When I awoke, there was chill in the air, but it was over 40 so I put the top down and popped over to Starbucks for a flat white to keep me warm on the inside. My first stop was Pike’s Peak. They opened at 7:30 and I timed my arrival so I’d be there soon after it opened. I stopped for a couple of pics on my way in and then ended up about 10 cars back in the line when they opened.
When I got my ticket they told me the construction at the summit was delayed because of weather and everyone was required to park at the Devil’s Playground and ride a shuttle up. I took the altitude sickness warnings so I stopped frequently to get out and take pics on the way up.
When I parked at the top, I was directed over to a parking area and then walked to the bus line. The busses were large school busses. The last time I rode in a school bus was when I was ziplining in Costa Rica and the bus ride was fun but riding an old, battered bus up the side of the mountain was as terrifying as the zip lines. Maybe I have an aversion to school busses?
When we got to the top there was construction everywhere. And mud. Tons of mud. I walked along the viewing platform and got a great selfie with a tiny snowman. There was a huge line for the donuts so I decided to ride back down.
The bus ride down was even more terrifying than the ride up. I had to close my eyes because the chatty driver was just zipping past the sheer drop offs like no big deal! When I got back to my car, I pulled out ahead of everybody else which was good and bad. I didn’t have to worry about them holding me up, but they also weren’t going to set a super slow pace or potentially break my fall!
When I finally made it down the mountain, I popped over to the Garden of the Gods. It wasn’t on my original itinerary, but Marc and Brian suggested that I stop by. They were right, it was glorious! Super crowded but glorious.
I decided to pick up some tacos at Jack in the Box before I started the drive to Steamboat Springs and then have a parking lot picnic somewhere on the way. I routed myself avoiding freeways which took me across the Ute Pass to the start of the Gold Belt Tour Scenic Byway.
After lunch I motored to Breckenridge.
Breckinridge was super crowded. There were mobs of people everywhere just shuffling down the sidewalks. I didn’t linger.My route took me through Silverthorne and it started raining. I had to put up my top because the aerodynamics don’t work on switchbacks but as soon as I crested that mountain it stopped and I put it back down.
I passed Keystone and then it was pretty much a straight shot (up and down mountains!) to Steamboat Springs. I dumped my bags went out for a sandwich and hustled back to my room to join the Tuesday night Twitch streams. Tomorrow is a long day of driving to Wyoming. Can’t wait to see the Tetons!