May 16th, 2015 -Salida, Colorado
Update: 5/14/2015 – Bring warm clothes! Most of the ride is 2000-3000 feet above Salida. Hypothermia is a real risk.
I recommend using Hartsel as the city for checking the weather.
Currently (at 15:00 on 7/14) Saturdays forecast Herring Park is this:
Corporate Sell-Out Edition.
Please make sure to read all rules for this. This is fully unsupported and you will need to be self-sufficient in order to complete this. The rules are located HERE.
No more than 74 people allowed for this event!
This is intended to be NON-COMMERCIAL, Recreational-Use Activities that are held on parts of USFS lands in compliance with USFS Special Use Rules and Regulations.
Double Metric (200K) Gravel Grinder
This isn’t some heavily marketed, corporate sponsored, contrived route on a grid of dirt roads. This is an adventure. This is an experience. This is a big ride. Times will be kept and recorded but is this a race? That is up to you.
What: Early Season, High Elevation Gravel Grinder, Self Supported, 200K (125 mile) loop of high altitude gravel. Starts and finishes in Salida, Colorado.
In a nutshell, 200km of gravel, high altitude, 2 places for re-supply.
Registration page located here: DDF 200k
*****for whatever reason I am not getting some email notifications from wordpress. If you have questions contact me at behnbrian at yahoo (dot) com.*****
Start: Meet a 6:45 AM in SALIDA at Cafe Dawn, rolling at 07:00 AM sharp! Restrooms are available at the Start. **Please consider using the restrooms at the boat ramp as there is only 1 toilet in the mens room at Cafe Dawn, ( I haven’t been in the woman’s room there but I assume it is also 1 toilet)
PARKING: Please park in the Parking lot on the East side of first street, by Subculture Cyclery….or park on the North side of Safeway, between 2nd and 3rd street in the free parking lot. Do not park in the Safeway parking lot and please don’t park at Cafe Dawn or on ‘ G ‘ Street in front of Cafe dawn as there are a limited number of spaces for Customers of Cafe Dawn and we will be occupying a space for..well…a while.
Finish:* Finish location TBD Whenever you arrive back in town please sign out at the Finish.
Lodging : There are a number of hotels in the area. The Simple Lodge and Hostel is 2 blocks from the start. There is free camping with a pit toilet at “Salida East” – two miles east (downstream) of town off of Hwy 50.
Course Description for the DDF 200km loop: Garmin connect version for the 200km DDF
Bike route toaster map and Cue sheet for the 200km DDF
GPS use is highly recommended. Bring a copy of a map/cue sheet with the route on it for when your GPS dies. The bellow description is in no way intended to be a cue sheet and should not be relied on as such. Seriously…you could get lost out there and not have cell phone service and wind up selling driftwood sculptures and artisanal home-made patchoulli out of an abandoned school bus that you now live out of in Guffey. While the route is straight forward things happen, signs change, roads get renamed.
– Start at Cafe Dawn, Neutral Rollout across the bridge to CR 175. Go Right on CR 175 and begin the climb. After a mile this paved road turns to gravel. Around 8 miles take the right turn, (uphill) staying on CR 175. In 2012 the course went to the left and downhill here, this is the new improved course. Aound MM 12 Cross the county line and the top of the climb. Near MM 16 take a left on to Herring Park road, (CR 65).
Go across the buttery smooth double track of Herring Park until you hit a ‘ T ‘ go Right (east) on CR 86. Stay on this until you reach CR 53. PLEASE MAKE SURE TO CLOSE THE GATE HERE. Go North on CR 53 towards Hartsel. You will hit Hwy 9 about a mile before Hartsel, go North on the highway to Hartsel.
In Hartsel there is a gas station, a restaurant and a mercantile. It may be prudent to re-stock water and snacks here as the next services are 35 miles away (at mile 85) in Guffey.
From Hartsel head SouthEast towards Spinney reservoir on CR 59, this road may also be signed CR 92. Just past MM 64 Take a Right on CR 59/thirtynine mile rd. You want to go between the lakes. You will go around the West side of 11 mile reservoir. climb up and over thirtynine mile hill . At the bottom of the hill, go West on CR 102 towards Guffey. In downtown Guffey go to the restaurant formerly know as Rita’s or the bar next to it ifyou’re feeling brave. This is your last chance to purchase food/beverages until the finish. Pro tip -you probably will not have cell phone service in Guffey. From Rita’s Place go down the hill to HWY 9 and turn Right (north). Ride the pavement for about a mile and half. Turn Left (West) on CR 88.
Stay on CR 88 up and over the shoulder of black mountain. After the descent go Right (west) on CR 2. At mile 100 you will see a sign for Salida/Cotopaxi, For what it is worth, the mileage on the sign is incorrect and it is 22 miles to Salida from here Stay straight, on CR 2, head towards Salida. This is different than the 2012 course. Follow CR 2. In about 12 miles things should start to look familiar as you pass the Herring Park turn off. Stay on CR 2 as it becomes Ute trail and eventually turns to CR 175. Rip down the hill back in to town.
It is highly recommended that riders bring lights with them.
This is a big day, at high altitude. Most of this course is through the middle of no where. You may not have cell phone coverage and the roads have little traffic.
FAQs: (under construction)
How long will this take me?
What bike should I ride?
what is the weather going to be like?
Do I need a GPS unit?
Are there options to bail?
What are the food and bevrage optoins on the course?
What are the climbs like?
Is there a Sag Wagon / support / rescue?
How hard is the ride?
- Bring a mountain bike or Cyclocross Bike, (at least 35c tires). If you show up with a road bike and 25c tires, you’re going to have a bad time.
- Prepare for a big day at altitude
- prepare for some of the best views in the state
- Bring a light, and a red flashing tail light, and a back up light source
- Study the map and have a bailout plan. There will not be a SAG vehicle.
- Close all gates!!!
- Put your cell phone in airplane mode/turn it off. Service is spotty and will drain your battery.
- Contact me with any questions (behnbrian at yahoo.com)
- Show up with a road bike.
- Expect any kind of bail out, sag wagon, sweep or any kind of rescue.