Hastings Mesa summit(u)
a bicycle there are at least three options to connect
Ridgway with Telluride: the long and paved Dallas
, the steep and slightly shorter, unpaved, more
scenic Last Dollar Pass
( that route also includes the Dallas
as well as this summit ), or the medium between
the two, the route over 58.p road. And that's this route
over Hastings Mesa summit(u).
This is a good all weather dirt road. When I rode it last,
I encountered no evils, such as deep gravel and dusty,
banked high speed turns. The Telluride side of the summit
also goes to the popular Last
. During my traversal of this route I
encountered a total of about 9 cyclists in 3 groups on
START-END WEST: junction Co62 and Co145 near
2.(7550ft,mile05) Sawpit, route turns up dirt road
turns steeply on left
3.(9110ft,mile11) junction with Last Dollar Pass
(road), continue straight
4.(9160ft,mile14) TOP: point of highest altitude
5.(8820ft,mile16) junction with Dallas Divide road.
Profile continues right
6.(8970ft,mile17) Dallas Divide
7.(7040ft,mile27) START-END EAST: downtown Ridgway
From North. 58.p road leaves the Dallas
Divide road about 1+1/2 miles west of its summit at an
unsigned intersection. During the gradual climb the southern
end of the Sneffels mountains can be glimpsed between the
trees. Besides the usual "ranch" like style of
housing, there is also something much more unusual ( and
interesting), a couple of houses with minimalistic beauty. One
is pictured below. Bigger is not always better ( really ? ).
The mesa consists of rolling hills with a noticeable summit on
each end. The point of highest altitude it is difficult to
determine without measuring it. During the ride it felt like
it was located immediately north of a horse corral and the
turnoff to Last Dollar Pass.
But after consulting a map it turns out be an inconspicuous
point closer to the center of the plateau.
From South. The profile begins
downvalley in Ridgway to show a large elevation gain, even
though it is more often approached from upvalley Telluride.
The turnoff in Sawpit is easily missed. It looks like a
driveway. After the first initial gasps of breath on a very
steep road a sign informs that the road is steep, narrow and
dangerous. Thank you for that bit of information, even if the
steepness was already noticable. A few good views open onto
the red sedimentary rocks of the canyon carved by the San
Miguel River. The point of highest altitude comes after miles
of rolling mesa hills, that are much cooler than the valleys.
Dayrides with Hastings Mesa s(u) as highest summit:
PARTIALLY PAVED / UNPAVED:
Hastings Mesa s(u) , Dallas
Divide : Billy Creek SWA > Ridgway > Dallas
Divide > on pavement to Sawpit > Hastings Mesa
summit(u): 76 miles with 5700 feet of climbing in 6.2 hours
(Cateye 100AT m3:5.8.27)
Notes: The Billy Creek SWA is about 9 miles south of
A ride from Ridgway over Last
Dollar Pass down Deep Creek, returning to the starting
point via Sawpit and this summit measured 60 miles with 6730ft
of climbing in 5.3 hours using a Cateye 100AT cyclometer. This
route also goes to the summit of the Dallas
Divide twice, but skips its western approach (m3:6.8.2).