a ride last february that gives a pretty good indication of what sort of road conditions to expect on Rim Rock Drive in the winter time.
many readers of this blog may already know that the Colorado National Monument will be closing a substantial portion of scenic Rim Rock Drive this winter due to budgetary constraints. that's the bad news.
the good news is that the road will remain open to cyclists for the immediate near future, as indicated by this recent letter from park director Joan Anzelmo:
December 2, 2010
To Grand Valley Cycling Community:
I am writing to personally welcome you to ride the closed section of Rim Rock Drive until we get the next snowfall. Please be aware that there are a few icy sections. Please also be aware that there is no road patrol going on in the closed section for the cost saving reasons you are aware of. Therefore you ride at your own risk. Please ride in daylight hours between 8am – 4pm only. Please be out of the closed section by 4pm and off other sections of Rim Rock Drive before dark.
When the snow comes, the road will be closed to cycling and I will write you again to remind you. Towards the end of the winter season there will be a few weeks where the road remains closed to motorists but will be available to cyclists. I will keep you informed.
For the long distance travelers I cannot change the road status day to day or week to week. Therefore the top portion of Rim Rock Drive remains closed and is signed accordingly. You are welcome to share this information with other cyclists. I am not doing a full public announcement as I don’t want to confuse the community or the long distance travelers.
so there you have it; get out and enjoy the car-free section while you can (at least on the bikes). then after we get some significant snowfall and the road is full closed, please respect the closure and hike, ski or snowshoe in for a truly exceptional wither time experience of one of our great national treasures.
please exercise caution in the shaded (and possibly icy) areas, we'll see you out on the road!
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