Mile 2418 – Spirit of America Ride for Hydrocephalus Reaches Denver, Colorado!
Our last night on road was spent in Watkins, Colorado, about 37 miles from downtown Denver. We started out early on Wednesday and took Colfax Avenue straight into to Denver. After our 2400-mile bike ride and 50 days cycling from Tampa, Florida, we were feeling triumphant and getting to the “Denver area” was just not enough. Even for our own benefit, sadly, you all were not there to enjoy it with us, we wanted to ride into Denver like a conquering Caesar returning to Rome.. The weather was with us on this last short leg. It was a beautiful day with very little wind to zap our cycling energy like the last few days. About half way to downtown, the wind picked up but it did not slow us down much. It was a nice relaxing ride to conclude our exciting, but sometimes difficult, adventure.
We rode through Aurora and happened to see an apartment for rent. We knocked but no one answered so, as we were leaving, the maintenance man rushed out to catch us. We looked at a couple of options there and this place is on our short list for housing for the next few months. We would like to spend a few more days looking around the area before we make any decisions. For now, we are in downtown Denver looking for options close to public transportation. We are settled into our hotel for couple of days while we rest up, get our bearings, and decide where we would like to settle semi-permanently.
We are excited about spending winter in the mountains but we are seriously considering continuing our bike ride further west in the spring. We may not be ready for the adventure to end. Everyone we meet here is great and they are very interested in our ride for hydrocephalus. We have no doubt we will enjoy our time here. Colorado was ranked the ninth healthiest state in the US by the United Health Foundation. Forbes also ranked Denver #5 on the list of best places for business and careers, America’s 7th most “wired” city, and America’s 10th safest city. So there is a lot going on here. Maybe being one of the safest cities in the country is why it is also one of the most bike-friendly cities. Denver is big on biking and Denver B-Cycle is to thank for that. There are 53 B-Cycle stations around Denver with 530 bikes for public use and the program continues to grow. We’ll fit in very well here. Everyone we meet seems to be amazed that we rode here from Florida on bikes. We could not have made it without Celsius. You know I will be telling every cyclist I meet and everyone I can how Celsius lasting energy got us through some really tough days on our bike ride from Florida!
There really are so many wonderful places to explore here. After Mary and I settled into our room, we went looking for a late lunch at Steuben’s to celebrate our arrival. A foursome sat down next to us and, as we began talking, we learned that they had just flown in from Wheaton, Illinois. Whoa! I graduated from high school in Wheaton and so did the son of one of the women. Her son was good friends with a buddy of mine from high school who now owns Pal Joey's pizza. In my day, it was THE pizza joint – glad to hear it still is. It’s a small world. It was nice to make these connections when we were all far from home although, for us, “home” is wherever we park our bikes these days. For a while at least, we are excited to call Denver home.
Now that we have arrived, I have to say thank you to everyone who has been following our bike ride through the blog and on social media. We have received $1500 in donations through our dedicated donation site and Celsius will be matching those donations to the Hydrocephalus Association. But we do not plan to stop raising money and awareness for hydrocephalus any time soon. Thanks for all the support.