iron horse classic
The iconic Durango train chugs along behind riders of the Iron Horse Classic this summer; (photo/Visit Durango)

‘Spoketober’ Brings Month of Cycling Events to Southwestern Colorado

Spoketober, the first-annual celebration of Durango cycling, includes a $7,000 sweepstakes for a weeklong vacation to enjoy the city’s bike-related activities.

Durango’s tourism organization will offer a month’s worth of events this October celebrating the city’s cycling community.

The first-annual “Spoketober” includes social rides, a film fest, and meet-and-greets leading up to a Halloween parade. It’s billed as a celebration of Durango’s “tight-knit and passionate” community of cyclists.

In addition to the obvious promotional opportunity, the events highlight the work of locals. Because of decades of “dedication and sweat equity” from residents, Durango has become a top cycling destination, Visit Durango said in a news release.

“We hope to create a fun month of programming for locals and visitors alike, all amid a time when Durango is flourishing with incredible fall colors,” said Rachel Brown, executive director of Visit Durango.

Along with several group rides, Spoketober will include a bicycle recycle and up-cycle clinic and a “community cruise” with the Adaptive Sports Association. Expect to meet pro riders like Ned Overend, Todd Wells, Payson McElveen, Howard Grotts, and Ellen Campbell in October.

iron horse classic 2022
Hans Hollenbeck cruising in the 2022 Iron Horse Classic Bike Race this summer; (photo/Visit Durango)

From Sept. 7 to Oct. 30, the event also offers a sweepstakes with a weeklong vacation in Durango as the prize. The $7,000 package includes a 3-night hotel stay and a 3-day guided tour of singletrack trails. It also comes with a “bike shop shopping spree,” as well as bike rentals and a trip to Durango Hot Springs.

Learn more and enter now.

Durango’s Growing Cycling Community

Like many small Colorado towns, Durango has grown rapidly in recent years. For local residents, that growth offers a mixed bag.

While the city has become increasingly unaffordable, many residents still see Durango’s appeal. That includes its 300 miles of singletrack trails and numerous Olympic athletes in residence.

“How do you preserve what’s best about Durango and still have a vibrant tourism business and not lose your cultural identity?” Jasper Welch, a Durango city councilman, told The Durango Herald earlier this year.

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A family bikes on the Rim Trail during fall in Durango; (photo/Visit Durango)

“Durango is a very special place for cyclists because of the trails we have and our cycling community,” said Rotem Ishay, director of Team Durango Segment 28, a local development race team. “Our extensive trail system welcomes riders of all levels, beginners to professionals.”

For the city’s tourism officials, community-focused festivals like Spoketober are a good place to start.

Check out the full calendar of Spoketober events.

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Andrew McLemore
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An award-winning journalist and photographer, Andrew McLemore brings more than 14 years of experience to his position as Associate News Editor for Lola Digital Media. Andrew is a musician, climber and traveler who currently lives in Cuenca, Ecuador, which he uses as a home base for adventures throughout the Americas. When he's not writing, playing gigs or exploring the outdoors, he's hanging out with his dog Campana.