First trip to Colorado for East Coast guys

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by dirt hokie, Feb 3, 2021.

  1. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    Hi,

    This is my first little trip report, will be mostly pictures. I hope it gives some flat landers a sense of the awesomeness of the landscape compared to the East Coast and what's really involved in a dirt bike trip out there.
    Back ground.
    Me: Sam, I am 44 and a decent "C/ B" rider.
    Bike: 2019 CRF450L. 300 miles on it. MT21 front, D 606 rear. Cheap saddle bags, home made tail rack, 2 gal fuel bag, bark buster and skid plate. Stock engine, Seat concepts low seat.
    Friend: Frank, 59 yrs old good "C/B" rider but takes it easy these days.
    Bike: Early 2000's DRZ 400, 15,000 miles on it. what ever random tires with 50% tread, stock everything except skid plate and bark busters, what ever pouches/ bags he had, 1 gallon spare fuel can.

    Accommodations.
    Slide in truck camper and enclosed "camper" toy hauler.

    Originally we planned to do the whole TAT along with my brother and another friend, but work and covid got in the way. So It ended up being just Frank and I, and with a much more limited time.
    So we decided to just do what we thought would be the best/ coolest part, and also decided no reason to just stick to the TAT. We settled on one mission, Hit as many of the high passes in Colorado as we could in 10 days. That's 10 days door to door.
    #1
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  2. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    The drive. We left Maryland around 5am. Got to Pittsburg PA around noon at which point the POS diesel exhaust emissions systems decides to crap out and put the truck into permanent "limp mode"
    couple at the Chevy dealer and we are on our way. Dealer had no confidence nor did we that it is really fixed. We drove until midnight, stopped at a Walmart and slept for 4 hours. Don't even remember where.
    driving.JPG
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  3. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    long drive short, we pulled into the camp ground around in Poncha Springs CO about 4 pm the day.

    As write I have concluded that my note keeping and pictures will not form a proper basis for a good ride report.
    So I will let the pics talk. Tincup sign.JPG restored water tank.JPG on way to tincup.JPG pika.JPG on way to Hancock Pass.JPG
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  4. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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  5. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    Alpine tunnel rock slide.JPG Alpine tunnel ruins.JPG Alpine tunnel scenery.JPG Alpine Tunnel trail.JPG Hancock Pass.JPG
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  6. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    humming birds in Tincup.JPG Marshal Pass.JPG Marmmot.JPG
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  7. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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  8. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    This covers most of the first 2 days. We also did Nepoleon Pass but did not get any pics. Went to Pitkin, and Sargents....

    Now off to the Alpine Loop area
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  9. KYwoodsrider

    KYwoodsrider Been here awhile

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    Great pictures.
    I'm planning a similar trip for Aug 2021.
    I made my first trip to CO. last year on my Super Tenere.
    https://advrider.com/f/threads/my-first-motorcycle-trip-to-colorado.1467509/

    Going back this year with my 450L. We are still working out the final details but are going to base out of Ouray and ride the passes.
    We may stop at Mueller SP on the way in and ride Phantom Canyon then stop on the way home at Trinidad SP and ride a day out of there.
    #9
  10. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    We rode two days around Tincup, Pitkin area, then loaded up and drove over to Silverton to check out the Alpine loop area 550 scene.JPG avalanch tunnel on 550.JPG alpine loop map.jpg
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  11. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    The drive up 550 was the scariest part of the whole trip.
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  12. Vark

    Vark Been here awhile

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    Great photos. What is the significance of the color coding on your route map above?

    Trying to get an idea of how technical/tricky these routes are that you rode?
    #12
  13. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    actually its just a pre colored map I found on the internet. The red trails are the main part of the Alpine Loop, I would call them "easy" for a dual sport bike, but some section may be hard for a big bike. Stock Jeeps can make it around most of the red. The yellow, we did not get a chance to ride because a land slid closed the trail the day we scheduled for them. I have read and heard that they are more difficult. The green is RT 550, its paved and is probably the sketchiest pave road I have ever been on that was not in a 3rd world country.

    The trails over the passes around Salida, Tincup area are by far more difficult then the Alpine loop area. I would not want to take a big bike over Tincup. If I remember right, Napoleon pass may have had the hardest trail as well as a side trail we took up to a alpine lake.
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  14. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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  15. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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  16. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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  17. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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  18. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    IMG_3857.JPG IMG_3858.JPG IMG_3862 (1).JPG IMG_3805.JPG
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  19. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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  20. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    The scenery around the Alpine Loop was simply awesome.

    Its nice day trip if you take your time, and its easy to do a loop and also connect some of the other side trails, and there is three towns to stop in gas, or food.

    We also had perfect weather, 80 deg in town at 9000ft, and mid 50's at 12000 ft

    Now for some technical bike input
    I took 2 gal of extra fuel, I did not need it...but did hit reserve once while exploring around Pitkin, which has one store with a fuel pump. If they were closed I would have need the fuel for sure. My tires did fine, my bike ran fine, no issues with altitude and fuel injection. Seat was great, saddle bags worked fine.
    My buddies bike ran ok at 9000ft, and like crap at 12000ft. Stock bike with carb jetted for sea level. It always started, and always made it, but it went from DRZ400 at sea level, to DRZ 250 at 9000ft to a DRZ 100 at 12000ft. He had one issue with his exhaust melting his side plastic because his bag was pressing it against the muffler.

    Overall we did 500 miles in 4 days of riding.
    #20
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