Day 41 – 50 miles to Estes Park, Colorado

We began our morning riding over to Team Portland’s host for a joint dedication circle and cheer!  Group themes were Friends characters – I was on Team Rachel with Landis, AK, Carolina, Nathalia, and Seattle alum and 4K for Cancer Program Coordinator, Nicole Considine.  She’ll be riding with us for the next couple of days.

Today’s dedication circle was pretty amazing.  We got to share our stories with Team Portland and also hear their dedications.  A lot of teammates and Portland riders dedicated their day to Jamie, who passed away exactly a month ago.  It was moving and touching to hear from each teammate.  For me, today was dedicated to Jamie and all of Team Portland – they’re fun, focused, and such a strong team, definitely inspiring all of Team San Francisco (and I’m sure many others across the nation).day41portlanddedicationday41emilylaurenandmeday41portlandvansday41portlandsanfran

We said goodbye to Team Portland and rolled out around 8 am.  For a 50 mile day, it was a lot of climbing, many of the hills steep.  Nathalia and I spent much of the day together, motivating her and pushing her as best I could.  We talked about why we were riding – she was honoring her great grandmother who died of colon cancer a couple years ago.  She took care of Nathalia when she was younger, always putting other people ahead of herself.  And when she faced cancer, she never gave up.

Though we had hard climbs, the scenery was amazing.  We saw snow-capped mountains and had awesome downhills.

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Unfortunately, we had to stop 10 miles from our host because of dangerous roads and thunderstorms (making today 40 miles).

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When we shuttled into the Estes Park YMCA, we were in awe.  It was a beautiful campus of lodges with fireplaces and hotel rooms.  Yay beds!  At night, some people went back to Boulder to see the Avett Brothers at the Red Rock Amphitheater while myself and others explored the town.  Cario and I got Trail Ridge Road ice cream, which was appropriate before tomorrow’s trek up Trail Ridge Road.day41trailridgeicecreamday41stephandmeicecream

Now for a good night’s sleep before our most challenging and exciting day.

Michael

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