2019 Gunny Loopy Loop Shortie Cues

Final Draft of the 2019 Shortie Loopy Loop Cues. All Milages Are Approximate. I would suggest using a GPX track as well as the cues for reference. GPX tracks will be forthcoming,

***Group Start: Downtown Gunnison, IOOF Park. August 31, 4:AM.

Any Route thru Gunny to Airport Rd to CR39 to Gravel Path to Mergilman Pond to CR38/Gold Basin Rd is fine. Grand Depart will have neutral lead out start to CR38.

As road begins to climb look for large dirt parking lot on right @~4 miles. Welcome to Hartman’s Rocks. (Best to preview the trails the route takes so as to make the many turns smoother)

Climb Jacks Trail, starts just past bathroom. Hartmans section is basically going Jacks, Becks, Rocky Ridge, Broken Shovel, BLM3565 to 3550, to Back In, BLM 3575 to Outback, BLM3550 down to Skull By Pass. Cross Beaver Creek on bridge, Aberdeen Access Trail to East Aberdeen/First Option, to BLM3054 to Pole Creek Rd, To Willow Creak Rd3043, to HWY149, to Hwy 50 going east back towards Gunny.

@~mile28.5 turn Left Onto N Beaver Creek RD/726, steep gravel road above trailer home, climb, drop into drainage, turn right on FS726 and climb for a while, like 16 miles!

Stay on main road, climb forever. Top out in one of my favorite spots, Holy Smokes!!! Roll along for bit, road dead ends@~mile45, look for vague FS Trail Little Mill Crk dropping off to the right thru grass into the dark timber. Descend Steeply, super rugged and fun descent. T with Canal Trail, turn left pass beaver pond/erosion. After less than a half a mile look for a trail dropping off to the right. Descends steeply for about a mile to Mill Creek RD3118, take 3118 right, all the way to paved Ohio Creek Rd/CR730 @mile 52, turn left and head north on good paved road. Pavement Ends, Continue straight/North on towards Ohio Pass on RD 730. Look for great little spring on your right,~mile 59.4, after a small downhill, still on the wide gravel road, tucked in a bit, but hard to miss.

Begin the climb up Ohio Pass, @ mile 67.8, just before steep switchback look for dirt road going off to the right/east, Carbon Creek Road. Take Road to Carbon Creek Trail. Take Carbon Creek to Baxter’s Gulch, Climb/Descend to HWY 135, Turn Left, Descend into Crested Butte @~mile 75. Take any route thru CB. You will exit Crested Butte on East Elk Ave, to Town Ranch(wide gravel) and climb Tony’s Trail, then Right/South on Upper Upper, Stay Left on Main Trail/Bridges to Brush Creek Rd, this area can be a bit confusing as there are many trails and not all are signed. Old Upper Upper or Bridges are both fine for getting to Brush, don’t stress (but don’t take whetstone vista).

Take Brush Creek Rd 738, @~mile 83.5, look for trail going straight at switchback, “Death Pass/Trl 409.1a”, take trail, road is fine too, just climbs a bit more. At about 87 miles, turn Right onto Block n Tackle Trail 545, take BNT trail up and over to Cement Crk Trail 612, go Right/South. @mile 94 hit Cement Creek Road at switchback, turn Left/Cross Creek on Bridge and Climb. After less than .5 mile, turn off Road onto wide single track “short cut” to Reno Road. Hit Reno Road, turn Right & Climb to top. @mile~98, hit top, look for Flag Creek Trl422, straight ahead dropping off other side. Descend! Hit intersection in trees, turn Right, drop and cross creek. Now on Bear Creek TRl 415. Climb trail to dead end road, take road back onto Bear Creek Trail 415 part II, descend! @mile 107 hit 3 way intersection. Turn Left/South onto lower Deadmans, descend crossing the creek many times. Hit intersection with Rosebud Trl, turn left and cross gate and creek get onto rough rocky road744.2c, for about a mile.

@T with Spring Crk Road 744, turn Left and climb slightly on wide gravel road. @mile 112, turn Right onto Rocky Brook RD 748, soon climb a bit more steeply. @~mile115, almost to the top of climb, Right onto Dustin Gulch RD746, then Matchless Trl413, .5 mile later. Climb Matchless Trl to DR’s Park Trail @Mile 117.5, turn Left onto Dr’s Trl424. Climb and descend N/E towards Dinner Station/Taylor Park. Cross Taylor River on Bridge. Take Trl 600 along a few campground areas, paralleling the main road on your Left. T into Taylor Rd 742, turn Right/South for about a mile, turn Left onto FS RD 671, can be gated. Climb 671, good road for quite a while, gets steeper, rockier towards the top.

Road 671 ends, steep trail continues towards Timberline trail, Climb, Hike a Bike!!! take Right/South onto Timberline Trl 414, roll along. Look for easy to miss intersection with Texas Ridge Trl 571. Take Texas Ridge Trl, faint at times, but so much fun! Eventually T into Road, go Left onto 755.1C, curves around and drops to Texas Creek Rd 755, turn Right onto 755, take out to Taylor Rd 742, turn Left/South. Take 742 to Taylor Park Trading Post, just off 742. Resupply!

