The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route from Canada to Mexico.

Welcome! This site documents a two month, solo, unsupported mountain bike tour of the The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route from Banff AB Canada to the US-Mexican border at Antelope Wells, NM. The trip began in late July and finished 25 SEP 2007. It took 61 days and encompassed 2842.32 miles.

My more detailed and informative site can be found at:

Please forward any questions/comments via email to:


View latests posts below: If you click on a "menu post," only that post will be shown. Click here to get back to main site.

26 June 2007

Main GDMBR Gear Package


Sleeping BagMontBell DownHugger #3 long size (“some men are longer than others.”)

Sleeping Mat – MontBell UL 120 3/4

Tent – Black Diamond First Light

Footprint –2 black trash bags

Outer layer jacket – MontBell UL Thermawrap Action Jacket

Rain Jacket – Sierra Designs Isotope

Wind Jacket (no hood) – MontBell UL Wind

Wind/Rain Pants – Golite Reed

Jersey – IBEX Wool Ventoux Lightweight Sleeveless

Base T-shirt – Patagonia UL Base layer wool silver

Arm and Leg warmers – Ibex Wool/lycra blend

Socks – Smartwool, 3 pair various blends for various days

Bike Shoes – Pearl Izumi X-Alp Low

Helmet – Giro Durango

Lightweight Sandals – Tevas

Tights – combo of Peal Izumi Microsensor and some nice, smooth Nikes

OvershortsPatagonia UL tans.

Gloves – Specialized fingerless, Performance 2nd layer, Mountain Hardware UL shells outer.

Beanie – Outdoor Designs Power Beanie

Sleep shorts – old ratty pair of purple Umbros from high school

Stove – Mini Triangia Denatured Alcohol stove without the pots

Pots – 1 SnoPeak Titanium pot, 1 Ti cup, 1 Ti Spork

Fuel Cannister – MSR Small

Dry Bags – Sea to Summit Event Compressor Dry Bag Large rear, Medium front.

Pack – Salomon Raid Race large (they don’t make this one any more)

Hydration Bladder – Ultimate Direction 128 oz.

Headlamp – Black Diamond older Xenon

Bike Light – CatEye HL-EL530 front, small Cateye Magnet Blinker in the rear

Bike Tools and Repair Items

Bike Tools and Repair items

I spread the tools out somewhat about the bike, most of the immediate repair items are stored in a tennis ball can mounted on the frame under the rear shock (tennis ball cans and bike water bottles have roughly the same diameter.) The 5.5 has very little clearance here and taking a water bottle in and out knocks the shock lockout lever over too much.

- Combined Ascent Mini-tool and ToPeak Alien. Went end to end on the bike and chucked any multi-tool parts not needed, just took apart the bare bones mini-tool and removed/added as necessary. Carry small combo pliers with flat and Phillips screwdriver handle tool…good chance you need the pliers and the screwdriver fittings to counter torque something else. Eliminated all unnecessary redundancy in tooling.

- Blackburn Mammoth hand pump

- Two Salsa LW tubes, tube patch kit and homemade tire boots.

- Extra PC99 chain section, three gold links, unattached chainbreaker from Topeak Alien.

- Extra cleat and cleat bolts. Various nuts and screws and a 10mm wrench for the OMM racks and Intense lag nuts.

- Presta to Schrader adaptor – nice for a service station compressor.

- Extra derailleur cable, extra set of (worn) brake pads.

- 50 ft of 550 cord for repairs and bear bag

- small roll of 100 mph tape (yes, OD green…hmm) and small roll of electrical tape, small vial of gorilla glue.

- 4 extra DT spokes stored in seat tube.

-Tire levers

- various length zip ties, two small and two medium rubber lined hose clamps in case of a broken frame or to lockout a blown shock.

The Bike's Direct Attachments

RacksOld Man Mountain Sherpa Front and Rear

Bike Attached Accessory Bags:

- Jandd Handlepac 2,

- Profile Design LG Stem Bag backwards on seat tube stay (no it doesn’t rub my legs)

