WARNING! This blog entry contains uncensored human and animal nipples. Continue with your own risk!
We finally reached Denver after avoiding a severe Thunderstorm which meant that Skippy had to ride some gravel roads. She managed just fine!
|Denver welcomed us with a severe thunderstorm which we were able to avoid even though it meant that Skippy needed to ride gravel roads|
|and along beautiful sunflower fields.|
We wanted to meet another ADVrider from Iowa here, but his bike broke down and so it did not happen. The next day we were aiming to join the Gotopless event 2014 in Denver downtown. Unfortunately we did not find any signs of that event, instead the downtown was full of bicycles! USA challenge (???) event filled the entire park.
We walked a bit around, got a free T-Shirt for Skippy and enjoyed free ice cream from SoDelicious :)
|Saving our vegan sausages from Hertta while we went shopping :D|
|Art in Denver downtown, some kind of memorial for Native Americans.|
|USA pro challenge instead of go-topless event, how boring.|
|This stone was in the middle of the Civic Center Park. Many seem to have forgotten the 5th commandment, even the religious people!|
When we returned to the bike, the bike was moved!!! It was standing on the grass on the opposite side of the street and there was a lot of police in the street. They were towing the cars away. I got a ticket and my steering lock was off. When we packed our stuff a policeman came by and told us that we were not supposed to park there. Yeah great, how should we have known that one (I did my US driving license 20 years back and nothing of that was in the test!) We told him that we are from Finland and he obviously read our body language indicating that we have no urge to pay the ticket. He took it back and said “well because you are soon returning to Finland...” Ok we saved that money, but they still broke my steering lock – Thank you Denver Police! Obviously it was a peace of cake to break the lock because the policeman told us that they did not break anything, they “just” moved the bike ;)
|I could have parked my sidecar right away on the green...|
After that I was not anymore in the mood to visit the vegetarian restaurant nearby and instead we went to Whole Foods. Suddenly Skippy found a voucher for a free neck massage. She had such a hard time after her accident and her neck was still pretty stiff. With her neck in deep need for a massage I still needed to push her to get the massage. She had bad experiences with massages. Even better this time the massage helped and she was very happy. Thanks a lot Thomas! Back in the parking lot Skippy asked me when I will go to massage school :D
|Skippy loved that massage!|
And then we were in the Rocky Mountains. First things first and we rode all the way up to Mt. Evans – 4320 meters high, plenty of curves and beautiful landscape. What a delight after spending a few weeks in the plains of Nebraska, South Dakota and Colorado. We both enjoyed the curves despite the 30mph speed limit and the weather was just perfect. Of course in this altitude it is chilly (+5C) and windy. Girls got their shirts on and they seemed fine in the sidecar.
|Red Rocks Amphitheater nearby Denver.|
|Nice and winding roads.|
|Great views ...|
|So thin air up here, we both started to feel dizzy.|
|Been there - done that :)|
|Obviously a famous spot for testing cars - I saw two different sets of cars within our break.|
|Brave little fellow came to get our dropped grapes :D|
|There was something absolute delicious on the street - this deer did not move away for a long long time!|
Skippy did not get what was the point of riding up the mountain and back the same way. After Mount Evans we went north to Estes Park (2300m altitude). Plenty of curves, yet different compared to Europe. It was a highway wide, sometimes even three or four lanes (and that was the small road!) nothing compared to riding in France on much more narrower roads without all the warning signs and speed limit of 90km/h. It was difficult to find an accommodation in Estes Park. Several motels did not allow pets and those which did were expensive. Too expensive for us, the cheapest motel would have been 85USD per night. Well then we went camping at KOA – even that cost 36USD and the pitch area was just sand. The internet was lousy and the lounge closed at 20:00. Skippy got into a bad mood.
|Pathetic and most expensive campsite in the US so far!|
|Shopping at Safeway. Since when is beeswax not from animal???|
|Catch and release is horrible fish torture! Why can't they forbid fishing here all together?!|
|Chad - be happy!|
It was a chilly night (+5C) and we had our breakfast with biking gear on. The sun warmed us up quickly while girls enjoyed their breakfast in the tent. We rode through the Rocky Mountains National Park along Trail Ridge Road (3713m), Milner Pass (3279m), Berthoud Pass (3446m) and Loveland Pass (3650m) before looking for a place to stay at Silverthorne. The sky got pretty dark and on the last kilometers it started raining. No signs of nicer weather and it was motel time. This time we went to the visitors center just moments before they closed. They tried very hard to help, but this was another tourist hot spot with high priced motels. None can do – Skippy needed to sleep properly and get warm.
|STOP HERE - Guess which pass we rode ???|
|Yep - it was Loveland Pass.|
We enjoyed our luxury room as good as we could all the way until check-out time. We took our first load of stuff to the bikes and when we came back to the room to get girls, the door would not open. Skippy went to reception to get the room key re-programmed and no success. We ask the maid and she could not get in either. What was going on? The receptionist called a maintenance guy. In the meantime, the maid let Skippy climb out of a window from the neighbor room and Skippy went via the terrace roof and climbed into our room through our window. What an excitement!
It was pretty chilly and dark clouds covered the sun. When we stopped for fuel the service guy told us that there came snow last night on the Independence Pass and he would not ride there by bike without making sure that it was good to ride. What the heck, we are crazy Finns and used to snow :D
It was the most beautiful weather on the summit and much warmer then in the valley! We enjoyed the curves and scenery and ended our day with some delicious ice-cream :) just before we checked-in to our motel.
|Hertta loved that bed.|
|Nature is great!|
|Beautiful aspen trees close to Aspen.|
|Our track - Denver to Silt 700km|
|Height profile Denver to Silt. First day we climbed 2700m in a few hours - that was heavy.|
|Height profile Saint Joseph - Denver in comparison!|
Skippy found great (copyright-free) music for this travelogue. Enjoy the Rocky mountains with us!