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Old 08-30-2014, 03:07 PM   #1
humanrace
 
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Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Lots of TWTs have gone to Colorado in the recent years. Hereís another. The only difference is ours is street and dirt. Thatís not much of a difference, but here it is anyway.

Twenty or so years ago, I went riding to Colorado with 6 friends. The ride was one of my top 5 rides ever. For one reason or another, we havenít been back to Colorado together. We have all ridden together over the years, but until January of this year we had not all ridden together at the same time. One of our original 7 had babies, a career, house, etc. and drifted away from the rest of us. He even quit racing. Ryan died in turn 9 at Texas World speedway and has remained with us in memory. We took a group picture 20 years ago and Ryan and the group picture will ride with us on this ride. Hopefully, one of my companions will post the original picture as I gave my copy to Ryanís mom.

Before, we drove to Taos, dropped one tow vehicles at the fire station and the other at my momís house. Street bikes only. This time we drove to Ouray, Colorado and towed 8 bikes, 3 street and 5 dual purpose. We left Bryan Texas Friday after work and drove overnight to Ouray, with a stop in Dallas to pick up a rider and 2 bikes.

Eight bikes, one trailer and a comfy van.


Mark, Phil, Maurice, me, friendly waitress at Dennyís, Ray. Note the FMF shirt Ray is wearing. It comes back to haunt us several times.


We stopped in Durango to get a supply of food and beverages. Food-$8.73, beverages-$99.27. We also unloaded 3 dual sport bikes to ride to Ouray, by way of Lime Creek road and Skyline drive. The second may be the most beautiful short ride in Colorado. On arrival at the campground, we immediately marked our territory.


Our territory in one of its more organized moments


Up early and anticipating French toast for breakfast. Alas, we forgot to buy butter. Cold cereal and pop tarts for breakfast. All five of us re-rode the Skyline Drive on our way to Silverton. Today is going to be nice and gentle to get us used to the Jeep roads. Two of our riders have never been on these Jeep roads and one is riding a new CRF250L that he just purchased. We save the relatively hard ride from Ouray up to California Pass for another day.

This is why I like Skyline drive.


The Million Dollar highway meandering down in the valley.

Flowers and a bumble bee along the way.


The minerís shrine above Silverton.


And Silverton down below


A familiar picture to riders that have followed previous TWT posts. We took the easy ride on 110 from Silverton to the point where this picture was taken.


During our the next few days, some of us would agitate others. My agitation was stopping to take pictures of flowers, rocks, etc.


And, of course the obligatory picture of Lake Como. The young boy in the middle was with his mother. He wanted to pose on that rock and she told him no. I suggested he go with me and she said yes. After we got back she was a little upset because I had not held his hand while getting there.


And one at Engineers pass. Even though 2 of us had been over Engineers Pass many times, we still had a couple of ďturn around, this ainít right,Ē


Iíve seen this house many times. Itís now for sale.


Maurice, Ray and myself went down the trail to the waterfall while Phil and Mark stopped in awe of the alpine beauty above.


Flowers close to the falls. They look similar to Blue Bonnets and there was another kind that looked similar to Indian Paint Brushes.


We continued to Lake City and rode back over Cinnamon Pass to camp. I went to bed at 8:45 and the rest went to town where they gave a heavy bartender chick a hard time. They did convince her to give them some butter so we could have French toast for breakfast.
We did have a crash fest today. I fell, Mo fell, and Phil had to turn around and get a second run at a little hill. Mark says he didnít fall, but he was riding the bike when it fell. Ray complained about street tires on his DRZ400. Heavy chick was cute and got a large tip for putting up with my friends. I know she deserved it.
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Old 08-30-2014, 05:02 PM   #2
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Day 2, Monday
The weather channel has predicted at least a 40% to 80% chance of rain every day for the next week. Other than short sprinkles that didn’t even warrant stopping to put on rain suits, the only real rain came one night. Lots of lightning and thunder, but only about 3/4” of water in a cup sitting on the table.

