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KUSA - When Ride The Rockies announced their 2013 route to hundreds of cyclists at a route release party on February 2nd, smiles were abundant. With highlights that include iconic mountain passes and the Royal Gorge Bridge, the 2013 RTR route is a must for Colorado lovers.

"We look forward to touring Southwest Colorado where cyclists will be treated to seven inspiring days on their bike," said Chandler Smith, Director of Ride The Rockies. "Climbs over Lizard Head and Wolf Creek Pass as well as a trek over the Royal Gorge Bridge will give cyclists a real sense of accomplishment."

This year's route starts in Telluride on June 9th and will culminate in Colorado Springs on June 15th after 513 miles over three legendary mountain passes and the highest suspension bridge in the United States.

9News is once again proud to be a sponsor of Ride the Rockies. Sports Anchor Susie Wargin will be riding the entire week and filing reports from her "two wheels."

Ride the Rockies 2013 route:
June 8th: Telluride - Registration
June 9th: Telluride to Cortez - 75 miles (Lizard Head Pass)
June 10th: Cortez to Durango - 64 miles
June 11th: Durango to Pagosa Springs - 86 miles
June 12th: Pagosa Springs to Alamosa - 91 miles (Wolf Creek Pass)
June 13th: Alamosa to Salida - 84 miles (Poncha Pass)
June 14th: Salida to Canon City - 67 miles (Royal Gorge Bridge)
Juen 15th: Canon City to Colorado Springs - 46 miles

Ride The Rockies' average economic impact in each town throughout the week is $250,000.

Registration is open for applications until February 22nd. Organizers estimate 3,000-4000 will apply for the 2,000 lottery slots. Riders will be notified in early March if their name was selected in the lottery.

Riders who want to bypass the lottery and guarantee a spot on the tour can sign up for the 2013 RTR Prologue. The Prologue takes place in Telluride and Ouray on June 8th and the first 50 to join will ride with legendary pro cyclist George Hincapie and other celebrities. Riders will also be pampered with other treats like massages, goodie bags and food. Cost for the Prologue is a charitable $2500.

Proceeds from Ride The Rockies benefit Denver Post Community and all funds raised are returned directly to Colorado nonprofits. In addition, The Denver Post Community Foundation awards a $5,000 grant to a nonprofit organization in each host town.
For more information, contact Ride The Rockies at 303-954-6700 or visit www.RideTheRockies.com.

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