Gunnison to host Ride-the-Rockies

Everyone invited for live music at the I-Bar

By Mark Reaman

The annual Ride-the-Rockies bike tour will be passing through Gunnison this weekend, so expect a busy city and lots of road bikes there Friday.

The tour started Sunday in Alamosa and there are 2,000 riders officially registered on the tour. The traveling entourage usually at least doubles that number. The tour will be coming into Gunnison from Montrose, where people will spend the night before taking off for Salida over Monarch Pass on Saturday morning.

Gunnison city manager Russ Forrest said people should expect to see the first riders roll into town as early as 2 p.m. on Friday, June 16. The main campground for riders is situated at the community school and Forrest said it appears 300 hotel rooms are booked for the night as well.

“It will be busy and it will be a lot of fun,” Forrest postulated. “There will be live music at the I-Bar Ranch with food and beer tents. The Household will play at 5 p.m. and the Blue Canyon Boys take the stage at 6:30. This is not just for tour participants. Everyone is invited.”

Forrest said there are no street closures for the event, “but we ask motorists to be watchful of riders on Highway 50 and along Eleventh beside the schools.”

Riders begin the last day of the Ride-the-Rockies tour by having breakfast and hitting Highway 50 to tackle Monarch Pass and end up in Salida, starting at 5 a.m. The last riders usually get out of town by 9 a.m.

The Gunnison Chamber of Commerce is the point organization for the event and will be manning a table with local business information at the school headquarters. If you want more information on the Gunnison leg of the Ride-the-Rockies tour, call the chamber.

“It is a great way to start the summer season,” concluded Forrest.

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