Six Salsa Sidewrap bottle cages

- two front rack mount, two rear rack mount, two on the frame

The Bike without Attachments

The Bike in Raw Form

Frame – 2006 Intense 5.5 EVP Infantry Blue

Cranks and Front Rings – Race Face Deus XC

Bottom Bracket – Race Face Deus X-Type

Rear Cassette – SRAM PG 99 11-32

Front Drl – XTR

Rear Drl – SRAM XO Med Cage

Shifters – SRAM XO Thumb Triggers

Chain – SRAM PC991 Cross-Step

Seat Tube and Stem – WTB XTC series

Saddle – Specialized Milano Gel

Head Set – Chris King

Handlebar – FSA

Grips – Ergon R1 Pros

Front Fork – Manitou Minute 3:00

Rear Shock – Fox Pro Pedal Float RL (PUSHED)

Wheelset – Mavic EX721 Black 36 spoke DT

Hubs – Hadley QR Front and Hadley SDH Rear 135

Brakes – Hayes HFX Mag Discs 8in front, 6in rear rotors

Tires – Schwalbe Marathon XR 26x2.25 "Tank Treads" with the obnoxious but very, very relevant reflective sidewall strips.

Trainup Chronology

Ready are you? What know you of ready?... A Jedi must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind. This one a long time have I watched. All his life has he looked away... to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing. Hmph. Adventure. Heh. Excitement. Heh. A Jedi craves not these things. You are reckless.” -Yoda


Late Summer 2005- My friend Allison and I were on an adventure racing training expedition south of Steamboat Springs, near the Colorado River. After arriving at camp for the evening, we noticed a group of four touring cyclists setting up shop in the campsite next to us. With a five gallon water bluey as barter, I went on over to see what they were up to. Turned out the group was riding from Canada to Mexico on what was known as the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, which generally follows the spine of the Continental Divide from North to South. They had no vehicle and no external logistical support. Everything they needed, they carried, resupplying along the way as they passed through small mountain towns. I saw maps, gear, logistical challenges, elevation profiles and a daunting amount of distance. Thats all it took. I immediately began redesigning my life to prepare for the trip.

Summer 2006 – BoundaryZero teammate Sandy, a hammer from the Aspen area named Ralph and I toured the Colorado Trail from Waterton Canyon westbound for three days. We carried way too much stuff (a loaded BOB Sandy and I shared…Ralph ran his own BOB,) I snapped a rear d hanger the first day with no replacement, lightning storms, burn areas, etc etc. We made it past the Lost Creek Wilderness bike bypass with good weather and up to Kenosha Pass in an extended downpour. Learned quite a bit about touring with gear and had a great time. I believe Ralph is riding from Alaska to the tip of South America right now, its supposed to take him two years. Sandy is training for endurance mountain bike racing with his sights set on the Durango MTB 100. See photos in an upcoming slide video.

Fall 2006 – In early September, I decided to test run a few sections of the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route. Initial plans were to ride the route Colorado top to bottom but it didn’t work out when I lost my transpo to Steamboat. I shifted gears and started from Salida with what I believed at the time was THE Divide gear package. Within 45 minutes of launch from Salida, I caught up to Ron Faul, who was riding the full route Banff to Mexico. Ron is a good guy and fun to ride with so I stuck with him till just outside of Chama, NM. I learned a ton of good beta from Ron, had a phenomenal time, gained some more long distance touring experience and decided the BOB trailer might not be necessary.

Spring 2007 – My goal was to have all the gear pieces in place by early April and bike configured by May of 07. Things have worked out well, I have all the pieces in place more or less. A few loose ends are still out there, but no show stoppers. Plane ticket is purchased, passport is ready, and a very nice Boulder local has let me borrow his hard shell bike case for the flight. See more as I post going forward, see training rides, and the bell will be tolling come the end of July.


  • Total length- 2,711 miles
  • Elevation Gain- 200,000 ft
  • 90% Off Pavement
  • Divide Crossings -29
  • High Elevation- 11,190 ft
  • Low Elevation- 2577 ft
Equivalent Distance Comparisons:

Denver to New York City - 1790 miles
Las Vegas to New York City - 2570 miles
Houston to Seattle - 2370 miles
Seattle to New York City - 2840 miles

About Me

Please redirect to (click hyperlink):

The Main Blog Page!


18 June 2007

Um, Rollins Pass Isn't Rideable Yet!

Did the powderpuff cakewalk ride from Nederland to Yankee Doodle Lake via Eldora Ski Area and the Jenny Creek Trail (yes, uphill) lolipoping back on Rollins Pass Road today. Nothing like rock gardens, babyheads, snow runoff, and boulder gardens to make for a leisurely afternoon ride! There is still a ton of snow, mud, and runoff up high but everything is green and beautiful. The weather was warm and calm, I went sleeveless the whole time!

