“The country through which we passed today was diversified…”

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Revelstoker, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    “ Like those in the valley behind us, most people stand in sight of the spiritual mountains all their lives and never enter them, being content to listen to others who have been there and avoid the hardships”

    Robert M. Pirsig 1974
    Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


    Today's GPS view.
    [​IMG]



    After a vaguely fitful sleep we were up and packing by around 7:15 or so. It was cold, but not nearly as cold as it could have been. Still though I was glad to have the grip warmers this morning. I had briefly thought of taking them off prior to the trip, but this was the first of several times I was happy to have them. I would have never thought that I’d want/need them in August.

    [​IMG]



    Today is actually an amazing one in it’s diversity.
    [​IMG]


    We passed the 2000km mark right at The Divide up on Union Pass.
    [​IMG]


    Just as we crossed the 2000km mark of the trip, we totally lucked out and had freshly plowed gravel for several miles…definitely made for railing around the corners!
    [​IMG]


    Post Union Pass offers up some sweet high country riding that is heavily populated with cattle. Hard to see, but there is actually a cowboy in the lower right hand side of this shot.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]


    Bikes with a lot of big sky.
    [​IMG]


    After a nice descent from the high country, we found ourselves in the Upper Green River Valley and a relatively straight-shot of pavement into Pinedale for coffee, breakfast, more coffee and a tank of premium grade. Pinedale is pretty much a cowboy town if I’ve ever seen one. We didn’t linger too long though as the next stop is 220 miles away – Rawlins, Wyoming.

    [​IMG]


    It didn’t take a whole lot of time until we had some pretty sweet riding South of town. Oil rigs are very predominant in the area.
    [​IMG]



    Once past those the roads turn into very nice double track that winds its way up into The Mesa Big Range Winter Range. A few gates to be opened and closed otherwise a great piece of riding that was nice to get some rhythm going on.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]


    Wyoming rangeland riding.
    [​IMG]


    We stopped here to talk about the section we had just done - nice washout area with a tricky climb. Made for a great photo spot.
    [​IMG]


    The next section offers up some absolutely spectacularly desolate country. Every direction you look is sage brush and it is endless as far as one can see. ..except for the odd boulder out in the middle of nowhere.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    They say that you actually cross the Continental Divide three or four times on this stretch, but there are definitely no markers celebrating this fact.




    [​IMG]



    I started to see a couple of mountain bike tracks around this point and once again thought that I was fortunate to be on a KTM. After an hour or so of this we took a small descent into South Pass City and stopped for a root beer at The South Pass City Mercantile. It’s for sale if anyone is interested.

    [​IMG]



    This little airplane/wind vane was right to the side of the building – didn’t look like it works, but looked cool.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    Leaving Atlantic City commences the last long stretch into Rawlins. Gary and I had decided already that it might be a motel night when we get there – maybe a little pizza, a six pack and an hour of Oberman to catch up on what’s shaking. But it’s not like it was right around the corner – we had much more spectacular riding to do through a pretty historically significant area. There are posts all through marking where the Oregon, California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express Trails once used to be.



    This post looks like it has had a few cows using it as a rubbing post.
    [​IMG]


    I like to think that I could see a couple of ruts where the covered wagons used to travel through the sagebrush.

    [​IMG]


    We tried to get a team photo on most of the Continental Divide crossings.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    I’ve seen this shot in a few other Ride Reports – how can you not take this picture?!
    [​IMG]



    Here are two of the happier cyclist we ran across. They were very cool – said they had seen a few dual sporters on their ride, but not a lot. I asked them if they too had ‘The Book’ and said they’d started off with it but found it kind of heavy and burdensome so they just had some map that looked more like a place map from a diner.

    [​IMG]


    Self portrait of me on one fo the Continental Divide crossings.