Very Briefly head towards Tin Cup on 55/765, look for RD 752/Union Park RD, right across from Trading Post. Climb, descend into Union Park. Stay on 752 thru Union Park, head towards Gold Creek/752.3b. Climb Gold Creek Trl 427, steep, hike a bike! Top out and descend into Gold Creek. Rowdy Sauce!!! At Campground turn Right/North and begin Fossil Ridge Trl478. Climb and climb, then roll and descend and climb, over and over. Rough, rugged and beautiful. After long rolling descent into McIntyre Gulch, stay Right, then look for Beaver/McIntyre Trl 472, a rolling 4wheeler Trl. T into One Mile RD 586, turn Left and climb. Top out on nice saddle. Descend Lost Canyon Rd743 for just .5 of a mile!!! At unmarked/gated road intersection look for faint trail paralleling road on other side of creek, just past green gate. Old Gunnison Spur of the CT. Descend fun/faint old cow trail. Hit Road, go straight across and follow along on fence line trail. Top out and hop wire gate. @~mile179, Look for Road604.1a just to the right. Descend. At T, turn Right, then immediately left and climb up to ridge. Stay on ridge/Signal Mesa on good BLM road 3108.

@mile~185, look for North Woods Trail to drop off to the right. Take Unmarked but well used trail. Cross road a couple times, stay on trail. @mile~188 merge with double track onto ridge, follow track for about 1.4 miles, after steep descent look for trail dropping off ridge to the Left/South, Rasta Gulch. Descend, T into Contour Trail 3213, go Right, follow, then drop down old road, look for bit of trail dropping to another road, follow road thru fence onto WSCU’s campus. Take any path thru town back to IOOF park. Congrats, you have Loopy Looped!


Shortie Loopy Loop Map

Howdy Y’all.

So this is the route for the Shortie Loop. Fairly Big changes from 2018. This is most likely the route in its entirety, although there may be a few tweaks after I get on the ground and vet a few of the changes. Most of this will be in the final route so it is a good representation of what we will be riding. Get planning!

According to Plotaroute its 192 miles, 28,000′ of climbing and descending! Low point of 7500′, high point of 11,942′.


Biggie Loopy Loop Map

Here’s the route for the Biggie Loop. Its drawn in, rough in spots, still need to do some vetting of couple sections, so this isn’t 100% the course. Damn close though to what we will be riding. Get planning!!!

According to Plotaroute, 313 miles, 45,900′ of climbing and descending! Low point of 7500′, high point of 12,578′!!!


2019 Loopy Loop

Its still on.

IMG_2747 2

Start is gonna be August 31st, 4:AM in the morning, right here in Gunnison, Colorado, USA.

There are a few changes this year for both the Biggie and the Shortie.

Both Loops got bigger and better. All listed mileage’s are Approximate!!! Shortie is about 192-ish miles, lots of climbing. The biggie is 313-ish, lots and lots of climbing. Both start and end in Gunny. Both will be rugged and remote with just enough easier dirt road to keep it moving, very much like last year. Biggie has 5 (or more!) resupply options, roughly at miles; 75, 175, 245, 270. Some big, some small. The Shortie has 2 resupply options at miles: 75, and 147. One big, one small. Lots of single track, lots and lots. Be ready to ride trails, not buff in places, but so damn good.

IMG_2764 2

Racing these loops will be hard. I would guess that the Shortie could be done without sleep in 30+ hours?! But could take 3 days for sure. The biggie is gonna take 2.5 days even at a fast race pace, 3-5 if you are sleeping a good bit or not charging it.

This will be a Self Supported, DIY sort of ride. No outside support, if you know the person or they know you, please do not take support of any kind. Feel free to ride the routes any time you wish, but if you plan on posting a “time”, stay on the route and within the rules. GPX track will be available, but route completion is up to the rider. There is some obscure stuff, but most trails are well documented.

I got all the ideas set, I just need to get out on the ground and make sure it all works and get it GPS’ed. Please forgive my late start with info. In case you don’t know I have a new house, I am getting married at the end of July and I have a 3+ month old! I will get the info out there, but most of it won’t be available till August, again sorry! If there’s any questions feel free to contact me.


Full details are coming, exact start time and location, full GPX tracks, full cues, maybe even track leader sign ups.

The Love of Hard

Life is hard, its a lesson that I’ve been forced to learn over and over again. I can remember as a kid, hoping that I had done the work and now it was time to coast, and enjoy the benefits. Only to get kicked to the floor and have to start working at it again. Feel like that series of thoughts and feelings has repeated itself countless times in my life.

Lately I’ve been thinking and feeling a lot about the difficulty that everyday of life can be. This morning our daughter just turned 6 weeks and my perspective on life has been thrown all around the room. It has been a constant roller coaster of sky high joy, to complete what the fuck have I done to my life, and back to joy. Its a lot like the rest of life, but taken to a whole other level of peak and trough. It makes me realize how simple and selfish my life was before, and how I worked hard, but mostly to benefit myself and my own pursuits.


getting up the hills is never easy, but reward is priceless

Now at 2:AM when my gorgeous little girl is screaming in my arms and nothing I can do will sooth her, I have learned so much more about tolerance, patience and the depths that one can go through for love. It has been a rough learning process to say the least, at times I really do wonder why the hell anyone would choose this life? Yet on one morning not long ago I was up pacing the house, Lillian screaming her tiny lungs out in my arms, the clock was ticking closer and closer to alarm/wake up/go to work time, and I found myself at peace. Amongst all the unconsolable cries, I found myself not wanting to be anywhere else, I found joy in this ass kicking!

It is truly amazing what we humans can accomplish, but nothing we look upon with respect came easy to those who built it, dreamed it, grew it or raised it. That was nothing short of hard work and we admire that yet everyday I see us humans taking the easy road, avoiding the pain of hard work and change. I know, I get it, we all want good without the toil, but more and more I feel like there is no other path to whatever it is we crave, the route to get there is work, perseverance, and patience.


smile thru the tough times and balance hard with some fun!

