The Base Camp @ Grand Lake cabin is closed up for the season, which means it is time for Larry and I to embark on excursions to other parts of Colorado. This past Saturday, we headed to the mountains for a little fall biking in Breckenridge. We really enjoy the bike scene there and wish that Grand Lake had something like that to offer, even on a smaller scale. Though the weather was windy and cool, we had an amazing bike ride, completely immersed in the glorious colors of fall.
We parked the Tahoe at the Gold Hill Trailhead. From this parking lot, you can either head south toward Breckenridge, or head north, which leads to Frisco and Copper Mountain, and eventually onto Vail. But the Tenmile Recpath heading to Copper Mountain is not for the faint of heart. The entire path leading in this direction is a gradual incline. And unfortunately, it takes my short legs forever to go a short distance on inclined paths. It is in times like that when an e-bike would be helpful, and I sneer each time they fly past me without any effort whatsoever.
Heading to Copper Mountain, the majority of the bike path runs adjacent to I-70, but most of the time, it is hidden behind the trees. Tenmile Creek flows directly along the same side of the trail; the opposite side of the trail is mostly forested, but some portions have private residences and small communities. There are also a few places to stop along the trail to take in the scenery and have a picnic lunch.
The Aspen leaves were so bright, they resembled golden coins hanging on the tree limbs and scattered along the ground. There were some people fly-fishing in the creek, and lots of people walking their pups. This is also the time of year when Goldie and Aspen had enjoyed walking/hiking the most. They loved feeling the crunchy leaves under their paws and the cool air blowing through their illustrious coats, hinting that white snowflakes would soon paint the ground. Much of my thoughts during the bike ride that day had been focused on them.
At the nine-mile point, we only had a few more miles to reach Copper Mountain, but we decided to turn around and bike in the other direction. The ride back to the Tahoe took half the amount of time since it is almost all downhill. Once we had reached the parking lot, we stopped for a quick snack and then headed south toward Breckenridge along the Blue River Bikeway.
The path in this direction runs adjacent to Colorado Highway 9, but it is not always visible the entire time. On the other side, the Blue River flows peacefully in front of some housing development areas. Biking in this direction is also a gradual incline, so the ride back to the parking area is a breeze. The trail comes to an end in the heart of Breckenridge, although you can continue biking through town.
If we had continued biking to Copper Mountain, our total trek would have been about 30 miles. But because we turned around early, our total miles biked that day was 26.33. While this is not a great distance, it certainly felt like it, considering we gained 2,200 feet in elevation. It is much easier (for me) to bike 30+ miles on flat path versus 26 miles with that degree of elevation. We had finished our bike ride that day just in time, as the winds became very cold and it had started to sprinkle.
After biking, we ate an early dinner at Castaways Cove in Breckenridge. We cannot say enough about how amazing the food was! If you are in the mood for something a little different, then we highly recommend trying it. But get there early because it is a tiny place that fills up quickly.
SOME OF THE GEAR USED: