Difficulty of Imogene Pass for a 1200 GS

Discussion in 'The Rockies – It's all downhill from here...' started by THE CAT, Aug 2, 2010.

  1. THE CAT

    THE CAT El Gato-Lifes yet to live

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    154
    Location:
    Denver, Colo.
    Hey y'all,

    Will be in Telluride this weekend and wanted to do Imogene from Tride to
    US 50/OUray.

    I have done most of the triangle between Ouray/Silverton/Lake City but did get my ass bit going up the Bear Creek access toward Engr just outside Ouray a few years ago. My buds took me on up the road a ways to the next
    access (I think it was Mineral Creek and it was fine.

    Wondering re level of difficulty of Imogene.

    Thanks
    #1
  2. Lance Hardwud

    Lance Hardwud Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,071
    Location:
    Hinckley/Wheaton Illinois
    I'm a flatlander, but was in that area on my XT 225 a few weeks ago and Imogene was a bitch on the XT. Lots of loose rock to contend with, would be tuff on a bigger bike. The next day in the jeep it was easy :D .
    Like I said...I'm a flatlander, what do I know?
    #2
  3. THE CAT

    THE CAT El Gato-Lifes yet to live

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    154
    Location:
    Denver, Colo.
    Hey Salty,
    thanks for the reply.
    I wouldn't be too worried re loose stuff unless it was endless. Probably more concerned re baby heads for a long stretch of steeps.

    J
    #3
  4. StmbtDave

    StmbtDave AKA Invisible Dave

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2005
    Oddometer:
    3,745
    Location:
    CO / AZ
    Yea, plenty of that too.. Also sections with lots of steps and drops.





    Dave
    #4
  5. GS Spirit

    GS Spirit Downsizing

    Joined:
    May 28, 2003
    Oddometer:
    2,703
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO.
    It has been years since I rode it on my 1150 but from memory it is similar to Mosquito, Hancock / Tomichi, Tincup etc. not sure if that helps.
    #5
  6. jwrover

    jwrover Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2006
    Oddometer:
    751
    Location:
    Ouray, Colorado, USA
    I rode it from the Ouray side to the top 3 years ago. It was a little tricky that day due to rain, mostly slick on the rock/scree areas.

    I'm not a real good rider on dirt. Do my best, get by, but I'm no seasoned vet.
    I think if you have experience you'll be OK.

    Go For it! There's always a Jeep on its way that can bring you and the bike out! :lol3 :lol3

    O yeah...on my 1200GS
    #6
  7. MeterPig

    MeterPig Meh

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    18,002
    Location:
    Parker, Colorado...
    I have seen it done -and it was tricky. Enjoy the ride. :thumb
    #7
  8. Tellydoug

    Tellydoug Troubador of joy

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Oddometer:
    7,399
    Location:
    channeling my inner manatee
    It is definitely more difficult than Tincup.... up through the Tomboy mine there is a pretty good hill that is loose rocks from 2-6 inches in diameter. If you have knobbies and get enough momentum to swim up that, the rest will be simple. If you got up the west side of Engineer, definitely give Imogene a try. It's a beautiful ride. If you can't get through the loose stuff, you can always head back down to T-ride and take Last Dollar Road over to Ouray, that is a really nice mellow alternative. Give it a shot.
    #8
  9. MountainsandRivers

    MountainsandRivers loves dirty things!

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4,755
    Location:
    To Hell U Ride
    if you do it, go early. We have had tons of rain lately, especially in the afternoon, but not limited to then! The loose sections don't go on for miles, you will know what it will be like before you get to the top so easy enough to turn around if uncomfortable. a few of the steeper spots just before the top are easiest if you stick to the right side when it forks, slightly steeper but not nearly as loose. There are two spots like that. it will make sense when you see it. You will be past the exposed areas on your right, and in a section with more dirt and little more rolling little hills, higher speeds. You can see the top from where i am talking. Also, on the Telluride side, there are a few decent loose rock sections just before the Tomboy mine site, below that is a cakewalk! Hope that helps! Edit-whoops-just realized you are running from Telluride first. What Doug said. Loose rocks above Tomboy. If you make that, the rest won't be bad. the parts i mentioned will be fairly irrelevant going down and won't be as obvious anyway. I missed them going up from Ouray at midnight and once i dropped the bike, i knew exactly where i was, and should have been..Ha ha!
    #9
  10. johnson357

