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Old 08-23-2009, 05:24 PM   #1
10Cup OP
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Continental Divide Ride August 2009

8/18/09- Day 1- Arkansas to Dodge City, KS
Loaded up this morning and headed for Denver, ran into a few showers but nothing much. Made it to Dodge City, KS where we got to enjoy the smell of cattle processing plants….ugh….room was good though and so will head out in the am on into Denver where we will unload and park the truck and trailer at relatives then head north to Montana on the 20th.


8/19/09 – Day 2- Dodge City, KS to Col. Springs, CO
Got into Colorado Springs about 1pm and unloaded the bikes and packed everything back on and made last minute checks. Nice weather about 75 degrees and will be sunny next few days on up to Montana. Will head out early AM on the 20th

8/20/09 Day 3- Col. Springs to Dubois, WY
On the bikes now and anxious to put some miles behind us. Rode hard all day and made it to Dubois bucking 30-40 mph head winds and steep grades the whole way. Normal mileage went out the window and we found ourselves filling up about every 120 miles or so. We had some fourth gear grinds with the wind kicking our buts and elevation between 5,800 and over 9,000 feet. Ended up with a 512mile day. Very tired for sure.

Still we did see some great sights too. Finally the end to a long day and a room to get some rest and a shower.


8/21/09 Day 4 – Dubois, WY to Wise River, Mt
Today would be a little easier with only about 366 miles to roll up.
Found a lot of construction and resultant delays today but made it into Wise River, MT. by 4:30.
Rode through some beautiful country even though it was on pavement.



The Grand Teton national park and mountains are always fantastic.


I like the town of Jackson Hole, WY too.. as long as you don’t have to stay there, it’s quite expensive but great little town for sure.

Found a room at the Wise River Club, oh and yes it is the only hotel in town.

No air conditioning either but a nice shower, good food and cold beer.….was very hot in the room until later in the evening. Got to park my bike under the owner’s private awning too……

Here are the days stats

Tomorrow we start out on the actual Continental Divide trail!

Lee and Burt met up and headed out to camp so decided to split up for the rest of the trip. Here on I'll be on my own. After the dust I encountered the first day on the CD ride I was glad that I was.


8/22/09 Day 5 – Wise River to Near Yellowstone, WY – Camped out
Got to test my camping gear for the first time, have had it for a long time but never put to use until today. Worked well and after a long day in the saddle again rolled up 311 miles in the dirt as I rode out of Mt, through ID and into WY. Very fun day with lots of differing terrain and outstanding vistas along the way.

Montana..













Lots of very nice ranches too, this is the “Canyon Ranch” and is top drawer to say the least.

I stopped in Dell, MT. for gas and food before again heading South toward Yellowstone.



Out of Montana and into Idaho..



Entering Wyoming......love those bored hunters....


The other side of this water gate..


Major forest fire here, I see the renewal already starting with new trees starting to show some green.

I cruise on down the Western side of Yellowstone and end up in the Southern part to camp for the night at camp flagg.

I ask about rooms....nope but got some cabins.....how much.....$196 for the night.............how about camping...oh, yeah there $26.....sounds good.
I set up not far from the showers and food....


Later on I had a guest stop in to check out the "new guy"....any food bud?

I turn in early and had no problem getting right to sleep. Thought I might since this was my inaugural camping deal.....I will say this is a hell of lot of work but I slept pretty well all things considered.

8/23/09 – Day 6 Yellowstone to Pinedale, WY -164 Miles
I got up at the crack of dawn and broke camp (sounds easy but is a lot of work….especially getting everything down to the smallest size like I had it so it fits on my bike)
Was on the road at 6:50am and rode on South East. After about an hour I stopped for breakfast at a Dude Ranch….hey it was right on the way and they had hot Coffee per the sign…
Sure enough, this young lady fixes me right up with a short stack and coffee.
After some food I felt much better and headed out again.
Little did I know that this view was going to become a more common sight.

Then it clears up some and I enjoy some more beautiful vistas

Oh, yeah and then there was this to keep you looking every chance you get...


Rode some roads today that were deep gravel with heavy water ledges making it a “full time job” just keeping the bike under me. I made it to Pinedale about 12:30 when the rains came….

looked up at the mountains I was heading for and they were socked in so I got a room and worked on the ride report. Forecast for tomorrow doesn’t look much better but “PM” thunderstorms may mean if I leave early thirty I can make some good mileage…….
Wish me luck, more as it happens.



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Old 08-23-2009, 05:38 PM   #2
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Nice



Waitin' for more!

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Old 08-23-2009, 05:50 PM   #3
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Me, too! Can you identify the road that had the nasty gravel? I hate gravel.