    [​IMG]


    After a long but very satisfying day we ended up in Rawlins, rented a room and kicked back with some takeout pizza and a few Buds.
    [​IMG]
    #21
  2. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Up from the banks of the Colorado
    Nightwatchmen stood guard 'round the wagon yard
    And I took a pillar for a sign
    That the salt of the earth was surely mine
    Up from the banks
    of the Colorado

    Jimmie Dale Gilmore


    40 hours of riding - almost a good work week!
    [​IMG]


    There were two points of interest that I was keen on today. The first being the infamous Aspen Alley and the second visiting The Boyer Ranch – a ranch dating back to the very early 1900’s just off the trail that had been in the family of a friend of mine since the beginning,
    First we had to get out of Rawlins, but there were a few pictures to be taken first. One thing I noticed with these smaller towns is that the so-called Mom & Pop Motels have been decimated by the chains. Rawlins had a whole street of abandoned motels – pretty lonely places. Make for great pictures.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    We thought we’d cut a corner on the route and ended up down by the Wyoming State Penitentiary. This didn’t last long as we were chased down by a guard in a truck who jumped out quickly with hand on holster. We begged forgiveness and told the truth. No pictures allowed of prison guards apparently.
    [​IMG]


    Back onto pavement for the next 25 miles or so we headed into The Sierra Madre Range – more cowboy country, although I couldn’t really see the one that belonged to this ride.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    About 20 minutes into the Medicine Bow National Forest we hit Aspen Alley – it’s no wonder why that there are so many pictures taken here. Pretty cool spot which I can only imagine is very colorful in the Fall months.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    From just past Aspen Alley, we were able to take the dirt right into The Boyer Ranch. I’ve heard my friend Jock speak of the ranch that he had grown up on many times and was curious to see if it was all I had been led to believe. It was. Very beautiful spot that was built by his Great Grandfather in the early 1900’s.

    [​IMG]





    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    Jock’s sister and niece were there and were very hospitable offering iced tea and a quick tour for Gary and me. I’m definitely happy to have made the diversion off of the route to see some cool Wyoming history. From The Boyer Ranch we headed South into Savery. Not a lot going on there, so we headed back East towards Slater where we got onto Route 129.
    [​IMG]




    About 15 miles down 129 we came across another photo-op – I’ve seen this shot several times on ADVRider as well…the 3 Forks Ranch. Spectacular spot! I researched it when I arrived home and it is set up as a lodge for fishing, hunting, skiing, massages… The pricing is unreal. A week of fly-fishing or hunting would buy a pretty well set up dual-sport.





    [​IMG]


    We made it through the hustle and bustle of Steamboat Springs when the crack of thunder and lightning lit up the sky – it was loud as it could easily be heard above the sound of the 640 and with ear plugs in. The first time it had started to rain on the trip! Wasn’t bad enough to put pants on, but the jacket definitely came out of the panniers. The rain felt very refreshing to tell you the truth.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Within about ten minutes, the rain had stopped and the sun started to make it’s way out. We took a stop in front of this old ranch to pack up the jackets and and take a few shots of the old equipment rusting away.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The Rock Creek Station can be found up in the Gore Pass area on FR206 – hard to imagine how life would have been up here 130 years ago! Great to see that places like this are being preserved.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Sortly after the Rock Creek Station, we came across Rock Creek – it’s actually surprisingly deep as it was very dry out with no other apparent running water around. A quick survey makes the righthand side look like the safest route through – it was, at least for me.
    [​IMG]

    After a few more miles and corners we were on FR214 at the beginning of a 2000 foot descent going from forests of spruce and aspen to baked hillsides of pinon and juniper - the forest changing drastically on the plummet into Radium. A hard left corner, crossing the tracks of The Union Pacific and we were on our way to Kremmling via the Colorado River.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    We were pretty jazzed when we saw a Mexican restaurant in Kremmling! Food here was very good and the beer better.
    [​IMG]

    From Kremmling, we took a quick ride up County Road 33 to the Williams Fork Resevoir and the campground located there. It was probably a little earlier than we would have stopped, but it was a very nice spot to set up for the night. I made a mental note to buy some bug repellent the next day as the mosquitos were pretty nasty.
    [​IMG]
    #22
  3. byways

    byways byways

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,619
    Location:
    Idaho
    :clap
    Outstanding report on the GDR, among the best I've seen. Thanks for the effort. I'll make good use of it in my planning for next summer ...
    #23
  4. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Now I can't let my life slip away
    Pushin' these number two pencils everyday
    This rat race don't fit into my plan, no ma'am
    I'm dreamin', schemin'


    Dale Watson


    [​IMG]



    I think that because we had gone to bed relatively early that we were up and at it early – also we know that we’d have some great riding today in the form of Webster Pass and a warm bed to sleep in as a friend of mine lives in Breckenridge our final destination.



