Riding the Colorado Trail through Rockies This Weekend on a whim!

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by BoochZilla, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    This Friday I am flying to Colorado to join some industry friends for a ride through the Colorado Trail & Rockies this weekend. Not enough time to get myself and my bike out there so I am renting a 650 Wee Strom when I arrive. Leaving Friday and flying back to Philly on Tuesday Night.

    Will be leaving from Gunnison and hitting the following waypoints over the weekend:

    Cottonwood Pass
    Monarch Pass
    Marshall Pass
    Independence Pass
    Aspen
    Glenwood Springs
    McClure Pass
    Ohio Pass
    Crested Butte


    Would love to hear any feedback, as this is my first time riding Colorado and I am sure many of you have hit parts of this journey before. I have to admit, among other things, I am am researching any can't miss, hole in the wall, Guy Fieri-esque food stops right now. Any recommendations welcome.

    I am excited to be beating on a new Arai XD3 (Motard Black :evil) and the rest of my gear will be the best of FirstGear lineup. Gear and Ride report with pics and HD video to follow.

    I love impromptu adventures.

    Anthony
    #1
  2. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    That's going to be a great ride.. be sure to snap lots of pics and post them here :thumb
    :lurk
    #2
  3. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Don't worry, I'll be taking the trusty Canon DSLR on the trip ;-)

    Also just snagged Fire Pin for the iPhone which will log all of my waypoints on a google map for posting and posterity.

    Have you done the Colorado Trail Gadget?

    #3
  4. UncleMike

    UncleMike How'd that happen?

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    Anthony,

    I've lived in CO for over 30 years now and can tell you that you're in for an awsome ride! If you had time to include the Ouray / Telluride area and the Rocky Mountain National Park you'd have hit most of the top rides in CO. But then again, you'll have a reason to come back.
    I do have a couple of suggestions for some things along your route. Just outside of Gunnison on your way up to Crested Butte is an Italian Restaurant called Garlic Mike's. It's on the right and backs up to the river. If you care to, they have outside seating. Good food, reasonable portions and a local favorite. Of course your friends in Gunnison would know best.
    If you find yourself passing by Marble, CO along 133, take a few minutes to ride on up there. It's about 5 miles off the road. The marble from this little area was used to make the Lincon Memorial. It's pretty bizarre to see huge chunks of the stuff just laying around the road sides and the town itself has some picture worthy sculptures.
    A few hours soaking in the Hot Springs pool in Glenwood Springs can be a good idea, especially after a long day in the saddle. There is a Brew Pub in the Hotel Denver in Glenwood Springs where you can get a Growler of beer and a pretty good meal.

    Enjoy your trip!

    Michael
    #4
  5. WYO George

    WYO George Long timer

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    I'm not sure where you are from, but altitude sickness can be an issue so drink lots of water, even when you don't think you are thirsty. Other than that have a ton of fun, take lots of pics and make memories that last a lifetime.

    George
    #5
  6. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Flew to Denver today and drove (by car) 250 miles to Gunnison to arrive at the meetup.

    Colorado is beautiful. And I havn't even done any riding yet. The weather is perfect this time of year and the trees are just starting to change. Took 285 South through the mountains. I want to fly home and kidnap my wife to bring her back. Its just awesome out here.

    I leave bright and early departing with our group of 10+ headed to Cottonwood pass.

    I am Fire Pinning (iPhone app) the entire trip so you can see the whole route we took. (obviously for today, those are wyapoints by car) Pretty cool app.

    Also I have posted some pics I shot from the road today as well as a shot of me getting my gear prepped for departure tomorrow morning.

    Check out the Fire Pin Map with Pins Here: Map!

    Here is a Link to the pics I posted from today:
    ADV Colorado Day 1 Prep

    I think tomorrow is going to be wild, but if it gets hairy at all, I am staying at a holiday in express tonight (no bs!) so I got that working for me :-). Riding and camping tomorrow.

