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Old 09-08-2010, 06:56 PM   #151
LittleWan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnderTheX
Hey man thanks for the comment! There will definitely be more cool pass pics, lots of Imogene because the weather was amazing at that point.


We did Black Bear pass lol and when I was posting the picture I looked at it trying to figure out where the hard part was. I figured it was off to the left but I couldn't be certain but now that you mention it I do believe it is not visible from that location. It is a strange feeling when you are looking at a distant trail or mountain in real life, sizing it up and wondering what it will be like to conquer it. For me finally looking at Black Bear Pass eased some of my worries because it looked like the majority of the switch backs would be easy... its one thought that helped me get over the pass when the going got rough (foreshadowing )
I tried blowing your pic up (screen capture) to get a better look and I still can't tell (too grainy). I guess you need a Colorado expert to tell you for sure.

Are the bridal veil falls visible in that photo? I couldn't tell. If you are facing the switchbacks, those steps are kind of up and behind the falls, right?

I was trying to compare that section you photographed with the photos I took (to look across and see if the vantage point makes sense) but I realized that I don't know exactly where you were taking your photos (We didn't know about Imogene Pass ).
SO, I've got that goin' for me.

Oh, I sound just completely insane and obsessive, don't I?
yeah. Sorry 'bout that. Must. Know. The. Answer. Now...

Okay, can I have a 20 million dpi copy of that photo so I can enlarge it and examine the details with my magnifying loupe? Just kidding!

I'll just sit quietly now and enjoy your beautiful photographs.
Your pretty ride report deserves a nice bump anyway...
P.S. I'm enjoying the words, too. Not just the pictures.

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Old 09-08-2010, 08:42 PM   #152
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleWan
I tried blowing your pic up (screen capture) to get a better look and I still can't tell (too grainy). I guess you need a Colorado expert to tell you for sure.

Are the bridal veil falls visible in that photo? I couldn't tell. If you are facing the switchbacks, those steps are kind of up and behind the falls, right?

I was trying to compare that section you photographed with the photos I took (to look across and see if the vantage point makes sense) but I realized that I don't know exactly where you were taking your photos (We didn't know about Imogene Pass ).
SO, I've got that goin' for me.

Oh, I sound just completely insane and obsessive, don't I?
yeah. Sorry 'bout that. Must. Know. The. Answer. Now...

Okay, can I have a 20 million dpi copy of that photo so I can enlarge it and examine the details with my magnifying loupe? Just kidding!

I'll just sit quietly now and enjoy your beautiful photographs.
Your pretty ride report deserves a nice bump anyway...
P.S. I'm enjoying the words, too. Not just the pictures.
Hi Kelly, thanks! I hope these pics answer our questions, I am really impressed ya'll did this stuff two up! I look forward to reading your experience out there!


Here is a link to the full sized picture (right click and save link as):http://enderthex.smugmug.com/Motorcy...98_JfUi4-O.jpg


I marked up the picture so you can see the points we are talking about. The falls are on the right and I think the pass and the steps are just out of view. I looked through the rest of my pics I didn't upload (tons of em!) but didn't find a better view...




I got onto Google Earth with my tracks and tried to find the same pictures and label the area. Sorry for the poor quality but I hope it shows the area.


This one I tried to get from the same spot I took the picture... "the tunnel" is the spot we are standing at










Here are our tracks over the two different days of riding Imogene (on the left) and Black Bear. You can see how Imogene runs with regards to the valley.








This pic is from further away showing how Imogene runs from Telluride, it literally shoots right out of the city!


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Old 09-08-2010, 08:49 PM   #153
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Continuing on Imogene Pass, things start getting even more loose and I hang on for dear life bouncing over the rocks. I make it to a resting point at the Tomboy Mine and take a look back... You can see the trail in the mid right of the picture. The weather was clearing up, we couldn't ask for a better day!