    This shot was just past the Williams Fork Resevoir on 33 – very peaceful spot with the horses grazing on the far side.

    [​IMG]


    Pronghorn, I found were very difficult to get a great shot of. They are very fast being built for predator evasion! Apparently they are the fastest land mammal around and I believe it.

    [​IMG]


    Heading down through The Blue River Valley, I was blown away by the amount of damage done by the pine beetle. We have the same problem in BC, but it appears worse in Colorado. I remember taking this shot and thinking that the redness of the forest will never come through, but it’s definitely possible to see this whole hillside is done.
    [​IMG]


    We stopped for a quick breakfast in Siverthorne and headed West for a short while on Hwy. 6 – the first time we had really detoured from the GDT. I had seen other Ride Reports of how beautiful Webster Pass is and figured there was never going to be another opportunity like this. On the road up to Webster Pass, just before Montezuma, we hit 10,000 feet above sea level for the first time – momentous occasion for a Canadian as there aren’t too many spots in Canada that the average person can get this high.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Past Montezuma there was a refreshing water crossing – Gary and I pretty much just committed to it. Once on the otherside, we stopped to empty our boots and give a little advice to some gentlemen on slightly lighter bikes.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Really nice riding to the top of Webster Pass – a few switchbacks that have been nicely banked by the Quaders. View from the top is quite spectacular.
    [​IMG]

    I can't imagine a more spectacular place to hit the 3000km mark of my vacation!
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Webster Pass was a very social place with several groups on motorcycles coming up and over and a handful of Jeeps coming down from Red Cone . These pictures don’t do the road justice – it really was steeper in real life.

    If you look very closely, you'll be able to see the Jeeps on the ridgeline.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    These two, Burt & Gene, had been riding together for years and were both from the area, but the funny thing was that they had met each other at a BMW Rally at Toad Rock Campground not far from where I live in BC. Gene is an ADVRider, but I don’t remember what his handle is.

    [​IMG]


    Originally, we had planned to ride down to the highway from Webster and loop back on the highway into Breckenridge but after a great chance meeting with Jim & Tom, we learned that we could hook into Georgia Pass very easily and it would drop us right into the backyard of my friend where we’d be spending the night.

    [​IMG]


    All in all, we hung out at Webster for well over an hour chatting and site-seeing. Very cool spot. I thought of the Ry Cooder album title 'The Buena Vista Social Club'

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    The road down in the valley behind Gary is what we came up.
    [​IMG]


    The descent of off Webster doesn’t leave a lot of room for error as it’s narrow, rocky and has a wee bit of a drop off. I would have loved to take a few more pictures but trying to put my bike up on the centerstand would have been virtually impossible.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]


    The gratuitous daily bike shot...with Gary in the background.
    [​IMG]



    Gary looking for the shallow end of the pool.
    [​IMG]


    Once the descent flattens out, the forested area takes over and the riding flows nicely.
    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    We blasted down to Hwy 285, turned right headed down to Jefferson the store/diner for a Red Bull and then headed North into the The Michigan Creek Valley up to Georgia Pass.
    [​IMG]


    Flightdeck view on the way up Georgia Pass.
    [​IMG]


    Even tough we were off of The Great Divide Trail we still managed to bag a crossing of The Divide.
    [​IMG]



    The ride off of Georgia Pass down into French Gulch is rutted and quite steep – no real problems although it was a tight squeeze when I met an H1 Hummer on it’s way up.

    [​IMG]



    At the bottom of the first major descent we made a wrong turn (left instead of right) and started heading back up again - in retrospect (looking at this photo), I was standing right where we went wrong and I probably distracted Gary with the flash - then of course I followed him when I got back on the bike.
    [​IMG]



    After about a kilometer it dead ended – but it made for an exciting rocky/rooty ride on a loaded up ‘panniered’ bike.
    [​IMG]


    Came across this abandoned house in French Gulch. I got a chuckle out of the sign that was partially covered up warning people to slow down as children were playing. Hard to imagine there was ever a lot of traffic in this area.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    We kept rolling down the valley and right into Breckenridge for a beer at The Southridge Grill. We ended up having two before we stocked up at the Liquor Store with about as much extra as we could carry and headed up to my friend Pauls house for a great evening, a warm bed, and a washing machine.
    [​IMG]


    Gary brought his Fat Tire!
    [​IMG]



    My friends Paul & Laney making us a great dinner while we regale them in stories of the hard life on the road!

