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Old 10-09-2010, 07:21 AM   #1
arkridergc OP
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Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado

Finally a ride report!

Well it has been 1 month since Apostle2 and I left for our Silverton and Taylor Park, Colorado adventure ride. I have tried in vain to post half of this report 3 times now only to have the session time out and lose everything. ARRRRGGGH! So, this time I’ll just do it in broken up chunks. Let’s hope the new ADV format will cure this glaring little glitch.

Dave and I both returned to very large work loads and just have not had the spare time to sit down and actually put into words all that we saw and rode. I suppose we were there at the height of the riding season for the area because in the interim, there have been several great ride reports from the area with gorgeous pictures to boot. So, while we took about 500 pictures or more between us, many will just be more of the same of what you’ve already seen if you have been reading any reports at all from this area. That being the case, I’ll try to concentrate on the stuff I haven’t seen in other posts and try NOT to post a ton of redundant pics of stuff you have already seen. That may be a futile effort as the place was just awesome and each of us have a slightly different experience to tell. So here goes:

The Two Brothers Train left on September 3rd, 2010 about 12 hours later that planned.



It was an adventure from a bad dream just getting out of town. First off, the microwave in the camper decided to die, the spare tire that had never been on the ground decided to separate at the tread and we weren’t even out of town on the interstate and got roped into changing a blowout on a lady’s car while we were stopped to tighten the bike straps. Needless to say the trip started on a stressful note.


Seems Uncle Sam is on board with the 4x4 crowd!




Cool stuff from our first fuel stop. The Batboat was wicked but I couldn't think of anyplace around here that the big one would go. Eufala is big but I don't think it's deep enough.

We arrived at the Silver Summit RV Park in Silverton at about 7am just as the sun was coming up and we were thunderstruck by what we saw. I had lived in Colorado Springs 30 years ago but I had never seen the likes of the San Juan Mountains. To top that off it was cold and I was wearing cargo shorts!






If you're in Silverton, they serve a great burger here.


We hurriedly set up the camper and tried to get a little sleep. Dave (Apostle2) couldn’t sleep and took a little run up toward Animus Fork. It was here that he discovered that his re-jetting job done at 450 feet didn’t quite cut the mustard at 10,000 ft. He spent most of the next two days trying to find some workable settings
For that matter, my WR250R had quite a bit of altitude sickness which surprised me. I had gathered quite a few settings form the WR250R forum on ADV and felt sure one would be perfect. After 4 days, I eventually went right back to HighFive and Krabill’s suggested settings plus 0.5 on Acceleration and cruise which seemed to haul my 235 lbs plus gear around adequately but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little disappointed at the loss in power at high altitudes. Maybe that Athena 290 kit is in my future as well.

Apostle2 had done a super job of gathering routes and tracks and getting them on our Garmin Rhinos but after purchasing a map form the Silver Summit Rv park office, we found out that lots of our intended trails had been designated hiking or otherwise off limits to motorized vehicles. We found the same issue at Taylor Park but that is not to say we didn’t get some superb riding in.










Crystal Lake

He stood locked up here for 10 minutes. What was he thinking?









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3 rides in 1 weekend, Mt. Nebo State Park Arkansas
Two Brothers on Two50's
Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
'09 Yamaha WR250r, '08 Harley Davidson Road Glide

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Old 10-09-2010, 08:08 AM   #2
EnderTheX
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Awesome pics! Looks like you guys had good weather. Iiif I lived as close as you do id be there every other weekend!
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Old 10-09-2010, 08:34 AM   #3
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More stuff

We rode most of the Alpine Loop knocking out Black Bear Pass the very first full day of riding. Being above the tree line so much of the time really makes you appreciate the grandiose nature of this area. Pictures really are nice but they cannot adequately convey the spatial sensation of seeing for lord knows how many miles away and, as we all know, they don’t express how freaking steep a piece of trail can be. I’m not gonna’ kid you here, the steps on Black Bear just above Telluride gave me some trepidation.








Is that a picture of grace and skill or what?!!

Oh hell, who am I kidding! You couldn’t have driven a needle up my butt with a sledge hammer! I rode much rougher sections of trail later throughout the week and felt proud to do so but, riding Black Bear right off the bat was, in hindsight, pretty drastic. It was actually THE one piece of trail that I was most anxious about in the weeks leading up to the trip and it was actually my call to ride it early just to get it out of the way.