Chris is taking a long time catching up to me and I am getting worried... There are a couple tourists up here to talk to though. We soon start to talk about his Harley and my riding experience and how nuts we are to be up here. This is a picture of their rented Jeep. Seems anyone can get their 4x4 fix up here with a cheap Jeep and some trail maps. Good guys though, we will see them later (if not sooner) in the trip.



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Old 09-08-2010, 08:57 PM   #154
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My concern about Chris is not unfounded... he shows up after a while with a broken shift lever! I know the road we just traversed was very rocky and "cliffy" so I am glad it wasn't worse. Turns out he was super lucky and go shot by a rock into the solid part of the cliff and not the other, more spacious, part.


Chris! I know you have helmet cam video of this stuff!



For the record... my BMW has steel levers which bend and can be bent back into place instead of snapping like these aluminum parts. Also, I carried all 4 spare levers with me at all times. Chris had to learn to shift with the back of his boot on the spiky stub.

Off the record, I still like Chris' bike and I prob would be riding one if I had more leg length, but don't tell him that! I just had to mention the lever thing because Chris still jibes at me for the legendary "BMW reliability" the less fortunate F800s have been experiencing in the forums.



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Old 09-08-2010, 09:41 PM   #155
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnderTheX
Hi Kelly, thanks! I hope these pics answer our questions, I am really impressed ya'll did this stuff two up! I look forward to reading your experience out there!


Here is a link to the full sized picture (right click and save link as):http://enderthex.smugmug.com/Motorcy...98_JfUi4-O.jpg


I marked up the picture so you can see the points we are talking about. The falls are on the right and I think the pass and the steps are just out of view. I looked through the rest of my pics I didn't upload (tons of em!) but didn't find a better view...



Hi Oliver,
THANK YOU! Oh, thank you so much for going through all that trouble (satellites and everything ).

I'm sure you were thinking, "Who the hell is this annoying person and how do I get him/her out of my freaking ride report?!"

Okay, I had the placement of the steps right (in my head, at least), I just don't know the names of anything. So the Bridal Falls are the ones near that house. Gotcha. I thought the waterfall that everyone poses in front of was called Bridal Falls, which doesn't even make sense (and that's why it was the Summer of STUPID).

After looking at your tracks, and seeing (and understanding) how you went UP Imogene and down Black Bear - wow, BigWan and i are sooo envious of you and Chris! What an awesome ride.
And THAT'S why it pays to plan ahead...we are finding out we missed all kinds of good stuff.


I'm really sorry to hear that it didn't go...um. Smoothly. I don't want to ruin things for the rest of your readers, but we'll all be tuning in to find out what happened!



p.s. I'm so slow, it will be a while before our RR gets to Black Bear - I can PM you when I get to that point if you don't want to slog through the rest :)
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Old 09-08-2010, 10:14 PM   #156
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleWan
And THAT'S why it pays to plan ahead...we are finding out we missed all kinds of good stuff.
Haha, very true but I often wonder what I am missing if I don't charge ahead like you two did and find some roads much less traveled (or never traveled at all). Kudos!





Probably a lot more of this...







Coincidentally this is the next picture in my series. Shortly after we left the Jeep tourists we plowed our way through the rocks towards the pass. There are several areas here where more adventurous 4x4 drivers have carved playgrounds in the rocks and I have trouble determining which paths to take. At the point where I drop the bike I am turning around to take the correct path and drop the bike in an embarrassing spot.

I stand there laughing at ourselves and Chris comes over to help me pick up the bike. We are over 12,000 feet now and both relatively tired, from this point onward toward the actual pass is where I recommend to have a buddy while riding to help when needed. The Jeep tourists were joking with me while we waited for Chris that their rental guy said "On Imogene Pass when the going gets tough it only gets tougher".





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Old 09-09-2010, 12:14 AM   #157
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...breathtaking !!

-colorado is on my list!!!

-greets to you texas guys !!!!!!!

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Old 09-09-2010, 05:14 AM   #158
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EnderTheX
I have to get some bike shots! I love seeing my bike in pictures, it places you there without your own mug in the shot.



