The campsite at Iron city was a good one. No bear, and we already dealt with the bad electrical storm and since everything was wet, we decide to keep it as a base camp and ride a loop out of there. We start by visiting the ghost town of St Elmo
Then we were off to conquer Tincup Pass. No pictures on the way up. I believed we could get over it, since I had in a VW Bus some 20+ years earlier but was warned against it again and again. After the the miscalculation on Mosquito Pass I was feeling gun shy. It was now a week later and countless miles of the best Colorado had to offer in riding, I was with a strong group of riders, that's not to say that advtenn and Rueben were not solid, we were just fresh and unacclimated to altitude when we were riding together. They are strong riders as well and you shall see in future posts. Roland, Scott, Brandon and I threw caution to the wind and give it a try. It was challenging but still doable. No dropped bikes and we made the summit in a reasonable amount of time. Passing Jeeps and quad's all the way to the top. It would have been much harder had we tried with loaded bikes.
The way down was a little harder in my opinion. We sent Brandon out as a scout on the KLR and he returned with a favorable report. Down we go.
The above shot represents the worst of it with the exception of one small ledge we all had to ride over. The tiger had more then enough ground clearance to make it. The only bike not to drag if I remember correctly. This is also much steeper then this picture shows.
We make it to Tincup and while waiting for Scott and Brandon, Roland takes this shot of me.
Wait some more. Wait some more. I get a bad feeling and turn around and head back up the trail. I stop a passing jeep and ask if he saw two riders. He told me they were on the side of the road with tools out. Well at least it seemed everyone was OK from that report. I arrive on the scene and find Scott and Brandon, using bailing wire to wire on Scott's auxiliary lights which had apparently rattled off on the decent. Back to Tincup and lunch.
If memory serves me it took us a couple hours to go about 15 or 20 miles. Can't underestimate what these passes hold terrain wise.
From Tincup we head over Cumberland Pass which I had already done, earlier in the trip with advtenn and Rueben, and down into the small but more developed town of Pitkin. Scott elected to take the easy way back to BV because he had ordered a new skid plate to replace the stock splash plate his BMW came with. Forgot to mention somewhere along the way he knocked that completely off and used bailing wire to hold it on.
We decided to ride out to Hwy 50 and then vector off to Marshall Pass and Poncha Pass back to Salida then north to BV and home to our camp. It started raining almost as soon as we started up Marshall Pass. After about 10 miles the road was grease. We had no choice but to turn around and slab back over Monarch Pass to Salida. Even then Roland an I were having trouble keeping the rear tire behind us. Brandon had full knobbies on so perhaps it was not so white knuckle for him.
We made camp and put brandon in charge of starting the fire. No sign of Scott. Still daylight so no problem.