Chasing Dinosaurs

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by bomose, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    My wife (Barbara) and I(David) decided to explore some of Colorado that we have bypassed in other trips out there and end up at Dinosaur NP. I'd like to thank Tony (Byways) and Frank (Dockingpilot) for inspiring some of the routes. Tony's books are very helpful in planning and Franks ride reports are always great.
    Barb and I usually set up a camp and do day rides from there. We're not quite as adventuresome(or young) as the Wans. We did this trip this past July. The fires changed some of our plans so we did some of the rides on the fly. Here are some teaser photos. while I get my act together.
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    #1
  2. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    The trip didn't start out well. Luckily, I did have a spare. I decided to buy two new tires in OK City.
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    Of course we had to stop at the Cadillac Ranch.

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    We set up camp at the KOA in Raton, NM. Nice, large spots.
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    #2
  3. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    We arrived Early in the day and decided to take a ride to Capulin Volcanoes NP up Hwy 72.http://www.nps.gov/cavo/index.htm
    It's a beautiful ride on a kind of rough pavement road. They were repaving in one section.
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    The road winds up to the top of the volcano.
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    This is the walkway to the top.
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    We looped back around Hwy 87 to Raton and looked back at the Volcano.

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    #3
  4. Backcountryboy

    Backcountryboy Been here awhile

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    Good stuff. Rode this area last May and coming back this May. Looking forward to your report
    #4
  5. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    The next day we decided to go to Taos to see the Kit Carson Museum. I've read some books about him and thought the museum would be entertaining and educational. As many times as I've been through Taos I've never even stopped in town. I always figured it would be too crowded. It was. And hot!
    US 64 starts out very straight and boring.
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    But it soon turns toward the mountains and goes up through Eagles Nest.
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    The Kit Carson Museum is his former house.

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    The museum was small and disappointing.
    #5
  6. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    We headed out of Taos to see the Rio Grand gorge. The weather didn't look promising.
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    Since we've been here before, we took a couple of quick pictures and got away just as the rain really started.
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    We were going to go up 522 to 38 through Red River, but the rain was over there, too, so we just went back the way we came.
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    Tomorrow we finally get to some dirt!
    #6
  7. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    The next day we would go over Raton Pass to Trinidad, Co and take 12 up through Stonewall and Cuchara.
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    We go around Trinidad State Park and through the old mining town of Cokedale. These are the old coke ovens and the massive slag piles around the town.
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    #7
  8. Bgunn

    Bgunn Mucha distancia

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    Traveling in style. Great pics too.
    #8
  9. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    Thanks. The real reason I take the enclosed trailer is to bring back massive amounts of beer.:D Which you can't get East of the Mississippi.
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  10. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    As we approach the town of Stonewall, we see how it got it's name.
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    We should have stopped to get some better pictures, but we were planning to come back through on our way back to camp.
    #10
  11. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    Continuing up 12 we pass North Lake.This is a fantastic motorcycle road. Tight turns, flowing turns, little traffic, and great scenery.
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    Apparently, there's more than one stone wall.
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    After going through Cuchara and La Veta, we cross 160 and head north on CR 520 toward Badito. Finally some dirt!
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    It turns out to be a wide well graded dirt road going through some big valleys.
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    It does have some wildlife, though.
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    And some history.
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    And luckily for me, a bush.:D
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    #11
  12. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    At Badito we hit 69 toward Gardner. We originally were going to take CR 560 around Little Sheep Mt to CR 572 and over Sangre de Cristo Pass, but the weather started closing in.
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    We turned on CR 540 and hoped it would go through. The road got less graded and less traveled. I didn't want to be on it if it started raining.
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    The route was scenic with only a couple of rough spots.But not too rough.
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    We even made some new friends.
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    We were able to skirt around the rain.
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    #12
  13. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    We originally had planned to go to Aguilar and turn toward the Spanish Peaks on CR 42 but the rain got there first.
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    By the time we got back to Raton, it had cleared up so we decided to go up 555 toward Casa Grande. A nice ride. We saw a lot of work trucks heading down the mountain, but no place for them to work. We did notice some oil wells off in the woods. Turns out some guy named Turner owns all the land on both sides of the road along a 30 mile road. That's where all the workers came from.
    We did see one interesting thing.
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    He wasn't too interested in us.
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    The road eventually turned to dirt and there was a mine up there. There was also a big gate. End of the line.
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    #13
  14. GreatLakesGuy

    GreatLakesGuy Saved by Grace

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    Looks like you had a great time!! Lots of breath taking pictures there. Sights like those are why I know I have to do a trip out west eventually.
    #14
  15. N-Id-Jim

    N-Id-Jim Been here awhile

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    where elephants roam
    Good plan .. we drive to Missoula just to drink straight from the trough!!
    #15
  16. Honkey Cat

    Honkey Cat Tailights Fade!

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    Makes me miss colorado
    #16
  17. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    I'm down to one case now. I'll have to make it last until August when I'll be back in Montana. Unless I can get a trucker friend to bring me some back.:freaky Yes, GLG, you need to get out west. The scenery gets even better in the rest of the report. Next, we go to Gunnison.
    #17
  18. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    We packed up and headed for Gunnison. Now the Spanish Peaks are clear.
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    At Walsenburg we turned up 69 to Westcliffe. It's in one of the most beautiful valleys I've ever seen.
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    There is an historic house outside of Westcliffe.
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    I would be back through here in Sept on my bike with some buddies.
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    We stopped in Salida to meet a friend of mine from S Carolina, Phillip. He bought my XR 650 and was travelling alone to a job in Oregon, camping all the way. He's a real adventure rider! We would meet up with him to ride around Gunnison.
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    Up over Monarch Pass.
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    #18
  19. Spirit_Rider

    Spirit_Rider Been here awhile

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    Check with your local liquor store, we can get it in Illinois through the distributor.
    #19
  20. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    Thanks, I'll try that. Sure is more fun to drive to Montana.
    #20