ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Regional forums > The Rockies It's all downhill from here...
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-09-2012, 04:14 PM   #1
stephenws OP
Wishful Wanderer
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Davenport, IA
Oddometer: 57
Engineer's Pass, Colorado

I'm planning a 2 or 3 week trip to Colorado next year and recently saw a video on riding the Engineer's Pass 4x4 road. Was wondering if I could get some advice from more experienced riders than myself (which is surely almost everyone).

Just purchased a 2009 BMW R1200GSA this past May. Not much previous experience riding. Prefer to stay off the main highways when I travel. Am used to gravel roads....in Iowa. Am looking to expand my experience level on the Colorado trip, but don't want to be stupid about it. Will be traveling alone, but wouldn't mind hooking up with some locals that know the scoop on conditions, weather, etc.

Would Engineer's Pass be too risky for someone like me?

Any advice appreciated.

Thanks,
Steve
stephenws is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2012, 04:46 PM   #2
KOH
Adventurer
 
Joined: Oct 2007
Location: Texas - DFW area
Oddometer: 42
Regarding Engineers Pass

My 2 cents. Depending upon your level of experience ............. I would not recommend a novice rider taking a GSA, solo, through Engineers Pass, Ophir Pass, Black Bear or Cinnamon. The GSA is just to big and to heavy - about 580 lbs (wet weight) - then add your gear and rider. So you end up with 800 plus lbs, that you need to manage through the rocks, turns, switchbacks, off camber road, scree, as well as going up and coming down. Smaller bike - would be advisable in these areas. KOH
KOH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2013, 07:51 PM   #3
rocker59
diplomatico di moto
 
rocker59's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2004
Location: The Trans-Mississippi
Oddometer: 15,538
Quote:
Originally Posted by KOH View Post
My 2 cents. Depending upon your level of experience ............. I would not recommend a novice rider taking a GSA, solo, through Engineers Pass, Ophir Pass, Black Bear or Cinnamon. The GSA is just to big and to heavy - about 580 lbs (wet weight) - then add your gear and rider. So you end up with 800 plus lbs, that you need to manage through the rocks, turns, switchbacks, off camber road, scree, as well as going up and coming down. Smaller bike - would be advisable in these areas. KOH
Ophir wasn't that big a deal on my big Quota.

__________________
Rocker59 (aka guzzimike), Aux Arcs (NW Arkansas)
Moto Guzzi: LeMans 1000 CI, Sport 1100, V11 LeMans Nero Corsa
IBA #24873, MGNOC #21347
"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." - Theodore Roosevelt
rocker59 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2012, 04:53 PM   #4
Mtn Man
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Mtn Man's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: East Tennessee
Oddometer: 210
Agree ...

I was there this past June on a DR650 and wished I had a smaller bike. I ride with buddies who would take their GSA over the passes but I would always pick my DR over my GSA for riding the passes in Colorado. If you are a new rider then I would without question stick to the million dollar highway and all the good gravel roads available to ride. If you wish to do the higher more difficult stuff then go lighter. Most of all, it should be fun!
Mtn Man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2012, 04:55 PM   #5
stephenws OP
Wishful Wanderer
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Davenport, IA
Oddometer: 57
Thanks for the advice. My desires seem to out run my experience level. Don't own a smaller bike. Should probably invest in the BMW off road training school.

Again, thanks
stephenws is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2013, 09:22 AM   #6
One Less Harley
OH.THAT'S GONNA HURT
 
One Less Harley's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Bowling Green, Ky
Oddometer: 4,642
Quote:
Originally Posted by stephenws View Post
Thanks for the advice. My desires seem to out run my experience level. Don't own a smaller bike. Should probably invest in the BMW off road training school.

Again, thanks
The BMW off road training school ain't gonna help you on the passes you mentioned!!! It's a pretty basic class just enough to get your feet wet. I took the class at the performance school in SC, and while it did provide some good tips, if you are expecting to become proficient in rocks, sand, gravel, and hopping over stumps and stuff, you had better look elsewhere. Maybe the Rawhide adventure school.
__________________
2004 BMW R1150RS
1984 BMW R80G/S
(wrenching index)
2003 Suzuki DRZ 400S (TAT Prep)
One More DRZ does the TAT (Ride Report)

One Less Harley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2013, 09:49 AM   #7
Supahflid
Wheelieless
 
Joined: May 2008
Location: Brandon, MS
Oddometer: 3,637
I wouldn't be too scared of any of the passes except Black Bear; I did it on my 990 and I don't think I would do it again.

If you have trouble making slow speed turns while modulating your clutch and picking lines through a switchback, you should practice that; IMHO, that's the most difficult part of any of those passes.

Here are two ride reports that show all of the passes mentioned:

Does Size Matter?

