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Old 08-10-2013, 06:09 AM   #31
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Location: between the Ozarks and the Ouachitas
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I left the volcano heading for Raton, NM, when I ran into hail and heavy thunderstorms, so I holed up at a local diner; snuck on up to Trinidad, Co, before it started in again, so I called it quits for the night.
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Old 08-10-2013, 06:50 AM   #32
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Left a little too early heading to Salida up 69; hadn't packed any winter gear, and the wind coming off of the Sangrias was bone chilling, but awesome views everywhere.
Picked up the Arkansas river heading north, a taste of home; a lot prettier up here than back in Little Rock.
Rolled into town around 1100, just in time to run into the Dumas boys; Derek immediately spotted both my fork seals were leaking, so as usual, had to affect a roadside repair.

They have been on the road for over a week and 1800 miles, had experiences with flooding in Kansas, crapped out bearings, and excessive cold and rain, needed a down day for maintenance, so we headed across the pass to Montrose, stopped to explore some side roads along the way:

When we stopped at Monarch Pass, a guy on a Wee was coming down the dirt road from the summit, said it was legal, so we decided to take a run up it. The Nighthawk did great.
Ran into four great guys from Illinois who were having tire issues, so Derek and Steve again leapt into action. Due to the excessive miles they put in, they are both wizards at changing tires and other trail side repairs, so I just get out of their way. I did find it funny that with all of their micro consolidation for this trip, Derek found room for his industrial size shampoo, which we broke out to use as tire lube.
The Illinois guys mentioned that they had lost two of their party to altitude sickness, and by the time that we got everything squared away, I could feel it nibbling away at the edges of my vision, so we decided to skedaddle off if the mountain to the relative safety of Gunnison. There are so many awesome sights west of there that we finally had to limit our stops as otherwise we would never get to Montrose.
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:13 AM   #33
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Dual use Tresseme'! Don't be a hater!
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Old 08-10-2013, 03:08 PM   #34
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That is awesome, bro.
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Old 08-11-2013, 07:02 AM   #35
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Rolled into Montrose cold and tired, seems that this rainy weather pattern is repeating itself daily. We land at my buddy Kyle's house to do some maintenance and recuperation. Kyle is a truly unique individual who shucked the rat race meat market mentality in Little Rock back in the 80's and fled to CO. If "he who dies with the most toys, wins" is true, Kyle gets the trophy; great guy who came through great adversity, went from common day laboror to flight, scuba and firearms instructor, skier, cyclist, biker, ADVer, the list goes on. If your going to hole up for a while, this is the place.
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Old 08-11-2013, 07:25 AM   #36
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Got up the next morning, forgo the maintenance to make a short ride to the North Rim of the Black Canyon. Corporal Goose shows up to lead the way; 74 year Marine, bigger than life, and this cat can ride. He immediately starts talking smack about Arkansas, doesnt seem smart as he's from Mississippi

The Dumas Boys and Kyle take off like a shot around the Rim; I would like to say I was so awestruck by the scenery that my riding was crap, but I just my riding was crap. It wasn't until I cranked up Wetsuit by the Vaccines in my helmet that I found my groove. As some know, this was The Song that Trevor used in his video. Derek hadn't heard it, so I played for him:

We then dropped down in the canyon, cue more jaw dropping please:



Just as we started hiking out of the canyon, the temps plummeted and the wind began to howl; we shagged home, triple digits in the pouring rain with lightning bouncing all around us; the Nighthawk hung with the FJR, but it wasn't purty.

The Black Canyon cannot be captured in pictures, but I tried. Breathtaking.
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Old 08-11-2013, 07:51 AM   #37
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Too big for pictures. Words are not enough to describe it... Imagination in overdrive!
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Old 08-11-2013, 08:01 AM   #38
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Hey Bret, I know exactly how you felt 'cause I've been in the same situation myself: standing there looking at something so majestic, wishing you had a better camera.
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Old 08-11-2013, 10:08 PM   #39
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Got back to Kyle's in time to find a block party going on; a far cry from eating beanie weanies and sleeping in a hammock.

Corporal Goose and the Dumas Boys


Ended the night with bike maintenance on preparation for tomorrow's trip into Gateway
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Old 08-11-2013, 10:40 PM   #40
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The day started with Corporal Goose showing up an hour early, complaining that we weren't ready, then scarfing down all the eggs; had a great time swapping insults, then we headed for Gateway. If I combined all of the last four days, it wouldn't equal the ride through Gateway; as close to a religious experience as I've ever had on a motorcycle. The scenery and roads are so incredible that any mundane thoughts cannot even be entertained, this is a truly a special place.

