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Bike to Climb

Once a year, for a few hours, Boulder streets are closed off and the town basically shuts down.  This comes courtesy of the Bolder Boulder- a 10K running race that attracts upwards of 50 thousands visitors to the city.  For anyone not racing, the city can feel like an impossible-to-navigate maze. The best way to get around during this time is via bike, and so was born: BIKE TO CLIMBA do-or-die adventure to escape Boulder & climb for the day.

runners overtaking boulder at the bolder boulder
Runners overtaking the city
bike to climb course map
The course weaves a loop through the city.

On the first Bike To Climb adventure, I had the unfortunate luck of living within the race loop. Biking the streets, it seemed there was no way to bypass the course and make it to the mountains. In a last ditch effort, I picked my bike up, hopped a fence and ran across the course, cutting off countless runners in the process.

This year would be different. Armed with the “internet” and having moved a couple blocks north, I was able to circumnavigate the course & meet Andrew at the mouth of the Boulder Canyon.

biking and hiking to climb in boulder canyon

bikes on ground with climbing backpacks

We plowed up the canyon on our bikes (mine a single speed), & arrived at our destination, Dome Rock. But the adventure wasn’t over yet. I made the foolhardy suggestion that we climb the notorious Umph Slot, a painful, awkward gash in the rock- too big for your arms and knees, but too small for your whole body.  Progress up the crack was slow and loud- likely a foot every ten minutes at the hardest part.

climbing in boulder canyon

I arrived at the belay ledge sick to my stomach from excursion. Andrew followed in similar form, then we cruised to the top of the formation.

cooling off in the boulder creek after climbing
After the climb, we cooled off in the creek & coasted back into town (all down hill!).  A great way to kick off the summer climbing season. ~ Eli

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