CO Tour Day 3: What Goes Up from Carbondale Must Come Down to Paonia

Greetings from Paonia! We wish you were here. Then the mosquitoes wouldn’t just be gnawing on Felkerino and me.

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Another great day on the bike, tempered with looming saddle sores. Haven’t had one of those in a few years so maybe it was time. I blame Trail Ridge.

This day, which was essentially a 30-mile ascent up McClure Pass at 8,762 feet and a 30-plus descent into Paonia, had less of an “out there” feel compared to yesterday, but was still awesome.
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Gathering clouds and thunder paced us much of the way up, but except for a few big drops we scampered away safely until arriving in town, where we watched the rain fall from underneath a store awning.

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For our entry into Paonia, we took a side road that skirts a coal mine and crosses the worst railroad tracks I have ever seen. I can’t help but admire these ridiculous dangerous tracks. They’re awful!
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Paonia is a lovely spot to overnight.
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Tasty espresso, ice cream, farm to table food, and mellow residents. World class mosquitoes. Wish you were here.

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