Its also beyond frustrating to see technology gaining so much ground and yet we use that, not to make the world better for everyone, but to make our own lives easier. Humans are losing so many hard won skills and abilities to machines and automation, because we are lazy and something can do that for us. Makes me wonder, what will we be willing to give up next, our very souls? Work is a four letter word, or it can be and working for “the man” can be awful. I also love free time and recreating. I am not advocating for a life of nothing but work, but to avoid things that are difficult and a lot of work, decimate our individual potential and the combined possibilities as a species. It really is time to stop thinking of everything through our own eyes, but to see our choices with the lense of what is does for the whole planet and each and every soul upon it. Everytime I look at my tiny daughter I am reminded of how important it is that we make this world we live on a priority over our own personal convenience.


they are worth every hard hour





Simple Redemption

img_0866I tend to get obsessed with things. I also get overwhelmed with the enormity of the very things I am obsessed with. Once that was the Tour Divide. I dreamed of those endless roads for 7 years before I gathered enough courage to actually take on the challenge of riding it. I dallied for all that time with the reasons/excuses that; I didn’t have any money, I was hesitant to take that much time off in the spring/summer, and I didn’t want to leave my sweet dog for that long. So I waited, and while I was stuck in stasis over the TD, I raced everything else I could that was easier to pull off. 24’s, 12’s, 100 milers, the Grand Loop, the CTR, AZT300, etc. I wanted the biggie, but I honed my skills doing what I could.


Now I am obsessed with the the ITI, the Iditarod Trail Invitational. The big bad frozen monster way up north. Racing the TD seemed huge and scary, but the ITI seems almost impossible. I know damn well it can be done and by mere mortals, but the costs and preparation make the TD seem like a local fun race in comparison. I’ve done one qualifier, the JP’s 200K, a few years ago. I loved it, hard, beautiful, and full of challenges to learn from. Yet if you think bike racing is expensive, take a look at winter ultra costs! The entry fees are high, the gear is amazingly pricey, and the required travel is kind of huge.


I make my living as a bike mechanic and a cook in a small mountain town. In case you don’t know, that doesn’t bring home much money. In fact the entry fee alone for the ITI is a considerable portion of my yearly income. Every once in a while I say “fuck it, lets do it!”, then I look at the website, see that crazy entry fee and I try like hell to put it out of my mind. I want it, but its just crazy for me to fork out that much of my hard earned wages!


Now life has gotten even crazier, with Rachel and I bringing a child into this world. For this I am so freaking excited that I have not enough bright and happy words to begin to describe! Yet money is a huge stressor for us going forward and the idea of an ITI attempt is simply unreasonable. Yet the dream in still there and over the past few weeks I’ve had a bit too much down time that has allowed me to obsess, unhealthily, about winter racing and the ITI. With all winter races happening and all the social media blasts of friends headed out there with number plates on their loaded up fatties, I almost lost my cool.


Well last night after work, I loaded up my fattie and headed out to Hartman’s Rocks. I rode around, pushed a bit, found a sweet little nook and set up camp. I watched the sky, listened to the light breeze, stared into the fire, and enjoyed my thoughts. I made dinner with melted snow, wrote notes in a journal, and let my mind wander. The peace that came to me was profound and beautiful. Instead of feeling left out and ignored, I felt loved and so privileged to be alive and able to ride from my door to such a quiet and wonderful spot. I let go of all that tension that envy can build up inside of us.


I awoke early in the morning to the tiny ticking of micro snowflakes landing on my sleeping bag. The world around me was a wash of white sky, white snow and dark grey rocks and sage. Then the sunrise miraculously poked through a gap in the clouds on the horizon and set the eastern sky a glow. I melted snow into tea and breakfast, as the colors intensified and set my heart a glow as well. The opaque white of the sky then swallowed the sun as the snowfall increased in volume and intensity. Soon big fat flakes swirled gently through the air as I packed up my gear and cleaned my tiny little camp.



I rode, pushed, struggled, and crashed my way along the trails and roads back towards the frontside. Amazing how different a familiar place can be within the set of winter. I saw no humans for hours, only the tracks of many animals and a few prancing deer. The air was so quiet except for the swirl of snowflakes falling. I bumped into a few friends as I got closer to the parking lot, all of us seemed happy to be free and moving in the winter landscape, even if just for a few hours. I descended to the road and pedaled home on soft tires still reveling in the simple joy of being alive in such a great place.


Not Idleing

Not much happening here lately. Not on purpose, as there is a lot going on and I have had words spinning in my brain to let it out. Unfortunately my 3rd hand laptop died and I’m still figuring what is next. So things are paused for a bit, but there is much to write about and the words are bouncing around, waiting….

Please stay tuned for more soon!


Biggie Loop Cues

Start: Rock N Roll Sports, if doing GD, sign in at start and finish.

