I was training to do the CTR this year. A surgically repaired bone in my arm and fractured neck suffered at the very end of March pretty well trounced those plans.
I'm finally back to riding the road bike, but the doc isn't going to clear me to mountain bike until July 25th at the earliest. Plane tickets are booked so I'm still planning to go to Colorado and I'd love to get some riding in. I'd love to get some thoughts on suggested alternatives for someone who was craving the technical singletrack, high altitude, solitude, and beauty of the CT. I'm going to train my ass off on the road bike but even if I'm cleared to mountain bike my tech skills will probably be pathetic, so...
One option I looked at was touring the ACA Great Parks South route from outside Denver to Mesa Verde/Durango. I don't know anything about it except it goes in the general area I was planning to go without the technical demand. Anyone know the route?
I'd also be open to an all dirt route that was relatively non-technical or with shorter singetrack sections. I don't know much about the Grand Loop but I have a friend in GJ so it crossed my mind.
I thought about spending 10-12 days on the GDMBR too (to go north or south?). And then there's the good old fashioned road trip and try to hit as many of the epic road rides in CO as I could (Pikes, Copper Triangle, etc.).
Lastly, I thought about just postponing the whole trip and touring/ITT the CT in late summer early fall to give me a chance to at least test my singletrack abilities after being cleared. How late is the weather reasonably predictable along the trail?
Suggestions and thoughts about any of these or all of them would be greatly appreciated as I try to find a way to salvage my 17-days off I'd saved up for. Thanks in advance!!!