Friday, June 28

There Is No New Black

The other day I saw a post on the Book of Face for “Kentucky’s Ride to the Summit,” a road bike ride in October to the summit of the state high point: Black Mountain.  It’s only $30 to register, but I also know I can just go ride Black Mountain on my own.

Ride...Black Mountain.

Of course, Dear Readers, you know what this means.  That’s right: scheme.

I, now, do not only want to ride my bike to the highest point of my home state, but I want to ride my bike to the highest point of my home state FROM MY HOME!  

Incorporating a couple of other ride opportunities I’d like to do in the future and abiding by my “always travel a new road when possible” philosophy on life means 300 miles round trip.  The shortest possible out and back route would be about 245 miles.  I think it’s worth the extra 55 miles to pick up a traverse mouth-to-source of the Redbird River and a crossing of Pine Mountain via the Little Shepherd Trail.  The return trip home would be shorter than the trip down to the top of the state though.  

While I think this would be a fantastic Leadville training opportunity (Miles! Miles! Miles!) I won’t have the vacation time until well after Leadville to take an extra two days to combine with a weekend and have the appropriate amount of time.  

When I did my Guanella Pass tour in 2011 my family was in Kentucky (ironically) and I was alone in Colorado.  I had the time; I had the opportunity.  How could I pass up that chance?  And it was a phenomenal trip.  In three days I rode 106 miles and gained a gazillion feet and managed to travel from my house to the summit of a 13er utilizing human power alone.

So Kentucky’s Black Mountain is no 13er…I get that.  But it’s the fact that I’m shooting for the highest point I can get to—a bona fide mountain—that’s relevant.  At some point in my life I’d also like to ride a few other summits in the east.  Spruce Knob, Mount Mitchell, Mount Washington, and a few other lesser summits, plus a few summits that could be ridden near and hiked to their pinnacles…are all on my life list.


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