As good as the off road riding and running is here, the road riding is limited, spectacular, but limited. There are essentially 3 reasonable rides under thirty miles The 27 mile bandelier loop, an out and back out to the Valles Caldera and beyond, or the grunt up 2000 feet in 4 miles up the ski hill followed by a fast descent on horrifyingly bad roads. Longer rides usually involve riding off the mesa entirely and then back up on not so much fun roads.
The bandelier loop is one of the best rides I have ever done. The map and elevation profile are here. I more or less live at the beginning of the elevation profile. There is about 2000 feet of climbing in the loop ranging from 6300 to 7800 feet in altitude. It gets too familiar at times, but when you have not done it in a while it is breathtaking.
I did a quick loop with my friend Dina last weekend. She went from being a very timid cyclist to a super strong power rider/triathlete in a year. Here are some pics.
Me and Dina climbing out of Ancho canyon, the lowest spot on the loop. See the giant radio antenna in the back? That is how the Gov't controls major league baseball, now you know:
click for a huge version with better panorama.
Here is another view toward the end of the loop looking out from twisty roads in white rock to the mountains over los alamos:
click for huge.
Give it Your Worst
4 hours ago