    I will leave you with some parting shots from today....


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    <img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3500/3910931037_02032e8211.jpg">
    On a side note, the Arai XD3 is what it is. Just one sick helmet. This is however the first time I am gong to be rockin any FirstGear for the ride. The TPG Rainer is new for 2009 and TPG Escape Pants complete the set. While tomorrow is the first acid test (30 in the morning, 70 in the afternoon with rain expected), I must say that my first impression is very high. There is a degree of polish to the new line that don't remember from seasons past.

    Two wheels down.

    Anthony
    #6
  7. PacificPT

    PacificPT Been here awhile

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    Looking forward to the RR!
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  8. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Crazy riding the last two days. Been without cell reception most of it.

    Here is an early highlight. There are 22 of us on this ride. Pics and video a plenty.

    I just uploaded this. It may need a couple minutes before its processed. (time now 8:43)<object width="425" height="344"></object><object width="425" height="344">

    <embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/tQDLkppBMW0&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></object>
    #8
  9. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Marshall Pass early today...

    <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/0WYdKPi0zVk&hl=en&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/0WYdKPi0zVk&hl=en&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>
    #9
  10. CoffeeGuy

    CoffeeGuy Coffee is 99% Water

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    Nice meeting you Anthony and the rest of the gang. I'll add my pics when I get home. Plowing my way through Kansas.

    John
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  11. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Yo John,

    It was great riding with you and hanging out as well. Hoping some of the other crazies chime in here. Expect an email with links to all my pics and video as well as a full report and link here - please feel free to post your "best of" here as well.


    Talk to you soon.

    Anthony

    #11
  12. garweb

    garweb n00b

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    Hi, I think you will be transiting Kebler Pass ( near Crested Butte between Mclure & Ohio Passes ). Stop on top and look for the grave stone of the young girl. Note the inscription. Makes one think....
    garweb (former Crested Butte residient)
    #12
  13. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Hi,

    I wish I knew going into that - we rode Kebler on Monday - I am pulling together a ride report as we speak. What a great ride.

    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2574/3926423518_1521416045_b.jpg">

    I did not see the grave stone, but now I wished I looked around a bit more - what did it say?



    Anthony

    #13
  14. txxr

    txxr Big gulps eh?

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    nice, im a bit jealous
    #14
  15. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Using my iPhone and FirePin I was able to track the whole ride except for the parts in which I had no phone reception (unfortunately the top of every mountain). If you switch to hybrid or satellite view you can guess the crazy twisty roads that we took. Obviously Firepin connects the dots as the crow flies. Also I will note that I flew from Philly to Denver.

    <iframe src="http://firepin.com/embed/Colorado%7EAdv%7ERide/3e4bb9c0-8135-012c-7452-12313a00c1c5" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" height="370" width="425"></iframe>

    Be sure to Zoom in.

    Anthony
    #15
  16. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    [​IMG]

    How sick are the roads in Colorado? They're sick.

    [​IMG]

    So before I get into the nitty gritty and begin detailing the days, I will share that we rode just under 500 miles over 3 days. It may not seem like a lot of mileage for the time, but that is due to the fact that about 30% of the trip was riding fire roads and dirt trails through the Rockies which take longer.

    [​IMG]

    I made the ride on a rented 2009 Suzuki 650 V-Strom from Kevin at http://www.rentmotorcyclescolorado.com/
    he was super nice and easy to work with and delivered the bike Friday at 7pm and picked up the bike Monday at 9 and had a beer with us! He was also super cool about replacing some damaged parts on the bike after I DUMPED it. :eek1 More on that later.

    I would say that would be more upset about getting off, if I wasn't one of two guys on stock road tires on dirt. If I dumped it on knobbies you could make fun of me all you want.

