Ride the Rockies rolls through 'Boat

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Ride the Rockies route

- Sunday - Frisco to Steamboat Springs: 98 miles and 4,700 feet of elevation gain

- Monday - Steamboat Springs to Craig: 44 miles and 700 feet of elevation gain

- Tuesday - Craig to Rifle: 89 miles and 4,400 feet of elevation gain

- Wednesday - Rifle to Glenwood Springs: 36 miles and 2,200 feet of elevation gain

- Thursday - Glenwood Springs to Aspen: 43 miles and 2,800 feet of elevation gain

- Friday - Aspen to Leadville: 61 miles and 5,700 feet of elevation gain

- Saturday - Leadville to Frisco: 51 miles and 3,700 feet of elevation gain

If you go

- Moots Cycles hosts a Ride the Rockies open house from 1 to 7 p.m. today and 7 to 9 a.m. Monday at the factory, 2545 Copper Ridge Drive. There will be factory tours, a raffle for Moots Ti products, bike-friendly refreshments and ice cream. All are welcome. Call 879-1676 or visit www.moots.com.

- A free concert for Ride the Rockies begins at 1:30 p.m. in Little Toots Park with a performance by the Yampa Valley Boys. Oakhurst will perform from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. There also will be food and a beer garden. The event is open to the public. Little Toots Park is adjacent to the Steamboat Springs Community Center. Call 879-0882.

— More than 2,000 cyclists will descend Rabbit Ears Pass today as part of the 22nd annual Ride the Rockies.

This year's course takes riders on a Frisco-to-Frisco loop, covering more than 400 miles and stopping in seven Colorado mountain towns.

The first stage begins today with a 98-mile ride from Frisco to Steamboat.

Local rider George Krawzoff, who has done the ride four of the past five years, said people should expect a steady stream of riders coming down the pass and into town throughout the day.

"By the time they hit Steamboat Springs they'll be coming in small groups," Krawzoff said. "It will be steady."

The Ride the Rockies route is different each year but always climbs a few challenging mountain passes and showcases Colorado's spectacular scenery. Daily rides can be as short as 35 miles or as long as 100 miles, but they generally average between 60 and 75 miles.

After riders leave Steamboat on Monday, they will visit Craig, Rifle, Glenwood Springs, Aspen, Leadville and return to Frisco on Saturday.

Krawzoff said the first Ride the Rockies riders should arrive in Steamboat at about noon. Riders will then proceed to the high school, where they will camp tonight. Riders will continue to pour into the high school until about 7 or 8 p.m. Krawzoff said.

"It will be a festival-like atmosphere with venders with demos," Krawzoff said. "There will be a ton of people - partly because of vendors and partly because it's like a rolling bicycle show."

Riders will leave the high school Monday and travel along U.S. Highway 40 to Craig.

Because riders can break camp whenever they want, Krawzoff said U.S. 40 should see a constant stream of bikers throughout the day Monday. Colorado State Patrol troopers will accompany the riders on their journey to Craig.

"I'd encourage motorists to be nice to" the cyclists, Krawzoff said. "We want Steamboat to put their best foot forward, so when the riders are looking at other types of vacations they're encouraged to come back to our community."

For more information about Ride the Rockies, visit www.ridetherockies.com.

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