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Thread: Rocky Mountain Trip Suggestions

  1. #1
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    Rocky Mountain Trip Suggestions

    I'm gong to be trailering out to CO from North Georgia at the end of August and need some suggestions for locations
    to home base out of. We have done all of CO a few years ago so for this trip we are thinking of the first stay to be in
    Durango, CO. From there spend a couple of days and then move on to UT(Possibly Moab??) Do some riding in that area
    a few days and then maybe head over towards Loa to do a few rides there. From there it's off north to Wyoming(Jackson?)
    to ride Grand Teton and Yellowstone a few days. From there trailer to Cheyenne and then back home. From my description
    you can get the idea of what I'm trying to do, the question is which cities would be the best to stage out of. We would like
    to be able to walk to dinner if possible and have a few more restaurant choices then McDonalds. I have all of the Butler maps
    for where all the good roads are, just not sure of places to stay. Thanks for the help.

    rderflin

  2. #2
    Registered User PittsDriver's Avatar
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    We have a group planning the same trip and we're looking at options for getting the bikes out there (shipping v. trailering v. riding). There are 4 of us on the ride and 3 of us have family in Boulder, Provo, and Idaho Falls. We're thinking about shipping the bikes to Idaho and then spending a week or so riding a loop through Yellowstone, Jackson, Provo, over through Rockies National Park into Boulder, criss-cross back over toward Durango and then decision time: do we ride home, ship home, or leave the bike's out there for a return later to ride them home. I'll be looking forward responses to this thread.
    Wes Jones
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  3. #3
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    Rockies 2013

    I'd avoid Durango just because of the summer tourist traffic! I always try to get through Durango as quick as possible. But, I live in a county with only 2 stop lights (a few hours east of Durango). I'd say stay in Pagosa Springs, on the east side (cheaper mom & pop motels, or camper cabins available). Or, another favorite of mine, off the beaten tracks, is Chama, NM. What a jewel! Or, there's Silverton or Ouray to the north of Durango.....up the Million Dollar Highway.

    I spent a few nites in Mancos (west of Durango) last year and found it to be a nice town....plus there's Basin Motorcyle Works, and one of the best independent BMW wrenches in the country....Harry Hill. What a craftsman he is, and meticulous about the work that comes out of his shop! I stayed at one of the mom & pop motels, just a block or two west of Basin Motorcycle Works, and on the south side of the highway. Real nice place with good prices. Walking distance to good food, too. Mancos could be just the place. Lots of folks drive through it....either going to Durango, or west to Cortez, so it's not usually crowded. Lots of good riding in the area.....and of course, Moab not far away. If you like history, be sure to check out Mesa Verde National Monument.....nice curvy, slow ride from the entry back to the main visitor center.....about 15 miles back there if I remember correctly.....and a great lunch back there, too.

    PM me if you want any other ideas.
    Piperjim

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  4. #4
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    rderflin...

    Gunnison would be my choice as the best Colorado "base camp" for rides in every direction. Durango is on the short list, mostly for the spectacular San Juan Skyway and other good rides nearby, but there is more great riding out of Gunnison. And there is more than McDonalds there.

    On the north side of the state I give the nod to Steamboat Springs. I can wander on two wheels for days out of that special place. It would be my second choice (maybe first depending on the mood) as a Colorado riding base camp.

    Steve

    PS. Gunnison and Steamboat are also outstanding for dual sport rides.

  5. #5
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    Book recommendation

    Rderflin:

    And, don't forget to buy a copy of the following book:

    The Complete Guide to Motorcycling Colorado: The Definitive Reference for ALL the Best Roads, Rides, and Tips

    This was written by Steve Farson.....who replied to your posting and didn't even try to sell you a copy....what a gent. Steve's a Colorado BMW rider and put together this great book. Available on Amazon for <$20. Get it and start drooling!!!
    Piperjim

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  6. #6
    Registered User dancogan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by piperjim View Post
    Rderflin:

    And, don't forget to buy a copy of the following book:

    The Complete Guide to Motorcycling Colorado: The Definitive Reference for ALL the Best Roads, Rides, and Tips

    This was written by Steve Farson.....who replied to your posting and didn't even try to sell you a copy....what a gent. Steve's a Colorado BMW rider and put together this great book. Available on Amazon for <$20. Get it and start drooling!!!
    +++1
    Dan

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    Thanks for All of the Suggestions and BUY Motorcycling Colorado by Steve Farson

    Just wanted to thank everyone for their suggestions and let you know that I
    picked up a copy of Motorcycling Colorado by Steve Farson. What a wonderful
    book, my only complaint is now I want one for Wyoming, Montana, Utah and Idaho.

    Thanks again,

    rderflin

  8. #8
    2011 R1200RT ka5ysy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rderflin View Post
    Just wanted to thank everyone for their suggestions and let you know that I
    picked up a copy of Motorcycling Colorado by Steve Farson. What a wonderful
    book, my only complaint is now I want one for Wyoming, Montana, Utah and Idaho.

    Thanks again,

    rderflin
    In case you haven't noticed, this group is very good at helping spend other peoples money
    Doug, 2011 R1200RT Polar Metallic
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  9. #9
    Registered User David13's Avatar
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    I don't know if they mentioned Butler Maps. That's the best one.
    Durango, yes.
    In Utah, probably the nicest and most motorcycle used city is Torrey.
    I took the train from Durango to Silverton last September. That was a real nice day trip. (All day)
    But I missed a similar spectacular train ride out of Canon City.
    Also, do go north for Rocky Mountain Nat'l Park, and a town I like, Steamboat Springs. I first went there as a little kid, so ... memories.
    Durango is a tourist town, but upscale. And the important thing is that you have to try the roads west, then north, and north, and perhaps also east from Durango. Must ride roads.
    But check Butler Maps, Colorado edition.
    dc

  10. #10
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    I'd second Steamboat Springs. Great town and not nearly as uber-tourist as Vail (near me). My hometown of Eagle would be a similar good spot to basecamp out of. As would Glenwood Springs. Hit up Highway 82 south out of Glenwood Springs to Aspen, then over Independence Pass to Twin Lakes. From there, it all depends on how long you want to ride. North through Leadville, Tennessee Pass, Camp Hale (brief home of the 10th Mountain Division) and to I-70. South through Buena Vista (more passes to bag), or even further to Salida.

    Feel free to PM me if you need more info. I'm a new member here, and just got my first BMW- but I'm not unfamiliar with all Colorado has to offer! I'm planning on hitting up Indy Pass this summer, myself.

    Have fun,
    - Randy

  11. #11
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
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    +1 on Steve Farsons book and Butler maps.

    On a trip last year I used Idaho Springs for a couple days and hit all the small twisty stuff west of Denver/Bolder as well as Mt Evans. Then my favorite spot was Granby, GREAT small town, cheap accommodations, easy access to Rocky Mt park, Steamboat, small roads W of Steamboat, and the small roads eastern slope between Bolder/Estes Park. Also a KILLER restaurant, called Brick House 40, unbelievable food and reasonable $$.

    Fairplay also small cheap, access to Pikes Peak, and the roads around Colorado Springs. Our final staging area was Paonia, to meet some others at the TOR rally, not a bad area, but aside from the rally, probably not as close to fun roads as some other places.

    Granby and Fairplay will put you very close to a lot of Butler maps good roads.
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