For the fifth time in the 28-year history of Ride the Rockies, a weeklong, 500-plus mile bike ride across some of the Centennial State’s highest and most scenic mountain passes, volunteers associated with the Colorado Potato Administrative Committee (CPAC) will clean, wrap, bake and distribute approximately 1 ton of potatoes to more than 2,000 cyclists and support team members.
Welcoming the thousands who ride and who accompany the riders to Monte Vista on June 12, CPAC volunteers will have potato lines set up. Linda Weyers, assistant director of CPAC, says russets, golds and nutritionally rich purple potatoes will fill the bill, and she added the carbo-loading respite has long been a favorite stop for the cyclists.
“We have information letting people know our purples and deeper-colored varieties are very high in antioxidants, and the russets and yellows are good sources of potassium and vitamin C. More and more consumers are taking notice of studies that show all potatoes are heart-healthy, and now there’s information that proves they help lower blood pressure,” Weyers says. “The bicyclists coming down off Wolf Creek Pass, which hits an elevation of nearly 11,000 feet and is often quite cool, are generally ready for a great baked potato.”
The ride, which begins June 8 in the famed ski resort town of Telluride and ends June 15 in historic Colorado Springs, will take riders over three mountain passes along the 513-mile route. Logging daily distances of between 46 and 91 miles, the cyclists will also climb a total of 20,400 vertical feet as they pedal from stop to stop. Well over 3,000 applicants put in for the ride and organizers said all 50 states and numerous countries are often represented in the tour.
Colorado Potato Adminstrative Commitee