    [​IMG]
    #24
  5. bpeterson

    bpeterson no other way to say it

    Joined:
    May 25, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,106
    Location:
    NJ
    great, great, great. I love CDR reports.

    wonderful photography too. :clap

    I need more vacation time :D
    #25
  6. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Well I'm ridin' along
    Singin' the same ol' cowboy song
    That's been sung a hundred times before
    Ain't got nothin' but my name
    And I'm the only man I know to blame
    But I'm livin'
    I'm happy and I'm free


    Marshall Tucker Band

    It was a leisurely start today as the bed was nice and my head hurt from the tequila the night before.
    We had a few errands to run and a some bolts to check and we were on our way at 4:07 – definitely a late start.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    First though we stopped in for a beer with my buddy Bill, a longtime Breckenridger. He was a great resource regarding some up the upcoming country as he had been driving trucks in the area for over thirty years. After reading ‘The Bible’ he definitely knew cycling was not going to be in his future.
    [​IMG]


    On the climb out of Breckenridge, I stopped for one last look – a beautiful spot that once again has been hit hard by the pine beetle. It’s going to be interesting to see this place in a few years.

    [​IMG]


    The road out of Breckenridge is smooth sailing – saw a lot of rental cars on the section. This is the road up to Boreas Pass – another Divide crossing, this one at 11,482 feet. The road is pretty mellow in terms of grade, but they apparently used to run trains up and over the pass.
    On the way up to the pass we rode by Baker’s Tank – this is how the locomotives restocked with water. I caught the mountainbiker just heading up behind it – singletrack back down to Breckenridge no doubt.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    The old station on the summit of Boreas Pass. It is quite interesting on the way up and at the pass itself to see all of the stumps – all of the trees were removed and used as lumber to construct the various buildings in the late 1800’s.
    [​IMG]


    On the backside of Boreas Pass we rode through Como. Since it hadn’t been all that long since we left Breckenridge we only stopped for a few pictures although I have heard that restaurant in the background of this picture is pretty good – this being based on other ride reports on ADV Rider.

    [​IMG]


    Daily gratuitous bike picture...in Como, Colorado.
    [​IMG]


    From Como we pushed onwards to Hartsell on County Road 15. The terrain is typically rolling with sagebrush – quite nice. The road was smooth enough for me to take a picture of my shadow which was doing a nice job of keeping up.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    We took the opportunity to stop for dinner in Hartsell at The H.O.B Café and Saloon – I asked the waitress what H.O.B. stood for – Hartsells Only Bar. Definitely worth a stop as the food was plentiful and good. Bottomless ice tea too.
    [​IMG]


    While Gary and I were having dinner this couple pulled in. They’d just ridden down from Denver. Great looking, and sounding, bike. Gary and I were feeling fortunate with our 11 inches of travel compared to their zero travel on the rear.
    [​IMG]


    From Hartsell, we turned onto County Road 53 and put our head’s down and rode the 45 miles to Salida through the San Isabel National Forest.
    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    As we approached Salida we had our eyes open for a campspot, but you descend through a narrow valley and there were a lot of No Trespassing/Private Property signs to be seen…so we continued through Salida and found a spot just West of town to set up the tents for the night. All in all, our shortest day in the saddle.

    [​IMG]


    This little guy lived in a spot just outside my tent.
    [​IMG]
    #26
  7. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Everywhere I turn there's some fool on my back,
    tryin' to outrun me, I ain't livin' like that
    I'd rather go back on the world yesterday,
    When people would do what they say
    How come there's no time to waste?

