Breckenridge, Hoosier Pass, Frisco

The climbing continued after my conquest of Mount Evans. We changed base camp to Breckenridge, where we will spend the majority of the rest of our stay. It has been an eventful few days, with a baseball game at Coor’s Field, a little birthday party, riding a gondola, taking a hike, and visiting a lot of mountain towns.

And, of course, riding my bike!

Breckenridge is an unusual location to focus on road cycling simply because it is a Mecca for Mountain biking. There are mountain bikes everywhere, from casual tourists strolling through main street, to hard core adventurists climbing above the treeline. The latter sounds like fun, but not on this trip.

The great thing about Breckenridge, or more specifically Summit County (including Frisco, Copper Mountain, Keystone, Dillon, Silverthorne and other towns) are the bike paths. They literally go everywhere. The riders closer to Breckenridge are mostly on mountain bikes, while there are more roadies around Frisco and Copper Mountain, with tourists everywhere.

My road biking escapades started by going in the other direction. I followed the path out of town, and then jumped onto Highway 9 toward Hoosier Pass. This was in a late afternoon, not the ideal time for cycling, and I wasn’t surprised that I had to endure some traffic. That turned out to not be much of a problem. There was a wide shoulder for a couple miles out of Breckenridge. It shortened to maybe a couple feet around the town of Blue River, but the cars were clearly used to cyclists and were very respectful of my space. Yes, it was nice.

I had heard that Hoosier Pass was close to Breckenridge, so when the road started rolling upward, I thought the climb had already begun. I gained a few hundred feet over a few miles, and was thinking this was far easier than I expected. Then I saw a sign that said Hoosier Pass was 4 miles away. Oops. That’s when the climb began.

Like what I’ve seen so far in Colorado, this was not a very steep grade and was very scenic. There was a lot of eye candy, like the Goose Pasture Tarn (a private mountain lake) to the east in Blue River, which could be seen all the way from the Hoosier summit, four miles away. Towering over the route to the west was Quandary Peak, another 14er, which has comparable elevation to Mount Evans.

The climbing continued after my conquest of Mount Evans. We changed base camp to Breckenridge, where we will spend the majority of the rest of our stay. It has been an eventful few days, with a baseball game at Coor’s Field, a little birthday party, riding a gondola, taking a hike, and visiting a lot of mountain towns.

And, of course, riding my bike!

Breckenridge is an unusual location to focus on road cycling simply because it is a Mecca for Mountain biking. There are mountain bikes everywhere, from casual tourists strolling through main street, to hard core adventurists climbing above the treeline. The latter sounds like fun, but not on this trip.

The great thing about Breckenridge, or more specifically Summit County (including Frisco, Copper Mountain, Keystone, Dillon, Silverthorne and other towns) are the bike paths. They literally go everywhere. The riders closer to Breckenridge are mostly on mountain bikes, while there are more roadies everywhere else.

My road biking escapades started by going in the other direction. I followed the path out of town, and then jumped onto Highway 9 toward Hoosier Pass. This was in a late afternoon, not the ideal time for cycling, and I wasn’t surprised that I had to endure some traffic. That turned out to not be much of a problem. There was a wide shoulder for a couple miles out of Breckenridge. It shortened to maybe a couple feet, but the cars were clearly used to cyclists and were very respectful of my space. Yes, it was nice.

I had heard that Hoosier Pass was close to Breckenridge, so when the road started rolling upward, I thought the climb had already begun. I gained a few hundred feet this way over a couple miles, and was thinking this was far easier than I expected. Then I saw a sign that said Hoosier Pass was 4 miles away. Oops. That’s when the climb began.

Like what I’ve seen so far in Colorado, this was not a very steep grade and was very scenic. There was a lot of eye candy, like the Goose Pasture Tarn (a private mountain lake) to the east in Blue River, which could be seen all the way from the Hoosier summit, four miles away. Towering over the route to the west was Quandary Peak, another 14er, which has comparable elevation to Mount Evans. There were plenty of other peaks looming over the road, too numerous to learn or mention.

There were a few tight switchbacks with sideways S shapes to warn drivers (see the picture below). Those had some steep inclines, but were not overly difficult. I just had to stand up at certain sections to power towards a more manageable grade. It was a pleasant 4-mile climb. but I was relieved to reach the top at 11,539 feet.

The descent was just as pretty, but oh, so cold! I had forgotten to bring warmer clothing, thinking it would not be necessary at higher elevations. I guess I wasn’t thinking. I was tempted to do some climbing afterward, but after freezing my butt off, decided to spend the rest of that ride on flatter ground.

The bike paths, officially called the’Recreational Pathway System’ (or recpaths) are simply amazing. After returning from Hoosier, I rode back through Main Street Breckenridge, careful to avoid opening doors, and linked up with the Breckenridge-Frisco path.

It was a 10-mile route in each direction following Highway 9, with a slight descent into Frisco, and an easy climb back to Breckenridge. I was faced with a headwind into Frisco, so that turned out to be the more challenging direction. As mentioned, there were mountain bikers everywhere. I even saw a skateboarder and a unicycler.

The path mostly followed the highway until nearing Frisco. From there it dipped into the woods and took a scenic route. There were some mini-climbs including one section that had a sign warning of a 10% grade, but I found it to be around 5-6%. Contended that I had seen enough for one day, I headed back to Breckenridge. The paths are easy riding, so long as you are careful to maneuver around the other cyclists.

So far this has been a terrific vacation, with plenty more ahead.

Strava GPS link

IMAGE GALLERY

3 responses to “Breckenridge, Hoosier Pass, Frisco

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