Day two, the longest day of the tour, 111 miles, starts in Telluride from the Mountainside Inn. Telluride settled in 1878 has a current population of about 2,200 people with thousands of visitors throughout the winter for world class skiing and summer for events such as the Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Telluride is probably the most scenic of the cities visited on the DRT and stands at an elevation of 8,750 feet.
The USA Pro Cycling Challenge - "America's Race" came to Telluride in 2012 with the 111 mile Stage 1 going the opposite way that the DRT goes - Durango to Telluride. The pros did the 111 mile stage in 4 hours - 42 minutes won by American Tyler Farrar of Garmin Sharp Barracuda.
Twelve miles south of Telluride the tour comes up to the third of five passes on the ride, Lizard Head Pass - (Elevation 10,223 ft.) named after the spire of what looks like a Lizard head.
From Lizard Head Pass the tour now begins a nice long decent of approximately 71 miles through the towns of Ricco, Stoner, Dolores and Mancos before coming to a small climb at Hesperus Hill. This climbs seems like it last forever - especially since by the time you get here - you've already ridden about 95 miles.
The last 12 miles is a wonderful decent on U.S. Highway 160 into Durango. Durango was organized in 1880 by the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad to serve the San Juan mining district.
Day two stopping point and luggage drop will be at the Historic Stratter Hotel. For history about the Stratter Hotel - click here.
A group dinner in Durango will also be planned. Contact Tour Director Barry Sopinsky if you are interested. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.