Friday, July 12, 2019

La Veta - Spanish Peaks Gravel

Today Heather had an afternoon appointment - so we did a shorter bike ride this morning on several gravel roads we have not ridden before. One road in particular (County Road 363) -  I figured we could try now since she rides an e-mountain bike with bigger tires. Well the roads did not disappoint and we now have a new favorite gravel road!

This gravel route is really very simple... head east out of La Veta on County Road 358, turn right and go south on County Road 340, turn right (west) on County Road 363, and finally turn right and take County Road 360 north back to La Veta. County Road 363 would be called a B-road - sometimes only two tracks on rock and dirt, sometimes very rough, but absolutely the type of road we like for scenery and solitude.

 Starting out this morning looking east on County Road 358. We have taken this road before on the way over to Walsenburg.

Heather finishing the last climb on County Road 358 before we descend down to County Road 340.

At the intersection of roads 358 and 340 there is this Boy Scout cut-out sign pointing the way down County Road 340 to the Spanish Peaks Scout Ranch. Just by coincidence there were some Boy Scouts hiking towards us from the Scout Ranch.

County Road 340 appears to take you straight into the Spanish Peaks. This road actually dead-ends at the Spanish Peaks Scout Ranch and the base of East Spanish Peak.

Just about to the turn on to County Road 363 - hoping for an interesting road.

Luckily there weren't any gates and we were happy to be on a very nice dirt and rock road.

Sometimes the road was smooth - sometimes... not so much! Big tires at low air pressure sure made a big difference.

Riding along County Road 363 is basically a 10 mile continuous uphill that finishes with a steep, short downhill. We paused a few times to enjoy the views and catch our breath.

Heather and the Spanish Peaks...

Getting closer to the top of our climb we spotted this log home tucked up on the mountainside - just visible in the treeline.

Just about two miles left to the top of the climb on County Road 363. Looking forward to the downhill journey back to La Veta.

Heading down a very nice downhill on 363 to the intersection with County Road 360.

On the downhill you pass through one of the many dikes in the Spanish Peaks area.

Once on County Road 360 we cruised downhill through nice countryside in a valley between two dikes.

Heather getting ready for the final descent into Las Veta.

Parting shot - Heather, the dike, and West Spanish Peak. We definitely want to do this route again!