Yesterday, we rode from Ouray, down rt. 550 - One of the Million Dollar Highways - there is another one but don't remember where it is and can't take the time to google right now. 550 is a Butler Maps G1, 2, and 3 ride. In that order, as you go south from Ouray. "It follows old stagecoach routes and pack trails with stretches of road that dance around mines, crystal creeks and ore-scarred peaks." It is exposed with no guard rails. We rode early in the morning, there was a light rain as we started - the air, the smells, the scenery was magnificiant. It lived up to it's reputation. I was so happy when we got to Molas pass, 10,910 just south of Silverton. Last year that was were I got a flat tire that I couldn't fix and had to be towed back to Durango. From there, I decided to go to Mesa Verde NP, instead of going back up.
Anyway, once Lisa and I made it to Durango, we stopped - out of rain gear and into mesh, filled our beer cooler with local brewery crafts, and bought a sandwich to eat later. We were headed to Four Corners Monument. I had been there last year, but Lisa had to see it. And the groups were meeting there for lunch. It's def. something to see, but it's basically a tourist destination with little shade, we ate under the shade of a closed restroom building. It was closed last year as well, the only difference was that this year there was caution tape wrapped around it. After lunch, we headed out -- our destination -- Lake Powell NRA, 179 miles away. It was going to be a long, hot, straight, ride through very desolate country along rt.'s 160 and 89. It is peaceful, but not friendly country. I can't believe I rode through here by myself last year. At a fuel stop, we saw the storm, but didn't care about our rain gear -- we were hot! It was quite a storm, but we just kept going - hard as hell to see, but there was no safe place to pull off. Safer to slow down and plow through. Eventually, we found a sort of an overpass with red gravel to pull over, by this time it was just light rain and I was cold. The temp. Went from 95 to 60.
We pulled into Lake Powell around 6pm, we had gained another hour, Thank God. Our room looked out over the Marina, really beautiful. See photo header.
Yesterday, we went to Seven Falls with the group for a historical photo. It is part of the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs and it is absolutely gorgeous. They opened it just for "Sisters Ride". Alisa and Robert took there sponsored BMW and Indian over a tiny bridge and our group photo was right in front of the falls. Pretty cool. Our shuttle driver was Cuby Valdez - he used to be a Hot Shot and a smoke jumper. He reminded Lisa of Rainman.
Lisa and I left Colorado Springs around 9 am and headed toward Salida, where there was a wildfire in the San Isabel National Forest. The Hayden Pass fire. We expected to see smoke as we went through on 50, and we did - in the mountains, but we didn't have to ride through any. The town had signs on the roads, in fuel stops, in a cafe we stopped in -- all thanking and praying for the fire fighters and their families. Nice to see, a real sense of community. We stopped at a subway in Gunnison and I got a text from friend, Betty Ebrect. - There was a motorcycle accident in the canyon and 50 was closed into Montrose. Lisa and I looked at each other, praying it wasn't one of ours. I checked map, and with Betty's help , we made an alternate plan. Just as we were about to leave, Betty got word that it was open, which was good, not only for us, but it meant most likely the rider was alive. We stopped in at Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP and then stopped in to see JE and Betty in Montrose on our way to Ouray.
Twin Peaks in Ouray was awesome, the little Switzerland, 3 HOT SPRINGS all different temps. Had a blast playing chicken in the 100 degree pool.
The day before was a rest day. We did laundry in our "corn maze" of a hotel. Lisa's description. The ubered into Manitou Springs for lunch. My first Uber! Went to a Mexican restaurant " The Loop". Killer Margaritas. Met an Irish Catholic family - brother and fiancé, sister, her son and his girlfriend. We all hit it off -- just so many similarities in our lives -- birthdays, suicides, mental health -- we took a group photo -- see FB for album of these days. Shawn ( Brother) paid for our meal without our knowing. We graciously accepted.
The margaritas had def. done their job, so we ubered through Garden of the Gods, with the AC blasting and windows open - Lisa had to sit on the door to take pics, of course.
"The most effective defenses of wildness seem to be rooted squarely in the needs and interests of civilized people." Roderick Nash, 1982