About 2,000 cyclists arrived in Breckenridge Thursday on their fifth of six days riding in the 29th annual Ride the Rockies road biking event.
Most of the bikers camped outside the Breckenridge Recreation Center, forming a colorful tent city on the baseball and softball fields. Hundreds of bikes filled the tennis courts where they were stored for safekeeping.
Community service office Jennifer Laureano directed traffic at the intersection of the recpath and Valley Brook Street.
“Ride the Rockies, straight ahead. You’re almost there!” she said over and over as she smiled and clapped, encouraging the bikers finishing a 74-mile day that started in Avon.
The riders responded with thank-yous and the occasional “that’s what they said 60 miles ago!”
“Some of these people sound so exhausted,” Laureano said.
One cyclist setting up a tent said he felt better than he did at the end of Wednesday’s ride.
Matt Winter, 34, a Denver banker, said Thursday’s climbs up the high-mountain passes were earlier in the day. This was his fifth Ride the Rockies in a row.
Friends Tim Richardson, 56, of Rancho Mirage, California, and Doug Winters, 63, of Palm Desert, California, said they were glad to be in Breckenridge’s cool climate with temperatures at home around 102 degrees.