Found my limit mountain biking up here in Crested Butte's high country.
Tackled a rather renowned loop in these parts: Reno-Flag-Bear-Deadman's trails, 20 miles all told.
Starts with a deflating 5mi climb up to the first ridge to the top of Flag trail. From there you're rewarded with swoopy fast descents down to Bear. Then regain all that lost altitude to plunge once again creekside grinning ear to ear.
Completely spent in that 15 miles, you're again faced with a demoralizing climb back up to the top of Deadmans.
All that beautiful scenery somehow lost its charm as I grunted that 3mi uphill virtually kissing the handlebars, eyes locked on the trail 3 feet ahead. I finally achieved the last trail intersection @ mile 17.5 to find I simply had no more give in that last half mile to the final ridge at the top of Deadmans.
There was much suffering in that last half mile lemmetellya. :-/
But once topped out- oh joy! A plunging two mile descent blazing thru 1000 vertical feet via 32 switchbacks, transitioning from black pine forests into dappled aspen groves. It was all I could do to avoid killing myself in drop after rock-encrusted drop.
Once back at the truck I marveled in the days stats, still can't quite believe I had it in me: 4 hours in the saddle, 20mi, 3,300ft in elevation gained between 9500' and 11,100'. Damn that was a big ride. u
Thinking tomorrow I shall fish... ;-)