    [​IMG]

    22 of us met in Gunnison - I am not going to lie - it was a lot of industry people, and I am an industry guy myself. Some Magazine guys, some dealers and some guys from FirstGear. Aside from ripping around Colorado which was awesome, we were all testing the new 2010 TPG line of FirstGear multiseason gear. (Just wanted to fully disclose the common thread that all brought us from our respective corners of the US to Colorado for the weekend - especially since many of the pics have the van in them)

    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2483/3926693239_6c82a2a670.jpg">

    Most guys made the trip on their GS's and 990 Adventures. I decided to go last minute so I flew out and met the party at the starting gate in Gunnison which was 1800 miles in for some of the guys who rode out.

    My next post will be day one of riding... stay tuned.
    #16
  17. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2625/3918783578_fb369dd876.jpg">


    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2502/3918787592_70a83f511e_b.jpg">

    After suiting up and meeting for breakfast - the 22 of us set out of Gunnison, CO headed about 20 miles and arrived at our first dirt impass - Cottonwood pass.

    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2658/3918796856_27e8fb4117_b.jpg">
    Me at the start of Cottonwood.

    [​IMG]
    Ripping the mud.

    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2489/3918010263_efd08f5ac7_b.jpg">
    John from BMW MOA - also on street tires

    [​IMG]
    Kyle comes ripping through

    [​IMG]
    Another shot as folks ride through and stop of pics

    Then as I was rolling up a gnarlier trail up to a quarry another rider came flying down and took my safe line, pushing me over into a rut which caused my bike to dip and shoot at about 30mph - I jumped off and the bike almost went completely over the side. Pretty sweet. I was fine. The bike was a bit wrecked and all my gear did its job. It also took 5 of us to get the bike back up.

    [​IMG]
    Obviously we were taking the "danger" very seriously.


    Its ok - it was a rental, but I jacked the fairings and cowl.
    [​IMG]

    From there we hit the summit of Cottonwood - no worse for wear.

    [​IMG]

    After the summit we had lunch and then basically got hit with a ridiculous hail storm due to our elevation and the Mountains micro-climate. We all threw our FirstGear back on to help shield us from the rain.

    [​IMG]


    We then rocked it through Monarch pass and down to Buena vista to eventually arrive at our campsite for the night.

    [​IMG]

    Notice my crappy blue kids tent in the far right. I was underequipped to say the least. No sleeping pad, flashlight or adult sized tent. Awesome.

    Did I mention it poured all night?

    I had to create a "gear-a-mid" with my luggage form the van, and electronics to keep them off of the tent floor and not touching a wall just to keep them dry. I then laid in the backside of the tent, in a puddle, to struggle through one of the least good nights of rest of all time. At least I did not get eaten by a bear. On a side note dinner was really good. Marks Wife Rose showed up and made ridiculous Pizzoli and we ate buffalo burgers and drank dos equis. All in all a good night.

    Here is a shot of me in the terrible kiddie tent. Funny now. Not so funny then.

    [​IMG]


    The whole photo album from Day 1's ride can be found on flickr here - Colorado FirstGear Motorcycle Ride Gallery

    Day 2 to come next..... Stay tuned.
    #17
  18. Boyd

    Boyd Been here awhile

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    Anthony - :clap it was great riding you and everyone else. I will be posting some pics over the weekend.
    Sean
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  19. BoochZilla

    BoochZilla Metal.Moto.Mania.

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    Yo Seany boy!

    Glad you made it home safe. What a blast that weekend was. I can't wait to see Kyles video - he has the sickest stuff.

    If you are coming east or vice versa we will have to catch up and go riding. I talked to Steve J. over email - he already said "next years ride" - I think were talking about heading toward Durango.

    the only vid I have up so far on youtube is the product review we did in crested butte, I will keep you posted as I post some other stuff.

    I am super hung-over writing this - my brother got married last night.

    Booch

    #19
  20. CoffeeGuy

    CoffeeGuy Coffee is 99% Water

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    [​IMG]
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