Monday — never an easy time for the outdoors enthusiast. After a weekend of adventure, returning to the humdrum work-a-day world can make one melancholy. To help ease the transition, every Monday we feature a 90 Second Escape — essentially, a 90-second video or slide show of a place you’d probably rather be: a trail, a park, a greenway, a lake … anywhere as long as it’s not under a fluorescent bulb.
I’m going to Colorado next week to play. I wasn’t planning to play hard: some nice day hikes, a road ride or two. At least that was the plan until I started hearing about my friends’ recent epic adventures in the Centennial State.
My cycling compagno Alan Nechemias went to Colorado two weeks ago and did the 27-mile ride from Idaho Springs, elevation 7,600 feet, to the top of Mt. Evans, elevation 14,130 feet (that’s 6,530 feet of vertical climbing, for the subtraction challenged). Alan is a mountain goat: he’s been doing all the major Southeast mountain centuries — Assault on Mount Mitchell, Six Gaps, Blue Ridge Brutal, Blood, Sweat and Gears, to name a few — for the last 15 years. And while those rides all have 10,000-plus feet of vertical climbing, the ride up Mt. Evans started 916 feet below the highest finish of his Southeast rides (Mount Mitchell, at 6,684 feet). Alan lives in Chapel Hill, elevation 510 feet: to go from 510 feet to 7,600 feet, then climb another 6,530 feet on a bike and only get “a little light-headed at one point” boggles my hypoxic mind.