Pics form a little earlier on Black Bear




Dave on a scrappy little section.













The way I figured it, if I could ride Black Bear, I should be able to ride almost everything else we had planned for the week.

Watch this! One handed!


Oh crap this handle is slipping!


I can’t let my little brother show me up.

Man, I gotta' ease up on those Krispy Kremes.

The right hand turn you MUST make!


The reward.

Black Bear actually turned out to be a good primer for several challenging trails to come. Namely the trail up Flag Mountain, portions of Corkscrew Pass, and Hurricane Pass up high was really just big flat, sharp rocks that sort of looked like a path (quite steep I might add) but since the whole mountain top was made up of rubble, we often just had to run and gun aiming for what looked like the smoothest path. It did eventually lead over to California Gulch. This is one big and deep valley to be all above tree line!

Imogene Pass was beautiful and had its share of challenges especially the steep down hills on loose rubble.




Looking at Black Bear from Imogene Pass.




I believe these passes were all maintained to serve as access to the mines but now, since the mining has all played out, they are a big source of revenue to the local areas.


I'm sure glad someone is keeping them up.









I’m surprised they didn’t call this the “Ace of Spades” mine.


This ice probably never melts.












Right about now I’m beginning to get a real appreciation for our U.S. Postal Workers.








Someone’s playground!

It was on the lower section of Imogene Pass where I managed to knock a hole in the side of my engine and loose half my oil 25 miles from the nearest town Ouray. Luckily, we had gotten the idea to carry “Quicksteel” with us from other inmates on ADV for just such and occurrence.









As luck (or divine intervention) would have it, a preacher and a buddy came by in their Jeep and sold me a quart of oil. Thanks Mark and Matt. I’ll try to pay it forward. I’ve ordered and received and new stator cover but the patched one is still holding just fine. Quicksteel is some fantastic stuff. I wonder what the world would look like today if the pioneers had had stuff like that.

We found our way thru Byrd Camp and on to Ouray without incident and rode slab home. I had brought exra oil and filters so the folks at Sivler Summit, who also rent and maintain Jeeps, allowed me to use thier oil drain bucket and clean up stuff to change my oil. The fellow in the Jeep had engine oil and I thought I could feel the clutch just a little grabbier so I felt better having motorcycle oil in the bike. A big thanks again to Mark nd Matt and the folks at Silver Summit which is a pretty nice campground by the way.

BlackBear, a busted crankcase, no freakin' air to breath, and a hot water heater that flooded the camper all on our second day in Colorado! This was shaping up to be an adventure all right. We went to bed whipped.
Gary
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Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
'09 Yamaha WR250r, '08 Harley Davidson Road Glide

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Old 10-09-2010, 08:49 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnderTheX
Awesome pics! Looks like you guys had good weather. Iiif I lived as close as you do id be there every other weekend!
I don't know brother, we live in central Arkansas and it took us 20 hrs to drive it. You're probably closer than we are. We met scads of folks from Texas at both parks.
Gary

P.S. Your pics from the area were great. We were going to try and ride Bolum PAss but ran out of time.
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Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:02 AM   #5
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Great trip report

Enjoyed the photos of the steep and rocky roads and scenery of Colorado. Been there several times (riding a horse and hunting). It is a great area. Next time I'll try to take the bike.

Liked your triple vehicle setup. I have a receiver hitch on the rear of my toy hauler/camp trailer (goose neck hitch), but in Oregon they don't allow triples on the roads unless it's over 25K pounds and the driver and vehicles are commercial licensed.

later, Dave
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Old 10-09-2010, 10:23 AM   #6
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Next segment

We Got up Tuesday morning and got some breakfast in town at the Bear Cafe or something like that. It was good both times we ate there. We headed out on Hurricane Pass which is actually Hwy 110 out of Silverton but it turns to dirt pretty soon. It was cold!

Hand warming stop on the way up Hurricane Pass.

The beginning of Hurricane Pass.

It eventually turns into this rubble pile.

Somehow they got cement up here. I seriously doubt they did it with a cement truck.




Hurricane Summit



Lake Como from Hurricane summit.

Lake Como frm California Pass summit.





This shot was taken from hill above Dave in the last pic.

Looking down into California Gulch.


I’m guessing this was probably a one or two man mine operation when it was active. I’d sure hate to winter up here.







Old soldier.


This one I have seen posted before mpst recently by EndertheX but it impressed me so here it is again.