    Hacienda Brothers




    Salida is a great looking city – looks like a nice place to spend a day, but not for us as we have Indiana Pass on the menu today. My friend Bill in Breckenridge had told us that Indiana Pass would be a real treat. We packed up camp, turned on the SPOT, took the daily GPS shot and headed the six miles back into Salida for breakfast, stopped into the carwash to hose some of the crud of the bikes, filled up with gas and headed out for Monarch Pass. That’s actually a pretty busy morning for a holiday!
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    It was early and Gary couldn't decide which horse to get on.
    [​IMG]

    Monarch Pass presented us with a climb up to just over 11,000 feet – we were getting used to never dropping below 7000 feet these days which for us is crazy as the top of our local ski hill is not a whole lot higher than that.
    [​IMG]


    From Monarch Pass we descended on Highway 50 until hitting Doyleville where we turned left onto County Road 46. Crossing State Highway 114 a few kilometers later, we were on our way up to the Cochetopa Pass. This road had been in place for 135 years! Prior to that the Ute Indians had been using it for trade. Cochetopa is apparently a Ute word meaning Buffalo crossing – not a lot of buffalo to be seen today.
    [​IMG]


    No team shot on this Divide Crossing, but here’s one of me.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    This old home was situated in a relatively lush valley – I like the roofline on it. Something I had not seen on any other old places.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    I was wondering how long these poles had been here – not one of them was straight anymore and the wiring occasionally was broken and on the ground.
    [​IMG]

    Gary was suffering from a pretty bad cold and Dristan had become his new best friend.
    [​IMG]

    Gary perfectly framed on Carnero Pass!
    [​IMG]

    From Carnero Pass, we started riding down Carnero Creek eventually turning up La Garita Creek and into the Penitente Canyon. There was some great double track riding through this area, but before we got to that we had a small stint on pavement where we took a couple shots of the sunflower like plants on the side of the road.
    [​IMG]

    Bikes & flowers.
    [​IMG]

    The TKC’s are wearing fairly well. First time I’ve used TKC’s, usually having Karoo’s on my bikes – they’re not bad tires! I would eventually get 6600km's out of them.
    [​IMG]


    Flightdeck view going into the double-track of the La Garita Creek area.
    [​IMG]

    Gary shredding.
    [​IMG]

    I think Gary knew that I'd probably try and catch a little air off of this bump - looks like I got about an inch or so.An inch or so too much with loaded panniers!
    [​IMG]


    We took the backdoor into Del Norte first crossing over the Rio Grande. The combination of the heat, the cactus, the Rio Grande and a town called Del Norte is making us feel like we’re getting somewhere.
    We stopped in Del Norte to fuel up with premium unleaded, water and Red Bull.
    [​IMG]

    Del Norte is at 7800 feet and our next stop is Indiana Pass at just under 12,000…in only 40 kilometers. After a few kilometers of pavement getting out of Del Norte we are on gravel and climbing.
    [​IMG]

    The top of Indiana Pass is very beautiful. In the far pastures you can see sheep grazing in one direction and the SuperFund minesite in the other.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    We decided to take the detour up to the actual summit – to the Summitville Radio Facility which is on the peak just behind Gary.
    [​IMG]

    This brought us up to 12,292 feet.
    [​IMG]

    Bikes at the top.
    [​IMG]


    Gary at the top - another brick in the wall.
    [​IMG]

    Me at the top.
    [​IMG]

    Starting the descent from The Top.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    This area has gold mining dating back into the 1870’s. It must have been very harsh to have lived up at this altitude through the Winter months.
    [​IMG]

    I dared Gary to fill his Camelback up from this pool - even told him that I'd buy dinner. His common sense prevailed.
    [​IMG]

    In the 1980’s new mining techniques were used and the amount of gold started to flow once again using techniques laden with chemicals. The creeks and the Alamosa River downstream now are totally devoid of any life as cyanide has killed off everything.
    Gratuitous daily bike shot.
    [​IMG]

    We stopped and chatted with this fellow rider on the way down from Summitville – he’s been ripping it up all day up around Indiana Pass.
    [​IMG]

    The ride down from Indiana Pass took us up and over Stunner Pass and then into Platoro for dinner which we were definitely ready for. The Skyline Lodge was like an oasis. It's an old hunting lodge that had been around since the late 1940's.
    [​IMG]