Does Size Matter Part 2
Supahflid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2013, 07:55 PM   #8
rocker59
diplomatico di moto
 
rocker59's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2004
Location: The Trans-Mississippi
Oddometer: 15,538
Quote:
Originally Posted by stephenws View Post
Thanks for the advice. My desires seem to out run my experience level. Don't own a smaller bike. Should probably invest in the BMW off road training school.

Again, thanks
Last Dollar Road is a dirt road between Dallas Divide and Telluride. No high pass involved, but a nice ride.

Also, riding from Silverton, through Eureka, to Animas Forks doesn't involve a high pass, but is well worth the trip.
__________________
Rocker59 (aka guzzimike), Aux Arcs (NW Arkansas)
Moto Guzzi: LeMans 1000 CI, Sport 1100, V11 LeMans Nero Corsa
IBA #24873, MGNOC #21347
"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." - Theodore Roosevelt
rocker59 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2012, 04:59 PM   #9
stephenws OP
Wishful Wanderer
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Davenport, IA
Oddometer: 57
I'll post on the Rocky Mountain regional forum, in the coming months leading up to the trip, to get some advice on the easier gravel roads you mention. Haven't heard of the million dollar highway. Will research that - unless you mean interstate. I really want to avoid interstate highway travel.
stephenws is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2012, 08:56 PM   #10
rgiroux
Invisible Man
 
rgiroux's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2008
Location: Socal near the great 33
Oddometer: 2,253


from this past July. Two GS's, one KTM 950, a KLR and a 650 Yamaha made it to the top from Ouray. After being told by several people that we shouldnt ride motorcycles up there????








I was on the 950, which didnt like the altitude much (or maybe it was me) so we went down a couple of times. There is an easy way up from Silverton, which we eventually found after being lost for a couple of hours, and going down a super steep road. Made even more fun by the 950 stalling.


As you can see from the pics, it is worth the effort! If you do it, dont go alone.
__________________
"Otherwise, its been a carnival of idiots, and Im the f*ckin ringmaster" - RTW Doug
Speed is your friend, it also why you see a bike up in a tree from time to time - WarLlama

2009 Alaska , 2010 Moab
2011 Calif Dreaming , 2013 Mexico
rgiroux is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2012, 10:37 PM   #11
itsatdm
Beastly Adventurer
 
itsatdm's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Nor Ca.
Oddometer: 4,613
It can't be too hard, I did it on a 92 Yamaha TDM








__________________
BMW Motorrad USA customer service: "We make superior motorcycles and continue to improve them."
itsatdm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2012, 08:58 AM   #12
rgiroux
Invisible Man
 
rgiroux's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2008
Location: Socal near the great 33
Oddometer: 2,253
Quote:
Originally Posted by itsatdm View Post
It can't be too hard, I did it on a 92 Yamaha TDM








you sir, are nuts!

But, I salute you
__________________
"Otherwise, its been a carnival of idiots, and Im the f*ckin ringmaster" - RTW Doug
Speed is your friend, it also why you see a bike up in a tree from time to time - WarLlama

2009 Alaska , 2010 Moab
2011 Calif Dreaming , 2013 Mexico
rgiroux is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2012, 07:23 AM   #13
Mtn Man
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Mtn Man's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: East Tennessee
Oddometer: 210
Possible ...

I agree you can do it on most any bike ... If you have the skill set to do so. Maybe someone will post riding their Goldwing or Streetglide but my opinion was based purely on your comment stating you had limited experience. As I mentioned in my first post, I have buddies who would not think twice about taking their GSA over the passes and the going up is pretty easy ... The steep downhills are more of my reasoning.

Either way, have fun and remember picking us a 600 pound bike at 12,000 feet is a little more difficult than at sea level.
Mtn Man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2012, 07:28 AM   #14
Mtn Man
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Mtn Man's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: East Tennessee
Oddometer: 210
By the way ...

You should make a point to visit Handlebars Resturant and Bar when in Silverton. Nice folks! Once they heard the Tennessee boys talk they stayed three hours after closing to visit and tell stories ... They have some good stories of their travels.
Mtn Man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2012, 08:30 AM   #15
itsatdm
Beastly Adventurer
 
itsatdm's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2004
Location: Nor Ca.
Oddometer: 4,613
He has a year to train. He has some experience on gravel roads. It is a gravel road.

It is steep in places and it has a few gravel hair pin curves. I would check with the "Rockies" regional forum closer to the time, as these dirt roads can change depending on the weather.

The altitude and view can be intimidating, but the biggest danger is getting pushed off track by a tourist in a rental jeep.
__________________
BMW Motorrad USA customer service: "We make superior motorcycles and continue to improve them."
itsatdm is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 04:52 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014