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Old 03-26-2010, 09:32 AM   #181
Secondtear
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esteban
Geek does not like the plains of Colorado, he is new here and still mesmerized by our high peaks. However, the plains have great riding, deep canyons, untold secrets and are steeped in history. Besides they are lonely and oh so solitary - time stands still out there.
Besides, you can't find painted turtles walking around the mountains.
When's the next Plains ride?! I'm in.
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Old 03-26-2010, 02:06 PM   #182
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I love the Alpine Loop area! I spent a few days there way back in 2001 in my Jeep. Have always wanted to go back. Black Bear was closed, but it was probably just as well, considering I was solo at the time.

Would love to go out there on a dirt bike!
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Old 03-26-2010, 08:48 PM   #183
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CO Riders

To the folks familiar with Taylor park ( I won't say where it is). Where can I find a listing or GPS of nice rides in the area. I am spending 2 weeks at a buddies cabin in Tin Cup. I will have several days for riding in the area. If it is super secret you could PM. I promise to not tell a sole. Except for the ride report after the trip.
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Old 03-26-2010, 10:28 PM   #184
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geek
I'm not spacing on it at all Bill... I'll be putting info about it and I'll be appending that info as I go deeper into Dinosaur on my 950 this summer than I got doing 80 miles of dirt around there on my R90 last year I can't wait!

I'm going to make an effort over time to make sure this report includes bits of all of Colorado (some of it will be written while I'm off exploring Montana ).

That said.. I appreciate your input!
I've not ridden Buffalo Pass and will pop over and check it out sometime soon.
Geek,

Let me know when you are going to Steamboat/Craig area. I would love to ride with you again and explore that area. I also have a condo there that we can crash at if not camping along the way. PM me.
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Old 04-01-2010, 03:14 PM   #185
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Considering the plethora of pm's I've received and the great feedback posted in this thread... I think it would be pertinent to change my tactics and make this thread "more useful".

I'm going to plug forward adding a new pass's information every few days. I would like to invite all others to post photos and their experiences regarding the specific passes so that there is more than one point of view on what a pass is like.

No egos involved - if you found a pass difficult, please explain why you found it difficult and detail so. For example; I'll likely be calling some routes more difficult than you simply because they have visual exposure and I'm afraid of heights.

Please keep in mind: The goal is not to show off what a great rider you are... the goal is to give someone a clear and fair opinion of what a particular route is like before they use up their (valuable!) vacation time on something they may or may not enjoy.

With that in mind, please do not 'spam up' this thread and post all of your vacation photos to this thread.

Only add photos that are relevant in demonstrating what it is like to ride a certain pass.



For example the photo FZ1 Matt posted of his KLR on Pearl Pass is brilliant and really helpful - it shows you that indeed, Pearl Pass is not for the meek!

If your photo doesn't add something of value, please save it for another thread.


Perhaps with multiple people's input(s) we'll build a better rounded view of what each route is like.

So we're currently on
MOSQUITO PASS.

If you have photos or thoughts on Mosquito Pass, please speak up!

(and for those who come to the thread late and add info, I'd request you clearly title your information with the Pass's name at the top of your post in bigger letters like the size=4 mosquito pass above for example.)


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Old 04-01-2010, 03:46 PM   #186
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Geek, cool way to show off CO's level of moto-awesome. I'm glad to hear you're getting so much positive feedback regarding this thread. Also nudging high on the awesome scale is your level of practical information for timing, terrain, and acclimitization.



In my opinion, inmates, we should make this the forum's "go-to" Colorado thread. Pics, pics, pics, you FF's; the Fourteener passes, the grasslands out near Pawnee, the North Sand Hills, the canyonlands we share with Utah, if you've snapped it then post it up!
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Old 04-01-2010, 03:53 PM   #187
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The San Juans

featuring:

The Alpine Loop

Ok.. back to my personal favorite recommendation to someone coming to Colorado who wants to experience the mountains!

The San Juans.

The San Juans are in the South Western corner of Colorado:


...and are famous because of their beauty, but also because of their accessibility. Due to the region's mining history (those mountains are damn near hollow! ) the area is quite accessible by historical mining roads (I use the term roads loosely..) etc.. and a particular part of the San Juans known as the Alpine Loop is legendary within Offroad Circles. You will see LOTS of jeeps when you are in this area, and this is a good thing because I know more than a few buddies who have had a jeep help them in this area when they've had problems

The Alpine Loop is roughly within the area between Ouray, Silverton and Lake City.


Generally speaking I refer to the San Juans, the Alpine Loop, etc all as the same thing.. because when you are down there you play all over the place, but technically its not probably true but I'll still refer to it this way as others make the same mistake.

As we've already talked about, several of the most spectacular passes in Colorado are in the San Juans, including:
Imogene
Black Bear
Engineer
Cinnamon
Hurricane
California
Corkscrew
Ophir
etc...

