May 20 - 30: Colorado

5/29 - Kremmling (55 miles 2237.5 total)
last night as patty fainer & i were sitting in our condo living room after 10, the lightning was flashing outside our picture window & the thunder pounding. after a while a short but heavy rain shower splashed against the window. it was really pretty long as we were inside. but this morning it was again a beautiful day...blinding sunshine, blue skies, light breezes, & temps in the low 40's. the boards of the deck were very slippery when the first folks walked out to the trailer, so it must've been colder overnight. sari said that her relatives who live in the breckenridge area told her they couldn't remember a memorial day weekend so beautiful as we've enjoyed. how fortunate we are!
breakfast was at 7. some riders snack on sandwich makings earlier & leave before the official breakfast hour. others aren't as anxious to get going. sari came back from her sister's before 7:30. by then i'd eaten breakfast & made a sandwich; we left breckenridge about 7:45. the 1st 15 miles this morning were on a GORGEOUS black-top bike trail, sometimes running alongside highway 9, sometimes off into the pine forest, later along lake dillon.
in this photo you'll see several riders stopped to take pictures &/or shed some clothes. this was our first view of lake dillon this morning & it was breathtakingly beautiful.
the temps warmed very quickly; later it got downright hot.
karin, sari's sister, followed us along our route again part of today. we're getting very spoiled having her along. she's always been her family's official photographer & now she's becoming this ride's official photographer, too.
here's a picture of karin with her slew of cameras, along with sari on her bike. that's lake dillon in the background. at this point we were just about to ride across the dillon dam.
on the other side of the dam i took a wrong turn; sari & i ended up at the same spot where we'd had our picnic yesterday. karin found us & got us back on route. she accused me of trying to sniff down leftovers from yesterday's picnic.
at about 15 miles into the route--after silverthorne--our bikeway ended & we had to go out on the highway. we followed highway 9 the rest of the day. at first there was a nice shoulder. we wound through an absolutely lovely valley up toward green mountain reservoir.
in this photo you see the reservoir there below the bluff on which we're riding; out to the right you can see our road winding along the bottom edge of the hill.
the drawback of this lovely stretch is that winds are notoriously strong in the vicinity of the reservoir. we were buffeted by gusts, sometimes from the side, sometimes in our faces. we've heard that winds will be worse & worse as we ride further north into wyoming. that's not good news.
shoulders had been getting smaller & smaller as we pedalled north; when we entered grand county they disappeared altogether. with the holiday traffic quite heavy by afternoon & the winds blowing strongly, the disappearing shoulder made our life even trickier.
finally we came up over another hill & kremmling came into view. you'll notice the high cliff with the tiny town strung out along its base.
that's patty fainer riding down the hill to our overnight spot; hey patty, it's best to look forward--not backward--when biking.
i was thrilled to have my sister, jane brown, & her husband dale visit me here at kremmling. they live in downtown denver but also have a place in fraser, about 45 mins from kremmling. jane brought me several little items i need..including 3 mismatched forks. i've lost the 2 forks i started out with; hopefully 3 will last me thru the end of this trip. she also brought BROWNIES---some dark chocolate ones (full of antioxidants!) & some blonde brownies for the riders who don't prefer chocolate. jane also delivered some fudge from deloris tvedte, a friend of mine in iowa city, where jane was visiting last week. we're all going to be well provisioned in the chocolate department for a day or 2. thank you jane & deloris.
today was debby's 50th birthday. we celebrated at the pizza place down the street where we all had supper. the pizza was super-duper! patty the chef made a cheesecake in one of her dutch ovens & lighted a passel of candles on top.
here is the birthday girl (center) with patty the chef (left) & anne (on the right).
debby was able to extinguish that firestorm of candles in the dutch oven with one blow. lin sang a wonderful tribute to debby; gerrie did, too. i think debby enjoyed the celebration & her presents. an extra added attraction was a tyrolean song--complete with yodeling--by sari & her sister karin.
tomorrow we ride 60 miles to walden. we'll leave very early in hopes of avoiding the brunt of the day's midday winds.
Higher quality versions of the pictures from my trip are available here. If you would like copies of the original, full-size photos, or if you would like text-only versions of these daily reports e-mailed to you, feel free to e-mail my son Mark with your request. Stay tuned....

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