Love it or hate it, Boulder puts the “B” in plan B in the best way possible. Don’t get me wrong, Boulder has a lot of plan A fun waiting to be had but living in the People’s Republic really shines is when your out-of-town primary directive gets derailed. Cases in point: I’ve had two successive weekend plans wiped out due to the starter failing on my truck and a decidedly persistent storm system. My two big adventures were to be my next two blog posts, but alas they have been relegated to future weekends. But does that mean I’m going to sit on my butt watching 14 episodes of CSI in a row while playing Civilization IV on my laptop?! Well… yes, for one of the days. But for the remaining days, my backyard has epic potential that never gets old.
For example, this past weekend I did the classic Heil Ranch – Picture Rock – Hall Ranch out-and-back mountain bike ride, a super fun day that clocked in at just under four hours truck door to truck door (3:59:08 to be exact). Outside of the blistering 90+ degree heat and the fact I went over the handlebars at Hall on a non-technical section (oh the irony–I was distracted looking at all the cool multi-colored grasshoppers), I got my fill of good riding in and scarfed down two pieces of Abo’s Pizza afterwards as a reward.
Another favorite adventure of mine is scrambling the off-trail ridges on Green, Bear and South Boulder Peaks. Recently, I did a traverse of the south ridge on South Boulder Peak and it was downright exhilirating! Some of the north ridges on Green Mountain are awesome for navigation, scrambling and even some tehnical climbing if you’re up for it. Road bikers know hundreds of great routes starting in town but the climb up to Ward via Jamestown or Lefthand Canyon then linking up Peak to Peak Highway is a blast. Trail runners can stretch the town by starting at the Sage Trail and running all the way to Dowdy Draw in Eldorado Springs. The list goes on and on… climbers, try bouldering on the rock formations just north of the summit of Mount Sanitas. Or just hop on your bike and explore the dirt roads above Jamestown, Sunshine Canyon and get lost somewhere new.
The truth is it’s hard to be stuck in Boulder. I’m all for getting out of town and playing in other parts of Colorado, but when you have to think inside the box, there’s a ton of exploration waiting here in the bubble.