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GDMBR Chapter 5

Salida, CO, to Dillon, CO


Hejdå, Salida

After partying in Salida, it took a little longer than usual to wake up the next morning, but by 10:00a I was back on the trail... only to realize a couple uphill miles later that I left my phone at camp.


Feeling sorry for me, Omar offered to shuttle me back to where I had turned around. On the way up, we passed the three Belgiums I had originally met in Platoro! I really thought they were ahead of me.


I yelled at them from the car window and said I'd see them again soon. One of them yelled back they'd heard more about me... I'm guessing they stayed at the hostel in Salida that David runs.


Omar dropped me off and I slipped into a really fun groove of cycling, listening and singing along to music in my earbuds with a little bit of a tail/crosswind.


An unexpected shuttle

About 16 miles in, I heard a car come up from behind and slow way down -it was Omar! Apparently the group decided against one more ride before heading home, so he decided to come find me again.


He ended up shuttling me a few more miles and it was fun talking and listening to Bad Bunny's latest album as he translated and explained the songs to me.


Robert's Cabin

We got to the base of Boreas Pass Road where a USFS cabin was marked on my map as a place to stay. However, most of the windows were boarded up and the front door was deadbolted shut.


It was cold and windy with flurries blowing in from higher up the mountain. About to hop on my bike for a campsite a couple miles up, he decided to check the windows. And wouldn't ya know it; the front window wasn't bolted!



We crawled inside the rugged mid-19th century log cabin, started a fire in the wood-burning stove and made some of my freeze-dried meals for a late lunch.


After Omar left, I collected more wood and used the cabin axe to split the larger logs.


I fully expected the Belgiums to show up, as it seemed like a logical next stopping point. I even tidied the place up and kept the fireplace going until well after dark, but alas they never arrived.


That night I kept waking to the sound of mice, that scurried along the perimeter of the room chewing through God-knows-what. It vaguely sounded like footsteps on gravel and I kept thinking someone was outside messing with my bike.


Logically, I knew there was absolutely zero chance someone was up there in the middle of the night looking to steal my bike, but my lizard brain thought otherwise.


I'm so glad I was able to stay in the warm cabin that night; it was so cold that all the water I left outside on my bike was frozen solid the next morning.

Boreas Pass

The next day was another quick 32 miles up over Boreas Pass to Breckenridge, then skirting Dillon Reservoir to the town of Dillon.



The climb up was clear of snow, although the ground was quite wet and felt like riding through playdough.


Once I made it to the top, the sky turned dark, it started to snow and the wind picked up.



A snowy, muddy slip-n-slide

As soon as I turned the first corner on the descent into Breckenridge, I hit snow.



I tried riding through it but kept wiping out, so I ended up walking my bike maybe half a mile. My shoes kept developing these thick snow clumps under the balls of my feet that I had to keep knocking off.



As I descended in elevation, the snow turned to mud. I climbed back on my bike and had a ball going down. I got SO muddy and although I had a lot of close calls, never fell.


...I may or may not have intentionally aimed for some big mud puddles...


It was so cold though. My feet were wet and my hands were completely numb.


Breckenridge

To warm up, I decided to stop downtown for a hot sandwich, macchiato and chocolate chip cookie at The Crown.


While trying to get my bike up the stairs, a man offered to help me.


Low and behold it was Clay Schwarck; a seasoned bike mechanic and the owner of Neighborhood Bike Breckenridge!


We talked bikes for a bit and he suggested I stop by Carvers to have them give Nolie a lookover.


Nolie was all good, but I did take advantage of the bike wash...


A(nother) late spring snowstorm

The whole way down Boreas Pass, I kept getting winter weather advisory alerts on my GPS.


Once I got to a wifi area I checked a more-detailed forecast, and it seems this area is expecting between 4 and 12 inches of snow tonight and into tomorrow.


One of my neighbors is letting me hunker at their condo in Dillon for a couple nights. Here's to hoping we don't get much snow and I'm back on the trail Thursday!


Not gonna lie though, I'm really looking forward to an off day, hitting a good breakfast joint and REI, rethinking my food situation, doing more laundry and taking another shower!


Video dispatches from the trail:






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