US Section Overview Map, Great Divide Mountain Bike Route

Full US Section Map Overview

Great Divide Mountain Bike Route
- Port of Roosville, Montana (CAN - USA) to Antelope Wells. New Mexico (MEX - USA.)

-Also riding from Banff AB Canada to CAN - USA map detail for that section to post.

To see maps in greater detail, click on individual maps for a bigger pageview.

2nd Half Map Detail, Colorado and New Mexico Great Divide Mountain Bike Route

Click on individual maps for a bigger page view.

Map Section 5 Colorado - Kremmling to Del Norte Colorado.

Map Section 6 Colorado, New Mexico - Del Norte, Colorado to Grants New Mexico.

Map Section 7 New Mexico - Grants, New Mexico to Silver City, New Mexico

Map Section 8 New Mexico, Mexico - Silver City New Mexico to the US - MEX Border at Antelope Wells, NM

17 June 2007

US Section Overview, Details of MT, ID, WY, CO Great Divide Mountain Bike Route

The US Section Overview. Canadian-US Border crossing is located at Port of Roosville, MT.

Note that Map Section numbers do not match ACA map sections.

Also note that you won't see any map detail of the Canadian Section, as my mapping software didn't include Canada...that map set would have cost around $ The Canadian Section starts in Banff, AB (west of Calgary) and heads down to Roosville, a little over 200 miles.

Section 1 Montana - Port of Rooseville, MT to Helena, MT.

Section 2 - Montana Idaho and Wyoming - Helena, Montana through Idaho to just west of Yellowstone National Park...near the northern Tetons.

Section 3 Wyoming - West of Yellowstone to North of Rawlins, Wyoming.

Section 4 Wyoming and Colorado - Rawlins, Wyoming to Kremmling, Colorado (south of Steamboat Springs.)

13 June 2007

Caribou/505 Training Ride

I finished the back bracket water bottle setup this morning and loaded the bike up with the full gear package. What you see on the bike is what I am touring the Divide with. The trail I picked to test it all is a loose, rocky, root strewn extended downhill, more technical then what I should see on the GDMBR.
Overall, the only issues include the cooking gear in the little bag up front rattling (something that can be solved with some cheap bubble wrap) and the tent pole bag not wanting to stay stationary. I have an idea of how to fix that as well. I switched from Marta SLs to Hayes Mags brakes a few months back and combined with larger rotors (more of a downhill vs previous UL cross-country setup,) it makes quite a bit of difference in the realm of brake control and modulation with weight.

The weather was wonderful and I was able to snap off some good shots but had to steal the batteries from the GPS when the camera batteries 'died.' The batteries in the camera showed a 75% charge in the GPS when I switched them out. Wierd.

10 June 2007

Colorado Trail from Kenosha Pass Mountain Bike Ride

Fellow Team BoundaryZero member Sandy and I went for a spin on the Colorado Trail northwest of Kenosha Pass today. The section we biked heads west over the Divide and drops down into Breckenridge. This isn't the first (or last) time we have been here. Last summer we completed a three day bike tour along this trail from Waterton Canyon near Denver to Kenosha Pass.

The weather was phenomenal, spring is full on with wildflowers everywhere. Everything is very lush and green. There was snow blocking the trail around treeline, so we headed back. Sometimes it takes until mid-July for snow to clear above 10-11k ft...which explains why I am waiting until later to launch.

This is also the test run for a Picasa slideshow. More to come with this interesting feature!

If you want to see the pics in a better resolution, click on the little Picasa Icon in the corner of the slideshow screen. Enjoy!

09 June 2007

Sledgehammer! YouTube on site!

BoundaryZeroChris is now YouTube and Google video capable! Ah, the fun I will have with this!

06 June 2007

Couch test ride with partial gear package.

I was able to get The Couch out for a decent ride with the partial gear package the other day. Major missing pieces are the small food bag that goes on the front OMM rack, the map case and the 4 pack rear water bottle setup.

Note the modification to the front rack with the water bottles...goal is to be able to carry 144 oz on the bike with the capacity for 128 oz in my pack. Yes, there is a 128 oz hydration bladder on the market...made by Ultimate has nice no-slosh baffling.

The compression dry bag on the back OMM rack holds the sleeping bag, sleeping mat, tent, extra clothes and my sub-freezing jacket. The bag on the outside contains the tent poles.

The articulating gear bag on the back end is interesting, especially when it starts to 'interact' with me and the rest of the bike in full travel.