Haha! 'Courage the Cowardly dog!' I wish BMW would do something about their disfunctional headlight styling.

Great report though!
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Old 09-09-2010, 07:37 AM   #159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by izom
...breathtaking !!

-colorado is on my list!!!

-greets to you texas guys !!!!!!!

peter
Hey Peter, thanks! I think everyone can find awesome stuff in Colorado to ride, you just can't miss!



Quote:
Originally Posted by tremor38
Haha! 'Courage the Cowardly dog!' I wish BMW would do something about their disfunctional headlight styling.

Great report though!

I don't know about Courage, I was thinking more Milo from "The Oblongs"


Courage:



Milo:




I kinda like how the F8 was designed with functionality in mind instead of fashion. Of course it's generally accepted that Germans have a strange sense of industrial design when it comes to practicality!
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Old 09-09-2010, 08:26 AM   #160
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Well, here is where the going got tough and we felt the full force of Imogene Pass. Above 12,500 ft we were tired and out of breath and the terrain became very loose. In the next picture you see Chris pulling his bike up and the previous Jeep Tourists heading up to help us. Chris had only dropped his bike because I just had a nice fall on a critical section of the trail.

At this part I was clawing my way up on the right side (you can see my tire tracks) to avoid the large rocks on the inside. Much to my surprise the trail took a sharp left with more rocks and I couldn't find a line. I stupidly stopped to try and find a line and immediately started sliding backwards. My front brake was locked and I couldn't get on my rear brake to help stop the bike (I must have been panicking because I didn't let off the clutch until it was too late). My wheels were inches away from the edge of the small cliff and I was seriously worried about going over, I dumped it on the left side on purpose to stop sliding further back.

Now I was on the hill, looking back at Chris and the Jeep guys, breathing heavily and wondering how we were going to continue. They helped me get the bike up and gave me some tips on how to approach the steep corner. I resigned to power walking the bike up around the corner (I think that was the only time I had to power walk the bike during the trip) and waited for Chris.



I have to give props to Chris for putting up with my lack of serious riding skills and my hesitation in these situations. He never expressed frustration or threatened to continue without me (unlike some other people I have ridden with). Without his help and persuasion I may not have continued to complete trails such as Imogene or Black Bear... and I am very glad we did press on!

I do most of my riding solo so I am always thinking about having an "out". A close call on my NM/TX trip taught me a valuable lesson... don't go through obstacles you can't come back over. My route had taken me into a military zone I wasn't allowed to cross and I was trying to re-route myself in the middle of nowhere. I saw a major road less than 2 miles from my location and took a small dirt road in that direction. It rapidly deteriorated and soon I was bouncing down ledges thinking "It is really close I can make it!". The road ended where the valley caved in and I spent almost two hours back tracking the 1/2 mile in the dark... dropped the bike three times, loading and unloading it etc. But with a riding buddy we can go anywhere since the two of us can pull the big bikes over obstacles and help each other out to reduce fatigue.









This is what met us at the top of the hill... it is hard to see how big the rocks are. Chris went ahead to scout it out and I soon followed his line, letting my suspension do its thing. I had hit many large rocks so far and the tires and tubes have held up great!



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Old 09-09-2010, 11:26 PM   #161
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OK I have some catching up to do!

I pretty much have the same thoughts Oliver does on Telluride. It's very touristy and PACKED with people. ...if you need a t-shirt though, its the place to go; there must have been 30 t-shirt shops with in 10 feet of where we had lunch. I reckon they're priced pretty reasonable if the ole supply and demand thing really holds true. We were not t-shirt impaired however, so we never checked.

We rode around in the rain at .0002 miles an hour yielding to pedestrians and cross traffic looking for food for a while. As Oliver mentioned every food joint has a line damn near. We hit the back streets hoping for holes in walls or fast food, but nothing jumped out at us. The result was slight satisfaction with smelling up a fancy place- though a 60 dollar tab made sure they had the last laugh.