From California Gulch we headed up on Engineer Pass.




We stopped to watch a guy and his two dogs work sheep for a while.

How far can you see?


More ice.


Apostle2 climbing back up from getting a picture of a waterfall.

The first words out of his mouth were: “It’s not worth it!”


Curious native art.

My idea of Dual Sport nirvana!






Another old soldier.


We ate at this spot in Lake City.

The food was great and plenty of it.

Like Silverton, Lake City isn’t a real big place but it’s got a couple of gas stations and several eateries. A nice little oasis when you need one.



We headed out of Lake City toward Cinnamon Pass that would take us back thru California Gulch then over Corkscrew to Hwy 550.











Now this was decidedly different!
The rusty cinnamon color is awesome!


If memory serves me correctly, I believe this was on the way up to the Ophir Pass summit. Does anyone know what mineral is coming out of that mountain. It stained the creek all the way down the valley.







We rode to the summit of Ophir but the rain was coming in and we decided to hightail it back the way we came. With this we ended our riding in the San Juan Mountains for this year.

From here we headed back to Silverton and and got the bikes loaded on the trailer just in time to miss the rain. It rained hard and the wind started rocking the trailer pretty big. We jumped up at 2:30 in the morning to roll the awning up before the wind ripped it off. We headed for Taylor Park in a drizzle and pretty much did no riding wednesday.

Taylor Park write up coming next.
Gary



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Well they say time loves a hero, but only time will tell......Little Feat
3 rides in 1 weekend, Mt. Nebo State Park Arkansas
Two Brothers on Two50's
Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
'09 Yamaha WR250r, '08 Harley Davidson Road Glide

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Old 10-09-2010, 10:28 AM   #7
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Tripple setup

Quote:
Originally Posted by smilin jack
Enjoyed the photos of the steep and rocky roads and scenery of Colorado. Been there several times (riding a horse and hunting). It is a great area. Next time I'll try to take the bike.

Liked your triple vehicle setup. I have a receiver hitch on the rear of my toy hauler/camp trailer (goose neck hitch), but in Oregon they don't allow triples on the roads unless it's over 25K pounds and the driver and vehicles are commercial licensed.

later, Dave
Thanks Dave. I don't really like the triple setup. I hate not being able to back up and this WILL get you in a jam sooner or later. Don't ask how I know. I'd rather have a toy hauler but I also have a Polaris RZR and Grizzly 660 and, for the life of me, I can't figure how to stuff them both in a 8ft x 12ft box so the triple is my only option at the moment.
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Well they say time loves a hero, but only time will tell......Little Feat
3 rides in 1 weekend, Mt. Nebo State Park Arkansas
Two Brothers on Two50's
Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
'09 Yamaha WR250r, '08 Harley Davidson Road Glide
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Old 10-09-2010, 11:06 AM   #8
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Enjoyable RR and photos of my favorite area to ride. Got to get back out there next year.
Very interesting tires you used on the Yamaha WR; Trials Universal tread pattern. I used them on my off road bikes for three years while living in Arizona. They handle just like the trials bikes; lower the air pressure and they will hook up on most any surface.
You pretty well described how most of us have felt while riding/sliding down Black Bear Pass. My riding buddy said "come on; it's as easy as eating ice cream". When I made it past the treacherous section; he commented "like Rocky Road"!
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Old 10-09-2010, 12:38 PM   #9
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Nice pics!
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Old 10-09-2010, 07:38 PM   #10
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Taylor Park section

On Wednesday we travelled from Silverton to Taylor Park and I have to say that I was a little reluctant to leave the Silverton area as there were a couple of passes we didn’t get to ride but upon arrival, I quickly came to realize that Taylor Park is a kind of Mecca for the ATV, UTV, Jeep and Dual Sport crowd. The Taylor Park Dream Ranch is like a little town unto itself. They have a trading Post with gas and diesel. They rent RZR's and 4 wheelers. They have a RV park and also rent cabins. There is a nice restaurant and Taylor Resevoir is right there. During June and July, the reservations are being made a year and 4 months in advance. Since we were into September, we called the night before and scored a pull thru spot! Travelling durign the school months has its advantages.
In Silverton, even though the streets were dirt, you could not ride any unlicensed vehicle on them which meant you had to tow to or dry camp at the trailheads. At the Colorado Dream Ranch in Taylor Park, there were connecting trails to all the forest service roads that gave you access to Tincup, Cumberland, Cottonwood, Hancock Passes, the Alpine Tunnel, Mirror Lake, St. Elmo, Pitkin and 999 miles of riding wilderness as the lady checking us in said. There were very few restrictions on where you could ride right from your front door. No need to trailer the bikes somewhere to enjoy a beautiful, challenging ride. This is a place I plan to see again.
Right outside the campground, there is a sign that directs you to the town of Tin Cup. The manager's wife told us that there only were two people who chose to live at Tin Cup year round. The winter season was about to start and many of the cabins were being or already shuttered down. There is restaurant there called "Frechies" but it wasn't open the three times we rode through town. That was about all I saw for commerce.





