The kids had a baseball game in Idaho Spring in the late morning, so I brought my mountain bike to ride home after the game. The driving distance is about 20 miles, but that is on paved roads with a couple of good climbs in between the town and home.
I rode up a dirt road officially called Virgina Canyon Rd, but affectionately called ‘Oh My God Road’. I read in a local history book that the nick name comes from 1873 when President Ulysses S Grant said something to that effect while speeding from Central City down Idaho Springs.
The vertical difference is about 2000ft, over five miles, all dirt road. The climb up to the top took 52minutes, and almost all in zone 3, good tempo work. The ride is not too difficult, with a 4-5% grade most of the way. Once I got to the top, I headed into the National Forest West of Central City. I haven’t ridden in this area and was lucky to find some people to point me in the right direction, otherwise I would have ended up in Winter Park.
After getting over to Apex Valley Rd, I had a shorter, but much steeper climb, Hughesville Rd. This has got to be around 10-12%, but only about 2miles.
After 2:30hr I made it home, with almost 5k of climbing and 30miles. It was a fun ride, but would like to incorporate more National Forest Roads next time, and I’ll bring a map.