  • Go South past Loves on S. 12th St. (Loves is open 24 hours)
  • Turn Right/West onto Rio Grande Ave
  • Just before intersection with Hwy 50 go Left/South between Schmaltz and Motel.
  • Immediately Turn Right onto gravel road. Pass RV Dump, Follow Fenceline/Path.
  • Stay on bike path as it curves around airport fence, to Gold Basin/CR 38, Take 38 as it goes East, Then South.
  • Mile 3.9: Turn into Hartman’s Rocks Recreation Area.
  • Take Trail next to bathroom, climb Jack’s Trail, pass thru cattle guard veer Left.
  • Top Out, Short DH on Dirt Road, veer Left.
  • Climb up “mainstreetRD3525 for just 1/4 of mile or so
  • Turn right/west up becks trail, Top Out/Wiggle Left/Then Right onto Rocky Ridge.
  • Take RR up & over. Veer Left/South at intersection.
  • Climb up Broken shovel trail, Turn Right/W/SW onto dirt road.
  • Take Dirt Road 3570 W/SW to RD3550 to Back In trail to RD3575
  • Turn Left/South onto Outback trail, At End of Trail, Veer Left back onto Rd3550and descend.
  • Stay LEFT/South at intersection of roads. Take another Left onto Skull BypassTrail
  • At end of Skull Bypass, turn Left/South onto old double track, after 1/4 mile look for trail on right
  • Mile 11.5: Cross tiny plank bridge over S. Beaver Creek, take ghosty trail Northalong creek
  • Turn hard Left/SW onto Aberdeen Loop/east side, Climb, Roll, Climb.
  • Mile 17.7: Hit Dirt Road 3585, Turn Right/West. Continue past West Side of Aberdeen, stay on dirt road towards Uncompahgre Peak.
  • Turn Left onto RD3054.
  • Pass Seasonal Spring, at cow trough. Stay Right and curl Northward/DH.
  • Merge with RD3043/CR31 Continue North to Hwy 149
  • Mile 24: Take Hwy 149 N/East to HWY 50, Take 50 east thru river canyon.
  • Turn Left onto Dirt Rd3113 and climb above single trailer home.
  • Descend, turning R/North and climb up Beaver Creek Valley
  • Mile 30: Turn Right onto RD3089/Steers Gulch and Climb out of Valley. Begin LONG Hard Climb!!! Stay Left and on main Rd, Climb and Climb!!!
  • Mile 37.7: Pass Thru Gate/Cattle Guard, RD becomes FSRD 726. Climb, Roll, Climb.
  • Mile 45.25: Top Out!!! Take a break and look around, one of my favorite spots.
  • Turn Right at end of RD, into trees, look for vague trail thru the grass.
  • Descend Little Mill Trail455 steep, gnarly, downed trees, be careful!
  • Mile 47.83: Hit “ditch trail” turn Left/North, follow ditch.
  • Turn Right/North off ditch trail down last of Little Mill/Lowline descend steeply
  • 48.8: Hit RD450/Mill Creek Rd, Turn Right/West, DH. RD becomes RD3118.
  • 52.25 Hit Paved RD730, Turn Left/North, stay Left/NW.  55.6: 730 turns to dirt.
  • 59.6 Pass Spring, great water source, on the right after a short DH.
  • Climb Ohio Pass, 10,056′
  • 68: Top Out, descend towards Kebler Pass, Just before merging, look for trail dropping right into willows, Take Wagon Trail 606, across meadow, thru double track, cross Kebler, continue on Wagon Trail 606.
  • Merge onto Kebler CR12, DH into Crested Butte.
  • 74.5 CB!!! take any way thru CB that works. End up on the Northwest Corner of town headed for the Lower Loop.
  • Take Butte AVE N/W to the edge of CB and onto Peanut Lake Rd, to the Lower Loop.
  • LL to Gunsight Bridge, cross and look for steep short climb to Slate River Rd/FS734
  • Go Left/North Up Slate River Rd.
  • Turn up switchback and climb out of valley on “slate du eze”
  • Continue North/Slightly East past 811, Stay On 734!
  • Descend, gorgeous country.
  • Catch Right onto Schofield Pass Rd. Climb a couple switchbacks, Top Out!
  • Look For famous 401 Trail on the Left/East, Take and Climb!
  • Take 401 to Rustler’s Gulch. Get back on FS317, sometimes a busy little road.
  • Take 317/Gothic Road to Mt Crested Butte.
  • Turn into Mt Village, Pass many Hotels, Condos, Bike Shops, Restaurants. Here is another window for finding food.
  • Stay slightly left/straight, eventually hitting the lower ski slopes/trails. Last Chance for MT CB!
  • Climb “westside”, Look for Right Cutting across ski run.
  • Take Hunter Hill Access Trl
  • Hunter Hill Rd(paved), to Upper Loop. Traverse Upper, after about 1.5 miles, intersect with “tony’s” trail. Crested Butte is just 1 mile west if need be)
  • Continue South along “upper”, rejoin Shorty Loop for a while.
  • Go Left at intersection Taking Upper Upper
  • Take Upper Upper to Whetstone Vista to Left Onto Brush Creek Rd.
  • Climb Brush Creek Rd 738 heading West/NW.
  • Mile 83.5 At Switchback going left, take single track to the Right, Death Pass, after about a mile, merge back onto main rd.
  • RD becomes Brush Creek Trail 400. Climb and climb up steep, sometimes loose and potentially heartbreaking trail, all the way up to 12,300′!
  • 92: Top Out onto Star Pass, holy moly look at where you are!!!
  • Descend steeply off East Side, after only 1/4 mile or so look for intersection going Right/South, Traverse on Crystal Peak Trail 583 to another high point. Descend Steeply for 2.4 miles.
  • Turn Right/South onto Cement Creek Rd 740
  • At Hunter Hill Intersection, leave Cement Creek RD, Cross Creek, take Cement Creek Trail, rolling descent, along open valley.
  • Trail hits Cement Creek RD, Turn Left, Climb Switchbacks. After 3rd switchback, Leave RD, look for bike tracks. Climb/Traverse on Trail back to RD, Turn Right On Reno Divide Rd 759, Climb!
