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Old 02-18-2013, 06:05 PM   #166
Razzeaux
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Great RR

Sounds like yall are having a great trip. Do you find that riding with a group of 3 is a good number for a trip like yours?
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:22 PM   #167
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I wanted a bigger bike on the long highway days but that was it.

Ya, 3 was a great number. Not to many that we couldn't make a decision but enough to be safe in case of a breakdown or accident.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:44 AM   #168
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In that, it may be that 3 is ideal. In case of mishap of any sort, one can go range / get help or whatever while the other stays with the one whose experienced the mishap.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:21 AM   #169
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Yup, and if you get in really nasty mud or something two pushing is nice.
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Old 02-19-2013, 03:41 PM   #170
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This didn't look good. I watched the storm tracking rather quickly across the plains trying to approximate it's direction. It was moving East fairly quickly, but I wasn't sure how far off it was or if it was moving North or South. Once we saw the storm, Bernie and Shawn dropped back and stopped to put on rain gear. Not having any to don, I sped forward hoping to get to the edge of the system where it would be easier to predict. Approaching the storm I realized just how fast it was moving, and looking at my GPS I saw my chance. The road bent left and if I gunned it maybe I could just sneak by in front before the worst of it hit. Ducking down behind the windshield I twisted the throttle and sped off, passing a truck and a few more cars.
It worked - I had been able to get ahead of one system but was now greeted with another one right in my path. I was able to slow up for a bit and let this one pass in front of me, rolling into Rawlins - high and dry - wondering how Bernie and Shawn had fared.


Looking East

We caught up a few minutes later, got gas and jumped on I-80 West for a 25 mile stint. The weather had all but disappeared turning into a beautiful blue sky day. The wind had died a bit and the heat was a nice change from the cooler humid breeze earlier. Looking ahead though, I knew we were in for some trouble and hoped we'd be heading South long before the next storm came rolling in.


Looking West

No such luck. Off the highway heading South I knew we'd be riding right into it.



We pushed on, approaching the edge of the system cautiously and then stopping abruptly as I saw a good number of bright streaks hitting the ground over a distant hill - thunder but a few seconds behind. Shawn and Bernie caught up and we quickly discussed our options.



This one was coming right for us, lightning and all. Two choices - try to beat it, or get soaked waiting in the ditch for the lightning to pass by. We were soaked either way I figured, so I sped off into the downpour.

I hid behind the windscreen and shot up to 90, not wanting to go any faster on the damp road. I approached the storm and it felt like riding into a wall of water, immediately visibility went to nil and I backed off the throttle but not daring to take my eyes off the road and look at the speedo. As the water flooded the road I became cognizant of the solid strip of hard rubber on the rear tire and made a point of carefully adjusting the throttle. The storm ended as abruptly as it began, and I saw Shawn and Bernie not far behind me.



We stopped for a minute, commenting on how much rain had fallen so quickly.



Blue sky ahead, I hoped with any luck this was the last rain we'd see for the day.



The cruise into Colorful Colorado was relaxing now and I became excited seeing the Rockies off in the distance.







We pulled into Steamboat Springs, picked up some provisions for the night and headed up the long dirt road to Strawberry Hot Springs.



We made camp on a great site by the river, changed, and headed up to the hot springs to relax. The place was pretty busy, and once dark settled in the real party started.
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Old 02-19-2013, 07:23 PM   #171
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Ahhhhh....

Summer rains in the desert. Absolutely LOVE the way the desert smells after a summer rain. The sage brush is great. Good stuff here guys. Keep it coming.
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Old 02-20-2013, 05:57 AM   #172
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Hmm...some of us would not call the last chapter 'desert'. I prefer 'great plains'. Yeah, it's below the 20" line, but also grassland rather than hard desert like where I live now.
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Old 02-20-2013, 08:14 AM   #173
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Haha how about "High plains desert"
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Old 02-20-2013, 09:21 AM   #174
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OK. Actually the official name is the 'Great American Desert' which is the area of the US having less than 20" of rainfall yearly and thus unable to grow crops w/o irrigation.
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Old 02-20-2013, 02:52 PM   #175
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Pardon me, the desert out west here....

