Hey, Spike! follows Ira Tane’s Ride the Rockies adventure
June 25, 2017
Among the just-completed 32nd Ride the Rockies bicycle tour were two married couples from Frisco.
Ira and Terese Tane and Mario and Jeanine Corvetto, next door neighbors over on Creekside Drive, often trained together on The Summit. Mario had ridden the Denver Post-sponsored tour last year.
The tour, covering 447 miles, has a cap of 2,000 entrants. This year's event started in Alamosa, headed west and ended a week later in Salida.
Other stops included Pagosa Springs, Durango, Ridgway, Montrose and Gunnison.
Passes conquered included Wolf Creek, Yellowjacket, Coal Bank, Molas, Red Mountain and Monarch. Elevation gain totaled a tad over 32,000 feet.
The Tanes and Corvettos were in a team, the Creekside Crawlers, with a majority being residents of Westcliffe in the Wet Mountain Valley. They stayed in a combination of motels and Airbnbs.
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The other Crawlers were Brent Bruser, Bill Mazurek, John Potts, Dan and Lori Fox, Mark Dembosky and Bob Steimie.
At age 68, now riding a Trek Madone, Ira has been an avid biker since elementary school back in Bayside, Queens, New York.
After college and 17 years in Boulder, he had a career as a real estate developer in Huntington, New York.
The Tanes owned a second home in Frisco for 15 years before making a permanent move west in July 2015.
Ira says he and the team finished "proudly," with no real problems along the route, all while enjoying "great Colorado weather."
Their favorite stop was Pagosa Springs, where "sitting along the Animas River with water from the hot springs flowing by our feet" offered soothing relief.
All the towns "rolled out the red carpet" for the small village-sized crowd.
The toughest day was number four, when the cyclists faced three passes: Coal Bank, Molas and Red Mountain, Ira says of nine hours "in the saddle."
Monarch Pass at 11,312 feet offered another stiff challenge.
"Monarch was certainly very tough; such a long uphill grunt that there was an aid station mid-pass. Once at the peak, it was all downhill to the finish line in Salida — can't imagine a better ending," reports Ira.
Completing his first Ride the Rockies was especially satisfying for Ira, who had been hospitalized three weeks before due to a dislocated shoulder he sustained in a tumble when cross-training on a treadmill at the Silverthorne Rec Center.
"Don't laugh," Ira remarks of the incident that curtailed his training.
Ride the Rockies added to the large crowds in Salida for the 69th annual FIBark whitewater festival on the Arkansas River.
Among those from Summit County down that way were Mark and Tracy Burke, celebrating their 35th wedding anniversary. Mark is a Breckenridge town councilman and owns Burke and Riley's Irish Pub.
They were joined by former Blue River homeowners Mary and Len Huffius, who now call Salida home. Tom Sellek was also there.
Others making the trek and unexpectedly hooking up with the Burkes at Benson's Tavern and Beer Garden were Dick and Mary Cunningham and Harold and Mary Wilson, who were joined by Bill Ferrell, formerly of Breck and now of Salida.
Another personality down that way was John "Tie-Dye John" Busscher, who was selling his fashion statements in Riverside Park for FIBark.
Miles F. Porter IV, nicknamed "Spike," a Coloradan since 1949, is an Army veteran, former hardrock miner, graduate of Adams State College, and a local since 1982. An award-winning investigative reporter, he and wife Mary E. Staby owned newspapers here for 20 years. Email your social info to firstname.lastname@example.org