  • 105: Top out, Continue straight, pass thru gate, look for Flag Creek Trail to the East.Descend Flag Creek. At T intersection Turn Right/S, Cross Creek, Climb.
  • Top Out on Bear Trail 415, Turn onto RD, Roll along to continue on Bear Trail 415,Mile 112.5, descend.
  • 114.7: Veer Left/South onto Deadman’s Trail 420. Descend crossing the creek many times.
  • 115.5: Stay Left at intersection with Rosebud, trail becomes rough double track, RD744.2c.
  • Hit Spring Creek Rd744, Turn Left/N/NE up wide gravel road. In about 1/2 a mile look for a road crossing the creek on the right.
  • Drop off main road and cross creek, begin climbing Dr’s Park Rd554. Climb steeply.
  • After about 1/2 mile. Veer Left/E/SE at intersection, RD550. Continue to climb steep narrow jeep road. Pass Cabins. Continue to climb.
  • Road becomes trail 424.1A for 1/4-1/2 mile. Steep ups and downs. Hit Dr Park Trail 424, TURN HARD LEFT. Old Matchless Trail/Gunnison Spur of the CT. Continue in a NE direction, many Ups and Downs, yet descending. Stay Right at all signed intersections, Stay on Trail 424 to Dinner Station/Taylor Park.
  • Take Bridge to Singletrack.
  • Take single track TRL 600? Not Signed, goes between many roads and in betweens. Parallels Taylor Rd/FS742, either route is fine
  • Take Left up FS671. Gate, might be closed to motorized. Climb 671 to trail 414.1A. Nice climb on road, gets steeper, then ends with Hike A Bike!
  • Hit Timberline Trail414, Go South/East
  • Hit Texas Ridge Trail 571, Don’t Miss This Turn! Texas Ridge is so fun!
  • Super remote, non-motorized single track descent!
  • T-bone RD. Go Right onto RD755.1D to Texas Creek RD 755. Follow Main Rd, Climb out of drainage to the north, slowly curl south.
  • Get onto Taylor River Rd, Pavement, RD742. Just for a bit.
  • At intersection with lots of cabins/Taylor Park Trading Post, possible resupply! Turn Left on 55/765, heading East, then SE, then South, all towards Tincup.
  •  Long gradual dirt road climb
  • Turn Left/East, RD267, Pass Thru TinCup, Cafe? Pie?
  • Continue towards Tin Cup Pass on RD267. Gets rough and gnarly.
  • Descend off South side. Look For Trail1439, CTD, Tunnel Lakes.
  • Climb Trail, Roll along above treeline for miles. Top Out over Alpine Tunnel, descend narrow steep trail back to RR Tracks. Take Alpine tunnel RD 839 S/SE
  • At switchback, Turn Left/Climb up rougher road, yes it is true, suck it up.
  • Climb Tomichi Pass rd 888. Closed or not, push over it.
  • Descend a tiny bit, look for Trail481 on Right! DO NOT MISS! Canyon Creek is Magic!
  • Descend, all kinds of crazy.
  • After long descent look for trail going Right/West as the main trail goes slightly east.
  • Waunita Trail497, steep climb and a sweet downhill. Hot Spring/B&B off course and to the West.
  • Look for RD769 going hard Right/North, Take Rd and Climb.
  • Stay on 769 to 767. Stay Left as you drop into valley. Descend into the tiny town of Pitkin. General Store?Hamburgers?
  • Stay on main drag thru town. Pavement.
  • Descend towards Ohio City. Turn Right/North at Ohio City(tiny little town) on to Gold Creek Rd771, climb!
  • Pass houses..cabins…..campground and Look For Trail478 Fossil Ridge headed North/Left.
  • Climb rough, loose, steep trail.
  • At intersection stay Left/SW on Fossil Ridge Trail478
  • Fossil is stupid hard, but honestly my favorite trail around. So Hard, So Humbling, So challenging, and Right There next town….
  • Take Fossil traversing west. Drop In!
  • At Vague 4 way intersection stay straight/North/NW onto 4 wheeler trail Beaver/McIntyre 472, Roll along.
  • Hit One Mile RD586, turn Left/West and Climb! Almost there….
  • Top Out, Rejoin the Shorty Loop Brothers and Sisters.
  • 138.2: Top Out, hit Lost Canyon Rd743. Descend to the West. After 1/2 Mile look for RD to the Left with Green Gate!!!!! Pass Around gate and turn downstream, look for ghosty trail following creek on other side.
  • 138.7: Descend old CT Spur Trail. Vague, but still there.
  • Cross Road continue on fence line trail with no motorized sign. Hit high point, cross fence, turn right and then left onto RD604.1a. Descend. Look for CT spur Signs.
  • 141.5: Veer Left, climb to gain ridge. Now on top looking across Signal Mesa and the last 11 miles or so to get to Gunny. From here stay on ridge, rolling along trending towards the Right/West. Staying on RD3108. Pass thru many gates, some may be open.
  • Pass CT Spur Sign, Turn Right and cross another gate. Look for Right onto unmarked single track, look for bike tracks! Begin rolling, twisting descent on “first woods” trail.
  • Hit Saddle with road, continue Left/NW on more trail, “shoelace” after another 1/2 mile cross road, continue on more twisty tight single track. Curl to the Right and back onto the main double track. Roll along “Ridge” double track, looking over the Gunnison River valley to the west. Descend.
  • 149.5: At saddle look for unsigned trail dropping to the left, “rasta gulch” is super fun, descend. At Intersection at Bottom, Veer Right. Take Contour Trail 3213 Right/West.
  • After roll over, stay left, climb slight rise, stay left again on CT Spur. Descend old doubletrack. Look for trail descending off to the left. Hit Road, either take gravel path down and under Hwy, or exit to Campus thru gate in fence due West.
  • 153: Gunny. Take any way you wish back to Rock N Roll, sign in with your time. Go get a cold one and some rest. Nice work!
  • Going Big

