Lizard Head Cycling
Newsletter: April 19th, 2012
The weather has turned decidedly warmer in canyon country. After a cold start our March Tours de Tucson finished with 80-degree temperatures and the desert in full spring wildflower bloom.
Our new Tucson and the Sonoran Desert bike tours exceeded expectations; it is an amazing area filled with fascinating flora and fauna in which to ride a bike. New pictures and route descriptions will soon be posted to the webpage.
On the return from Tucson Lizard Head Cycling’s Nicole Nugent and John Humphries detoured through the Gila Mountains near the town of Silver City in southwest New Mexico. In the Gila Mountains we found fabulous, nearly empty roads offering as much climbing as Colorado at much lower elevations (3,000 to 7,000 feet). Lizard Head’s will be offering a new Tour of the Gila Silver City, New Mexico bike tour for fall 2012.
The Gila are rugged mountains that host the annual Tour of the Gila Road Race each May and it is apparent why this remote area is becoming a draw to both road and mountain cyclists. The area’s roads afford wide shoulders, minimal traffic and offer climbing that jumps back and forth across the continental divide. Additionally the area abounds in geothermal activity with multiple hot springs along the Gila River. Lizard Head’s new Tour of the Gila Silver City New Mexico bike tour will offer a hike into Gila Wilderness area to access a spring.
The town of Silver City will anchor the new bike tour and if one can initially judge a town by the quality of its coffee shops, Silver City has four, yes four, independent coffee shops on its main street alone!
In addition Silver City is blessed with an energetic art and musical community who have set up shop on Silver City’s still affordable main street locations. Live music pulsed from multiple locations last Saturday night. The town, quite simply, is way cool.
Highlights of the forthcoming Tour of the Gila bike tour will include the Gila Monster: a corkscrewing, 7 mile, 10% descent (and then return climb) to the Gila Cave dwellings.
There is also a gorgeous 80-mile ride the traverses the crest of the continental divide bordering the Gila Wilderness Area; it features twists & turns and multiple long descents and ascents of 8-plus miles.
On its final day the new Gila Tour will include a epic climb to the Mt. Graham Observatory; a 22-mile, 7,000-foot ascent on a 8% to 10% grade! Bicycle Magazine recently ranked Mt. Graham as the 6th best bike climb in the country.
The Tour of the Gila Silver City, New Mexico bike tour will be offered in September, October and April/May tour dates.
Keep on Rolling,
Lizard Head Cycling Guides