Another big number of hours to cover in the saddle today and we had our bikes booked in to drop off to the bike shop to be serviced and a new rear tyre for both bikes and replacement highway pegs for mine and as we were skating around serious rain we didn't waste a lot of time but the ride was AWESOME ... at least until we were heading from Colorado Springs to Denver when the rain finally caught up with us and proceeded to dump large amounts on us and cover the road with what resembled shallow flowing lakes and the road spray like fog above the road in the distance and a steamy shower when we were in it. Not pleasant but got here safely so that was the aim.There's been a tornado watch on Denver all day and will remain on tomorrow and Denver had 2 feet of hail yesterday would you believe and it had to be cleared from roads with snow plows so it could have been a lot worse. Almost impossible for this Aussie to imagine. Yesterday's ride was awesome as well by the way, lots of sweeping corners as today and more tight ones yesterday than today but all beautiful riding.
We headed for Royal Gorge through Canon City then on up to Cripple Creek an historic gold mining town and the gold mining is still going on in the casinos which are all over the town. Even the cafe we had our coffee at was buzzing and clanging. We had hoped to get a look at Pikes Peak but reserved our decision on how much time we had to get the bikes in and what the weather was doing but even if we had plenty of time the weather ruled it out with the mountain wreathed in clouds and worse. From there we headed to Woodland Park and through Manitobu Springs which are obviously the go to places for ski resorts. Very speccie and then somehow coming into Colorado Springs the GPS Gods had the last laugh and we went round in many circles before we were finally heading for Denver and then it was full throttle between rain when the roads were dry but the trip took a good hour longer than anticipated.
The historic bridge at Royal Gorge which is now a heritage centre and no longer used other than as a footbridge.
The ride to Cripple Creek was incredibly beautiful and no traffic to speak of so very enjoyable. Way too many great sights and way too few safe spots to pull off for photos ... probably just as well. This is one of the great vistas we saw taken from Norm's bike.
And a speccie rocky outcrop amongst grassland and forest on the way into Cripple Creek also.
A quirky house in Cripple Creek which Norm liked.
And a street shot typical of the town. Substantial brick buildings climbing up and down very steep hills and the altitude was 2,950m here so the hills were a challenge.
A cute manhole cover outside our cafe stop.
A shot of the historical museum precinct in the town.
And a view from an overlook above on our way out. 3,166m here. As we climbed in altitude it was obvious that spring was slow coming as the leaves had barely started to open out on the deciduous trees.
A view to Pikes Peak, the cloud cover increased and we stayed away.
After dinner we took a couple of photos and the city looked pretty all dressed up in lights above and below.
Bits and Bobs:
Below, two signs on the restroom wall at Royal George, self explanatory.
Just after we got in to the bike shop the skies opened up with big fat rain then thunder and lightening complete with green fizzing flashes in the rider training yard beyond the shop. We were glad it poured rain as we had been covered in some concrete cutting spray on our way off a ramp to the shop so the bikes were covered as were our visors, which made for an interesting trip to the shop!
This won't be coming home with us, just silly.
Last Night's Accommodation:
Forgot the photo sorry.
Courtyard by Marriott Pueblo Downtown, 110W 1st Street / City Center Drive, Pueblo, CO, 81003
Nice hotel and not too much drama or traffic to get through to get here. Thankfully free parking on site so we checked in showered and headed for a catch up and plan for tomorrow then dinner and bed. Free wifi also. Breakfast available and Starbucks Bistro available for meals throughout day.