This is where things turned pear shaped; a truck pulling a trailer was passing on a blind curve, no guardrail on my right, yawning canyon below. I couldn't go right, left meant going into the grill, I held the fog line and prayed. The truck whipped back into his lane, causing the trailer to whiplash even further into my lane, serious injury wasn't an option, I truly thought death was certain... Shot the gap at speed, the shock leaving me sick to my stomach; it was a life changing moment.
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Old 08-11-2013, 10:50 PM   #41
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Rode on over to Telluride; it's crazy to actually see the place I've heard about in bluegrass circles for all these years.

Total of 287 miles today, heading down to Durango and beyond tomorrow... I'm sure glad to be here.
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Old 08-16-2013, 11:14 PM   #42
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Ran south from Montrose down through Ouray to the Million Dollar highway, an absolutely blood pounding road, as most of you know, with scenery everywhere:

Made it down to Silverton, checked out the scene, very cool old town, until the HD crowd rolled in en masse



We then headed back north on 550 just in time to get caught in a cold thunderstorm, which seems to be the pattern of every day since I arrived on Colorado; lightning was hitting all around, heavy wind, low visibility, had my butt in a pucker I assure you. When we stopped at an overlook, I was humbled to see a lady we had passed earlier in the day, climbing the pass on a fully loaded bicycle:

Her name was Heather Anderson, she had written a book detailing her seven years spent riding her bike around Africa during her stint with the Peace Corp, very interesting lady.

Finally ran out of the rain at Ouray when Steve noticed the rear tire on my Nighthawk was wearing quickly, as was the rear on Derrick's DR650, so we hightailed back to Montrose to grab some new skins before closing. They had a sweet little CB500X on the floor, and as I had been considering this bike heavily even before I started this trip, we ended up working a deal; will pick the bike up in the AM.
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Old 08-16-2013, 11:37 PM   #43
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Got up Wed morning to find the Dumas boys packed and ready to point it south towards home; kind of shocking, but I guess they heard Arkansas calling, and it's a long 20hrs on a DR650 back to the delta. I went over to pick up the CB and switch my gear over; Corporal Goose and my buddy Kyle came over to lend a hand and see me off towards Moab.
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Old 08-16-2013, 11:50 PM   #44
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I like riding with good friends but I sometimes love riding alone, especially when getting acquainted with a new bike. I headed hwy 90 across the La Sal mountains towards Moab, and both the bike and the roads were spectacular. The CB yielded 71 mpg on the first fill up with some pretty spirited riding( break in? We don't need no stinking break in!); I think I'm in love.


It was a major change from the greens and blues of Colorado to the reds and browns of Utah; I don't know why the La Sals have such a draw for me, but they do. Hwy 90 is a phenomenal road, tons of switchbacks with non existent traffic so far, and I had it all to myself.
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:43 AM   #45
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Rolled into Moab in the heat of the day on Wednesday; the town has exploded in size since I was here back in 93. Adventure sports and Harley's seem to be the prevailing theme, so I head straight to Arches, a 45 mile loop of perfect asphalt through the most surreal scenery on the planet.

Another uncanny Trevor occurrence here: met two awesome KLR riders from Texarkana who had heard from a mutual acquaintance that I was in the area; they were both aware of Trevor's situation, and had donated... You should too. Shameless plug:

https://www.everribbon.com/ribbon/view/8352



Second time this trip that I've ran into someone involved with Trevor's situation; I don't think it's a coincidence.

The tourists were all congregated in the back of the park, worshipping at the altar of the Arch at sunset, so I had the rest of the park to play in, so I did... The X did awesome in the twisties. No photos, as that would be self incrimination.

Found a great place to hang my hammock, so I did, then rolled into town to grab some grub.

Moab was hopping with foreigners, Basques, Danes, Eyetalians, Aussies, etc, all on vacation; evidently the devalued dollar has made the US an attractive destination. Good times, as I'm not a bashful person; who needs languages? Foreigners be trippin on the short guy with the big mouth, y'all.

Rolled out of the hammock the next morning to this view, finally turning southeast to Durango.
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