Everyone’s rear is sore from 100 miles of riding and from the unfamiliar beating they took on the Jeep roads so the consensus is another light day. Me Maurice and Ray decide to ride to the south rim of the Black Canyon on street bikes. We had my FZ1 and a couple of lesser quality bikes that might make the 200 mile ride. The south rim drive is totally paved, unlike the 15 or so miles of dirt on the north rim. Actually, the south rim drive has been totally repaved, with the west side overlayed and the east side sealed and graveled. I took it very slow on the east side. Mark and Phil decide to take the van into town and shop. I felt like I had brought wife and sister with me.

Earlier, we finally had French toast. Everyone ate at least 3 except Mark and he went without breakfast. I guess he had one too many beverages the night before.

Maurice wasn’t particularly happy with some of the lengthier walks, but after we got back his wife told me his blood pressure had gone down 20 points.


Due to the abundance of pictures on TWT, I know that many think the Black Canyon is a lake close to highway 92. It is not. Ray doesn’t seem to mind the 1700’ drop behind his perch.


I joined Ray.


This is as close to the edge as Mo was inclined to go.


Looking down.


They traveled over a thousand miles to see the canyon, but this little girl was more interested in the sand.


Happy to be here.


Same canyon, different rock and view


This doesn’t look too bad


Until you see this


I don’t know if this is considered national park humor or is intended to inform our intellectually declining population.


This one is just for Mark.


When we got back from the Black Canyon, Phil and Mark met us at camp for some Frito Pie. Afterwards, we went into Ouray for some ice cream before going for a short ride to Yankee Boy basin. I forgot my camera. Phil and Mark stayed in camp for more rear end rest. They would need it for tomorrows ride over Imogene and Ophir.

Ray’s DRZ went rubber side up today and I believe he holds the record for the longest roll down a hill. The bike did not roll, only Ray. We went to the hot springs, but they were closing early today at 8:00. It was already 7:40 and they wouldn’t give us a discount for 20 minutes so we went back to camp and plan on returning tomorrow. Another light day planned for tomorrow. Probably Minnie, Maggie and Clear Lake, with another run, this time with a camera, to Yankee Boy Basin if we get back in time.
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Old 08-30-2014, 05:19 PM   #3
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

very nice
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Old 08-30-2014, 07:07 PM   #4
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Loving it. I want to hear about Mo falling off the cliff.
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Old 08-30-2014, 08:13 PM   #5
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

It wasn't a big cliff. I have video. Just like Mark, he says he didn't fall. He does admit to being on the bike that fell.
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Old 08-30-2014, 10:21 PM   #6
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Looking across the canyon. There is supposed to be two dragons in the face of the cliff. Use your imagination.
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Old 08-31-2014, 06:52 AM   #7
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

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Old 08-31-2014, 12:13 PM   #8
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Quote:
Originally Posted by _RG_ View Post
+1
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Old 08-31-2014, 01:26 PM   #9
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Day 3
Going through my notes, I suddenly realize why we decided on another easy day. Last night it rained most of the night, especially up on top of the mountains. It was even raining a little while I made breakfast. We stood under an EZ-up until it stopped. Off to Minnie and Maggie or until it gets messy. It never did. We had a great ride.
Mark and Phil led once we got off the pavement. Mark later told me that the ride along wet pavement of the million dollar highway was the scariest ride he had ever had on a motorcycle. He did have full knobbies on his CRF450. Anyway, they didnít know where we were going and drove right past the turn to Maggie Gulch. We waited on them to come back. I guess I have mellowed in my old age. The rock crusher at the top of Maggie was the highlight of the day

The little waterfall shortly after leaving the main road


The rock crusher. Probably 150 years old


Does anyone else think these look a little like Indian Paint Brushes?


The fields were alive with flowers. Yankee Boy has the reputation for flowers, but I believe Maggie won the beauty contest this year.


We rode up a little used jeep road and found this mine. Ray went inside with an LED flashlight. He turned around when he saw 2 lights shining back at him.


The road to Maggie gets easier toward the top. Itís just the opposite of most of the Jeep roads.


This one is just for Seth.