    For me it started with spending lots of time on my feet. Once I got over the fear of the unknown, I became entranced by it. Getting around the next corner or over the next hill became more important than feelings of hunger, fear, or exhaustion. Fulfilling one goal after another, an almost endlessly satisfying march over the next horizon. Seeing new and old places, all filled with surprises.


    Big days became something I craved, I needed these ass kickers every so often to remind me how small, we and all of our problems can be. When I started riding bikes again, it immediately spilled over and took on a life of its own. For on the bike I felt a bit more rewarded for the hard work of navigating through these rocky mountains. I still clawed up the trail, but now able to cruise easily for miles at a time, grinning wildly. I simply can not get enough of this combination of focus, adventure, mountains, and the end result of complete depletion.


    Living here in Gunnison, there is an amazing amount of crazy rides one can string together. Its ridiculous and addictive! I’ve been dreaming up trail connections here for 24 years, and still, the unfolding of a map makes me giggle. So much to ride, just have to make the time!


    Yesterday I got the chance to ride with friends in Taylor Park and then rode home via trails, gravel, and pavement. The day was spectacular, barely a cloud to be seen, hot in the sun, cool in the shade. Being the month of June, the day was long, the sunset endless. Being a dry and low snow year we are able to ride way up high, on some amazing trails. Pretty special to be out in these mountains on such a day, grateful to able to spend so much time on my bike.


    Already dreaming of next weekend….


    One dream I haven’t made time for in recent years is putting on my own ride. Based right here in the Gunnison Valley, using some of the routes that I have learned and trained upon for the past couple of decades. Places that crushed me to get to, but have since opened my eyes.


    There is such raw beauty out there in this world. It comes in many forms, sometimes it is just a quiet stand of aspens high on a ridge top in the middle of nowhere after a long, hard climb. It is a wonder that I forget, and quite regularly that life is much the same way, greatness does not just pop into your hands, it must be pursued and earned.


    Un-rideable mud, tangles of down trees, endless climbs to rough, arm wrenching descents and more, and more. Tough, brutal even, but all of it with a backdrop of breathtaking beauty and a core of love. A playground with lessons in self knowledge and soul testing grit around every corner.


    I rode a bit of this on Saturday. My whole body is still sore, I’m not the trail crusher I once was, but I’m still keen to get back out there again. To keep listening to the wind whispering wisdom through the trees. To keep digging deep into myself, finding both strength and weakness. For these lessons don’t stop teaching, so long as we keep listening.


    Be wise, respectful, and humble, but do not be afraid.

    Strong Coffee

    Dark, Hot, and Delicious, thank the universe for the little things. This morning the coffee is doing more than making me wake up, its giving me something to hold on to.

    I woke up this morning sobbing into my pillow and I just can’t seem to stop.

    To be honest I cry pretty easy, I may not show it, but I’m a sucker for the heart string pulling stuff, dog rescue videos, beautiful babies, weddings, sappy moments in movies, etc. I don’t cry much over my own shit, that I tend to turn into anger and bitterness. So why am I crying? I keep asking myself the same. I don’t think its because I feel sorry for myself, although maybe I do. I just can’t stop thinking about how much of my life is based on the physical. Work, Play, Creation, it is all done with my hands.

    For the record I can still do everything with my hand that I ever could, it just comes with a price. I can ride, even still pull off some good hard techy stuff, or ride 145 miles in a day. I can still wrench, cranking out bike after bike, turning turds into functioning machines. But, I hurt. I awake in the middle of the night with my wrist throbbing. I can barely operate a computer mouse with out cringing. I find myself riding with one hand, way too often. I can not do trail work anymore. I can barely write with a pen.

    I can’t stop thinking about all the folks with greater disfunction than me and how they can deal and move on. Makes me feel like a wuss for not being tougher, more resilient, more adaptable. Guess I am still getting there. But this transition, or whatever it is, makes me cry.  I am scared, I am afraid to let go of what I know. It flashes me back to when I was younger and stronger, but still could sense that it wouldn’t last forever, I thought, “well when I can’t do it anymore, I’ll just move on”. Now that I am there I find that I am terrified, more than riding into the darkest unknown, surrounded by reflecting eyes hiding in the bush. Guess that this is just mental, spiritual version of that.

    I want to believe that there is more, more to me than the physical and I am trying to open up to it. Yet it is also hard to imagine doing any of it with out my hand and therefor without pain. Guess that is one of the hands dealt by the harsh side of life and we never, ever seem to be done paying our dues.

    Again, I am looking through the drying tears and seeing the coming sunrise through the open curtains, feeling the hot coffee flow through my bones, the fuzzy nuzzle of dog noses on the backs of my knees. Little things, can be the steps to more powerful things, I keep telling myself, even if I don’t feel it yet. I’m not giving up, that is for sure. I really do want, no need to give more to this world, but god damn it sucks to wake up crying. I’ll just make another press of coffee and keep on trucking.


    Counting Time, Wasting Time

    Been awhile since I sat down to write. A long long while.

    There are times when I want to open up my heart and share whatever it is that is happening in there, good, bad, or ugly. For the past few months it has been such a mess and too much to think about, much less form into words.

    I’m still living, but sometimes it feels like I am more zombie than my old self. The reason is that the next big thing has been missing. Due to injury, then surgery and the prolonged recovery, I have been disconnected from my dreams. Fact is I battle with depression, have most of my life. There were times when I thought I had it beat, done, gone forever. But thats not how it works, it lingers till you are weak and then it grabs you my the throat once again.

    I found ways to deal with the everyday battle, I dreamed big, I went at it hard and that focus kept my head above the grasp of that dirty fighter in the back of my mind. Having that huge, daunting mission ahead of me, did wonders for my brain. I still got beat up and dragged down, but I’d bounce back in a few days or weeks and get back at it.

