In Colorado Springs, there’s an unwritten three-day rule for road cycling. Most of the roads can be ridden year-round except after a big snowstorm. Even then, if you can wait three days, you can usually hit the streets again (Be sure and watch for loose gravel/salt that has been dropped by the snow plows). The southernmost parts of the city are the most snow- and ice-free.
What Makes It Great
The southernmost parts of the city are the most snow- and ice-free. A popular variation of several of the Colorado Springs Cycling Club’s Saturday Fitness Rides, this ride starts at the Safeway shopping center at Colorado Highway 115 and S. Academy Boulevard. It’s a loop ridden counter-clockwise through the Fort Carson military base.
Fort Carson opened as Camp Carson in 1942 as a training base for soldiers and airmen who fought in World War II, after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. During World War II, more than 100,000 soldiers trained there. The camp trained nurses, cooks, mule packers, tank battalions, a Greek infantry battalion and an Italian ordnance company. Fort Carson continued to be an important base for military training through the Korean and Vietnam wars.. Today, Fort Carson troops regularly serve in Iraq and Afghanistan.
From Fort Carson, it heads south through the town of Fountain to Old Pueblo Highway. It returns on Link Road to Mesa Ridge Parkway, and back through Fort Carson. This is a rural ride with no obvious places for food, water or shelter. It's a long route through wide-open prairie with rolling hills and uncrowded views. On most of this ride, your only companions will be the occasional coyote, rattlesnake, or hawk.
Those interested in Colorado's military history and/or anyone looking for a quiet ride through the prairie.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
From downtown Colorado Springs, take I-25 south to the S. Academy Boulevard exit and drive to the Safeway shopping center. Park there to begin your ride. This is a very rural ride, with nowhere to stop for food or water.
According to Ridewithgps.com, it’s about 63 miles. Leave the Safeway parking lot and drive south on Colorado 115; turn left on Titus Boulevard, right on Specker Avenue onto Magrath Avenue; to Colo. 16/E.Mesa Ridge Parkway, right on Bandley Drive onto Crest Drive; left on S. Santa Fe Avenue, right on W. Illinois Avenue and right onto S. Main Street in Fountain.
Regulations for entering Fort Carson vary depending on the security alert level; for information, call (719) 526-6199.