From Denver to Durango: 500 miles of the Colorado Trail

The story of four riders who embarked on the massive through-ride

It’s so cool to have a group of friends that is willing and eager to get after it like this. The memories formed on a trip this epic certainly won’t be forgotten any time soon. –Joey Schusler
It’s so cool to have a group of friends that is willing and eager to get after it like this. The memories formed on a trip this epic certainly won’t be forgotten any time soon. –Joey Schusler

FILM, PHOTOS, & STORY BY JOEY SCHUSLER

Sometimes the most challenging and arduous adventure is the one in your own backyard. The Colorado Trail links up the state’s largest metropolitan region with some of the best mountain bike trails in the country, spanning over 500 miles through the rugged and scenic alpine wilderness from Denver to Durango.

The first few days were eye opening. I don’t think any of us thought it would be as hard as it has been so far, but we’re finally settling into our pace and things are going much more smoothly. –Sam Seward
We’ve been riding for half an hour now, and it’s official. We’ve gone 1% of the way, 5 miles. It’s going to be one hell of a ride. –Justin Reiter

Once summer rolls around, the trail clears of snow and those daring enough to attempt a through-ride set out into the unknown. This past summer a group of Colorado based Yeti Ambassadors set out to give it a go for themselves. Heading the charge was Olympic snowboard athlete Justin Reiter, along with good friends Craig Jones, Joey Schusler, and Sam Seward.

We were slowing falling behind our daily goal of 50 miles a day. It was looking like we were destined to spend a few extra days out there, until on the 6th day we had a random boost of energy and were able to cover almost 80 miles and get back ahead of schedule. From that point on, we set our eyes on Durango and never looked back.  –Justin Reiter
We were slowing falling behind our daily goal of 50 miles a day. It was looking like we were destined to spend a few extra days out there, until on the 6th day we had a random boost of energy and were able to cover almost 80 miles and get back ahead of schedule. From that point on, we set our eyes on Durango and never looked back. –Justin Reiter

The team encountered deep snow, high mountain passes, pristine singletrack, and views beautiful enough to convince you to never leave Colorado again. Averaging over 50 miles per day above 10,000 feet while carrying all of the gear needed to survive was exhausting. The days and miles passed. Some passed slower than others, and others passed too quickly. Adventures like this calm the mind, rekindle the simple love for riding, and will never be forgotten by those who experience them.

It’s been brutal so far, but 100% worth every grind and push up every hill. Once we got to the San Juans on day 7, the scenery went from great to unbelievable. –Justin Reiter
It’s been brutal so far, but 100% worth every grind and push up every hill. Once we got to the San Juans on day 7, the scenery went from great to unbelievable. –Justin Reiter
The first few days were eye opening. I don’t think any of us thought it would be as hard as it has been so far, but we’re finally settling into our pace and things are going much more smoothly. –Sam Seward
The first few days were eye opening. I don’t think any of us thought it would be as hard as it has been so far, but we’re finally settling into our pace and things are going much more smoothly. –Sam Seward

201407_ColoradoTrail_1053