    Then around 2015 my hand started to really hurt. It really hurt to ride, it was really hard to race. I still stubbornly managed to do a couple more biggies, but it was obvious that time was ticking. I really hoped that surgery would put me back at it, that I could return to the life I knew of planning for the next big ride. But 16 months post op and I’m still aching, unable to ride without pain and definitely unable to ride hard day after day.

    I’d been ignoring the winds of change as much as I could, meanwhile drinking and smoking way, way too much to try and compensate. It has not been a fun experience, I felt like I was rotting from the inside out.

    There have been some very strong slaps to the face recently.  A few friends and friends of friends have left this world by their own hands. I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t had the same thought. Its something that many of us fighting depression have to deal with. Yet, I can remember one of the most powerful moments of my life, riding along the Continental Divide way back in the 2011, TD, outside of South Park City, WY. It was sunset, the sage hills were glowing into seeming infinity one one side, the remaining snow covered mountains alight with an amazing colors on the other. In that moment I felt so wonderfully strong, alive, and in love with what I was, and what I was doing. I think about that moment and I refuse to give up on myself.

    Yet I want to return to that same feeling with the same experience, but I have to wake up and realize that it might just be time to move on. Ultra racing might be a thing in my past, and that has haunted me for the past 2 years and it has made me angry and bitter. That is a waste of time and I am attempting to grow and seek another avenue to explore. I have been waiting for something new to find me, bite me in the ass, and change me. That hasn’t happened, I got to do it myself.

    I am trying to quit drinking and smoking, I am going to read more, write more, create more and spend less time torturing myself with social media. Life is big and it doesn’t just mean big huge miles on a bike, I keep reminding myself that I am capable of so much more. It just requires starting anew and working to get to another place where I feel strong, free, and in love with what I am and what I am doing. I hope we can all find that thing in our lives, it makes living a lot more fun.



    Damn it, I got sick. Nothing crazy just the usual crud. Luckily I’m fairly healthy much of the time. But it comes around and gets most of us from time to time. Thing is I suck at it. I get twitchy and impatient. I get aggravated not ticking things off of my stupid long to do list. For someone who excels at suffering discomfort, it is amazing how crabby and grumpy I get when I’m ill.

    Yet I must say, I always learn something when I’m sick. Like any change in perspective, it makes you see everything a bit different. Especially appreciating the wonder of feeling good! It takes the dumb stressful things and makes them seem silly, why worry about that everyday, if you feel good, why bring it down with worry? With so much suffering out there already, why bring it on yourself?

    I’m great at over thinking, worrying, stressing myself out. So talented I am! Yet after a couple days of being forced to take it easy, when I simply can not do anything on that list, I read, I sleep,(I blow my nose and cough too) but I slow the F down. I swear there’s less teeth grinding, more relaxing thoughts, more possibilities popping up in my head.

    Here and now, I feel more at peace with my life. The judgements of others that I tend to endlessly scrutinize myself with, seem less important, more remote. I feel more in love and in touch with the good things that surround me, my cool job, my supportive friends, the wonderful woman in my life. I am much less agonized inside about missing out on riding and racing. Patience is tangible, not completely elusive.

    Like any separation from normalcy, reality, whatever you want to call this recess from the regular operation procedures, I wonder if the perspective will last. And if so, how long? No matter, the reminder here, I believe, is to keep moving, shaking, dancing about, so that stagnation does not take root. Keep living, keep dreaming, never stop shifting places, so that the perspective is alive, not pigeon holed in one dormant place. I need to keep this going and keep negativity at bay, it has never really helped me no matter how I cling to it.

    Live, Love, Breath. Keep growing no matter what the obstacles. Our own futures and the future of this world depend upon it.


    ups and downs


    FullSizeRender“Out there, on dirt, in the hills, maybe even up in the mountains, a simple ribbon of trail leading me forth. There, in that moment, I am content. Sometimes I am even truly happy.”IMG_5699

    On a fluke, I get out of work early! Have to deal a bunch of crap before finally getting out for a ride. Ends up being only being 1:20 or something, door to door. Ends up feeling like a million bucks. Seriously, a million dollars. The whole ride my legs ache, almost cramping, still I push a gear harder. I stand up and mash the pedals as hard as I can. So Now…Why not throw in that trail too?! Got to be home, showered and out the door by 6…so I hammer, hammer. Trail after trail. Then the road home.

    So simple, and after decades, it is still So amazing what it does for my head, my sense of purpose and place. So freaking powerful, A Simple Bike Ride. FullSizeRender[1]

    I forget as quickly as anyone how great some things are. Try to hang on to the good stuff, don’t push it away or forget them. I get caught up in wondering why I am here, it is okay to wonder, but in the meantime, keep getting out there and doing something good.




    Riding Home


    I participated in the Bikepacker first annual Bikepacking Summit in Golden, Colorado this past weekend. It was great stuff. Lots of super cool presentations that showcased the many, many ways one can explore via the bicycle. Met and chatted with so many cool people, learned so much and in turn, I am inspired by them all. Such a wonderful event.


    From there I spent a couple nights, and a day, with my Mom, in Brighton, Co. We sat with the dogs and cat, drank beer, watched the clouds roll by and the rain drops fall. All the while I prepped my bike and gear for the ride home. I watched the weather constantly, but no matter it didn’t improve, it looked like a wet ride home. My Mom tried to convince me to stay and let Rach come pick me up. As comfy and warm as that sounds, I needed to ride, to travel under my own power.


