report by coordinator Bill Stilwell
Although I have been on this route several times, it has never been in the month of December!
A fellow ride coordinator, Jerry Adamek, told me he had been on the route on Friday and found the conditions satisfactory.
So with Laurel and Chris signed on we rode from just outside the closed south gate. The road conditions were almost 100% clear and dry and we encountered no snow to transverse.
It was a sunny sky and the landscape was as Laurel suggested, an early Christmas present to be present to view this spectacularly beautiful terrain. We used our full season of riding to roll up the almost continuous climb within our comfort zone. But winter solstice being only a couple of weeks away, even at its zenith, the sun was blocked a few times by the tops of the beautiful mountains to the south. When we were in the shadows the temperature of a few degrees above zero was noticeable.
We had agreed to turn back at 2:30 pm. and so we did about 8 k from the summit. I was glad to have a second pair of windproof pants to don as the windchill was significant on the rapid decent.
All three of us were happy to have hot beverages to enjoy back at the vehicles.
All in all, it was a great last road ride for 2020.
Wow. That looks like a cold ride. Thanks for posting the write up.
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