COVID-(7)19 Guidelines

Doing the 719 Ride in the time of COVID

The current Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment guidance for outdoor recreation allows for competitive events such as races and endurance events, as long as social distancing and limitations on group size can be maintained, including implementation of staggered start times, and efforts to prevent gatherings at starts and finishes, so that no more than 10 people are gathered at a time.

El Paso County Public Health is also allowing competitive races and endurance events provided social distancing is maintained, staggered start times are implemented and gatherings at the start and finish are limited to 10 or fewer people.

To comply with the state and county guidelines we will not be having our typical group start at 7:19 a.m. Instead, you may start riding at anytime. However, for camaraderie purposes we suggest a "departure window" between 6:45 a.m. and 8:15 a.m.

When at the start/finish and when on the course, please pay special attention to the impact we have on the neighborhoods we ride through and the perception the residents have of us as cyclists and as an event.

Even in normal times, our behavior and consideration of others determines whether or not they are receptive or hostile to us sharing their roads. In the time of COVID-19, this matters even more.

With this in mind, there are four key principles USA Cycling instructs us to keep in mind when we gather.

They are for our benefit individually and collectively, both as people and as members of the cycling community riding as guests through other people's neighborhoods.

  1. The virus that causes COVID-19 is easily spread.
  2. The virus is spread through direct contact and droplets. Aerosolized spread may be possible but is a greater risk in enclosed spaces.
  3. We each have the responsibility to not spread the virus and to not contract it.
  4. We must pay special attention to our off-bike activities.

"If we do perfectly in the on-bike activities and then do poorly on the off-bike activities, you're going to see transmission."
— Dr. Michael Roshon, USA Cycling Chief Medical Officer

Do NOT join us if you are symptomatic or have been in close contact with a symptomatic person in the previous 14 days.

COVID-19 Symptoms

Do NOT join us if have you been in contact with anyone that has COVID-19 or is presumed to have COVID-19.

And of course, do NOT join us if you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or been advised by a physician that you have COVID-19 and are still under quarantine restrictions.

If you do not have any virus symptoms, consider these questions before joining us.

  • Have you experienced a fever of 100.4 degrees, or higher, anytime in the past 3 days?
  • Do you currently have a dry cough?
  • Are you experiencing shortness of breath?
  • Do you have a runny nose?
  • Do you have head or body aches?
  • Do you have a sore throat?
  • Do you have any nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea?
  • Do you have a current loss of taste or smell?

If you answer yes to any of the above questions, and your yes answer is due to anything unusual or out of the norm for you, please DO NOT JOIN US.

During the event, assume that you and other riders have the virus and allow that to guide your actions and interactions.

  • Don't gather in groups of 10 or more.
  • Avoid close contact with others when off your bike, and follow the state required 6' social distancing guidelines.
  • Ride side-by-side or more than 20 feet behind one another when on the course. (Road conditions and traffic laws determine when side-by-side riding is allowed.)
  • Don't share water bottles, food, etc.
  • Clean your hands often with an alcohol-based sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol, and use hand sanitizer before eating, after using the portable public restrooms along the course, before touching your face, etc.
  • Take steps to prevent droplet spread, particularly if you have to sneeze, cough, blow your nose, etc.
  • Buy a 719 Ride cloth face mask for your off-bike activities.

If you are age 60 and older, recognize that you are at greater risk of severe illness due to COVID-19 and take extra care to protect yourself if you choose to ride with us.

If you are younger than age 60, recognize that some 719 Ride participants are older than 60 and are at greater risk for severe illness due to COVID-19. Take extra care to respect and protect their health.

If you've missed out on a bike event this year,

because of COVID-19, I urge you to participate in the 719 Ride. It has miles and miles of climbing the same upward tilting loop over and over again. The time together will be good for our collective soul. Yeah! Heaven let your light shine down.

- Ottavio Severo