    So early Tuesday morning I got dropped off at Waterton Canyon, the start of the Colorado Trail and started my ride home. I did the first segment of the CT to the South Platte, where I turned south and followed the canyon towards Deckers. I planned most of the route without knowing exactly what was on the ground, I was hoping to do mostly gravel and dirt roads as my hand hasn’t been up to rugged singletrack. Unfortunetly, this dirt road soon turned to pavement a bit too soon, but was still a lovely bit of country.


    I then climbed back up on dirt towards the Tarryall detour of the CT, then turned south to 24 and eventually Lake George and the Eleven Mile Canyon. This was all new and gorgeous terrain. Huge granite rocks jutting out of the tight twisty river, all while gathering clouds made the sky a swirl of sunshine and darkness. I then took couple of shortcuts that turned out to be dead ends, county roads that didn’t go like they looked to on the map. Despite the waste of energy and time, I didn’t get frustrated and instead laughed and carried on…all the way north to Hartsel.



    There I racked my brain and my eyes to find the Tour Divide route south towards Salida. I had drawn a GPS track, but didn’t get the right one loaded, so by now I was going off of memory and general direction/instinct. I managed to stay on route all the way to Ute Trail where around midnight, I finally found some trees to hide from the rain and get some sleep. Despite a minimal sleep system I got in some quality rest, at least 7 hours of sleep! I stayed in my bag till almost 9 and then packed up in the rainy mist and made my way to Salida.


    After hot coffee, salami and refilling my feed bags I headed out and eventually up Marshall Pass. The riding was kicking my butt, despite mostly good dirt and more pavement than I was planning, my hands were hurting, as well as my left knee. Still I climbed away, knowing that home was getting closer and closer. The clouds stayed low and dark, but the light was amazing. Bright yellows, golds, pinkish peach, red and orange leaves glowed against the dark ominous sky. I stopped so many times to attempt to capture how gorgeous it was out there, my pictures do not come close to reflecting how amazing it truly was!FullSizeRender[2]

    After Marshall Pass I took HWY 50 home. I really wanted to be out a bit longer and spend another night under the stars, between the weather and my aching hands, I needed to get home. It hurt a bit inside to take the short easy way, but things have changed and I have to make smart decisions…damn that sucks! Ended up with about 237 miles, in about 36.5 hours. I wasn’t “racing” and took tons of breaks, lots of pictures and slept 7 hours!FullSizeRender[7]

    I really miss these big rides (and races) and I want so bad to get back to doing them. Fact is my hand hurt the entire ride, even on easy stuff. Sometimes I want to plan for a return to all kinds of endurance shenanigans, but rides like this remind me not yet. I’m still hoping it will get better and better, yet right now I fear that big stuff might be only in the past, cause it hurts that much. Staying positive and looking forward!!!IMG_5574


2018 CTR


There was a part of me that was pretty sure I wasn’t going to race something as hard as the CTR again. Not by choice, but forced to sit out due to my hand’s inability to ride such rough and tumble trail for so long. Still deep inside me I was craving a return to competition, to some serious self guided suffering, and experiencing a ton of amazing places. Realizing that I can’t wait for perfection to present itself, it was time, I was just gonna have to try! So a couple weeks before this years CTR, I threw my hat in the ring and said, “fuck it” lets do this!


There I was July 29th at Waterton Canyon, lined up with a large and rowdy crew of fellow adventure seekers, all of us pointing our front wheels towards Durango. The air was filled with excitement and fear, so many unknowns facing us all as we embarked on the journey. I settled into a nice mellow, yet still painful pace and let race fever take whom it would. I had not trained enough,(more accurately I hadn’t trained at all) to go hard, especially not at the beginning! So I let the excitement pass over me I and I just pedaled along, just below the cramping threshold in my legs.


The day was hot and I continued to pace myself, yet I slowly began to catch up to some folks.  As a result I got to ride with some really cool people the first day, bikepackers are pretty great peeps! After The Stagecoach Stop I saw fewer and fewer folks and really got into my rhythm of pushing the steep hills and riding long into the night. Turns out my tried and trued methods still work, as I pushed and rode consistently day after day slowly crawling south.


There was nothing easy about this ride. I was hurting, legs almost cramping with harder efforts, knees swelling, feet sore from so much walking, my butt raw from lack of training miles. Yet I was happy, so stoked to be out there once more, doing the thing I love so much and thought I might not ever do again. It was liberating and enlightening. I felt like I was in the race, but somehow removed from it by being so relaxed. Still I struggled mentally with the idea that I was counting every minute, hour, and day. I was timing my experience, instead of living in it. Regardless of my thinking process, I just kept moving.


The Colorado Trail is tough and sometimes cruel and brutal, yet it is always captivating and gorgeous. I was reminded over and over again how beautiful these mountains are and how lucky we all are, that such a trail exists. I felt especially lucky to know this trail so well and to have it right here, running thru my back yard. I can close my eyes and see any section, the roots, rocks, the flowers and ridges, sunrises, sunsets. It is all in my blood, pumping through my heart and soul.


Long story short, I kept up my slow and steady pace all the way through. I rode more trail in places than ever before, I also walked and walked and walked. My mind was always on, always thinking, questioning. I had so many powerful moments out there that I am still trying to process and catalogue. It is impossible to walk or ride the CT and not be changed. I for one, am done timing myself on the CT. I am not looking for another record, or another time stamp, or to even think of this trail as a “course” anymore.  I have come to the conclusion that I need to adventure, but not race. After thinking I was never going to race again, it felt so good to persevere and traverse that wild bit of trail. With 8 CTR finishes, I am ready to chill out and take it slower and it feels so damn good to be here!