...and the radio played...Alaska

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by AntWare, Sep 12, 2004.

  1. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

    Joined:
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    I'll apologize in advance if the report gets a little drawn out. I'm still trying to sort and make sense of 600+ photo's, corrupt GPS files, chicken scratch notes made on the road...and play catch up at work. :D

    Deep breath...here goes...

    Wednesday 21/07/04

    After breaking the ties that bind, imprisoning the mutt in the kennels (sorry mate), and pissisng everybody off at work by putting in for a month off in the middle of premium holiday season, it was finally time to load up the bike for an early morning getaway...but not so fast.

    A late phone call meant I'd have to stop by work before heading out, pretty much nixing tomorrows 950 mile non-stopper to Ouray. :bluduh
    #1
  2. Komet

    Komet The Voice of Reason

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    and.....? :evil
    #2
  3. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    Thursday 22/07/04

    It's 11am, almost 100 degrees outside and i'm finally pulling out of work.

    Colorado's obviously out of the question for today, so it's all about how much of a dent I can put into New Mexico.

    Here's the old sherrifs office in Estelline Texas, I got a ticket here a few years ago on my R1 on a road trip to Laguna Seca :D

    [​IMG]

    SH 287 through Estelline is speed trap central. It's one of those insignificant little towns whose elders decided to generate revenue by using uniformed tax collectors...for that reason I refuse to spend any money there.

    I'll usually fuel up and buy whatever I need well before I get there. I'm sure they couldn't care less, but it gives me a nice warm and fuzzy feeling...kinda like taking a leak around the back of the old sherrifs office :wink:

    Rain Gear

    The road karma gods, frowning on my actions, decide to open the heavens on me just as I ramp onto I-40 just east of Amarillo.

    I lock the throttle and switch to rain gloves on the fly. Whatever they can throw at me I'm ready for...well at least I would've been if I hadn't taken the Goretex lining out of my pants before leaving Dallas.

    As the light rain turns torrential I realise my faux pas as the first drops of cold rain begin to run down the crack of my a....., well you get the idea.

    After riding through thunder, lightning and hail for about an hour at speeds hitting a whopping 30mph, I hit the exit for Tucumcari, fuel up, and ask the 276C to autoroute me towards the blue sky's beckoning me to the north.
    Within 30 minutes i'm out of the rain, by the next fuel stop i'm almost dry.

    Las Vegas see's me back on the highway as I-25 drops me south, back into the rain, and on my way towards Santa Fe.

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    With the worst of it behind me and needing to make up for lost time I decide to forego camping, hammer out some more miles, and get north of the next round of showers.

    [​IMG]

    I'd planned on camping as much as possible so spending the first night in a motel in Espanola 700 miles after leaving Dallas wasn't what I had envisioned, but I guess that's the beauty of having no daily destinations or agendas.

    [​IMG]


    ...and the radio played...Sit Down-James

    Now i'm relieved to hear
    That you've been to some far out places
    It's hard to carry on
    When you feel all alone
    Now i've swung back down again
    It's worse than it was before
    If i hadn't seen such riches
    I could live with being poor..


    ...thanks for listening.
    #3
  4. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    Friday 23/07/04

    Friday arrives and with it more rain, but what the hell, I'll be in Colorado before you know it :D ...destination Ouray :thumb

    The trusty Garmins telling me it's less than 300 miles. Using the "across the flatlands of Texas formula" that's about 4 hours. :D that's also not taking into account, going uphill, down dale, out of steaming rains, or into freezing fogs. :wink:

    To take a break from the relentless rain I stop for a late lunch at Ramons Mexican restaurant in Pagoso Springs. It was raining cats and dogs when I crossed the state line so I said "bollocks" to stopping and taking the obligatory photo op.

    But blue skys are on the horizon and by the time I stop for petrol in Durango it's positivley toasty, so much so that I'm sweating-me-taters off as I talk to the young fella who's parked his jeep sideways in the Exxon, preventing my escape, and is trying the KTM on for size :D

    I take the opportunity to remove the goretex liners from my pants as the Meoni wannabe recites 9fiddy spec sheet stats he knows off by heart...it's nice seeing possible future riders so enthused about bikes. Have you met Rabia? No, neither have I, so off the bike matey, I've got places to be :D


    As I climb out of Durango I'm reminded of the old saying..."If you don't like the weather in (insert state/country name here), wait 10 minutes and it'll change"...as I run into the mother of all lightning/hail squalls.

    Not wanting to get struck I avoid the temptation to join the cars and trucks taking cover on the shoulders over by the lightning rod pine trees. It was one of those "laughing out loud inside your helmet" moments.

    There's something comforting in knowing that you can only get so wet, once you're saturated, that's as wet as you're gonna get, no point in pulling over and donning rain gear at this point.

    The road from Durango through Silverton to Ouray was absolutley amazing, the rain had eased off to a light drizzle and the new found visability allowed me to pass the plethora of RV's...five at a time.

