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Day 55 - Ride Trike Carbondale to Aspen on Rio Grand Trail

Friday, July 15, 2016

Yeah!  We get to ride the Rio Grande Trail to Aspen, Colorado today.  I am excited.  First we unpack the bikes.  We put all the luggage that was in the way into our hosts garage.

We bike to breakfast.  Rosy had told us about a cart in a parking lot in downtown that serves breakfast.




We were maybe 2 miles from home and George already needed the bathroom when we arrived.  There is no bathroom at a kiosk.  So the owner told us a block down was the city building with restrooms.

I was worried that George would get lost.  So after he left, I told the owner we would be right back and I dashed off after him and helped him find the place and get back.

We didn't want the hot peppers and the jalapenos.  Those were the things, I suppose that gave the sandwich flavor.  We were disappointed.  Two sandwiches, two coffees, $20.


The trail crosses Main Street near downtown Carbondale.  It was easy to find and soon we were on the very gradual incline toward the ski town of Aspen, Colorado.


Some guy pulled up along side George and chatted for awhile.  I suppose it was about our trikes.  George can talk about our trikes.

We might have gone 4 miles when there was a detour sign.  "Cougar activity" was the reason.


It put us on a road without a shoulder that was kind of busy at times, but the traffic was moving at about 30 mph.


At one point I saw a trail and I thought maybe we were supposed to be on that.  It was gravel and when we came to an little hill we had to walk our trikes because they couldn't get traction.

We moved forward but I got us back on the road.  I didn't want to miss any detour signs.  The detour was well marked.  We have been on bike detours before that were not marked at all.  So thank you Colorado!

We passed a Waldorf school with no parking signs.  The big P with the circle and line through it.  A couple of the signs in front of the school had something else on them....


The picture doesn't sow the red circle and line, but they were there.  I think the grey part was white paint to cover the P.  What is that... a monster?  Are they saying, "No monsters"?

I told this horse I didn't have any apple cores for him.  Then I saw that it was a vet clinic.  The horse was probably on a restricted diet anyway.


In a field next to a park.. rental bikes.

We used the restrooms in the park.  We rode by some interesting play ground equipment.  You can tell that this area is interested in climbing skills.


The restrooms looked "Alpine".


We stopped on a bridge as a raft was approaching these falls.  I wanted to see it go over.  But they stopped just before the falls.



We were averaging a little over 7 miles per hour.  It was going to be a long climb to Aspen.

I stopped to take a picture and was visited by a fly. 

Right next to the trail were a couple railroad cars that looked like they were living quarters.



I think I remember our friends taking pictures of this rock or a similar egg-shaped rock on their trip to this area last year.


At one point we could hear a lot of voices.  There was a bar and grill just below the trail with lots of bicycles parked outside.  It must be the destination place for bicyclists on the trail.


There were places with lots of milkweed.  The only food for the monarch caterpillar.   I saw only one butterfly on them.




Yeah!  32 miles and we made it to Aspen.

We had parked our bikes right by this life-like statue. 

I handed George the camera.

We discovered several streets made into pedestrian malls.  I was hunting for a coffee shop, not a full restaurant.  We asked at a bike shop.  He steered us to a full-service restaurant with $6 cups of soup.


We found an info kiosk.  She pointed us to Victorias, one block away.


Victoria's is across the street from a huge bike and bus center in downtown Aspen.  Great going, Aspen!



The coffee shop uses coffee bags as pots for flowers.



On our way back to our bikes we passed a Gucci store.  I had to get a picture of these shoes for Connie R., our friend in Waukesha who loves shoes and wears the most uncomfortable looking shoes.  I wince when I see them.  She tells me, "They are comfortable!"



The ride back was fast!  We were going 12 to 20 mph most of the time. 



The average speed on my speedometer didn't change much.  Getting close to 9 mph.


If you ride the Rio Grand Trail, just know there are NO FACILITIES.  Take lots of water and prepare to make do.   I think I might have used someone's driveway as a potty.


I kept asking George if he had to go.  "No," he said.  And there were no accidents...




Back on the trail after the detour, I saw this snake on the trail, digesting a meal.



A little further down on the trail I saw two smaller snakes curled on the trail.  I stopped and got off my trike to go  back and take a picture.



I walked back to the trikes and went to get on my trike and right next to it were two more snakes.


One slithered off before I got the camera ready.


Back in town we stopped at City Market for stuff for supper.  We got sweet potatoes and Cauliflower and salad stuff. 

I pulled out and rode down the street a couple blocks before I checked my rear-view mirror for George.  NOT THERE!


I go back to the parking lot.  NOT THERE!  I ask a woman just entering the store if she had seen him.  Nope!

I don't know what to do. 

I start biking in another direction and there he is on the other side of the street.  He is heading back toward the store and looking around, but he doesn't see me.  I yell for him until he sees me.  I give him directions to follow me on his side of the street until we reach a cross walk where it is safe to cross.

We get home after 64 miles.  Not bad for a 68 year old guy with dementia!  High fives!

Our host is gone for the weekend so I feel comfortable using her kitchen to make our meal.  I put the veggies in a casserole dish and put them in the oven and we take our showers.

Dinner is satisfying and we finish off with fruit-cicles for desert.  Two each! 

It's 8:30 by the time we clean up the kitchen.  Tomorrow we will not bike.  We have groceries for breakfast, I am going to try not to eat out. 

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