Amidst the burning sun, and before the city awakens, cyclist’s arrive for an event with nothing but a smile and a helmet. In June, there will be several more events, with more miles to track, and more hills to climb. The first event in Colorado Bike Month is The Gran Fondo Tri Lakes Ride from Cafe Velo and Pikes Peak Brewing Company. Winners will get a Zorrel Tech Shirt, Specialized 26 oz Purist Water Bottle, Vitamin Cottage Shopping Bag, 2Go Coconut Oil, Bird Dog BBQ lunch, Pikes Peak Brewing Co Beer, hydration from Skratch, nutrition from EnduroBites, Strava Segment prizes (for age group/genders) from SRM, Advanced Sports, and Orbea. The ride is an annual event, one of many, that takes place in Monument, a city just about 20 miles north of Colorado Springs. For some, the ride was 110 miles long. Others opted for the 22 mile loop. Registration for the event began February 9th, but (sorry mountain bikers) this is a road race. The cheapest registration fee is still about $45.00. The courses are filled with rest stops throughout the race. Each stop, typically called a “ride station,” is equipped with food, first aid, water, and bike repair. They are usually run by volunteers or family members of the riders who want to cheer them on and show support. This year, there were volunteers who even helped by removing sand from the course.
It is hard to follow every race because there are so many, but there are a few that seem to stand out. The mountain biking races are equally deserving of praise and support. Receiving lots of attention this year, is the Ascent Cycling Series # 1 race that took place Wednesday at Palmer Park. Anyone can pick up a race form at Sand Creek Sports. The next race is The US Cup, June 26-28th, at the Pulpit Rock course. It is a HORS Category UCI MTB race as well as a USAC AMBC and our CO XO State Championship race. Ascent Cycling also puts on a Women’s Mountain Biking Day. It is a free clinic and ride for ladies.
What’s the next stop? It’s The Roll Bike Art Festival. Part of the festivities include lining up to ride a stationary bike that generates electrical currents. There is enough energy to power a local musician’s concert in an outdoor arena. Guests will be dressed for an evening of culture and wine. The event is sponsored by the Pikes Peak Community Foundation in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The idea of riding a bike to power a guitar can be credited to local bicycle advocate, Allen Beauchamp.
Allen Beauchamp, a cycling specialist, works for a unique company that provides “alternative” transportation. The name of the company is CycleDifferent. They recently partnered with the City of Colorado Springs Parks and Recreation department’s Therapeutic Recreation Program in order to create the Adaptive Cycling Ride. People with injuries and disabilities can benefit because it gives them the opportunity to ride a bicycle.
The ultimate ride for folks who just like being a part of the community is the Annual Starlight Spectacular, held in Garden of the Gods Park. Money raised at this event helps maintain the trails. This ride has been going on for over 10 years. Rated the #1 U.S. park by TripAdvisor, Garden of the Gods has both paved and gravel trails that wind through magnificent red rock formations and offer stunning views of Pikes Peak. There is an off-leash dog area between Rock Ledge Ranch & 30th St. It’s easy, fun, and everyone is welcome.