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The Venture Report | Colin Baker | June 28th, 2024

A Dream Fulfilled

Life is funny. There are highs, lows, twists, and turns - and you never really know what’s around the corner.

In 2021, I witnessed my father-in-law complete a big ride that he had planned for a couple of years and it was inspiring. It got me thinking - what am I capable of?

After scribbling down different ideas, I eventually landed on an idea that stuck: ride from my home to my in-laws’ home.

In broad strokes, it seems like a simple idea - just ride a bike from one home to the next. However, in reality, it’s not. Spanning over 100 miles, 13,000 feet of elevation gain, and a maximum elevation level of 11,990 feet, this wouldn’t be something I could just go out and ride on a Monday after work.

On top of the challenge of finishing the ride, there are other factors that lie among the hills. First, I would need a way to come back down - so I would need to coordinate with my wife to make sure that she would be able to drive up the night before so we could then bring me down the mountain the following day. Secondly, the weather - it gets cold in the mountains, so my window for opportunity was only a few months. Then, when you add the fact that Colorado summers are normally in the 90s, that window just became more like a cat door.

In 2023, it was time to take a stab at it. However, with a busy schedule in the Spring, the ride would have to be pushed to mid-July - not an ideal time of the year, but I was determined to get it done no matter how hot it would be. Then, life made a turn.

On June 29th, 2023, I got myself into a mountain biking accident and broke my distal radius, also known as my wrist.

After a quick surgery involving a “T” plate with 10 screws, and months of rehab, I was able to get back on the bike - however, it was not like before. I felt intimidated - every descent was a flashback to the accident and a reminder of how fragile we are as humans.

I wanted to break out of the funk I had put myself into and I wanted to get back to who I was. So, I signed myself up for a Cyclocross race, a fall sporting series that I love, and went racing. My goal was just to finish, but by the end of the first lap, my confidence was back and so with it, my old self.

Enter 2024.

After a winter cross-training, which involved more than a few après-ski events, I felt like it was time to start thinking about an attempt at my dream. I talked to my wife, we picked a date, and I began preparing. After a few months, the day came.

At 5:20 am, I set off and began my journey. The following pictures are from the day and, while they don’t tell the whole story, I hope they give you a cat door-sized door into the dream I completed.

Venture Report - Colin's Big Ride