Past Events: 1990, 1991, 1995, 1998, 2001, 2004, 2008, 2011 and 2014
Albuquerque, NM to Kalispell, MT
Arrive: Albuquerque Saturday, July 6th, 2019
19 riding days 1,760 miles 80,000' of climbing
Ridge of the Rockies Tour full You can be added to the waiting list email us or call Susan for more info 612-804-9970
The Ridge of the Rockies is a very mountainous route with long climbs and great descents. We cross many major passes and the Continental Divide in six states. This will be a wonderful time of year to ride through the mountains.
The Ridge of the Rockies is the oldest PAC Tour ride that is still being offered. This tour averages about 30 riders per tour. This event has traveled in each direction depending on the season, sometimes starting near Mexico and sometimes near Canada. Starting in Albuquerque this year provides a good range of temperatures on our way north.
Our starting motel,in historic Old Town Albuquerque, is an easy shuttle from the airport. The El Camino Real which was the original wagon road between Mexico City and Sante Fe passed through Old Town. We will have our kick off meal in Old Town!
Day one is along sections of Old Route 66 that was in service from 1926 to 1937 on our way up to Sante Fe. The terrain quickly changes from tan desert hills to towering peaks. On our second day ,the route is on old twisting roads to Taos. These roads are the narrowest and steepest of the tour. It is so twisty our trailers will need to drive around this section. One final day in New Mexico takes us along the Cumbres & Toltec coal-fire steam train tracks which winds up and around the southern Rockies ending in downtown Chama.
The passes are higher in Colorado providing spectacular views. The Chama - Pagosa Springs day allows riders the chance to summit Wolf Creek Pass (10,900’) This is an optional out and back route. Some riders may prefer to soak up the afternoon in a hot spring spa next to our hotel.
We will average one major climb over 10,000' for each of the next three days. Equally spectacular are passes near Durango, Silverton and Ouray. These are the heart of the Rocky Mountains with fertile valleys, steep climbs and fast descents.
The climb up and over the Grand Mesa heading into Grand Junction, Colorado is a classic ride with a good mix of mountains and farms. As we head toward Vernal, Utah the terrain changes to the dry, rocky landscape that has preserved dinosaur bones for millions of years. Arriving in Vernal – lunch is served at the Utah State Dinosaur Museum conveniently located across from the Vernal Brewery! continued next column.....
Depart: Kalispell, Friday July 26th, 2019
Day 10 is one of our toughest but very scenic ride through the Flaming Gorge with steep climbs that reward riders with cliff overlooking huge red rock walls.
As we continue north toward Jackson, Wyoming the route crosses famous pioneer trails from the mid 1800s. We traverse the Oregon Trail, Bozeman Trail and Lander cutoff passing by Mormon churches, ranches and farms. Our route along Bear Lake into Montpelier, ID is stunning. Leaving Idaho to Jackson, Wyoming the ride follows the Snake River up hill! The Teton Pass climb, departing from Jackson, is a 10-12% grade on bike paths and the old highway. This is probably the toughest climb of the tour and the reason riders need a granny gear. The rest of the day is through the potato farms of Idaho and up along Mesa Falls. If the wind is right this should be a fun ride into West Yellowstone.
We stay 2 nights in West Yellowstone, MT-home of Yellowstone Bear Wolf Park. The 14th day is a rest day in West Yellowstone - just outside the west gate of the park. Riders can rent a car and go sightseeing to the Old Faithful Geyser and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River.
The final five days across Montana are some of the most scenic with many postcard-quality rivers and mountain views. Each day has notable climbing as we cross the mountains of the Continental Divide region. The mountain ranges around Butte, Anaconda and Missoula are filled with old mining camps and pioneer history. The roads are good with rideable shoulders and moderate tourist traffic.
We finish the tour in Kalispell, Montana located fifty miles south of the Canadian border. We follow along the valley of Flathead Lake through dense forests which are good places to spot deer or bear crossing the road.
At the completion of tour you may understand why the Ridge of the Rockies is only recommended for cyclists who like to climb.
We expect this tour to be filled before December 1st. Email Lon is you have any questions Please check the web site before registering! Final prices will be set by Oct. 1st.
Best Equipment link - Bestbikeequipment
Ridge of the Rockies Tour July 2019