Here is a REALLY ROUGH map to use a quick reference to get your bearings before heading to the San Juans.
Click here to zoom in: http://topgeek.smugmug.com/Adventure...24_52vH7-O.jpg



There is basically ONE road going through the San Juans - it is paved - US550 known as the Million Dollar Highway (it has an interesting history itself which you can look up on wikipedia). It runs from Ouray to Silverton and then on to Durango.

I know the folks who live south of Silverton will protest that there is some damn fine riding down there too.. but I'm going to stick to the "primary routes" that are north of Silverton.
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Old 04-01-2010, 04:03 PM   #188
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So looking at the map above.. the ONLY thing you could get a car down is the green line in the middle. It is paved.

It is probably the only thing you would want to consider on a street bike as well (though more experienced riders could get a street bike over a few of the passes like Ophir).

As you can see there are 4 primary towns in the area.

Telluride.
Ouray.
Silveron.
Lake City.

Animas Fork is a GHOST TOWN and has ZERO facilities (other than being a really neat place to take photos.. but watch for nails on the ground = flat tires!)

Animas Forks is not a town where you'll find gas



If you are from the east coast.. you need to keep in mind how deserted this area is.
I don't think there is a single traffic light in any of these "cities" or in this entire area (except maybe in Lake City if the bridge is still under construction and the temporary one is still up ).

NEVER PASS UP GAS. There is NOT a gas station around every corner.
Ouray: Has a couple of gas stations. I believe at least one has pay at the pump so you can get gas 24hrs.
Silverton: Has one gas station. I believe it finally has pay at the pump so you can get gas 24hrs.
Telluride: Has one or two gas stations with pay at the pump for 24hr gas.
Lake City: Has a couple of gas stations... I'm pretty sure one of them has 24hr gas.

Someone local please correct me if I'm wrong on gas station status!

Each of these towns also has a very distinct feel and personality.
I would highly suggest spending a little time in each.

Ouray: Is an "alpine town". They call it "america's switzerland" for a reason.
Silverton: Has an "old west" mining town feel. If you have ever watched Deadwood you could imagine it being filmed here.
Telluride: Is a resort town. It has a private jet runway. Tom Cruise and Oprah both keep homes here. It has a world famous ski resort. The real estate market STARTS over $3 million.
Lake City: As Hayduke says: "Lakecity is the ATV capital of Texas" Its a small town with a lake in it and it seems like the biggest business in town is ATV rentals (for folks wanting to explore the Alpine Loop!).



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Old 04-01-2010, 04:30 PM   #189
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You Can't Get There From Here...

We've all heard the famous line... but in the San Juans it is darn near true! I want to stress one more time how rugged this region is for people planning to visit from places like Texas or New Jersey who are used to being able to go from A to B. Look at this rough map I drew showing the paved routes (i.e. the way you get a car or a gold wing) from one of these towns to another:



Telluride and Ouray.
They are 9.7 miles apart as the crow flies.
To drive a car from Telluride to Ouray takes one hour and nineteen minutes and is a 49.6 mile drive!

Ouray to Lake City.
It is 19.4 miles as the crow flies.
To drive a car from Ouray to Lake City takes 1 hour and 47 minutes over the shortest route of 30.2 miles.
OR
If you go the route north out of Ouray, you have to go 137 miles to cover those 19.4 miles! = 2 hours and 47 minutes.


Why am I stressing this point?
Because you may need it!

If you were to run into bad weather up high, or into technical difficulties, keep in mind the distances involved for the road-way alternatives and make sure you have enough gas!

Last year (or was it the two years ago?) we were coming down Black Bear Pass into Telluride when MtnDragon (from California) broke his subframe on his KLR. He had to ride all the way out to Placerville, over to Ridgeway, etc etc to get back to Lake City where we were camped - it was an all day ride for him to get back on pavement where as we just went back over the mountains.

10 minutes after this photo was taken Mtn Dragon (right) snapped his subframe and ended up having a really loooong ride back to Lake City *around* the mountains.


Last time I'll say it (maybe ) - NEVER leave one of these towns without filling up for gas.
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Old 04-01-2010, 08:02 PM   #190
Brown Dog
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A BIG Thanks Geek for your fantastic info & pics. I sure wish i could come out
& ride in your area. Maybe in a couple of years
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Old 04-01-2010, 08:58 PM   #191
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Great thread my friend! Lettin' everyone see what Kansas is like....

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Old 04-01-2010, 10:30 PM   #192
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I think this is what he's talking about. Thats my parents house in the top middle. In all honesty, this is about 5 minutes from Kansas. The only thing that changes is the roads get much better.


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Old 04-01-2010, 11:57 PM   #193
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Old 04-02-2010, 07:20 AM   #194
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Keep it Up!

Geek...great info and idea on the thread. I'm speeding up my retirement plans just to move there and ride based on everything in this thread.
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Old 04-07-2010, 07:06 PM   #195
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