Top of Minnie


After Minnie, we rode to our first campsite from 20 years ago. We camped beside Animas Fork. Twenty years ago, the guys were a little upset at me leading them down 15 miles of dirt road. We were on sport bikes with a Suzuki full dresser thrown in the mix.
Our reunion campsite with Ryan joining us.


20 years ago. Phil, me, Ken, Mark, Ryan and Maurice. I wrote in my notes, ďItís not like Ryan is with us, but his presenc is sure felt,Ē The original picture was taken on the next to last day of our first trip. Ray had gotten sick, we divided up his assets just in case he didnít make it through the night, and then he found out his girlfriend was seen with another guy. He had left to return home and missed this picture.

Five of us had the same Jacket, maybe 6 of us. The distributor put them on sale for around $100 and I bought one and sold a couple to customers to pay for mine. Later they went all the way down to about $50 wholesale and I sold one to nearly everyone. Three of us are still wearing the jackets.

A little side canyon. This is where I fell again. Mo also fell. My riding buddies count it as a fall even though I wasnít on a bike. Their fall doesnít count because the bike went sideways but they remained upright???????


Back to Silverton where the T-shirt reads, ďI got pickled at the Pickle Barrel.Ē We opted for a beer and sandwich at another local pub.


End of trail riding for today. We had to shop around Silverton to let the effects of 3 pitchers of beer be diminished. We rode back to camp and all went to the hot springs. I needed it much more than the rest. My ďcrashesĒ had nothing to do with my need for massaging warm water. I havenít mentioned it, but I fell off the trailer while loading bikes last week and my left ankle is swollen. It was motorcycle related so I guess that makes my 3rd crash. The swelling would bother me for the entire trip, with me not being able to zip up my boot by the end of the first week. Iím a fairly staunch believer of ATGATT, but I admit I wore tennis shoes for 7 or 8 days.
4 days down 10 to go
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Old 08-31-2014, 02:31 PM   #10
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Trip of a LifeTime!
5 of the best guys to road trip with!!!
Dennie ... THANK YOU!!!!

Mark Tuttle
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Old 08-31-2014, 03:59 PM   #11
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

It's not going to be 20 years before we go again. We have to go in less than 10 because all 4 of you are going to have kids at Texas A&M in 10 to 12 years.
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Old 09-01-2014, 10:41 AM   #12
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

I see two of the group are riding CRF250L Honda's, I owned one and rode it in Colorado and for it's size was truly fun to ride. I did sell it the first of this year, now I'm wondering why I did, thought I wanted another 650 DS I guess.

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Old 09-01-2014, 11:32 AM   #13
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Fantastic!
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Old 09-01-2014, 12:36 PM   #14
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Quote:
Originally Posted by trainman View Post
I see two of the group are riding CRF250L Honda's, I owned one and rode it in Colorado and for it's size was truly fun to ride. I did sell it the first of this year, now I'm wondering why I did, thought I wanted another 650 DS I guess.

John
Mark is on a 450, Maurice is on a 250L, the rest are on DRZ400s. The only time Maurice was at a disadvantage was on the pavement or really tight switchbacks.
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Old 09-01-2014, 09:22 PM   #15
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Day 4
The plan is to ride Imogene and Ophir. Ray and I have ridden them before. Every time I ride Imogoene, it seems to get harder. This time would be an exception. Maybe itís because I was not riding double like the last 4 times or maybe itís because the water crossings werenít as deep. I did fall 2 times. Once I was going around a blind switchback, expecting to use the exit as a berm when suddenly there were 2 kids on a 4 wheeler right where my berm was supposed to be. I tipped over. The second time, we were going up a really steep section for quite a while when I saw Maurice and Ray wrestling with Mauriceís CRF250. It looked like it was leveling off so I stopped. The bike went into reverse and I havenít practiced reverse riding. Another tip over.

The first indication that things are going to be interesting. This is a very dangerous curve. Everyone is standing at the edge of the road. Why would anyone speed while surrounded by all of this beauty.


I donít know the circumstances involved, but this is proof that one needs to be careful around this blind curve.




The famous overhanging rock. This is the proverbially straight up on one side and straight down on the other.

We rounded up an elderly woman to take our picture at the top.