    Another small world story; when this young buck found that we were from Canada, he asked if we had ever heard of Revelstoke, a small town in BC. Apparently he had played hockey with the Grizzlies, the local junior team, and had billeted with a family only a few blocks from my house there!
    [​IMG]

    A great dinner of chicken fried steak. Not something I‘d usually order, but it came highly recommended by the hockey player.
    [​IMG]

    We continued on down from Platoro until finding a very nice spot to set up the tents for the night. It was getting dark early as the valley is very deep…and surprisingly enough, it was getting chilly…but more on that tomorrow.
    [​IMG]

    Gary diarizing the day with a quick hand.
    [​IMG]
    #27
  8. killurtv

    killurtv free range moron

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    640
    Location:
    central oregon
    Fantastic RR and pictures, keep it coming!!
    #28
  9. Leeb17

    Leeb17 Let's ride !

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    44
    Location:
    Bend, OR
    Just what others have said. This is one of the best RR I've ever read. Photos, narrative and great quotes, great job man :clap What a ride!

    What vest/chest pro are you wearing...looks like KTM brand?
    #29
  10. bpeterson

    bpeterson no other way to say it

    Joined:
    May 25, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,106
    Location:
    NJ
    +1 on the vest, which one is that?

    Also, the photos are vibrant and vivid (is that the same thing??) - what camera are you using?

    thanks again - nice RR
    #30
  11. Holaday

    Holaday Man of Leisure

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Oddometer:
    704
    Location:
    Vancouver's North Shore, B.C.
    Great ride report. Just returned from Riggins KTM ralley via your neck of the woods. Rode Trout Lake. Loved the Kootenays. Hey I recognized Paul Parker met him while he was working with G3. Keep up the good work.
    #31
  12. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Thanks for the kind words regarding the RR. It's a great way to relive the trip!
    A majority of the pictures were taken with my Olympus 770SW (7.1 megapixels) - it's a durable little pocket camera that survives just about everything you can throw at it.
    Here's a shot of me trying to take a shot of how bad the dust was in Utah.
    [​IMG]

    The vest is a TekVest made in Ontario. Great for summer riding - built in water bladder pocket in the back, four pockets and wrap around armour - wasn't overly hot like a pressure suit can be. It's the latest vest that they've made to work with the Leatt. Their site is not great, but their customer service is quite good.
    #32
  13. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Next time you're through, you'll have to stop in to Revelstoke.
    Paul is to skiing, what Malcolm Smith is to riding! That's a small world that you recognized him.
    #33
  14. uncle shafty

    uncle shafty n00b

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2
    Surely is a small world, Old Rich. Isn't that Gary guy from Woodstock?
    #34
  15. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Let it ride, let it ride easy down the road
    Let it ride, let it take away all of the darkness
    Let it ride, let it rock me in the arms of stranger's angels
    Until it brings me home, let it ride, let it roll, let it go

    Ryan Adams

    [​IMG]

    The frost says it all! According to the cowboy at The Skyline Lodge, it had dropped to 25F. the night before. I was pretty snug as my bag is toasty. Gary on the otherhand had a miserable night. He had brought a sleepingbag that was on the small side and had been using it as a blanket while he layed on his Thermarest. He wasn’t happy as his fingers were numb – I offered to take his tent down as long as he took my picture doing it. I am an asshole!
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    We departed the Lake Fork campground and hit the road.
    [​IMG]


    Things didn’t get any better when we got on the bikes as the valley is so deep that the sun was still hours from warming things up. Once again, the grip warmers were priceless. We made it down to Horca, but were still too early for the one restaurant to be open, so we ventured on up to La Manga Pass (10,230 feet). Perfect shot someone took right in the middle of the sign.
    [​IMG]


    This area is quite historic, not only as a meeting place over the years for Hispanics, Whites and Native Americans, but for the railway. On the way down from The Cumbres Pass, we crossed a narrow gauge railway several times – this literally dates back to the 1880’s. It is a very cool looking train that calls Chama home.
    [​IMG]


    Before getting to Chama though we crossed into New Mexico and figured this was a good spot to get a team picture.
    [​IMG]


    There are a lot of folks wanting to take there anger out on signs in New Mexico.
    [​IMG]


