Altitude Sickness

Well, that’s a bit of an exaggeration.

I rode twice on my three day excursion into the Colorado Rockies, and both times I suffered terrible embarrassment. I simply could not get enough air. Here I was, this avid cyclist, bragging about how I could ride 50, 60, 70 miles at a time, and I can’t crest the smallest hill without stopping at the top for a 5 minute, head over the handlebars rest.

I rode very little as a result. I was out there for a good amount of time, but didn’t cover much ground. I stayed on dirt roads (Can you say “tourist?”). I was fully humbled.

On the flip side I was out there in the wild. There were tracks of animals everywhere. Elk, moose, deer, coyote, and yes–mountain lion. The scenery was epic. The weather was unpredictable and changeable; it even snowed 4 times in one day, in between blue & sunny skies. I found on my second ride the remains of a long gone elk….just hide and chunks of spinal column. It was all an adventure.

Just one with shorter breaths.


P.S. Granby, Colorado lives at 7939 feet above sea level, and I was higher in the mountains out of town.  This east coast girl never had a chance.


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3 responses to “Altitude Sickness”

  1. Heather says :

    That’s why I’m renting a motorcycle when I go out there.

  2. Pam says :

    I love the Granby area, it’s my favorite. I have done much better with riding and running in altitude when I drink tons of water, so much it seems I’m constantly drinking (and peeing of course)! The first few days my legs feel like lead bricks but then it gets better. Hope your next trip will be better, sounds like you made the best of it either way. Slow riding in the mountains is still better than no riding at all.

  3. Karen says :

    Pam, I think it was the burning I felt in my throat that was most alarming. And my lungs scraping my ribcage. I just couldn’t breathe! The second time out I picked a flat dirt road, which was better. Still pretty wild out there, even on those dirt roads that go for miles into the wilderness…

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