cycling, backpacking, golite
Frisco, CO

Cycling to Silverthorne

I woke up and ended up cycling to the library in Frisco to use a computer.  I needed to see how to fix my tablet.  In the past few days my phone and tablet broke down, but I managed to fix them after buying some parts on Amazon to reflash a few custom roms.  After several hours of tinkering with roms, radios, and different settings with NoGood we finally got it to work completely well.  My service is actually better now after flashing that radio.  I don’t understand that, but I’m happy.

Anyway, I spoke with Kate and she suggested I go to the GoLite store in Silverthorne to get a GoLite JAM backpack.  I thought the nearest place was in Denver, but after confirming with her and checking Google Maps, sure enough, one was in the Outlets.

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I ended up biking down the Frisco Bike Rec Path headed towards Vail and Copper Mountain instead of veering towards the library.  The breeze felt great since the weather this week yielded warmer temperatures compared to the past few weeks of blistering cold weather and snow.  I ended up following signs to Frisco and stopped at a visitor information center where the woman behind the counter gave me directions to Silverthorne.

Cycling to Silverthorne to Buy a GoLite JAM Backpack

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I followed Route 9 towards 6th Avenue and turned on Dam Road.  Much of the bike path meandered around Dillon Lake.  The scenery, even more beautiful from this side of the lake, depicted shadows of trees in the reflection cast from the sun peeping over the mountain tops.  I stopped to take in the scenery and snapped some pictures.  The best part of the bike ride came when I crossed over the dam.  Nothing but miles of clean, blue water spread throughout the dam with mountains of brown and green blended into the background and snow tops of white touched the clouds.  The temperature began to drop and I continued looking for the store not knowing the exact location since the GPS on my phone did not work.  I rode around for a bit asking for directions until finally someone gave me the correct ones.  I arrived at the store and spoke with Randy who advised me to go with a small frame GoLite JAM backpack.  I really wanted a 50 Liter, but only 35 Liter packs dangled from the store shelves.  A small 50 Liter would be on backorder until December.  I could not wait that long so I took a chance and bought the small GoLite JAM 35 Liter.  He told me if I returned it in 30 days I would get my money back or could exchange it for something else.

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He entered my name in the email list, which entered me into a drawing to win a base layer, puffy, waterproof lightweight jacket and waterproof ski pants all weighing under 3 pounds.  If I win I’m going to ditch my other gear and sell it on eBay.  Then I’ll have some more room in my pack for bread and peanut butter.  Everything else fit though.  A snug fit, but it’s interesting to know that everything I could need to live off can fit in a 35 Liter backpack that cost me $100.00.  This includes all my cold gear.  I stashed everything in there to see how it would hold up in summer conditions at the bottom of the pack.  Now to get down organization for future hitch hiking and train hopping trips.

I ended up talking to this guy for forever and before I realized it the sun started to set and dusk brewed over the mountains.  I left not realizing the temperature dropped about 40 degrees so my hands stuck to my handle bar for over an hour.  The skin changed to white as flakes started to peel off the crevices between my fingers.  I touched my face, my pants, the bike and did not have feeling at all in either hand.  I have broken my growth plate in my shoulder, and torn a tricep, both painful, but nothing nearly as painful as this experience.  Cycling home in the dark, not really knowing the exact direction of home, and barely being able to distinguish street signs due to my horrible vision made this a very interesting trip.  My only worry being frostbite.  Everything else felt warm, but your body takes blood from the least important areas first before reaching your organs.  So it’s very possible I could have gotten frostbite if I never made it home and slept in those conditions with no sleeping bag, snow pants and other warm layers.

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I ended up cycling home and as soon as I walked in the door I kneeled down on the floor crawling between the couches.  I rolled over on my back and sat on my hands for a good 20 minutes.  The blood rushing back to them felt more painful than being outside in the cold.  I began to  get cold sweats and felt like I was going to pass out so I did not stand up for about a half hour.  Everything started to come back after a half hour and within 45 minutes I sat up and finally regained feeling in both hands, joints and fingertips.  Never again will i forget gloves.  The temperature in Colorado changes so drastically, but I guess that would explain the extreme amounts of snow that get dumped here each year.

Anyway, I ended up cycling a total of 26 miles.  We drove over the dam before, but the experience of cycling on a bicycle is far better than a shuttle bus or vehicle.  I appreciated the scenery much more.

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