    Chama was great for breakfast and Gary picked up some more Dristan for his nagging cold which was not made any better by his frigid night. Gary’s bug wasn’t so nice, this Bug on the otherhand was.
    [​IMG]


    We took a few shots of the Chama Train Station before splitting. The train hasn't moved for a few years.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Shortly after leaving Chama, we were back on dirt. FR91B was pleasant enough riding – definitely would not want to be there when it is wet though. This picture attests to the depth of the ruts that were formed by just one truck. Every so often I could see the tracks of a fellow dual sporter in the dried mud…and felt sympathy!
    [​IMG]



    Gary flying amongst the flowers.
    [​IMG]


    Ran across this old place right on the side of the road.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    Couldn’t help but notice that someone had carved my initials in the tree several years ago…maybe I’ve been here already.
    [​IMG]


    These kids had a KoolAid stand literally in the middle of nowhere well not quite as they were somewhere between Canon Plaza and Vallecitos. They had cold KoolAid for 25 cents a cup with a free cookie. We had no change and lowest denomination was a $10 bill – it was their lucky day. I wonder if they still wonder who these two spacemen were that stopped by and left an Alexander Hamilton for them to split four ways.
    [​IMG]


    I love this shot – straight into the mountain.
    [​IMG]


    Starting to see some cool cactus.
    [​IMG]


    We stopped in Abiquiu for fuel and the usual snacks found some shade as it was a scorcher once again. The next stop was Cuba, New Mexico about 100 miles away. Flowing road describes this route best – mostly dirt, but there is some slickrock and lightly rocked sections thrown in for good measure.
    [​IMG]


    I found another rock to stand on.
    [​IMG]



    Gary took this of me.
    [​IMG]


    We ran across these cyclists from Vancouver – they were hanging out, and in good Canadian fashion, smoking a joint on the side of the road. They’d been on the GDT for two months. I’m a mountainbiker at heart and I honestly believe you’d HAVE to be stoned to do the GDT on an MTB. Gary and I were going through water at a high rate and I don’t know if I could carry enough as a cyclist to survive.
    [​IMG]


    Gary soaking up the bumps.
    [​IMG]


    Picking my way through the small stones.
    [​IMG]



    Hit 4000km from home today.
    [​IMG]


    Came across this Jetta literally in the middle of nowhere. What had the owner been thinking when they apparently ran out of gas – the road was not the kind that I’d want to drive a car on. Obviously they didn’t make it back in time to rescue the car from it’s ultimate demise.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    Just after the Jetta, we ran across this tree that had fallen across the road and had just been cut judging by the smell. I look a little underexposed and Gary a little over!
    [​IMG]

    Daily gratuitous bike shot.
    [​IMG]

    The road through the Santa Fe National Forest rocks – by the time we turned onto HWY126 into Cuba we were spent. No tents tonight – we splurged and moteled it. Everything needed a little charge anyway.
    [​IMG]
    #35
  16. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Well, I was drunk the day my mom got out of prison
    And I went to pick her up in the rain
    But before I could get to the station in my pickup truck
    She got runned over by a damned old train

    David Allan Coe

    Morning GPS shot.
    [​IMG]

    Exciting day not only for riding…but today we were going to end it all at Pietown gorging ourselves on various pies and then rolling into our tents to sleep it off. We had a few hundred miles of anticipation, dirt and heat to go before we got there though.
    First stop was before the edge of town at Napa for some chain lube. We were running any kind of really lightweight lube and it had seemed to working well at keeping the chains lubricated and clean.
    [​IMG]

    The 200km’s that separates Cuba with the next big stop in Grant, NM is crazy. I think that this may have been the longest stretch on the entire GDT that we rode and did not see another soul, nor any form of moisture. I can only imagine how miserable this would have been on a bicycle.
    Bicycle tracks.
    [​IMG]

    My tracks.. Looks like a shot from the moon.
    [​IMG]

    Scenic rideby.
    [​IMG]


    Maybe not seeing water is a good thing though. I have read other ride reports that showed what a nightmare this section can be if it is raining. We on the otherhand were having some sweet riding.
    [​IMG]


    I think Gary may have been resting in the ditch when he took this shot.
    [​IMG]


