NC to Utah

Discussion in 'Americas' started by drdubb, Sep 16, 2012.

  1. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    I've been thinking about a trip to Colorado and Utah. This post is a kernal of the beginning of a plan to execute this trip.
    I'm planning about 14-16 days, second half of June '13.
    I'll be riding a 1995 Honda Nighthawk. Bike currently has about 25 K miles.
    I will be camping most of the way. I'm a retired teacher and money is an issue.
    The goal is to ride some fun roads and see a part of the country that I've not experienced.
    I've laid out a preliminary route, but I'm not wedded to it.
    I like to stop and take pics, visit with folks and generally take a mellow approach.

    I'm wondering how many miles I can cover per day once I'm out west. Most of the days are between 250 - 300. Sounds like a lot once I'm in the hills. When I was on the BRP, 200 miles was a lot in one day, but the speed limit was 45.
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  2. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    Let's see if this works

    [​IMG]
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  3. sealsam

    sealsam Sam...I am.

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    We kinda got the idea. In UT ride Hwy 12, visit Zion, Bryce, Cedar Breaks, Capitol Reef, Arches, Canyonlands, Moab. If you get these major sites covered, you'll be a happy camper!
    #3
  4. FotoTEX

    FotoTEX Long timer

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    That is a can't go wrong ride. I am headed up to part of your route in a couple of days. Awesome area.
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  5. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    I'd love to get some ideas for campgrounds, places to eat. I'm flying blind.
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  6. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z Long timer

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  7. thetourist

    thetourist Just passing thru

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    Try to work in Monument Valley. Valley of the Gods is nearby. Mokey Dugway is a cool bit of road beside VoG.

    Your route into Moab is good. There is a road into the mts thru Castle Valley. It circles Moab with some nice views. As I remember, In the mts, few gravel spots on an old paved road. Very scenic.

    Lots of space to rough camp along the roads. I just try to get out of sight of beer drinking teenagers. :lol3 Where hwy 95 crosses the river is a big wide spot. An outstanding view from Bears Ears. There is a nice spot on 163, just on the north edge of Mon Valley, used by the Navajo to sell stuff. On a little rise with a great morning view. Cisco is a good place to stop.

    No eateries, along your route, are memorable, to me.

    300 mi a day is my average. I am not an iron butt rider, but (ha ha ha), I do ride till dark. In summer there is up to 16-17 hrs of daylight. I'm up by 5am and ride till 9pm. Even riding slow you can make some miles.

    I figure a full day for Nat Parks, but some of the Utah parks can be seen in a few hrs. I've done one in 30 minutes. Some are more hiking oriented than viewed from the road.
    #7
  8. TwoShots

    TwoShots Vagabond

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    The 250-300 sounds like fair numbers given the route and a mellow approach. I highly recommend a camelbak strapped to the bike... or something to hold 2 litres of water to sip on throughout the day.

    Just a thought on taking it in:
    Much of your UT route is my backyard so to speak. It's easy to get caught up in exploring the scenery off the bike. A lot of fun, really.

    Most riders coming through miss the real gems on their quest to log miles. Consider putting the tent down in one spot for 2 or 3 nights. Then explore north from your campground one day, west the next day, etc. That way you'll get the views and points of interest twice and from different perspectives. It would work especially well traveling UT 12.

    Fire me a PM when your plans or destinations get a little more defined. I can probably save you time locating the least expensive or free camping, be it primitive type or with showers. Keywords: least expensive.

    Safe travels.
    #8
  9. jon6.0

    jon6.0 Been here awhile

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    Does it have to be June? Weather in Colorado can get quite sketchy. My first time though in late August I was totally unprepared and had to buy better gear in the middle of my trip from San Diego to Glacier Nat'l park. I did that trip on an old GS1100E and averaged 300-400 miles per day.
    #9
  10. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    the tourist, two shots, jon6.0; Thanks for the input.

    More background....I'm a born again rider, did so as a teenager and just started back three years ago. I intend to migrate into dual sports next year. I've not taken long trips. I did about 1800 miles this spring doing the Natchez Trace. This trip out west will be a big leap.

    I'm working part time in a school, last day June 11 and I'd like to be back before the 4th.

    I've got pretty good gear, I've got both a First Gear Kathmandu and Kilamanjaro Jackets with pants. 15 degree sleeping bag.

    Good tip on the camelback. One of my jackets has one, but I think I would prefer a bag on the bike.

    I like the idea of camping in a spot and heading out in various directions. That's usually what I do when I go up to the Appalachians. Reduces lost time due to packing up every morning. I'd love suggestions on good central spots.

    My original route came from an article in rider magazine. I prefer local knowledge. I'm heading up to our mountains next weekend and a local dual sport rider from the area is going to show me the "good" roads.

    Not a beamer, but has been a great motorcycle so far.

    [​IMG]
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  11. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    How about these changes? That makes the trip 16-18 days without an off day.

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  12. Yankee Dog

    Yankee Dog Long timer

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    from my experience when you are in the twisties, 250-300 is plenty, but while crossing the plains you will not find 400-500 all that difficult.

    However, do not use the freeways to cross the plains. It is mind numbing horrible experience. You can still make great time of the backroads through Kansas and Oklahoma and you will enjoy it much more on the side roads.
    #12
  13. TwoShots

    TwoShots Vagabond

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    I can work up a short list. What's your preference: primitive camping or something with showers with food close by?
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  14. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    I gotta have my shower. I plan on bringing cooking gear, but will also check out interesting eateries.
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  15. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    Good suggestion. A few hours of slab work and I'm done. I'll start studying the maps.

    Its about 1800 miles out, so a good 3600 miles of interstate. I'm thinking three days out, three days back with 8-10 days putzing around.
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  16. Yankee Dog

    Yankee Dog Long timer

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    consider crossing the Mississippi on the ferry at Hickman, KY. Anybody can cross on a bridge.

    Also, look at Hwy 160 across Southern MO. A roller coaster of a road that will take you most of the way through the state. No sense in waiting for CO for the fun stuff.
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  17. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z Long timer

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    It's a good suggestion, but I'm wondering if it'll be running with the river so low. There's no indication on the webpage that they've stopped... but then again, the last time I was up there the river was high and the ferry wasn't running and the website didn't mention it.

    Jamie
    #17
  18. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    Check!
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  19. drdubb

    drdubb OFWG

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    Got a good route through Missouri, how about suggestions from there to Colorado?
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  20. TwoShots

    TwoShots Vagabond

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    Roger that. I'll be back with a short list of decent camps and eateries within walking distance of camp. Busy with work the next few days.
    #20