2000 PAC Tour Central Transcontinental
Day 10, September 19
by Ken Bartholic, Cheryl McMurray, and Chuck Bramwell

Daily Map
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Lon's Description: The long wide valleys near Alamosa are filled with farmers harvesting hay.

The final climb over LaVeta Pass is the last hill before the long straight roads into Kansas.

We woke up to 36 degree temps and on came the winter clothes. As we started out, the only thing that became numb were the fingers.

It was sunny and beautiful as we climbed up to our last summit in the Rocky Mountains (La Veta Pass) which was at the 9,500 ft. elevation. Beautiful Aspen trees changing color and magnificent mountain views keep us in awe as we descended the 6% 8 mile Eastern slope.

The downhill did not end there but continued almost all day with a few flatlands and minor rollies.

The day was going very well until the last rest stop where we were greeted with very strong headwinds that even sucking the wheel of Mike and Nancy Myers' tandem did not spare the energy (but it helped a lot). We were all very tired by the end and are hoping the winds across Eastern Colorado and Kansas will be kind to us.


Estimated Distance: 148 Miles
Actual Distance: 145.1 Miles
Cumulative Actual Distance: 1,206 Miles

This includes the following off course added miles:
San Diego - 2.0 Miles when Chuck and Bob Harting missed a turn

Winslow - 4.7 Miles when Chuck, Ken, and Les Drake went to the mural painting after the ride

Pagosa Springs - 3.1 Miles when Chuck missed Lunch

Alamosa - 11.2 Miles when Chuck missed the turn for Lunch

Estimated Feet of Climbing: 3,000 Feet
Actual Feet of Climbing: 3,070 Feet
Cumulative Feet of Climbing: 43,900 Feet
Elevation of Destination: 4,590 Feet
Average Speed on the Bike: 18.1 MPH
Maximum Speed on the Bike: 44.5 MPH
Chuck's Heart Rate Data:
Max Heart Rate was 196 BPM a few weeks ago before PAC Tour
Time above 160: 0:00
Time between 140-160: 2:15
Time below 140: 6:54
Chuck saw 156 for awhile holding onto the wheel of the Myer's Tandem
Dairy Queen Count: 1 Blythe, CA

2 Twister's Ice Cream in Williams, AZ

3 Dairy Queen in Cortez, Colorado was phenomenal

4 Dairy Queen in Monte Vista, Colorado
(PAC Tour Hot Fudge Banana Split:
Bananas, 3 Scoops Ice Cream, Hot Fudge on Side: Awesome!!)

Beautiful colors The climb up La Veta Pass was a nice gradual one.

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Rest Stop #2 The Second Rest Stop had to be the most scenic so far!!

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La Veta Pass Sign Nigel Watt, Chris Pile, and Brian Dukek before a great descent.

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The start of a great descent The descent was so incredible: the road was very smooth, like ice, and free of gravel and debris. Speeds were easily 35-45 MPH that rolled on seemingly forever.

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Highlights: The morning was icy cold but crystal clear with a beautiful sunrise. I chose to slow down and ride with Susan Notorangelo, Pat Carter, Jim Bradbury, and others. We had a great time in a nice and smooth Double Wide paceline. Many riders zipped past us and that was fine ... we were working hard on going slow and enjoying each others company.

Pat and I got to talking about the fact that after riding this PAC Tour she would have completed over 10,000 miles which are required to enter the PAC Tour Hall of Fame. This was very cool for sure.

Jim Bradbury and I got to talking .. turns out we rode some miles together last year over in France on Day 1 of Paris-Brest-Paris. We both were amazed at how small of a world it really is.

Up ahead we saw a number of riders fanned out into the lanes of traffic ... sometimes 3 and 4 abreast. This was far in the distance with a bright sunrise as the backdrop.

As we were riding down the bike lane two abreast, we heard the siren of a Police Car coming up from the rear. We all stop and Susan yelled out, "Pat, HANDLE IT!!" as the Colorado Highway Patrolman pulled us over.

Pat immediately walked back and greeted the Officer with a "Good Morning". She let the Officer explain to us that he was pulling us over because he had received reports of cyclists who were riding out into the lanes of traffic. Of course, we all assured the officer that this was the faster group that was a few miles ahead of us down the road.

Then Pat opens her Camelbak pack and pulled out her "New York Police Department" badge. Pat explained that she was a retired Officer from New York after working Bank Robberies, Narcotics Deals, and undercover work for many years.

Immediately the tone of the Colorado Police Officer changed dramatically. and his eyes lit right up. Needless to say, he was most impressed and for the next few minutes the two of them talked "Police Talk". He assured us all that he would go down the road and pull over the faster group who was riding ahead of us.

The instant that Pat pulled out her badge, you should have seen the expression on the Colorado Police Officer. Suddenly, everything changed. It was like night and day ... his eyes lit right up!! It was definitely one of the highlights of the day to see the change that occurred!!

Later down the road, I stopped to take off a layer of clothes. As I rode back up to join the group, I was surprised to see them off the side of the road. Susan was sitting on the ground holding Ed Boecker up from behind. I did not realize it but Ed has a severe case of Diabetes ... and his blood sugar level was running very low. Susan ordered up another set of "Bud Lights" (actually Dole Pineapple Juice) that Ed always carried with him on the bike. It wasn't long before Ed was looking much better and zipping down the road again!!

At the First Rest Stop, Lon took photos of us. These were later used in the plaques that were presented to us at the Finish Line Banquet.

The climb up La Veta Pass was a nice gradual one. The descent was so incredible: the road was very smooth, like ice, and free of gravel and debris. Speeds were easily 35-45 MPH that rolled on seemingly forever.

Memorable Scenery: We passed Adam State College early in the morning ... reminding Chuck of his son Adam

Sand Dunes sign at Mile 15 was interesting

Yellow daisies and purple flowers

Serious snake road kills at Mile 75

At Rest Stop 4, Lon reported that it was so flat / visible that you could see the next Rest Stop

XTR Rear Derailleur on Myer's Tandem as they gave us a fantastic pull into the Finish
Mechanical Problems: None to report
Biomechanical (Engine)
None to report
What Worked: Chuck's super clean bike thanks to Scott and Jim Sitler ... it was just on fire in the sunlight blasting down the La Veta Pass descent

Cheryl's Ding Dongs and Suzy Q's for Lunch blasted her down the road

Team BMB did 50 crank pulls into the wind that worked well
What Didn't Work: Nothing to report
Quote of the Day:

Susan yelled out, "Pat, HANDLE IT!!" as the Colorado Highway Patrolman pulled us over.

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