I had noticed prior to lunch that my side stand (which is AFTER MARKET, meaning KTM did not install it, meaning KTM is still perfect and I am to blame) was VERY loose, like 100 feet away from shaking the bolt that holds it loose. So because its an after market bit of kit, its got an allen head that isn't covered by the KTM tool kit. This resulted in a quick purchase at one ACE hardware and applying the correct foot pound of torque :P At that point, I figured i'd give it a quick once over and found a few other lose fellows here and there. All of these loose fellows were also last tightened (or not) by me, no fault to KTM. KTM is still perfect (if you're keeping score).

We were a little worried about the Telluride hipster police kicking us out of town for mucking up their main drag with tools and bike fixory. We drew a bit of a crowd from the t-shirt tourists. I must say, I felt pretty badass sitting there on the curb dirty as hell playing with my dirt bike while fathers of 3 drooled from the side walk behind us.

OK its time to go up Imogene... This is where the video Oliver mentioned starts, since I can't (or didn't...) talk you through the video, I'll write up my take on going up, kinda overlapping the video and filling in some holes. Since its late o'clock and the video is still uploading, you get to read first and watch later.

So as the video starts I had stopped to turn it on to make sure I could hear the *beep* and Oliver had kept going, so I scoot a bit to catch up.

Once caught up with Oliver we quickly get out of the trees on to some pretty serious cliffs. This is the longest most sustained cliffage we'd been on to this point. Most cliffs had been kind of fleeting, but here, we have steady cliff. Its pretty interesting to look over and see nothing. Early on Imogene doesn't throw too many ledges or tricky technical bits at you. The technical stuff seemed more spread out, especially compared to Engineer Pass. Engineer's technical section was fairly short and compact section over all. Imogene spreads technical bits out along its length. I'm not sure which I liked better.







Near the end of the video you'll see me have a silly fall. Oliver seemed to favor looser rock and keeping his tire spinning (always spinning!) instead of the larger amplitude (generally) fixed rocks on the inside. I liked the larger amplitude stuff, as it was fixed and allowed for a little wheel up action here and there. On the section where I fall I found myself on loose bits nearest the cliff (outside) and wanted the firmer section inside. As soon as I got up on the hard stuff my front wheel hit a loose premature baby head sized rock a little less than square. This caused my front wheel to bounce up and into the mountain side. I simply stepped off the bike and it was a light fall, a fall not unlike hundreds before it... except the hundreds of falls before weren't into rocky Colorado mountains. The tip of the shifter made contact with a rock and broke off. Fortunately there was enough shifter left that I could downshift easily and upshift with a little effort using my heel.

Not shown in the video is a large amount of cursing and a small tantrum before I figured out the heel shift solution :P We still have DAYS worth of riding left! I must be able to shift!

As I took off from my fall I quickly noticed my old "electrical" problem from day 1 had returned. Hell! I limp to a small flat area where Oliver and a few jeeps are waiting. We small talk while I figure out what on earth could be going on to cause my bike to stumble. I decide to remove the electric cables that I thought had previously been the issue from the equation with my knife. This didn't solve the issue, it was never electrical...

Quote:
Originally Posted by child
A Long time ago...
...I top off my tank with a splash of gas (thats some literary foreshadowing for you high brow folk; bmw owners, Im looking in your direction... ) and hit the trails. I hit all the steep bumpy inclines that caused problems yesterday with fury and vigor, problems solved! Huzzah! I'm shocked that it was electrical...
So this next section of Imogene (still not on video) was rough, mentally on me, and physically on Oliver. The ledges are getting bigger and clean lines more technical. My bike keeps stalling, and Oliver has a few touch and go moments. All of this stress is amplified by our new jeep friends who are now behind us waiting every time we stop. They're not in a rush, but their friendliness and desire to be helpful isn't working on me.

