The great outdoors. Here in Colorado, we have some of the most gorgeous scenery nature has to offer right on our doorstep. You can hike it, bike it, raft it or ski it, but sometimes, the tedious task of planning the trip is what gets in the way.
Which trail to take? How much food and water to bring? Will it prove too difficult, or maybe even too easy?
Those are questions Lauren Costantini decided to answer for Boulder residents and visitors. A former pro Cyclocross racer, Costantini fell in love with the physical exertion and adventure of mountain biking as much as the exhilarating views of natural scenery it afforded her. A year ago, she decided to start Boulder’s own branch of Sacred Rides, an award-winning mountain bike adventure tour company, originally founded in Toronto, Canada and now globally acclaimed.
The idea behind the company is to eliminate the nagging questions for tourists and locals looking to have an amazing experience on a bike.
“Sacred Rides Boulder offers single track tours for all skill levels in and around Boulder on incredible trails even locals don’t know about,” Costantini said. “Since we coordinate all the logistics — from creating a customized itinerary, to renting bikes, and even providing locally sourced meals and snacks — the ride is hassle-free.”
Costantini has had the privilege of biking across France, Switzerland, the Dolomites in Italy, Patagonia and Canada, but she says some of her favorite vistas have been right here in Boulder. Costantini moved to Boulder 10 years ago after seeing a story about it in Outside Magazine, and Boulder has been a phenomenal destination along her life’s journey, a journey that has been unique and extraordinary.
At college in New York state, Costantini studied to become a ballet dancer as an undergrad, but when she started looking for a job, she was told she was too short to perform on Broadway. So she followed another passion of hers with the encouragement of her mentor who was a biology professor, and earned her Ph.D. in neuroscience. She did her post-doctoral research at Harvard Medical School where she later became faculty. Afterwards, the biotech industry came calling and she moved to San Francisco where she worked at a startup that addressed Parkinson’s disease. The Dot Com Bust forced her to rethink her path, but she realized adventure was still in her DNA.
That’s when she moved to Boulder. Here, she joined the thriving startup community, and is currently the President and CEO of Prima-Temp, a wearable sensor startup company that offers the most precise and accurate way to measure core body temperature with a sensor that can communicate directly to a smartphone. Health applications include fertility detection, early disease detection, sleep disorder recognition, and more.
Yet along with her scientific passions, Costantini feels the tug of the outdoors, and wants to help her fellow Coloradans and local visitors fall in love with the mountains the way she has.
“I love riding and it’s wonderful to be able to lead tours for riders of all levels, and to coach riders who are beginners,” she said.
Tours with Sacred Rides Boulder range from two to three hours for beginners to six hours for experts. Group sizes are small, from couples up to eight people. Tours traverse stunning, often empty trails along Boulder Reservoir, Marshall Mesa, Golden, Nederland, the Continental Divide, and more.
Sacred Rides Boulder provides a fully-trained and certified guide, rental bikes, gift bags with snacks from local brands, trail map, gourmet lunch or picnic with locally sourced food and drinks — and they even take photos and videos of the riders. Sacred Rides Boulder can even add on other activities such as yoga, stand-up paddle board, massage, and manicure/pedicure. If riders need hotel accommodations or biking gear, Sacred Rides Boulder will arrange it.
If skill levels of riders vary on the tour, more experienced riders are free to go ahead at their pace while riders with less skills, experience, or fitness levels can go slower and be coached by the guide. This especially works well for couples in which one partner may have more experience than the other partner who may need extra guidance and training.
Sacred Rides Boulder even offers fun and active tours for birthday or bachelorette parties, company team-building, and for couples looking for a romantic and beautiful getaway.
*All photos courtesy of Sacred Rides Boulder