Also, can you comment on the Yamaha's long-distance highway performance? Colorado Springs to Dubois, Wyo, and then to Wise River, Mont., is one helluva highway haul on a 250.
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Old 08-23-2009, 06:01 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by byways
Me, too! Can you identify the road that had the nasty gravel? I hate gravel.

Also, can you comment on the Yamaha's long-distance highway performance? Colorado Springs to Dubois, wyo, is one helluva haul.
On the gravel, once you jump off 287 in WY and head down to Pinedale, WY you will have your hands full BUT there is so much other out there that is just beautiful if you don't mind some hard ridding it is worth it!

My bike runs interstate speeds no problem and once I opened up the intake and exhaust with aftermarket slip on then added the fuel mapping it really woke the bike up. It is no problem pulling down 500 mile days on this little bike. The rub comes with high altitude and looooong steep grades you have in the rockies. I was fortunate in that I added more fuel across the rpm range and this little bike just pulled like a 650! Rode with a KLR all the way no problem. I'm sure he could have outran me if he wanted to but I was able to cruise 65-70 even at 9,000 feet. Loaded down with two weeks gear and full camp gear as well I felt it was extremely good. I am more than pleased with it.
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Old 08-23-2009, 06:08 PM   #5
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Thank you. I have a friend who is considering that bike.

Sounds like Union Pass Road is where you encountered the gravel. I drove it on four wheels a few weeks ago, and noted that ... and the mosquitoes, which were unbearable at that time.

Enough of that ... more RR! I can't wait to hear about the leg from Pinedale/Boulder to South Pass and across Wyoming.

Pouring rain here in Idaho Falls, not too far from Pinedale. I'll be thinking of you ... hoping you don't hit too much rain and mud hereafter. Holler my way if you need any assistance.

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Old 08-23-2009, 06:28 PM   #6
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Rain

Thanks, rain is coming down in buckets here too, hate to see that cuz I know it will be challenging enough without mud and water to navigate.

later
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Old 08-23-2009, 07:34 PM   #7
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Great report 10Cup! I'm happy to see you made the long run north up the slab from the Springs so smoothly.

Looking forward to following the rest of your trip!

-JD
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Old 08-24-2009, 07:04 PM   #8
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Old 08-24-2009, 07:15 PM   #9
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The ride continues

8/24/09 = Day 7 Pinedale, WY to Steamboat Springs, CO. 371 Miles
Woke up around 5am and started to get going, was a little worried about the weather and what the roads might be like after the heavy rains of yesterday and last night.
Very cool this morning with fog to top it off so had to be pretty careful early morning. I was delighted to see that the sandy roads were all but dry, no dust and good traction.

I kept a close eye on this build up as I was heading right for it but missed it just to the south.

Right away the landscape started to get interesting

but since it was open range cattle were always close by and many staked out their “spot” right in the middle of the road.
Pronghorns were everywhere too; saw literally hundreds of them by days end mostly in herds but with an occasional buck off by itself.

Sunrise out on the prairie was a welcome and beautiful sight as it burned off the early morning fog and added some welcome warmth to the day.

I rolled into Atlantic City, WY mid morning and it was very much asleep. Neat buildings and history though.


Then more endless miles out on the prairie, these roads were a blast and I ran my speed up over 50 at times way too much fun!


I had been seeing foot prints and bicycle tracks in the sand for miles as I left Atlantic City and sure enough I come up on four guys and a gal that were hiking all the way to Mexico on the Continental Divide. Not sure what they were drinking but from the looks of things it was starting to wear off…..seriously they said they were having a great time. They snapped my picture as well.


Next I run up on three mountain bikers they too were on the Divide and were going to Mexico. Two of them did not stop but I did visit with “Bruce”, nice guy and obviously in great shape.



Later in the day I would pass yet one more mountain biker peddling away.

I gas it and enjoy more miles of this sandy double track. After a couple hours of this I stop and attend to business and try to get creative at picture taking with out a tri-pod….not too good.

Just to give you an idea of the openness of this area here is another shot. I was real glad I was not hiking or mountain biking though!

Next up Wild Horses….they were very wary and took off like a cannon shot as soon as they saw me. I saw several herds of them and all took off like mad at first sight.

The road started to deteriorate a bit with a lot more sand.

I was finding that my fuel was getting pretty low and just as I hit the interstate for the short jog into Rawlins, WY. I spot another motorcyclist by the side of the road…out of gas. Big cruiser said his other two riding partners would miss him and come back he was well…hoping. I looked at the GPS and it was 5.6 miles to a fuel stop and so I told him that I would look for his Goldwing and BMW riding buddies there, if not I would bring him back some fuel. Sure enough they were not there so I filled up and headed back to help the guy, just as I got there they were pulling away…oh well an extra 10 miles to help a fellow biker was no big deal.

