The first part of my vacation is in another thread. http://www.ridemonkey.com/forums/showthread.php?t=128591 PART 2: The next day we went back up to the top of Monarch Crest to ride the trail in its entirety. This involves more than 30 miles of singletrack with something over 4000 of climbing and a lot of tech sections and great views. Brian and Derek check out the views from on top of the world. You are surrounded by 14,000 foot peaks!! Here was Dereks attempt at adding a little artistic flare to my riding. Here I am climbing just before the turn off to Agate Creek Trial. Derek climbs through the same area. Have I mentioned before that the views were great? This dude was TOTALLY digging our cliff bars. Here is the beginning of the Silver Creek descent. Once wed descended quite a bit we came out in a valley of Aspen trees and wildflowers with the river running alongside. Brian decided to take a nap in the creek. After descending through a lot of loose rocks and boulders, we came to Rainbow trail. The character of the trail changed as we got lower in elevation more desert like almost. We rode Rainbow all the way out to the highway and then rode down another 5 miles to our car. Long day, awesome riding. We headed out for a night on the town. Here is Brians date. The three of us split 4 pizzas, two pitchers of Rexs Red beer, and two ice cream sundaes. NICE! Here is the view of Salida from Tenderfoot Mtn. just to the West of the city. The next day we headed up to the ghost town of St. Elmo high up in the mtn range and did a great 19 mile loop. Well, great except for the extreme hiking we did in a couple sections. My knee was NOT liking that and it was slow going. Here we are at the ghost town. The trail starts with a gradual climb for something like 7 miles as you pass abandoned mines. We eventually turned up the Alpine Tunnel Trail and were climbing an old railroad grade. The railroad was built back in the late 1800s but the thing collapsed as the men were in it and both the entrances are blocked now. We basically got no pictures of the top of the pass where the trail is just a field of boulders with very little line at all to follow. It was tough picking through and carrying momentum when you were tired. This is further down when it opens a bit more into meadow. It was tough because just when you thought you were going to get a huge descent, you would climb again. Its hard to tell in this picture, but the hills just rolled forever. Keep in mind we were up above 10,000 the whole day. You can kind of see all the rocks in this picture thats the trail! That was it for the pics. Hope you enjoyed it.