    Sorry for the lack of pics, I was snapping them in between rain showers :lol3

    Here's a consolation shot taken Saturday of some tart in a frock giving Wes Weber relationship advice.

    "...get in that kitchen, and fetch me a turkey pot pie"

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    ...and the radio played...Accident Waiting To Happen-Billy Bragg

    "And my sins are so unoriginal
    I have all the self-loathing of a wolf in sheep's clothing
    In this carnival of carnivores,
    Heaven help me

    Goodbye and good luck to all the rubbish that you've spoken
    Goodbye and good luck to all the promises you've broken
    Your life has lost its dignity, its beauty and its passion
    You're an accident waiting to happen..."


    ...thanks for listening.
    #4
  5. Tiras

    Tiras Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Medford, Oregon
    Awesome! Keep it coming! :thumb
    #5
  6. AirForce

    AirForce Abbey Normal

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Kickin on Rt 66, Waynesville MO
    Manchester United, you have my complete attention...keep it coming.
    Ex-Luton Town.
    #6
  7. neduro

    neduro Addict Super Moderator

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    Off to a good start... :thumb
    #7
  8. The Fist

    The Fist Knulp

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    Dolores, CO
    Excellent start-- I'll be waiting for the next installment...

    :lurk
    #8
  9. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    Saturday 24/07/04

    Ouray was really just a blur. What can I say that hasn't already been said?
    About a dozen of Colorados most outstanding citizens, disingenuosly known as the steering committee,
    volunteered countless hours to sleep, feed, entertain, and attempt to drown in alcohol, a 150+ strong band of gypsys, vagabonds and reprobates, all drawn like moths to a flame from every state in the nation...and er...Canada. :D

    I'd seen the tent flying the Union Jack as I entered the camground. I also noticed "other" markings
    on the bike that let me know this wasn't just a Reebok salesman.
    Being from Manchester, my sole purpose in life is to torment Scousers, and what would
    you know, the steering committee had brought one in, special like, I set up camp next to the
    offending Beemer, like a fly on shit if you will.

    O'Hooligan aka Gerry With The Pacemaker, The Fairy 'Cross The Mersey, an accomplished
    traveller in his own right, had made the trip up from Arizona.

    Keep an eye on that bastard behind us Mr Crabs...

    [​IMG]
    Ilmostro, hope you don't mind me stealin' your picture



    Ware To Ride?

    The morning after the night before wasn't pretty. The nocturnal amongst us were only
    running on a few hours sleep. Around the breakfast tables various rides were taking shape headed up
    by sadistic locals hell bent on teaching the invading masses a lesson.

    The hot ticket in town seemed to involve hooking up with one or other of the Weber Boys on their
    homemade Rallye Twins.

    Columbia's own Ricardo takes Waynes bike for a test ride...

    "...boyz...dis bike is orsum, butt da'barz suk..I mene relly relly sucky" :ricky

    [​IMG]


    Hitting The Road

    Wanting to avoid the whole Wes Weber/Motozilla/Neduro wrecking party that is so well documented HERE by Neduro, I tagged on the back of Waynes trip out to Telluride via Ophir Pass.

    The eight of us, Wayne, JuanG, GS Spirit, Pawk, BigDave, Steverino, Stinez, and yours truly, stopped off to watch 'Zilla and the rest of the nutters attack the entrance to Engineers Pass :huh ...sorry fella's, that's no way to treat a bike that I planned to take to Alaska, you can have it :1drink

    BigDave called for attention, and got a salute.

    [​IMG]

    Cresting Ophir Pass, we let the moving road blocks have a head start. Most of the jeep drivers were great about pulling over and letting the bikes past...

    [​IMG]

    ...yet we still managed to piss some people off. On the way down one chap had pulled over on the left affording us barely enough room to squeeze between his truck and the wall to our right. One by one each bike passed and smacked his mirror :lol3

    ...by the time I got there he was steaming and I had to close my tinted visor so he couldn't see the tears running down my face...you had to be there.

    When the going gets tough the camera's get put away, so pictures of the best parts of the pass are non-existant...if you want to know what it looks like, you'll just have to go for yourself :D


    BigDave, I hope you don't mind me stealing your pics but I think you're the only one that was taking time out to smell the roses.

    Dave's shot of Ophir looking back at the pass.

    [​IMG]

    I was trying to keep up with GS Spirit, who was trying to keep up with Juan, who was trying to keep up with Big Dave, who was trying to keep up with Pawk, who was trying to keep up with Steve, who was trying to keep up with Stinez, who was...

    [​IMG]

    ...trying to keep up with Wayne :lol3


    Back on the road, and heading into Telluride for lunch...

    [​IMG]


    ...back off crasher, I've got my eye on you :D

    [​IMG]

    Hey Steve...

    [​IMG]

    ...slow down...

