Lizard Head Pass
Based on studying the elevation map last night, I was convinced today was going to be the hardest ride at 10,220 feet of elevation. But the map deceived me. We were already at 7,000 feet and a 3,000-foot climb over 50 miles actually resulted in a pleasant ascent of only 1-2% for most of the uphill. Best of all, the scenery was magnificent the entire way. Glorious Ponderosa Pine trees, gushing snow-melted river, cow farms, blue sky, and sun. Couldn’t ask for a better ride!
We rode down from Lizard Pass right into Telluride. More stunning beauty, and an old western town with rich history.
(Historical note: After the 1929 Crash, Charles Waggoner, president of the Bank of Telluride, contrived a Robin Hood scheme to save his bank and pay off depositors. He went to NY and borrowed money illegally from five different banks. He returned to Telluride, paid off most of the bank’s debts, and fled town. After being arrested in Wyoming, he said in court, “I’d rather the NY banks lose money than the people of Telluride, most of whom have worked all their lives for the savings that were deposited in my bank.” He was sentenced to 15 years but paroled after 3.)
Like me, Wendy is riding across the country via Adventure Cycling maps, so we have been tracking each other from town to town since we met her and her husband Sam in Nevada. I rode the final mile to the top of Lizard Pass with Wendy today. So fun to share the celebration with them!
Wendy started her own salon 10 years ago and so we interviewed her for the documentary. What she loves about her job is that success is always in her hands. In addition, the salon is a form of art for her. (Here’s a picture of Sam, Justin, and Wendy at the top of Lizard Head Pass.)
- A “Jesus Saves”-wrapped RV (clearly not the road kill…)
- A sign: “America needs a faith lift”
- A field of prairie dogs popping up from the ground (reminded me of the game wack-o-mole)
- My dog Elwood on Skype this morning (along with Rob, Jack, and Carly – the perfect way to start the day!)
- Colorado mountains!
Day 22 miles: 64.28 miles
Total mileage: 1,404.17
Day 22 ascent: 4,229 ft
Total interviews: 38
Road kill count: 151
Destination for Day 23: Montrose, CO