Friday, November 20, 2009
Part 5 AMA Women's Conference Keystone CO ~final~
Day 7 Keystone CO -Our final day
Both Cathy and I did not sleep too well in our "comfortable" queen size beds. I guess we were kind of missing our bunk beds!
We arose to grey overcast skies that was threatening a repeat of yesterday! We wanted to take a scenic route back to Denver before giving up our bikes to the rental agency, but was finding this simple task growing increasingly difficult due to time, weather and closed roads from road construction.
As we sat in this funky diner having a late breakfast going over alternate routes, these two girls offered a suggestion of taking hwy 6 which ran basically parallel to hwy 70, which was our main route. We liked this grand idea, so we took their advise and went for it.
We started out east on hwy 70 climbing the summit passing through the 2 mile long Eisenhower tunnel and for the next 40 miles until the hwy 6 turn off.
Hwy 6 was very picturesque with it's rugged rock walls, numerous chiseled out rock tunnels and meandering steams that seems to mimic the two lane road. After 15 miles or so, it led us to Golden CO, where the famous Coors brewing company made it famous. And as big a day, there it was, the big "Coors" sign atop of a big plant! A small town with a big beer gut!
We tuned on to hwy 25 from hwy 6 and by this time could see the skyscrapers in Downtown Denver in the distance. With a few wrong turns, we managed to safely return the BMW F800GS and the Honda VFR back to the owner of the rental agency. I think Cathy and I both simultaneously let out a silent sigh of relief after parking the bikes in the garage.
The next 45 minutes was consumed by unpacking, repacking our gear from the panniers to the suitcases, which we left at the rental agency. It was a bit challenging, but we did it!
Our shuttle arrived 30 minutes early, but we were surprisingly ready, but sad that our wonderful adventure was coming to a close.
I think the most difficult part for me was just not knowing when I would see my "Alaskan" friends again. I hope that we can manage to pull something together like we talked about doing during our week together, a tour of riding the Michigan Lighthouses the following June.
On the final closing ceremony at the AMA conference, they posted a 10ft banner for everyone to sign. Laura quickly grabbed the pen and in big bold letters wrote " The Alaskan 5 was here" and to me, it just summarizes it all!
I will miss you girls, until we meet again...