    [​IMG]

    ...you got a hot date or summat... :dunno :pissed

    [​IMG]

    Bastard :pissed

    So while the rest of us stood around looking like a bunch of saps, Uncle Fester the molester takes off with the French foreign exchange student, and single handedly smoothed over Anglo-French relations :1drink

    [​IMG]


    Back On The Road

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Hey Steve, where's ya finga...other hand :D

    [​IMG]



    ...and the radio played...Albatross-Corrosion Of Conformity

    I'm feeling left behind
    Lord what a waste of time
    They're coming to get you, run on
    How can I respect your crime
    When all you criminals whine
    They bought and sold you, run on run on


    ...thanks for listening.
    #9
  10. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

    Joined:
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    16,483
    Saturday 24/07/04 contd.

    Wayne had been doing a superb job of dodging showers and finding good, fast, dry fire roads for us to play on all day, but it was only a matter of time...

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]




    About half of us were on street tyres and the speed with which this trail turned to snot caught us all by suprise. Wayne was just plodding along like it was nothing on his hybrid, looked in his mirror, and damn near fell off laughing at the carnage taking place behind him.

    No matter where you tried to ride the crown in the road sent you into the ditch. Stinez' front mudguard was so packed with mud his front wheel was acting like a ski...

    [​IMG]

    so we left him :lol3

    [​IMG]

    ...hey...fellas...how about a hand here...

    [​IMG]

    :flip :flip :flip :flip

    [​IMG]


    Wayne headed back and using one of the trick gadgets from his batman belt removed the mudguard.

    ...it was so bad it almost wiped the smile from Stinez' face :lol3

    [​IMG]




    Once back on the dry stuff we had a good highspeed run down some superb twisty fire roads, eventually dropping us back onto the black top.

    At this point we split into two groups, Wayne took one group for a trot down some of the most scenic, technical roads this side of the Mississippi. The rest of us backtracked and did the return trip up and over Ophir....you just can't get too much of a good thing :nod

    BigDave crests the pass just ahead of the next batch of wet stuff...
    [​IMG]

    One on one at Ophir...

    Stinez.
    [​IMG]

    Steve.
    [​IMG]

    GS Spirit.
    [​IMG]

    BigDave.
    [​IMG]

    Moi.
    [​IMG]



    Highspeed Russian Roulette

    All to soon, we're back on the apshalt and heading back towards Ouray...not that that's a bad thing :evil

    Steve set a blistering pace for a scratch & drift session back to camp...Stinez was grinding hard parts and I was dodging schrapnel :D

    A great day was had by all. :nod

    Hats off to Wayne for taking the time out to escort us and for allowing us to play in his back yard, :bow and to all involved for providing the entertainment and making it back in one piece :thumb
    #10
  11. O'Hooligan

    O'Hooligan Ken Dodd's dads dogs dead

    Joined:
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    What's up Ant-nee, why no more report, we all know that Manky Mancs can't string more than two sentences together.....is your ghost writer on strike? :rofl
    #11
  12. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    Some of us have to work for a living, apparently the generation before me bled the dole dry :D
    #12
  13. O'Hooligan

    O'Hooligan Ken Dodd's dads dogs dead

    Joined:
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    I have heard of that work thing...I think it's some sort of cult! Somebody once said that "Hard work won't kill you", however I've decided not to take the chance!
    #13
  14. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    :lol3

    I think it's in your genes...you were fooked from the off :D
    #14
  15. Fighter

    Fighter Head Gruver

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    Sep 25, 2003
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    Location:
    Alaska

    Antdubya ... Where's the rest of the story??? Anxiously awaiting your comments and pics of/from Alaska. Enjoyed our conversation at the mercentile in Denali Park... How did the rest of the trip go? Are you still favoring the Katoomer over the BM?
    #15
  16. Wayne Weber

    Wayne Weber why are we stopping?

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    Just read it Antware. Fantastic. I'm stealing the shot of Ricky on my RallyTwin, thanks for getting one. You quoted his comments on my bars, almost exactly.


    Ouray really was a blur, looking back. Nothing to do with alcohol, it was just so ...



    OK, maybe something to do with alcohol.:1drink
    #16
  17. ilmostro

    ilmostro Under Da Sea

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    Awesome shot of "Uncle Fester the Molester" :thumb

    Keep it coming Aye Dubya!
    #17
  18. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    Was great to meet you mate, it's a small world isn't it. I met a few other riders associated with the 'Gruvers on my travels and all had great things to say about you...go figure :D

    I had some very generous offers from Legion and the like offsite before I left...you fella's have a pretty sound group of riders up there :thumb

    All the trip pics are stored HERE if you want to a self guided tour.
    #18
  19. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    hey, haven't you got a trip report to finish :lol3

    After Ouray I was wondering where Coloradians (?) went on vacation :D
    #19
  20. AntWare

    AntWare Lost In Translation

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    There's enough shots of those two it probably deserves it own thread...he's such an attention whore :lol3
    #20