My good friend and co-worker, Ryan Horkey, are off to Colorado to ride the Colorado Trail. We’ve been planning and preparing for this trip the last six months. Ryan first presented the trip idea last year right before Minnesota saw its first blanket of snow. Since then I’ve been dreaming about riding high above treeline and alpine valleys.
I was able to do a bit of research for this trip when my wife and I took a weeklong vacation in Colorado to ski and hang out with our good friend, and Salsa sponsored rider, Brett Davis. Brett is a good resource for the CT because he’s already ridden it.
While riding the Tour Divide Route together, Brett and I talked a lot about the Colorado Trail. Brett also showed me the places where the Divide Route and CT cross each other. I knew then that someday I needed to come back to ride it. We hope to meet up with Brett at the end of our trip to eat some homemade ice cream. That’s a hint Brett!
As for preparation, Ryan and I feel confident. It sounds like the snow has melted and we are hoping for no forest fires. Our Spearfish bikes are packed to the “gills” (pun intended) and the transition from thoughtful planning to anxious excitement has taken place.
Part of this preparation is riding your bike fully set up so you can know your gear in and out. This hasn’t happened as much as we would have liked because it’s been a terribly wet and soggy spring and early summer here in Minnesota. Riding the local singletrack systems hasn’t really been an option. We’ve found other ways to ride and train, but there is a level of confidence that comes from getting to ride your fully-loaded bike beforehand. Ryan and I have resorted to fully-loaded commutes back and forth to work. Those shakedown rides help you refine your setup so you avoid gear headaches that may otherwise have you stopped for hours on the trail.
I hope you can follow us on our journey using my Spot Tracker. Check out our location at:
We hope to complete 70 – 80 miles a day. Our goal is to set a good pace everyday while still having the time to stop and enjoy the scenery. Wish us well as we hit the trail!
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Sean 'Mailman' Mailen
I was born and raised in the hills of Tennessee. I decided in high school I wanted to design the best bikes and parts possible; I’ve been following my dream ever since. I love about every possible mode of cycling, mountain biking is the most fun, but if I’m on two wheels I’m happy.