The road down from Black Bear and Bridal veil falls.




I seem to have lost two and a half days worth of pictures. Iíll skip to Saturday when three unlucky riders leave for home and two STOP STOP STOP My wife just came in and asked, ďWhat are you doing?Ē
ďWord processing.Ē
ďWhatís word processing?Ē
ďWhat?Ē And I burst into laughter.
After looking at my computer screen, ďDonít tell anyone, OK.Ē
Back to the thread.
and two lucky riders get to stay for another 6 days. We hauled 3 street bikes, but Markís wife had to go on a business trip and he had to be back in Texas by Wednesday afternoon. Remember the kids I mentioned earlier. Two darling young ladies that need him home. If they were my daughters, I would have wanted to go home also. Maurice and I head to I-70 by way of hwy. 92 on my FZ1 and his Interceptor.
Blue Mesa lake is as high as I have seen it in years. Itís only about 4 or 5 feet low.


The lake that should never have been built. It covers the start of the Black Canyon and is sometimes confused with the north rim of the NP. We had originally planned to ride to the south rim and then to the north rim of the Black Canyon NP and to camp at the north rim campground. Since we took a light day and rode to the south rim earlier in the week, we decided to motor right by the north rim and thereby skip the 15 miles of dirt road.


We stopped in Crawford and I ate the worst Navaho taco I have ever had. Pie was good so Iím giving them an 8 out of 10 rating.


We thought we could ride up to the mill above Marble, but the road was way rougher than my FZ1 needed. I know that Iím going to crash it, but I want it to be on pavement. We turned back. We did go up to the quarry that gives the town its name. This house and 60+ acres, right next to the quarry is for sale. The sign said, ďShown to pre-qualified buyers.Ē Since Iím fairly certain that Mo and I didnít qualify, we took this picture instead.


Marble is so cheap there that they line the outside of curves with it. This is where the marble for the Washington Monument and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was quarried.


Interstate highway 70 in the background. This portion of the highway through Glenwood Canyon is the most picturesque interstate in the US. At one point, you can look right and see the traffic going the opposite direction.


Start of a little hike. Itís only 1 mile, but over a thousand feet of elevation gain.


The hike is pretty though.


It does get steep.


Looking back. The I-70 is back there In the canyon.


The reward. Hanging lake.






Tired, winded, but glad he came.


The source of the water in hanging lake. Iím fairly certain that the source is the reason hanging lake was formed.
Spouting Rock


Another view of I-70 from the feeder road.


We were tired so we decided to spend a night in a motel if we could find a reasonable rate. Glenwood Springs is the town that all the millionaires moved to when the billionaires kicked them out of Aspen. It would be a long shot to find a reasonably priced room. The first one we stopped at was recommended to us by a convenience store clerk. It looked way out of our price range, but I asked the price anyway. The desk clerk said he only had an economy room left and it was clean but not pretty. We took it. His definition of not pretty was a small place on the ceiling that had been repaired but hadnít been painted. $69 for the room with 3 queen beds.
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Old 09-01-2014, 09:29 PM   #16
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Next up is Aspen, Independence, cabooses, Norwegian on a rideabout, phone booths and Montana. If I find the missing pictures from Ouray, then Aspen and the Norwegian will have to wait.
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Old 09-01-2014, 09:57 PM   #17
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Great write-up!
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Old 09-02-2014, 08:13 AM   #18
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

Awesome pics Dennie. Keep them coming if you got em.
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Old 09-02-2014, 09:47 AM   #19
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

I have more of the street ride and will probably find the rest of the Ouray pictures.
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Old 09-02-2014, 07:00 PM   #20
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Re: Just another ride in Colorado, 5 friends for life

I guess I should mention something about the roads we are traveling. Of course the Million Dollar Highway between Silverton is awesome as everyone knows. It is also extremely dangerous. Highway 92 from Sapinero to Crawford is also a great road that is lightly traveled with good scenery and curvy roads. Highway 133 through McClure pass has great scenery with many curves, however most of the curves can be taken at over 70 MPH and the speed limit is 45 to 55 MPH.
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