so he still had quite a few miles left to go. Its just nice to meet other people on similar trips, even if you can only talk to them for five or ten minutes.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

First Week of Biking

I've been on my trip for about a week now. I ended up getting into the bus station in Ft. Collins around 2:30am, and walked about 4 miles towards an REI, where I was planning on buying a Surly Long Haul Trucker. While I was waiting for REI to open I found a bike store just behind the REI, where I stopped in to see what they had. Andy, one of the guys at Re-cycle Cycle, convinced me into getting a Raleigh Road Three Hundred. It isn't quite as nice as the Long Haul Trucker, but it was roughly $800 cheaper, and will still work for me. I spent roughly $450 on the bike, plus another $400 on accessories, including a bike rack and panniers, before heading out.

I spent the first day riding around town getting used to the bike and making sure everything worked, then headed out the next day towards Estes Park. The entire way was uphill, heading into the Rockies from the plains, and it was quite a long ride. The views along the way were worth it though, and when I get a chance I'll be uploading a lot of pictures, most of which are already geotagged.

The next couple of days included a lot of hills, and I'm definitely not used to biking yet. There have been a couple of nice small mountain villages, and most of the drivers along the way have been decent. The only real problem I have had along the way was in Black Hawk, CO where there is a bike ban. They apparently are more than happy to ticket riders, even though the federal law states that places can't ban bikes without providing a nearby alternative route, which they don't have. That case is currently being debated in court, so we'll see how things turn out.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

End of Summer

I haven't had a chance to post much since I have been in the woods for the entire summer, but my job at Philmont is officially over. Dan Beard was much busier than it has been in previous years. We had more than 400 crews come through, so roughly 4000 scouts came through Dan Beard this year. That's a lot of people.

For the fall I am planning on starting a cross country bike trip. I am planning on trying to hit up a lot of National Parks and National Forests along the way, trying to explore a lot of the country while traveling by bike. Right now I have a greyhound ticket up to Ft. Collins, CO where I will buy a bike and take off for quite a while.