Day 129 – Castle Rock to Rimrock Lake

Today had the potential to be one of the best days of the whole trip… but unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out like that.

This was largely down to bad luck but I didn’t help myself by being even less productive than normal this morning. It was almost 8 o’clock when I finally got going – not exactly ideal for the first day heading over the Rockies.

Actually something a bit odd happened this morning… You know when your alarm goes off and you hit ‘snooze’ and just lie there half asleep (by half asleep, I mean 90% asleep). Well that happened to me this morning; only when I finally came to my senses, I realised I was actually on the phone to someone. It turns out they called me, but either way, the first thing I remember this morning is ‘Hello, can you hear me…?’.

In answer to your question Mrs. mystery caller – I could hear you, but I didn’t have a clue what was going on, so I apologise for hanging up on you.

Once I was out on my bike though, things were looking good. The wind was favourable and the temperature was comfortable. So all was going well until I got a puncture. Then, the tube I replaced it with split right next to the valve for no apparent reason so I had to change that as well. It ended up being about 40 minutes before I was riding again.

For most of the day I was riding on a very gentle but uphill slope so I wasn’t really speeding along. Regardless, I was in good spirits as I approached the foot of a very big climb; until I got a second puncture. Long story short – of my 4 spare inner tubes, one is in the bin and 2 have been rather badly repaired.

The final climb of the day was about 25 kilometres long and had a more-than-noticeable gradient. By this point; it was really stinking hot and I was not in the best of moods.

The further I went though, the better I felt. The mountain gave me a chance to de-stress and some of the views on the way up were absolutely spectacular.

There was a noticeable temperature difference as I headed over 1000m and I must say, it was quite welcome by that point. Apparently there is a heat-wave expected around here in the not too distant future.

After cresting the top, I had a 12km descent to where I’m now staying… Probably one of the best descents I’ve ever done anywhere. It wasn’t the steepest, nor the fastest, but the scenery and the fact that it came after such a long climb meant I finished in a very good mood.

All in all, I’m feeling good now (albeit a bit tired) but I think it’s fair to say I’ve had my share of bad luck today.

Distance: 112.9 miles / 181.7 km
Riding Time: 8:06:36
Av. Speed: 13.9 mph / 22.4 kph
Elevation Gain: +2000m

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