We chose to travel Cumberland Pass where we could catch the Alpine Tunnel trail then backtrack to Hancock Pass. We'd take Hancock over to St. Elmo and then out of St. Elmo ride Tincup Pass back to mirror lake and then on to the town of Tin Cup. That seems like a lot but it is easily doable and without hurrying and missing stuff.

Cumberland Pass was a no drama type of ride but the scenery was nice.

The road starts to climb a little.



This is a heavily used pass. How would you like the job of keeping it clear (or trying to) in the winter? Can you find Apostle2 in this picture?

Yours truly.

Apostle2

The Alpine Tunnel was a railroad passage thru whatever mountain they drilled thru. The railroad shut down in the early part of the century (oh yeah, the 20th century!). Now the tracks are gone and the road bed is used by the off-road crowd.

This was right beside the road. I don't know what it once was but I could see it as a temprary shelter from the rain.

Unless that's a big covered hole under that debris. On second thought, I'd rather be wet!







Can you imagine riding a steam locomotive along this side of this mountain? You can make out the Pallisade wall just before the Fir trees.




We finally arrive.

For some reason, I'm all excited about seeing this tunnel. There was once a large engine house here that burned. There was a guy there stacking and mortoring the walls back up.



He had a ways to go yet.

The tunnel was about a quarter mile walk ahead. I'm willing to make the trek in boots, armor and a jacket. I hope this is good.

The anticipation is building.

You walk past this engine roundabout on the way to the tunnel entrance. It was used after the engine house burned down.

We're almost there. Wait for it...

And there it is! That's the most underwhelming thing I've seen all day. I guess the ride up was the highlight.

From here we rode back down to where Hancock Pass takes off north toward St. Elmo.
More to come.
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Well they say time loves a hero, but only time will tell......Little Feat
3 rides in 1 weekend, Mt. Nebo State Park Arkansas
Two Brothers on Two50's
Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
'09 Yamaha WR250r, '08 Harley Davidson Road Glide

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Old 10-09-2010, 08:51 PM   #11
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Hancock Pass, St. Elmo and Tincup Pass

After leaving the Alpine Tunnel we backtracked a bit to the southern trailhead of Hancock Pass. We didn't get a lot of pictures of this trail because it was a zinger of a ride. The trail had all sorts of loose babyhead rocks to embeddeded boulders, holes, tight switchbacks, and steep inclines. It was a blast! Once you got moving, stopping to take pictures was the last thing on your mind. Dave and I were both amped up and winded by the summit.




As it turned out, this prepared us for Tincup.


Somewhere past the summit of Hancock but before St. Elmo, we passed this structure. I can only assume it is part of a mine structure but sure looks like it could fall any minute. More likely, people will be saying the same thin 20 years from now.


We had intentions of visiting Pomeroy lake but...
we found these instead.

I bet we could have easily made it on motorcycles but we were warned that the authorites were serious about their road and trail restrictions so, we just headed on into....

the big metropolis of St. Elmo.



There was all kinds of contruction type of activity going on and a general store but I couldn't tell if it was open. We didn't spend a lot of time here and found our way to Tincup Pass.



I had not heard much about Tincup but I can say that it takes your full concentration much like Hancock did. We ran into a couple at the summit on a 4 wheeler who took our photgraph. They had just come from mirror lake which was the direction we were heading. We mentioned how we were enjoying the challenging riding we had just done and they told us of a 14,000 footer called Mt. Antero just north of St. Elmo that was the same kind of challenge. The tracks for Mt. Antero went into the GPS's that evening.


Here's one of the tamer sections of Tincup heading down to Mirror Lake from the summit.

Mirror Lake

Lots of people fishing.

