Ride of the Ancients - a passion pursuit.
I live in a special area of southwest Colorado. Roughly nine hundred years ago the human population of my home was considered to be larger than its current one. These people left behind clues of their lives, clues that still stand and give us a glimpse into the past. Ancient pueblos predating the arrival of Christopher Columbus can be found throughout the region, and each time I visit one I am struck with feelings of awe and wonder. My thoughts no longer revolve around my own personal desires, but instead I am reminded that humans are a collective. What we choose to do can have a ripple effect throughout our entire society for decades.
Ride of the Ancients is a charity event that seeks to raise money for two organizations, Trail of the Ancients Scenic Byway and Southwest Colorado Canyons Alliance. Trail of the Ancients Scenic Byway serves as a gateway to the Ancestral Puebloan and heritage destinations throughout Southwest Colorado, with a mission to instill appreciation for the cultural continuum represented here. Trail of the Ancients aspires to be a pathway for learning from the past and investing those lessons in the future, promoting understanding of this exceptional region and its place in the larger world. Southwest Colorado Canyons Alliance collaborates with Bureau of Land Management to engage the public through education, outreach, and stewardship for the use and enjoyment of the natural and cultural landscape of Canyons of the Ancients National Monument and nearby public lands.
My goal with Ride of the Ancients is to combine my love for cycling with my desire to see these beautiful landscapes and sacred places protected. All of the proceeds will go towards two organizations that help protect the public lands and natural resources of southwest Colorado.
The ride will feature three distances that cyclist of all ages and backgrounds can choose from. The long route, roughly one hundred miles in length, will take riders through the San Juan mountains and up to almost 11 thousand feet, finishing with a little single track towards the end. The thirty mile route is a shortened version of the long route on some of the most beautiful gravel roads in the county. And new for 2022, there will be a “family affair” route. This route is roughly eighteen miles and must be completed in multi generational pairs; a parent or grandparent will ride the course with their child. There will also be food, arts and crafts vendors in the park all day for spectators and families to enjoy.
Come join us July 9th at Flanders Park in Dolores, Colorado for a day of bikes and fun! Go to www.rideoftheancients.com for more information.