Day 5 (~230 mi- http://goo.gl/maps/f9vQn
With a bright and early wake up by the sun, we were off and on the road (in 38 degree temps) by 8a or so.
A quick stop at the Visitorís Center, looking down into the canyon:
Followed by the Painted Wall (Steepest Cliff Wall in North America, but a bad picture of it):
We then headed down to the river (16% grade road!), back up, and back on the highway to Buena Vista. This route took us over a couple of summits, next to Blue Mountain Res, then over Monarch pass. As expected, the temperature took a turn for the cold next to Blue Mountain, but then warmed up a bit as we headed towards the pass. Monach Pass, for those whom have never ridden it, is a great experience. Freshly re-paved, steep, twisties, two lanes uphill- itís a great treat. Itís a road you get Ďlostí in, and at one point looked down while leaning in a turn to find that while my body and bike were to the left of the right limit line, my head in fact was hanging out over the side of the cliff. That was a bit of a start! Again, no pictures, as both Kris and I were completely lost in the ride. Was better to enjoy then document, I suppose.
A quick stop at the Eddy Line Brewery in Buena Vista for lunch (continuing our Beer tour), then we headed North to Independence Pass into Aspen. We stopped just short and strapped on the Go-Pro again, which ended up in absolutely no hard photos. Iíll spare you the rest (since thereís no photos), but we ended the night at the Aspen Brewery for a pint, then off to our campsite in the Maroon Bells.
It was important to note that at this point in time, Kris began having bike issues. Cold Starts were not happy, and idle sounded rough- as if the bottom end was knocking.