When a bicycle tour, such as the Bicycle Tour of Colorado, with 900-plus folks travels through any city, you’d think they’d welcome you with open arms. It was true of all of our pass-through cities and overnight places except for Aspen, where we were instructed to ride around the town and ride on the partially paved trail. We did stop in a restaurant to find some lunch where we received a chilled reception. Unfortunately we learned later (after our stop and lunch) that the residents didn’t want us there. It must have been just too much trouble to have that many folks wanting (and needing) to spend money for lunches and possibly some trinkets. The trail was paved partially and sandy in other areas. Not a good mix for our fairly expensive and pampered road bikes (dust and sand in gears and bearings just doesn’t work out well). Mass consensus: never again through Aspen.
So, on the other hand, a huge shout out to the other cities and towns that bent over backwards (with and without much notice): Canon City, Buena Vista, Carbondale, Paonia, Crested Butte, Salida and all of the small and big towns in between who showed us how Colorado folks really treat their visitors. We’d love to come back. A big fat thank you.