When I pulled into to gas pump I had 226 miles on my GPS and took 3.1 gallons of gas in a 3.6 gallon tank….almost had to break out my two MSR bottles I keep in my sweet cheeks seat expander, best $39 I ever spent!

Got a bite to eat and then fueled up I again headed South. Rolling around a corner I see this…open range is or can be very dangerous..

I ride on another hour and come around another curve and am awestruck by what I see.. Aspen trees, standing tall like soldiers. What a sight.

I have been lucky today missing all the many rain cells in the mountains and see I may still get wet as I see what is across the way.

Then I come up on Battle Mountain, WY (not to be confused with Battle Mountain in Colorado on the TAT). Interesting history and great vistas too.


Next I hit the WY/CO border and the views again start to change.

Welcome to Colorado.
I roll into Steamboat Springs, CO. a tired puppy after 371 miles today.

Got a room and some food, checked over the bike and took a shower. If everything goes well tomorrow I hope to make Salida, CO.

Stay tuned……
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Old 08-24-2009, 07:24 PM   #10
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This outstanding report, sir!

How bad was that sandy stretch? Cause you any trouble other than the usual?

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Old 08-24-2009, 08:31 PM   #11
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Nm

Looks like you are headed quickly to NM--be aware that it has been raining in norhern NM and Brazos Ridge (south of CO border across highway 17 south to El Rito and Cuba to Grants could be well--muddy). Just be prepared. My post of the CDR from this month can be found at the link below (updates are scattered thru the posts as I did them as I rode) if you need something to give you a feel for those areas when they are wet. Ride safe.
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=493140
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Old 08-25-2009, 04:25 PM   #12
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mud

Quote:
Originally Posted by AKASY
Looks like you are headed quickly to NM--be aware that it has been raining in norhern NM and Brazos Ridge (south of CO border across highway 17 south to El Rito and Cuba to Grants could be well--muddy). Just be prepared. My post of the CDR from this month can be found at the link below (updates are scattered thru the posts as I did them as I rode) if you need something to give you a feel for those areas when they are wet. Ride safe.
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=493140
Yes! Thank you, that is my intended route for the 26th so will be on the lookout for mud. I read your report great job!
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Old 08-25-2009, 05:29 PM   #13
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CD Ride Day 8

8/25/09 – Day 8 Steamboat Springs to Salida, Co. 249 Miles
Got up and checked the radar, 40% chance today but looked like I might be able to miss the rain as it was just moving out of my intended path to Salida.
Morning was very nice and the sun came out for a beautiful sun rise over the mountains in Colorado.


Roads were much more technical today and the average speed was way down as was the total mileage. But great roads and good to have a little more difficulty too. Biggest problem was “BOVINE”.seems they had camped out on the roads this morning and would take some careful negotiation to get around them.

After an hour or so I came to my first of two water crossings of the day, this one was deep. Water was over the header of the engine and I noticed the change in the exhaust note as it covered the header. Made it through ok and was on my way again.


Roads became much more technical now with steep ascents and descents along with ruts from when ranchers had traversed them when wet. Had to really stay on my game as they were very narrow over the mountain and going off the side would end my trip for sure.

Got into Breckenridge, CO. mid morning and the views were magnificent! Got up over 11.5K In altitude as well.

Came across this old railroad water tower from the 1800’s on my way over the mountain.


Then the roads turned into fast gravel and I pushed to make time. Great fun again of course as I negotiated them.
Ran across more mountain bikers on my way into Salida and the roads narrowed and became very steep with constant tight switch backs coming down the mountain into Salida. I stopped by "Fat Tees" but they were closed for three days....no T Shirt I guess.

Got a room at the trusty Circle R motel, some good Mexican and did necessary maintenance on the bike.
Tomorrow I might be able to hit New Mexico but will be a very long day if I do.

More as it happens.
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Trails of the West 2011 Moab/Western TAT 2010 Continental Divide Ride 09 Route 66 Ride SPOT Tracker
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Old 08-25-2009, 06:13 PM   #14
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Subscribed. Great ride, really enjoying it. I'm interested in your windscreen. I'll bet that helps on the long paved sections
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Old 08-25-2009, 06:30 PM   #15
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Wr

10 Cup,
Nice ride, thanks for sharing it. I clicked on this report because I hope to do the CD ride myself sometime. Tomorrow I plan to purchase an 08 WR250R if the bike checks out as advertised. Your input has been timely for me thanks. Can you give me the low down on the windscreen?
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