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Bike Ride up Left Hand Canyon

May 10, 2010

We had such a busy & fun first weekend in Boulder!  First of all, it snowed in the middle of the night Thursday…I was shocked to see an inch or so of fluffy snow covering everything on Friday morning.  Weird.  It was in the 40s when we woke up and the snow was totally gone by 11am.  The snow was pretty while it lasted, disappeared so quickly, and the weather was so warm later that day that it almost seemed like it never happened. 

snow flower 008

snow flower 007

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On Saturday morning, Jamie and Stephen decided to go on a big bike ride together up Left Hand Canyon.  The starting point was a little farther south of that red arrow (our house), and the finish point was the red star.  Total route was about 28 miles; 16 of those miles were an extreme climb…from 5500 ft all the way up to 9500 ft!  Wow!

left hand canyon route

Here they are, getting ready to leave on the big ride.   They’re all stocked up with Gatorade, peanut butter sandwiches, and Clif Bars.

Boulder Baby Vids & Left Hand Canyon 050

Here is them, taking off on their ride.  I am saying “Look at me! Smile!” Stephen laughs nervously, Jamie ignores me.  He’s probably so unnerved by what he’s about to do that he can’t muster a smile.

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“Look at me! Helllooooo!  Don’t you want to remember this moment?”

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Nope.  Way too nervous.  Can’t even make eye contact.  Obvious sense of impending doom:

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Here is Stephen right before the ascent up the canyon:

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Isaac and I hung out for two hours or so and then drove up to Ward to meet the victorious riders and give them a lift home.   It was COLD up at 9500ft in the mountain town of Ward.  There was still snow on the ground, the buildings were old and rickety looking, and the town seemed almost deserted.  All except for the lone general store, who’s outside bench was packed with bicyclists decked out in spandex, resting & sipping lattes before their ride back down to Boulder.   We joined the cyclists who were hanging out on the bench, and even spotted four pro cyclists (members of the Cervelo Test Team).   Celebrities – Boulder style!

I’m not sure how long we waited, but it was quite awhile.  One guy asked me “So, are you just up here enjoying the view…or what?”  I said I was the sag wagon for my husband & his brother, and that this canyon ride was their first in a year so I hoped they were going to make it.  He was like “Yeah…you’ve been here awhile, eh?”  Ha!  Anyways, Jamie and Stephen did make it to the top.  Very impressive!

Here they are loading up on some recovery snacks in Ward’s general store:

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Oh – while I was waiting for them, I was chatting with the store’s owner about Ward’s winter weather.  He said winds up there regularly reach 100 mph, most of the buildings sustain some type of wind damage each year, and the winds can keep up for months at a time which drives people mad.  Sounds like harsh living to me.

Finally, here are Jamie and Stephen posing victoriously in Ward.  You can kind of get a sense for the style of the town by the buildings in the background.  This is what I imagine the Yukon frontier to look like or something…

Boulder Baby Vids & Left Hand Canyon 058

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One Comment leave one →
  1. GrandPapa DEE permalink
    May 11, 2010 4:22 am

    Ward looks similar to some of the old mining towns on the Western slope. You’ll have so much fun exploring. When you go on your first bike ride together as a family, who gets to tote the baby hauler?

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