Oliver's biggest moment is going up a steep section with a few small ledges at the top, he hesitates 3/4 to the top, stalls and starts sliding backwards. All I can do at this point is stop and watch helplessly as my vertically challenged buddy struggles to keep the bike balanced in this awkward slide. After 6 feet or so of sliding, Oliver decides a little controlled horizontal action towards the mountain is much better than a lot of uncontrolled horizontal action away from the mountain; he dumps it mountain side. I immediately lay my bike down, it was too steep for any sort of kickstand action, and run up to Oliver to make sure he's OK and to help pick up the bike.

Oliver is now officially shaken, rightfully so. In his mind, he almost just fell off a cliff. His head was doing the Oliver patent pending "what am I doing here" head shake.

Watching the fall from behind, it was one of those "rookie mistakes" where you choose slow and steady over throttle and throttle. I watched him slide, and yes there was a cliff (really more a ~45 degree loose rocky mountain side), but he was a couple of feet from the edge; if he had fallen away from the mountain I don't think he would have gone over. I tried explaining that to him as he regained his composure, but for some reason he wouldn't listen, go figure :P At this point our jeep buddies pull up again and ask if we're OK. We are, Oliver is just coming to grips with if he should go on or turn around. The jeep guys used to ride dirt bikes in their younger years and start offering line suggestions. I start to get a little annoyed here, because I'm not entirely in agreement with them and I think they're kind of flustering Oliver's analytical mind as he's taking the situation in. Oliver decides to power walk the bike up and over the ledges, I walk along side to help balance and we get the 800 to the top of this little section successfully.



I walk back down to my bike I start back to thinking why oh why is my bike stalling. I pick my bike up and try turning the fuel from normal to reserve. I've still got more than half a tank, but maybe the pickup is clogged? I'm a little worried the bike will sputter as I go up the section Oliver just fell on and run into a similar issue. I start the bike, rev it real good to clear out any gremlins that may mess with me and up I go, bouncing over the ledges... waiting for stuttering... nothing happens! I cleared a rough section, no hickups! Fuel problem solved!!!

We tackle some more technical stuff, with the video camera off (I've forgotten it in all the drama). I remember it on just in time for the final charge up to Imogene Pass!!! I flip the video camera on and we're gone.


In retrospect, what I think (not confirmed yet) happened was fuel pickup issues in the tank while on a steepish sustained and bumpy climb. Flipping to reserve simply kept the fuel pickup buried while on normal it'd suck air from time to time as fuel was near the rear of the tank being sloshed.
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Old 09-10-2010, 06:49 AM   #162
LittleWan
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Originally Posted by child
I had noticed prior to lunch that my side stand (which is AFTER MARKET, meaning KTM did not install it, meaning KTM is still perfect and I am to blame) was VERY loose, like 100 feet away from shaking the bolt that holds it loose. All of these loose fellows were also last tightened (or not) by me, no fault to KTM. KTM is still perfect (if you're keeping score).
Haha, we had that happen with our rear axle nut and we didn't notice it until Moab
Those Colorado rocks really bounce everything loose!

I was reading your post to BigWan. He laughed and said that KTM is far from perfect, but you can lose half your bolts and still beat a BMW
(sorry, Oliver)

Really enjoy reading all your thoughts and feelings as you go through the passes. Hope you were able to shake the friendly jeep people once you got through the tough stuff

Great job, guys - I love that you didn't quit when the going got shitty.
Make rocks your favorite!

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Old 09-10-2010, 06:57 AM   #163
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Haha, thanks littlewan (and bigwan). I'm pretty sure that KTM is perfect... let me get back to you on that

Video is done uploading! Here you go!

>
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Old 09-10-2010, 07:25 AM   #164
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Excellent ride report!
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Old 09-10-2010, 08:01 AM   #165
LittleWan
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That video made BigWan late for work - we're kicking ourselves for missing Imogene!

You guys look good
nice helmet cam quality, too.

Thanks for taking the time to make and post the vid.
Man, don't you miss colorado??
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