These things always start simply enough…

High Above Telluride, Colorado

Image via Wikipedia

This was certainly no exception. A short email from my friend Dave that said, “We’re going on a little bike ride. Want to come?” In this case, the little ride was a little over 200 miles and five days long. At 11,000 feet. Starting in Telluride, Colorado and heading west toward Moab, Utah. Did I want to go? You bet your ass, I did.

Only one little problem: We leave in 30 days.

The trip is one offered by San Juan Huts and is pretty ingenious. They have modest but stocked huts spaced about 30 miles apart up in the mountains. Starting in Telluride, you climb up into the peaks and start the trek. Each night you stay in one of the cabins, each morning you set out for the next one. Five days later (or seven, if you’re taking the longer trip) you ride out of the mountains tired, recharged, and very likely anxious to do the whole thing again.

All of this sounds absolutely perfect, except that I haven’t been on my bike for a decent ride in months. So can I be ready for this in 30 days? I guess we’ll see, because I’m definitely in. (I have to admit I’m at least a little inspired by my friend John White, who set out to pedal from San Diego to Hilton Head with little more than a few hours in the saddle and the sheer audacity that he could do it. Well, that and an aching sense of mid-life crisis, I think.)

I started riding in earnest a couple of days ago. This morning I went out for a little 20-miler from the house up to the end of the Monon Trail near 171st Street. Going to need to find a way to get a lot more saddle time and some trails rides in pretty quick!

If you’re interested (that is likely only you, Mom and Dad), you can keep track of the training schedule and, if you like, read a little more about the trip.

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