    johnson357 Bad Monkey Racing

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,533
    Location:
    Indpls, IN
    Midwest flatlander here....but......heading out this weekend for Ouray. A couple years ago I had my 950 ADV out there and almost made it over from the To-hell-u-ride side but it was a carbed model so one spill, pouring rain and I couldn't keep it running at 12500 so we went back down but could have made it on that had it been a fuel inj.....I ride a lot of off road don't know if that helps or not....that being said I'll probably take my KTM450 this year...unless I could sneek into the Big Dog Ride in Ridgeway while we are there then it will be the 1150.
    #10
  11. Blakebird

    Blakebird air conditioned gypsy

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2004
    Oddometer:
    22,093
    Location:
    Parker, CO
    We had a 950 with us that came from the Rockies and still wouldn't run over 12,500' - had to turn back. My XR628 was jetted for elevation (I thought) and was tough to keep running on the last climb up the scree.
    We also had an 1150GS with us that smacked a valve cover at the bottom of Tomboy, sprung a leak and turned back.... but was doing fine up to that point.
    The riding part is, as always, what you feel comfortable with on a big heavy bike in places with loose rock and steepness all around.
    I like the climb up from the Telluride side, and coming down into Ouray is beautiful.



    You've been over Imogene? Which bike did you take?
    #11
  12. cojoel

    cojoel Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Oddometer:
    770
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    FWIW...I have taken my over weight under powered KLR over Imogene a couple of times. I did not think it was that bad or I don't remember any sections that gave me any pucker factor.
    #12
  13. FatChance

    FatChance Road Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2003
    Oddometer:
    12,433
    Location:
    On the road
    I will second MountainsandRivers. This is the heaviest monsoon season we've had in a while. It is storming heavily here right now. Thunder, lightning and heavy rain. This is supposed to last at least into next week, so keep a close eye on the weather. This may not be the best time to be up there. You do not want to be up high in a storm as the lightning can be lethal. Don't be a slave to your schedule if there are storms up there and plan of being below treeline by noon this time of year.
    #13
  14. MountainsandRivers

    MountainsandRivers loves dirty things!

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4,755
    Location:
    To Hell U Ride
    Last Dollar rd is a nice second option, less exposure, easy tour, or Bolan Pass between Rico and DMR-that is a nice, less used one with less exposure....or just drink at Smugglers and tell stories about other rides!
    #14
  15. MartiniUp

    MartiniUp Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,648
    Location:
    TX
    Last time I did that run we passed two guys on the big GS models. They were about two thirds up and were dying. And they were highly skilled. They said one more fall and they were turning around before they destroyed the bikes and themselves.
    #15
  16. katbeanz

    katbeanz earthbound misfit, I

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2005
    Oddometer:
    8,542
    Location:
    Kansas City
    He would have been OK with TKC's I think, no lack of riding skill. I liked running up and down at will past the 950's on my EFI 610. :D There was big bike carnage on the Ouray side too. :brow
    #16
  17. MeterPig

    MeterPig Meh

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    18,002
    Location:
    Parker, Colorado...
    Yes, the operative word "seen" it done -and it was tricky for the rider.

    I didn't have much of a problem on a dirt biek.


    #17
  18. Gordy

    Gordy Team Listo

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2001
    Oddometer:
    27,746
    Location:
    NM
    [​IMG]
    Imogene, Oscar '04


    BMW says that the GS can go anywhere, now man up and make them proud! :lol3
    #18
  19. GS Spirit

    GS Spirit Downsizing

    Joined:
    May 28, 2003
    Oddometer:
    2,703
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO.

    You don't happen to have any jb weld do you?
    #19
  20. Lance Hardwud

    Lance Hardwud Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,071
    Location:
    Hinckley/Wheaton Illinois
    I think Scotch Creek trail just south of the Bolam pass turn on 145 would be wicked fun on a larger bike...narrow, rocky, mud, then smooths out after a few miles to a scenic gravel ride.
    #20