Well, upon return, I think this last lil bike ride may have been one of the most immersive and deep pain cave visits i've experienced in long time.. Drove over the pass from t-ride and pulled over near Rico to start.. Nice reverse tailwind for 20 mi or so into Dolores on a lovely Wednesday, reasonably temperate; while staring at an eagle across the Dolores river up in a tree at one point, another eagle dropped in from behind and flew next to me for a bit before perching up in another tree. Upon rounding the corner towards Mancos the wind all of a suddenly got real friendly. With my wide disc-niner rear rack and panniers on the Cooper I was in full sail mode, clickin' the big ring up and over the risers and arriving in durango with time for a shower a nap, some dinner, all before Ben started his party at the abby theatre. Which went well, especially the whompwhomptakincareofbizness part and 5 o'clock in the morning is always a pretty good time to go to bed at benz i guess. Combining timing and preparation for a leisurely sleep deprived take off I settled into 20 degree weather and a ripping headwind for the next 6 hours or so. Luckily i got to start with a nice long climb up 160 out of town. So much for the big ring. Luckily I had totally spaced any tools or the like and had my seat a little too high on the ride there so my knees were good and stretched and sore, no aero bars to hide from the wind, and as always, you don't need to have fun to have fun. Had a piece of cake at the Absolute Bakery in Mancos to make me feel slower. After making the turn up the Dolores canyon hoping that wind would be cooperative ( it wasn't) and the sun went away, I started to wonder just how cold it was gonna get, and where exactly I'd parked. Along came my pal Juju, just back from getting an Alpaca pack raft in Mancos, and he gave me a lift for the last 15 mi or so, which would have been pretty cool in the dark; that was just fine by me, 13o mi of semi loaded riding for a dance party, yeah it's called STOMPN. xoxoxo PainCave!

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