11-Day mountain tour of NM/CO June 1-14 2013

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by jahwerx, Jun 19, 2013.

  1. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    THANKS ALL!

    Plus Day 4 has just been added - Enjoy!

    Day 5 may may a few days - I'm traveling on business, and Day 5 is the Alpine Loop - the jewel of the trip! Spoiler alert - we didn't fall off of corkscrew pass :)

    Cheers,
    Josh
    #21
  2. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    OK, scroll UP to see the updates for Day 5 - Really the best overall day we had. I put 4 videos in the post - Enjoy, Josh
    #22
  3. Dillard

    Dillard Seeker

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    Really enjoying your report :clap

    You guys handled Lower Engineer Road extremely well. Dropping your gear in Lake City was a great idea. My buddy and I hit this section with loaded bikes and had much different results....

    Looking forward to the next installment.
    #23
  4. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    sweet!
    #24
  5. DocAxeYarYar

    DocAxeYarYar RideDualSport.com

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    Very cool! Showing how capable over all the KLR is too!
    It looks like your GoPro was able to handle all the still shots you needed, and the POV is great! Was making me think how I could have captured shots of the huge elk that crossed my path had I had a GoPro or other camera on my Gunslinger's Divide Ride.

    Thanks for taking us along!

    Do you know if Bruno is still operating his fantastic French restaurant on the edge of Lake City?
    #25
  6. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    You are very welcome.

    Indeed... check out my post above on Day 4 ;) We ate there that night. Since I ordered the escargot (I'm guessing pre-summer folks aren't really the escargot crowd, but who am I to judge, right??) and a crab dish, Bruno came out and chatted us up. Or perhaps he talks to all his guests.. I'm not sure, but he was very friendly. It turns out Frederique (his wife) lived in Manhattan for a while too. I've got a rental unit on the upper-west-side, so we had a lot in common, even though I'm not French! My take is Lake City is pretty cool if you just want the rugged CO outdoor experience. However after being in Telluride, I'd really miss the culture if I had to live there all year round. I understand most Lake City residents just shuttle off to Texas in the winter anyway.

    -J
    #26
  7. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    The "easy way" from Lake City to Telluride is now up! Scroll up to view...

    I'm finally more than 1/2 way done with the ride report. It seems to take longer to report than ride!

    Cheers, Josh
    #27
  8. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    If you were waiting for a day with Drops, this is the one :lol3. Scroll up to DAY 7, and watch the last video. We "mastered" colorado, but Utah had its way with us... We go 'exploring on the Fisher Mesa and learn a lesson.

    Hopefully you'll read the rest of the post too!

    All the best, Josh
    #28
  9. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    Fisher Mesa extracts all the life-force from Pat... Scroll up and enjoy - The journey has only 3 more days of documentation left!!!

    - Josh

    p.s. spend 30 seconds and enjoy the zen moment video
    #29
  10. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    Back to work, so its taken a long time to finish this report :(

    only 2 more days left to document... Scroll up to the Day 9 to see Ophir Pass and Mesa Verde.

    -J
    #30
  11. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    This ride report is officially COMPLETE. ALL DAYS 1-11. If this is your first stumble-upon, go right to the very first video in the first post - for a quick highlight reel. also can be seen here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jbERi9iU15U

    -j

    p.s. I may still do the full packing list, weights, etc., but I'll do that in a different thread.
    #31
  12. theofam

    theofam Been here awhile

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    Josh, the format you used for this RR is my favorite to date. Thanks for taking the time!

    I'd love to see a link here to the KLR mods and packing list if you get a chance.

    I just sold my GSA that took me on trips up the PCH and to Alaska in hopes of finding something lighter (and cheaper to drop!). You and Pat have sold me on the KLR!
    #32
  13. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    There are many fine bikes out there, and for the loads we were carrying, and distances we were travelling, we needed "full size", big tank, and one capable of 75-off/25-on road. The fact that KLR's are inexpensive on the secondary market, easy to find, and very reliable, it was an easy choice for us. KTM, BMW, etc. would al have been excellent as well I'm sure, but just a lot more $!

    I'll finish up the mod & pack list soon.

    Cheers!
    #33
  14. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    OK, here it is:
    HERE IS A MASTER LIST of all the bike mods I did to my bike and our packing list:

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/7998780/NM_CO_Trip/Actuals/Parts and Packing List.xlsx


    I still have some ambition to put all the stuff on scales to figure out what our laden weight was...

    I custom fabbed the side luggage plates, so those are not reflected in the spreadsheet. I used 3/16" plate Aluminum and mounted them to the SW Motech luggage racks.

    - Josh

    #34
  15. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv

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    very nice rr.

    thanks for taking us along.
    #35
  16. theofam

    theofam Been here awhile

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    Josh, that list ROCKS! Thank you.
    #36
  17. No False Enthusiasm

    No False Enthusiasm a quiet adventurer

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    As others have mentioned, I appreciate your RR format, including difficulty ratings.

    This RR, along with Cannonshot's RR, are useful as I plan my CO trip.

    Thanks,

    NFE
    #37
  18. jahwerx

    jahwerx n00b is fine for now

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    You are all very welcome. Documenting the trip allowed me to relive it again. Now I go into my garage and look at the KLR, and think "Geez, nowhere to do THAT kind of damage to my skidplate around here!"

    Cheers,
    Josh

    p.s. I found out from a hunter friend today that the animal Pat almost hit was indeed a Bighorn Sheep - a young ram. It probably was gunning for us since I went with the Ford F350 over the Ram 3500 :D
    #38
  19. Pmturner1

    Pmturner1 n00b

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    So I will chime in to Josh's great ride report. I was Josh's riding partner for the two week trip, wearing the black suit and orange helmet.

    We had the best time ever. My favorite was clearly the Alpine loop. I will probably never have a ride that awesome again. Kudos to Josh for the research on the routes. The weather, vistas and conditions were perfect. It was a bit harrowing learning how to ride off-road in the Colorado Rockies, but hey where else will you learn so fast. The lack of real mechanical issues is amazing, given how intense some of the riding was. Our skid plates paid for themselves many times over. Fisher Mesa kicked my butt hard. If we had not already ridden 140 miles it may have been different, but with the altitude and evening sun I dropped badly.

    The GPX tracks were really good. I imported them on my iPhone into EasyTrails GPS before the trip, but we could not have done the trip with the iPhone alone. The Garmin was essential for accurate navigation.

    The camping was terrific, although I would love to not carry the camping gear. We should have hired Sherpas.

    Later
    Pat
    #39
  20. gregdee

    gregdee Motocampist

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    Josh - again, great write up. So what's next?

    Could you tell me more about the road out to the Los Pinos camp where you were on night two? I recall crossing the bridge and then we stopped. We saw the road and it looked fairly nasty with loads of large rocks strewn about. How was this road? Did it keep going upstream or did it dead end at your camp? Is there an actual camp ground or just primitive spots along the way.
    #40