...as I was growing up was always refered to as "High Desert" That would be desert with sage brush, usually 3000ft or higher, "Low Desert" woud be that more with cactus such as the Arizona area, either way, I still love the way the desert smells after a summer rain whether it "high", "low", "high plains" or whatever. Just enjoy the ride.
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Old 02-20-2013, 02:54 PM   #176
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Day 18: Colorful Colorado

We awoke not so early the next morning to a beautiful sunrise over the aspen trees. The spring facility was set in the middle of a large grove, quite a scenic spot.



Having stopped for an excellent breakfast in Steamboat Springs, we hit the road late this morning. It sure turned out to be a beautiful day, and we rode East for a while putting more pavement behind us.



Colorful Colorado is right.



Beautiful colors were a nice change from the rain and solid grey - brown of the previous day.



I spotted a shortcut on the GPS, turned off the highway and into the dirt.





It was easy going, but fun to be off the highway for a ways. The road offered spectacular views of the expanse before us.



Back on the road again, heading North past Lake Granby.



Time to climb.



Up we went. Here, we'd reach the highest elevation of our trip.



We were treated to a beautiful view, though clouds began to gather the higher we climbed.



At the summit, it was clear a storm system was moving in fast. The sky East of the Rockies was black, not in the least bit inviting. Hoping to avoid thunder and lightning on the mountains we retreated behind the front range and started heading South on 40. As it does in the mountains, the weather was changing quickly and we decided to push on and make a run for Golden before the rain started.









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Old 02-20-2013, 07:35 PM   #177
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Great stuff! You guys are really getting the full boat experience going from West to East,taking the time to do as much dirt as time permits,its a huge country with lots of variety,might as well check it out! Colorado has so much to see it could be a trip in it's self easily.

(I do feel the DR is getting a bum rap though,Ive done 650 miles a day on my DR on all hiway with stock gearing at 70/80 and even 90mph with out problems,50 mpg most all the way,fully loaded after camping at Death Valley,possibly a fuel filter is getting plugged on Shauns or something is amiss with it,shouldnt just die from bombing down the hiway,maybe dirt in the carb?) Its not like a touring bike but it gets it done.

Carry on,I'll be reading!
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Old 02-21-2013, 09:19 AM   #178
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I don't mean to give the DR a bum rap, it's just not the highway bike the F800 is, just like the F800 isn't the highway bike the 1200 is. Shawn absolutely kicked our asses off road, though most of it due to his skill. Hell, I could barely keep up with him on the road at times and he had knobbies.
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Old 02-23-2013, 07:05 AM   #179
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Part of a new Series -

People of the Road: Part 1 - Strawberry Hot Springs

There we were, Bernie and I, relaxing in the hot springs as dusk approached. Strawberry Hot Springs is a series of rock pools changing from hot to cold heated by natural hot springs and cooled by the river running through. Just as I see an old camper van pull up the driveway the manager of the place comes out and yells to everyone there "It's time! We're closed for the night, everyone out!" I let Bernie know since we were camping we could stay as long as we wished. After dark the rules change a little bit....

We sat in one of the warmer pools enjoying the effects of a small bottle of whiskey and commenting on how it didn't get much better than this. We talked about possible routes and plans for the next day. I noted a glowing dot approaching - moving around the pools and eventually disappearing a good distance away before I got a chance to see it's source. I hadn't thought much of it until, to our surprise, a woman appeared out of the darkness. She disrobed and, in the manner of a good friend sitting down to place their arm around your shoulders, proceeded to sit down in the small space between us. As she introduced herself, commenting on the beautifully clear night I caught Bernie's eye with a knowing glance and the slightest trace of a smile.

We three chatted for a while about the numerous beautiful places in Colorado. We learned that the hot springs is located in one of the largest aspen groves in the sate, and this was about the nicest hot spring anywhere. We talked about the motorcycle trip, where we'd started and were planning to end. She was a teacher, having just left on a road trip around the state before school started up again. The trip would take her to visit her son in Utah for a few days. We learned she hoped to retire soon, hoping to travel more. All the while Bernie and I had been exchanging stifled glances, trying to hide our amusement at the 60 year old woman sitting between us buck *** naked.

Walking back to the tent I looked over at Bernie and said "You would've" with a grin.
Returning the look he replied "At this point in my life?"
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Old 03-18-2013, 07:34 AM   #180
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I'll get back to this ASAP, been a busy few weeks for me!
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