    The roads today are really fun, not overly fast riding, but a lot of twists and turns. Not only am I glad I’m not on a MTB, but I keep thinking that the 640 is the perfect size as a bigger bike might be a handful. This was the last of the straight sections for awhile!
    [​IMG]


    Dominating the landscape is Cabezon Peak – it shows up in a lot of the pictures that both Gary & I took. Cabezon Peak is a volcanic plug or neck that wass formed from the erosion of a volcano. The original volcano's central pipe is filled by upwelling magma where it solidifies. Over time erosional forces attack the soft outer slopes reducing the volcano to the resistant volcanic plug. Makes for great shots.
    [​IMG]

    Gary getting a better view.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    This poor cow didn’t make it to the well in time.
    [​IMG]


    The trip up until this gate had been totally free of any private property issues and closed or locked gates. We turned back after hitting this for a few km’s, scaled out the GPS, and worked our way around it. Wasn’t a problem.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    The road around the gate.
    [​IMG]


    Continuing on after the gate, it actually seemed to get drier if that is possible.

    [​IMG]


    Gary spitting up some dust.
    [​IMG]


    This is definitely not the place you want to be when it is raining!
    [​IMG]

    Some of the twisties I mentioned earlier.
    [​IMG]

    Here are the remains of what was once some sort of hardscrabble farming operation. This place really looks like it is just part of the surrounding rocks and dirt. The amount of work that went into building this place blows my mind.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    It was total workout somedays getting off the bike, putting it on it's centerstand, opening the gate, closing the gate and getting back on...only to do it again five minutes later and then again and again.
    [​IMG]


    We stopped into Grants, NM for lunch with pie’s on our minds for dinner. From Grants, we slabbed it down HWY 117 – in retrospect, I wished we had gone down 42. Nothing wrong with 117, but it is pavement you know. After 40km’s or so we turned left onto County Road 41 through the open grasslands and then later into forests of pinon pine and juniper.

    [​IMG]


    Lots of windmills along this section. Signs that there is, or was, some sort of well.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    We pulled into Pietown…only to find it pretty much shut down. It was a crushing disappointment to not have our pie dreams fulfilled. Pietown looks like it had once been a relatively thriving community.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    No gas here anymore.
    [​IMG]


    This sign was definitely for Gary and me. Even though there was nobody there, they had at least been courteous.
    [​IMG]


    Thankfully we had had a relatively large lunch in Grants, so we weren’t going to go to bed hungry – besides, we still had beef jerkey, Corn Nuts and trail mix to get us through. We pushed on down to Valle Vences Campground our destination for the day. County Road 916 turns into FR214 – on the way to Valle Vences Campgound we actuall passed over The Divide 3 times – pretty sublime crossings. If you are lucky, you may catch one of these signs.

    [​IMG]

    Team photo on The Divide.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    Camp Revelstoker.
    [​IMG]


    This sign was posted at the entrance to the campsite. I made a mental note to watch Gary for these symptoms over the next couple of days.
    [​IMG]
    #36
  17. redpillar

    redpillar Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    904
    Location:
    Vancouver Island
    Way to go!! nice trip report and what a fine route. Love the balance of words lyrics and photographs! Do you happen to have the track saved in GPX format? I would love to look at it on a map and google earth.
    #37
  18. RiderJones

    RiderJones sketchy

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2009
    Oddometer:
    263
    Location:
    Nelson BC Canada
    Thanks for the vicarious trip... :clap looks like a great route...nice shootin' by the way!
    #38
  19. Revelstoker

    Revelstoker Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    234
    Location:
    Revelstoke, BC
    Thanks alot. I referenced Big Dogs, easily found here on ADV Rider and Kevin's route, found here: http://gpskevin.googlepages.com/greatdivideride Saying that tough, some of it was improvised using the Cycling The Great Divide Route book put out by the Adventure Cycling Association. I think that is the cool thing about this route - there are lots of variations. The route Gary and I took was definitely an amalgamation of those that had ventured well before me. Sorry, I don't have a GPX version of mine - kind of kicking myself.
    #39
  20. redpillar

    redpillar Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    904
    Location:
    Vancouver Island
    Thanks, I will download those, I can feel a plan starting to hatch for next summer. :wink:
    #40