This taint tiger goes raaarrrrrrrr. Justin and I have found our way to Vail in style. We were wearing flip flops as we pedaled the last few rotations Friday night. Not necessarily for style points. Justin’s knees had taken a beating and they were angry. The battle of Minturn hill was where it all took place. There was some swearing, some loud grunts and even the occasional laughter as we realized that it was the last hill to Vail that was going to thrwart our 100% pedal power mode of transportation. The good news is that walking produces no emissions of the fossil fuel kinds. Standing behind Justin confirmed the presence of an allowable amount of emissions during this tour. We walked the uphills and biked the downhills through the Vail valley and into our Condo, aptly named the Antlers.

The hotel is a fancy gathering of mountain town condos adorned with an enormous bronze sculpture depicting an elk quarrel. They are locked in an eternal antler struggle which sounds like the life of a mountain town interior designer. All seemed right with the scene minus the important bits that make elk aggressive enough to engage in such a confrontation. The elk were eunuchs. I am guessing this was a strategic move to spare any unsuspecting family from the awkwardness of seeing these bits. So we are staying in a large hotel minus the, well you know what.

So, back to our triumphant entrance to the Vail valley or as I would like to call it, the battle of Minturn Hill. This hill isn’t large, bulbous or any of the usual adjectives used to describe a formidable obstacle of the mountain persuasion. It was more of an ant pile to what we have already climbed up and rolled down, but it was the end of the day and the end of a four-day push. It all came down to this hill. Justin’s knees were in no mood to continue. My right knee was right there with Justin’s knees, not through a heroic move of solidarity, but through my own battle with the tendonitous. Between the two of us we had one good knee to get us to the top of the hill and lots of gravity to keep us from this goal. I positioned myself in front and pretended that the pain was a humble reminder that I was still alive. The hill began to grow as I neared the top. Darkness set into the valley. Justin wasn’t rounding the corner. I began to wonder if he had stopped for a stretch session or maybe a cliff bar or two. My mind was wandering to a place with warm water and bubbles. The Hill had taken Justin. Where was he? I began to walk down the hill in hopes of grabbing a look around the corner, and then Justin appeared, charging up the hill. We were on the move again. I began to walk back up the hill when Justin stopped me to update me on the state of his knees. No good was the diagnosis and this was when the flip flops came out. Flip Flops were not the white flags of surrender but another mode of travel. We moved on up the hill and away from the battle. It was behind us and hot water and bubbles were there to greet us . . . behind a gate that said closed for the night. We tasted the sweet smell of success with a few slices of pizza and called it a night.

We presented our first show last night and another will be tonight. Looking forward to meeting some new folks and swapping some more stories this evening.

Stay tuned for some more updates. I leave tomorrow morning to head over Vail and Loveland Pass. Five Thousand feet of trailer hauling fun. Maybe camping on top of the pass and then onto Boulder the following day. Access Fund fundraiser in Boulder on Wednesday evening at the Boulder Theatre. Hope to see you there.

Drew

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