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Author Topic: My Two Day Colorado Tour  (Read 1540 times)

Offline Hondo

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My Two Day Colorado Tour
« on: May 27, 2014, 12:07:18 AM »
(November 2008)

November 1st, 2008.

It's warm in Colorado. I have a new bike with new tires, and I wanna ride it. And I set a goal of seeing the San Juan Range of the Rockies this spring.

So I decided to head south with minimal supplies.

There will be lots of pics of scenery with my new bike, as this is my first planned trip with it.

The plan - a 2 day trip, with lunch in Salida, then a hotel somewhere between Pagosa Springs and Durango, Colorado.

On day 2 I'll ride the "Million Dollar Highway" from Durango to Ouray, and then back to Denver.

So here's the route map- it's a thumbnail, so click it to see it full size-

I wake early and roll the 1983 CB1000 Custom outside and let it warm up some. It's about 40 degrees -

On the back is my Nelson Rigg CL-800 Tote/Tailbag loaded with a change of clothes, some tools, my laptop and other gear. If you want to see the review I did on that bag, you can see it here -

So I head south on 285 and head for breakfast in Fairplay. I can always count on a good bacon & eggs meal at The Brown Burro, and I wasn't dissappointed!

After I eat I decide to ride southeast on 9 ( to Hartsel and then to Canon City) for a couple of reasons - I've never ridden that route before, and I want to drop by The Royal Gorge.

I stop and take this pic of the morning view, between Hartsel & Canon City, looking at the back of Pikes Peak -

It's a quiet & deserted stretch, calm & cool.

I end up at The Royal Gorge, and find that it's basically a tourist park. I have no time to play tourist, but I do take a pic of an old steam locomotive there on display -

A couple of pics of the engine when it was working-

In Gunnison -

In Salida -

I call Hayduke to see if he & Tammy are avail for lunch, but the signal is breaking up. At least Duke understands that I'm on my way for lunch. I arrive, show Duke my bike, give Tammy a hug and we head off for lunch.

It was VERY good! (can't remember tha name of the restraunt) -

We look over the map I have & Duke & Tammy give me their views on the route I have planned, with some great insights on what to see.

After lunch I mount up & ride south again.

I wasn't planning on stopping at The Great Sand Dunes National Park, but since I was in the area I decided to check it out.

Here are some pics of the bike & the dunes -

From the dunes I ride back to the west, stopping in Alamosa for fuel and a Gatorade break. From Alamosa I ride through Monte Vista, Del Norte, and South Fork.

The farther west I go, the more beautiful it gets. I stop at this tunnel outside Pagosa Springs for a pic -

It was getting dark & cold, so I pulled into Pagosa Springs to find a hotel. I end up staying at the "First Inn". It has wired & wireless internet, the rate is not too bad (considering that this was the opening day of Elk hunting season and lots of hunters were out looking for rooms too), and the room was nice.

367 miles for the day.

Next door is a Chinese restraunt, so I order up some spicy General's chicken while I unpack & setup the laptop. It was a very good meal, and afterwards I work online some and then hit the sack for the night.


I wake early, not realizing that the clocks were rolled back for daylight savings time. The first thing I do is check on the weather for the day. The current weather for Durango -

I also checked the weather for Silverton, Ouray and the rest of Colorado, and there was a chance for snow (that blue blob on the radr image above). Oh well, I was on vacation and that would make things interesting.

I load the bike and let her warm up -

The hotel sign -

Between Pagosa Springs & Bayfield I see a cool looking formation ahead -

It's called Chimney Rock, more info here -

I continue on and stop in Durango for fuel and breakfast.

From there I ride north on highway 550 (The Million Dollar Highway), and am immediately inundated with astounding views. This route is a must do if you can.

Not far along the highway I stop for some pics-

The highway has very few straight sections and is a joy to ride! I find myself wanting to constantly stop for photos, as there are so many unbelievable views -

This is one of my favorite pics from the trip -

Too many photo opportunities!

Farther along I stop for more -

What a view to the south -

And to the north -

Of course I have to take some with the CB1000 in them -

Another pull-off-

Looks cold up there!

Before climbing up the pass that drops you into Ouray, I see this when I round the bend - another of my favorites from the day-

Coming into Ouray I stop at the Scenic Overlook -

Looking down onto Ouray -

The road leading down to Ouray -

Two more pics from the overlook -

I stop in Ouray and take a break, gassing up & stretching a bit.

I then ride north to Delta, Colorado, and then turn east on Hiway 92, then northeast on 133. This will take me over McClure Pass (8,756 feet) and into Carbondale.

In Somerset, CO there two huge coal mines- here's a pic I took of one of them -

I stopped for pics one more time, as the stretch of 133 from Somerset to Carbondale was a twistie joyride, and I was having too much fun -

At one point I rode with 2 unknown riders, a rider on a GS (with panniers) and a couple on another unknown bike.

I gassed up In Carbondale and then rode to Glenwood Springs to jump on I-70 for the slab ride home. I wanted to make it past the Eisenhower Tunnel before dark, but didn't quite make it. And it actually was snowing lightly over Vail Pass and the tunnel area.

I stopped in Idaho Springs for more fuel and a warmup, as it was probably 25 degrees on the tops of those passes.

But it was a nice 55 when I arrived in Denver.

515 miles for the day, 882 for the trip.

So that's it, my 2 day jaunt around the state of Colorado.

I love where I live!  scheet2

Offline Adventurer

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Re: My Two Day Colorado Tour
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2017, 06:21:40 AM »
Nice! Colorado is one of nine U.S. States I've yet to get out to, despite having some great friends and more recently, a younger brother out there. Looks like some great riding country. Enjoy!

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Offline Wahrsuul

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Re: My Two Day Colorado Tour
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2017, 04:47:43 AM »
Beautiful country.  The last time I was in Colorado, I was driving a 40' van trailer to Cali to get new MREs  Not near as much fun as a bike would have been.

Offline Dan

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Re: My Two Day Colorado Tour
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2017, 07:18:40 PM »
Stunning scenery and beautiful photography. That CB front end is more raked out than I thought. Thanks for taking us along.

Offline Sporto

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Re: My Two Day Colorado Tour
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2017, 09:39:25 PM »
Some very nice photos.  Thanks for sharing.

Offline home4sale2

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Re: My Two Day Colorado Tour
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2017, 10:41:14 PM »
Awesome Hondo!  Great pics.  Thanks for sharing.


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