Mike Hulley of Granby wanted to create a team of riders for this year's Ride the Rockies so he called his friends Alan Findley and Peter Kerswell, both of Granby, to put together a team.
They recruited eight other cyclists from Granby, Denver, and Parker, each of them friends or colleagues. They named their team "The Toads Less Raveled."
Members of the team include: Alan Findley, Granby; Mike Hulley, Granby; Peter Kerswell, Granby; Julie Kerswell, Granby; Bill Aplin, Parker; Dave Aplin, Parker; Kathy Aplin, Parker; Adam Pring, Colorado Springs; Rob Gillespie, Denver; and Ryan Kunisch, Denver.
Riders will be coming into Granby on Wednesday, June 13. To welcome them, a party in Polhamus Park in Granby will include 24 vendors, half of which are food vendors.
The Sky-Hi News will post the daily trip report of The Toads Less Raveled online each day.
The following was compiled from The Toads Less Raveled team blog: www.toadslessraveled.blogspot.com, written by Alan Findley:
Sunday, June 10 - Day 1 (Gunnison to Hotchkiss)
What a wonderful day for riding, except for the 10 to 20 mph head wind we had to buck all 79 miles from Gunnison to Hotchkiss. Despite the windy conditions, the day was beautiful and filled with amazing scenery as we ascended from the Gunnision valley up and over a 3,077 foot climb and then down into Hotchkiss. The number of riders was incredible. In many places we could see mile after mile of multi-colored bike riders snaking their way along the route to Hotchkiss.
The views of the Gunnision River, the gorgeous mountain ranges, the crystal-clear blue skies made it clear to all involved. Although the climbs for the day were not overly difficult, there were times we asked each other if the uphill sections would ever end. Fortunately, they did, and we enjoyed a screaming descent into Hotchkiss. At the end of the day, we burned over 4,000 calories and welcomed the chance to eat large quantities of high-carbohydrate food; after all, that's why we endure all of this.
Despite the unfortunate setback last night for Bill Aplin (his bike was damaged beyond repair after it made contact with a low overhang while attached to the roof rack), we all made it to the starting area by 7 a.m. for a team picture before setting out to Hotchkiss. As the rest of the team was riding to Hotchkiss, Bill and Dave were searching bike shops in Colorado Springs for a replacement bike for Bill. Incredibly, they found a replacement bike exactly like the one that was damaged, and Bill and Dave made it back to Hotchkiss in time for dinner.
Monday's ride takes us from Hotchkiss to Carbondale. The ride will begin with 44 miles of steady elevation gain and then tops out on McClure Pass at 8,8843 feet above sea level.