From here we rode on toward the town of Tin Cup looking for a singletrack trail called "Timberline". We had GPS tracks for it but could not find the trail entrance. So we gave up and planned to get on Timberline off of Cottonwood pass tomorrow or the next day. We never did because of time restaints but we did find the trailhead off Cottonwood Pass. Maybe next time.

We decided a hydration/snack break was in order and since "Frenchies" wasn't open for the second time, we dug into the emergency stash.

See what I put up with.

From here we headed back to camp and had a meal at the "Nuggget" (I think that is the name of the restaurant at Taylor Park.


More to come.
Gary
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Well they say time loves a hero, but only time will tell......Little Feat
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Two Brothers on Two50's
Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
'09 Yamaha WR250r, '08 Harley Davidson Road Glide
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:41 PM   #12
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Clear Lake actually.

Quote:
Originally Posted by arkridergc


Crystal Lake


He stood locked up here for 10 minutes. What was he thinking?

Correction, this would be "Clear Lake".


I had multiple thoughts firing erraticlly through my mind like If I went for a swim would I freeze before I got back to Silverton?...If i peed in it would anyone notice?...If I peed in the water first then jumped in I could possibley make it back to Siverton before freezing...na better not...Why is the wind blowing so much when we're surrounded by mountains...



I kept having random thoughts until I got a headache, that's what happens when I think to much. Then I had one final thought, an epiphany, “Wow, this place is cool!” Ok, let’s go.
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Old 10-09-2010, 10:19 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Watch this! One handed!








While we were waiting for the rental jeeps to get out of the way, I saw that cable and said, "who is the hell would swing on that??"
Now I know!


Great report, you guys!
Quote:
Originally Posted by arkridergc
I have tried in vain to post half of this report 3 times now only to have the session time out and lose everything.
(it's probably too late now, but writing the report in a word processing program allows you to just cut and paste into the "reply to thread" box. Sorry to hear you lost those posts...)
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Old 10-10-2010, 02:04 PM   #14
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RR's in word

From LittleWan
Quote:
(it's probably too late now, but writing the report in a word processing program allows you to just cut and paste into the "reply to thread" box. Sorry to hear you lost those posts...)
Thanks for reading.
In the beginning I wrote this report in Word and inserted the picture links from Smugmug in the Word document. When I inserted it into the Forum "new thread" window, the text tansferred and only the text for the picture links and not the actual pictures. I did not know how to make th pics show up so I went back to the long way.
Gary
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Old 10-10-2010, 03:17 PM   #15
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Flag Mountain

After a fine meal at the Nugget Cafe we decided that we had enough time to ride up to Flag Mountain. Now before we show pics, I had visons of a big rock face with an american flag painted or perhaps someone laid out rocks to form a flag. I wasn't sure exactly but it was something other than what we found. This was an absolute blast to ride and the view was breathtaking.

This is probably my favorite picture of the whole trip not because I'm in and I'm a narcissist but because it looks like you're on the moon or something.




Here's Dave locked up again.

He eventually snapped out of it,

Here's is a pullback shot to give you a better sense of the landscape.





The top of that ledge is about 15 ft wide but you have to cross a little spot there that seems to be about 6 ft wide (with a crown) with a long way down. The flag should give you and idea of how the wind was blowing. Apostle2's bike nearly blew over twice during the photo! It was hard to stand still without the wind causing you to shuffle your feet a little. Turning the bike around to ride off was a walk and push affair definitely.






I don't know the elevation here because I erased the tracks from my Rhino. Maybe Dave has them still.


The main trail up involved crossing one of those narrow ride over barriers designed to limit the trail to ATV's and smaller but there was a pickup and camper beyond that point. I guess they had a key to the gate or something. We also had to find another way around one section of road that has a private property sign along with another that said something like "If you come any further, you'd better be a friend." We found another way. Above is a typical shot of what the trail looked like coming up with a few jumps, small creek crossings and a few loose rubble areas. The best part of the trail up was the last half mile or so. It was a really loose and steep grip and rip section.

That pretty much wraps up the pics we took that day. We got back to camp before dark, which is a good thing as there are free ranging cattle all around Taylor Park. All in all it was a big day of riding and we were tired.

Tomorrow Pike's Peak
Gary
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Two Brothers on Two50's
Two Brothers on Two50's ride Colorado
'09 Yamaha WR250r, '08 Harley Davidson Road Glide
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