LA to Denver - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 7 Old Apr 26th, 2013, 3:23 pm Thread Starter
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LA to Denver

Just got home from a 1500 mile trip from LA to Denver. Went out there in the fall and left the LT to be fixed. Flew out to LA and rode her back. The map said 1022 miles from address to address. The way out it took 1945 miles and the way back was 1500 miles taking different routes.

I always seem to find the great camp sites and this trip was no different. I had the full moon going out at the end of Sept and had the full moon coming back, I like that.

Here's some great places to camp on your trips: Cottonwood Hot Springs Buena Vista CO, Orvis Hot Springs Ridgeway CO, Hite UT, Great campground between Boulder and Escalante UT on Hwy12, Lees Ferry AZ, Grand Canyon North or South Rim, Cedar Point AZ, Mystic Hot Springs Monroe UT, No Name Camp Ground Glenwood Springs CO.

Coming back into Colorado Monday, I called a friend in CO to get a weather update and he told me the front just blew in and the temp just dropped 10 degrees and starting to snow!!! Well, I was still at the Mystic Hot Springs and no point in leaving a great place that was warm and head east into the desert and much colder weather. So I holed up Monday and Tuesday nights at the hot springs (it really sucked being there) and headed into western Colorado on Wednesday. Had great weather taking some side trips along the Colorado River out of Moab and the into the Colorado National Monument. My friend had 11 inches of snow at his home in Longmont CO on Tuesday.

I was thinking about hitting the high country over Vail Pass (10,603) and the Eisenhower Tunnels (11,153) in the late afternoon and get home. It's still cold up there and with snow on Tuesday I feared snow pack or ice on the road. I decided to camp on the bank of the Colorado River at No Name just east of Glenwood Springs. What a night!!! Someone left fire wood and the full moon rose over the mountain!!! I could see the silhouette of trout in the river by the moon light as they swam near the surface. A river otter was hanging around for a while. Out of 25 or so riverside camp sites, I was the only one there!!! Just wished the trains didn't come by in the middle of the night.

Made it over the high country Thursday with only a few wet spots from the melting snow with temps in the low 40's. A glorious day of sun shine and snow covered mountains!! Ruined by riding off the mountain back into Denver area!! And yes, at 40 degrees with gear, it was just fine! NOT COLD AT ALL!!! It doesn't get cold until below 30 in Colorado with low humidity. For all you in warm weather places, come on up and you'll be surprised how nice the Rockies are..

Ride On
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post #2 of 7 Old Apr 27th, 2013, 10:20 pm
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Re: LA to Denver

I'm interested
What route from Escalante to Moab UT. I hope to be doing just the opposite north to south. Were you anywhere near Page AZ and on 89. Finally the Tunnels are on my trip without the snow we have enough of that every winter. What is a good camp west of Denver and close to the tunnels and Loveland Pass?
ride safe
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post #3 of 7 Old Apr 29th, 2013, 10:28 am Thread Starter
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Re: LA to Denver

Bill, Camping on I70 near Loveland/tunnel: few places.1. Gunella Pass south of Georgetown is my pick. It will be cool to cold at night due to elevation. 2. West of Empire on US40 there are a couple nice campgrounds. 3. On Swan Mountain Rd between Keystone and Breckenridge. Nothing to the west of the tunnels. If in Glenwood Springs, the No Name Campground at the No Name exit couple miles east of Glenwood is right on the Colorado river.

Utah??? Esclante to Moab! Two choices and both go through Hanksville. North to I70 or South to Blanding. I've been both ways and I'll take the south route for the WOW!!!

Esclante to Hanksville is WOW!!! However the closer to Hanksville the less WOW. Hhanksville north to I70 east to 191 is desert and HOT! Not much WOW. Going south from Hanksville is WOW!!!!!!! Until you get close to Blanding. The ride north to Moab from Blanding I think has more eye candy than coming south from I70.

Calf Creek Campground is east of Esclante and is awsome. On the west end of Esclante is a State Park campground with hot showers!!

Last edited by buck57; Apr 29th, 2013 at 10:37 am.
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post #4 of 7 Old Apr 29th, 2013, 10:34 am Thread Starter
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Re: LA to Denver

Bill, Page AZ., Lee's Ferry AZ, if you don't go ya won't know!!!!!

Hwy 89 is still closed but you can still take alt89 up to Jacob Lake which is up in the mountains with much cooler air and trees!!!!! Not bad place to cool down from the desert heat.

Hwy 98 heading SE out of Page is a nice ride. With 89 broke, depending on where you're heading may/may not be an issue????

Lee's Ferry will be hot and the river cold.
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post #5 of 7 Old Apr 29th, 2013, 11:03 am
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Re: LA to Denver

Quote:
Originally Posted by buck57
Bill, Page AZ., Lee's Ferry AZ, if you don't go ya won't know!!!!!

Hwy 89 is still closed but you can still take alt89 up to Jacob Lake which is up in the mountains with much cooler air and trees!!!!! Not bad place to cool down from the desert heat.

Hwy 98 heading SE out of Page is a nice ride. With 89 broke, depending on where you're heading may/may not be an issue????

Lee's Ferry will be hot and the river cold.
Thanks for info in your backyard Denver to Dillion.
I was planning on Arches National Park once I enter UT south on 6,then 191 south to AZ destination Horseshoe Bend in Page. I know about the 89 disruption. So my choice is either back north to Escalante or work my way south to Grand Canyon NP and skip the rest of UT.
My weather concern is for mid June around the tunnels hope none of that white stuff. I have never ridden in snow.
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post #6 of 7 Old Apr 29th, 2013, 11:49 am Thread Starter
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Re: LA to Denver

Just a couple thoughts about the Grand Canyon. I don't know the exact number, well over 50% of the people head to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. The North Rim has less people/traffic and with it being higher it will be a little cooler than the South Rim. Unless you plan on heading to Flagstaff and points beyond in AZ, there is no reason to head to the South Rim.

From the North Rim, you have easy ride to Zion, Bryce, and the rest or UT. With the elevation of south UT, the nights will be nice and cool and days warm. And heading back to IL from Ut, you can head up to Yellowstone area?????? Just an idea!!!

Weather in June will be nice. Before monsoon season and maybe a nice thunder shower to cool it down in the afternoon. June in the high country of Colorado??? Day to day? The mountains generate their own weather with the sun shining on the melting snowpack. I've been in snow in July and August over Trail Ridge at 12,000+. It's not a problem if you go slow with your outriggers down????? HA HA!!!! Really, the road is warm so it not going to stick and ice up. Just follow the car/truck with the biggest tires to clear a path or pull over and wait for the snow to stop and the cars to plow a path. Snow should not be an issue, just an isolated freak weather issue.

Have a great trip.
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post #7 of 7 Old Apr 29th, 2013, 12:39 pm
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Re: LA to Denver

Buck57 thanks for the ideas.
If you turn your attention to Page, AZ and thereabouts
in the LT1200 forum you will find a breakdown of what I have in mind. I was working on it over the winter and did not want to be premature in posting in case of changes. That thread goes back Feb 22 quite a few pages back. You are one of the many who offered very valued advice. It helps in my flexibility and expectations.
ride safe
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