Father Son Ride - Co to Moab Loop

Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - Rockies' started by XTWalt, Jan 29, 2016.

  1. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    Hi everyone, thanks for all the great information on this forum.

    My son and I have started researching a DS loop from Co to Moab and back. We are trailering our bikes) from VA, and don't have a starting point yet.

    Launch Date: May 28, 2016
    Duration: 8-10 days of riding
    Bikes: ‘01 KLR650 + ‘15 Wr250
    Starting Point: TBD
    Goals: Experience a few of the Colorado passes, wide open spaces of the West and see some of the scenery of Moab.
    Roads: Ideally 100% dirt. But that being said, we are used to east coast fire roads, so nothing too technical or difficult water crossings for our first adventure out west.

    Accommodations: back country camping & motels 70/30

    We don’t know much about when the passes will be open, or what condition they will be in, so we’re hoping to get some advice from ADVrider. We’ll be using GPS for navigation, so ideally we’ll find some tracks to build upon.

    Thanks,
    Walt
    #1
  2. wbbnm

    wbbnm Long timer

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    We rode from Durango to Moab a couple of years ago. The planning tracks for the ride are in this forum here:

    http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/nm-ut-co-loop.1007868/

    We ran into a terrible 3 day rainstorm and had some mechanical problems and didn't get north of Moab.

    If you PM me I can send you the actual tracks. I don't want to post them since it wasn't my trip. I think you will run into snow at elevations above 9500 ft or so. I think you can squeeze by the north side of the La Sals and make it into Moab below the snow line.
    #2
  3. jhax

    jhax "No matter where you go, there you are" BB

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    #3
  4. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    Thanks guys, I appreciate your help.

    Wbbnm, your loop looks decent, I'll PM you. Being early June, I was worried about snow in the passes. We might look focus more on Utah I guess.
    John, thanks for the excellent directions. I'll get my maps out and see if I can follow along. How do you think those routes would be during the first week of June?

    Thanks,
    Walt
    #4
  5. Happycamper

    Happycamper Have bikes, will travel

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    This year with all of the snow it is probably a safe bet that the CO passes will be closed, so focusing on UT is probably your best bet.
    #5
  6. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    OK, the plan is morphing as we learn more. From what I'm reading, Utah is a safer bet for early June. No problem - we would love to see some of the landscape of the lower Ut BDR.

    We were planning to trailer bikes to Colorado Springs or Salida for our start. But given that we will be planning more for Ut:
    A: should we trailer farther west (Mexican Hat)
    B: ride the bikes from Salida to Mexican Hat

    It looks like the CoBDR would be a good route to get us toward Mexican Hat. Is this section passable early June. We would love to ride, but would rather trailer than ride the slab. If there a scenic dirt roads that are passable, this might be fine for us.

    Thanks
    #6
  7. wbbnm

    wbbnm Long timer

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  8. Lulu7404

    Lulu7404 Been here awhile

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    XTWalt,

    I hope you don't mind if I tag along on this thread. A friend and I are planning a late June trip to about the same places. I have a bit more seat time off road and will be taking 1190 R and he is on a Husaberg 450. Less pavement the better, but I am taking the big girl for her first trip and would rather not end up in a rock garden. Initially started planning the new NMBDR but have slowly morphed to AZ/UT. Sedona, Grand Canyon, Lake Powell, Bryce, etc. We did some UT last Oct, Lake Powell (Alstrom Point), Casto Canyon, and even then the low country was a bit warm during the day. It froze every night at higher elevation though. Alstrom Point for breakfast below. One of our two day loops got cancelled due to a rock slide that closed the road. We ended up bailing out two days early and hit Ouray, CO for two days on our way back. Got snowed on each day, but not enough to stop a ride.[​IMG]
    #8
  9. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    Lulu, I think we talked before but you may want to look at route for Old Spanish Trail (Santa Fe - Durango - Moab - Green River - Salina) and the Great Western Trail.
    #9
  10. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    Thanks guys. Alstrom Point looks awesome.

    I've put together some options for our trip. We have a decent route from Colorado Springs to Telluride (lots of pavement, but very scenic). Then some good dirt tracks from Telluride over to the 3 Step Hideaway in Utah. From there, we'll spend a few nights doing day rides. Then, ride south to Mex Hat and see southern Utah.

    Now I have to figure out how to get back to Co Springs.

    Walt
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  11. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    Guys, I've been studying Google Earth, looking for a route into Telluride from the East. Can anyone estimate if these roads will be open early June?

    Lake City to Silverton: Rt149 - Rt30 - Rt5 - Rt2
    [​IMG]


    Million Dollar Highway to Telluride: Rt 630 (Ophir Road) - Rt 145
    My maps says road closed in winter.
    [​IMG]

    Both of these routes avoid crossing any peaks or high ridges, so I'm hoping they are passable in early June.

    Thanks,
    Walt
    #11
  12. wbbnm

    wbbnm Long timer

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    I suspect neither of those routes will be open in early June. My experience is that you will not be able to get much over 10k feet on dirt roads. I have a track that looks like your first one. The profile shows it going up to 12.5k ft. It might not be the same. Your second one looks like it goes over Ophir Pass which is about 11.5k ft.

    If you don't have access to other topo maps, you might take a look at this:

    http://caltopo.com/map.html#ll=43.1119,-94.53281&z=5&b=t

    These maps are hard to read because you have to really zoom in to see the text. But you can import gpx files into them.
    #12
  13. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    OMG! Caltopo is the tool I've been missing. Thank you so much for that link. With this tool, I can overlay my route plans on the topo map can review elevation. Perfect.

    Bummer though on getting into Telluride from the East.

    Thanks,
    Walt
    #13
  14. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    Using Caltopo, I found a scenic looking route from Ouray to Gateway, It mostly goes along a road called the Divide Road, and never crosses 10K ft. It turns off on a road called 19 1/2 road at the Divide Forks Campground and heads towards Gateway. Anybody know if this would be passable in early June? Also, is this a forest road?

    Thanks,
    Walt
    [​IMG]
    #14
  15. wbbnm

    wbbnm Long timer

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    Sounds like that might be doable. I really don't know. We did ride that in October a year ago. The road on top is pretty easy. But the first few miles of your track outside of Gateway are a little primitive. There is some sand and ruts, but the climb up to the mesa is breathtakingly spectacular and not really hard.

    We came from the other direction. When we got to the edge of the mesa, it looked like the world ended. Then we saw the sharp turn to the road down.

    You might post in the Rockies regional forum and ask if the road on top of the Uncomghre Plateau opens by June.
    #15
  16. NMTrailboss

    NMTrailboss Team Dead End

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    I think you will be good on that route in early June. We crossed the Divide Rd. last year on the second week of June and it was all dry...just depends on late spring snows.
    #16
  17. XTWalt

    XTWalt Been here awhile

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    Thanks wbbnm and NMTrailboss. I'll post over in the regional forum later in May and see if anyone has any first-hand intel.

    Thanks,
    Walt
    #17