Colorado Backcountry Motorcycle Trip – August 2016

My Colorado Backcountry Motorcycle Trip – August 2016

The Western Flyer is safely moored in La Paz so, upon returning home from La Paz, Baja California, to escape the summer heat I began researching adventure motorcycles.  To be honest, I was actually looking for a great used convertible sports car to purchase for under $10,000.00.  The Porsche Boxster S made the final cut but, common sense prevailed and I became the proud owner of a 2009 (BMW F650GS).  It did not take me long to get back up to speed with riding and soon I signed up for a road trip to do the Colorado Backcountry trails.


Photo above:  Ourphir Pass

And yes of course there are the details of searching for and acquiring the correct bike and bike brand the first time.  Then onto getting licensed again, the registration, all the associated riding and maintenance equipment and finally becoming one with bike.

Our one week (7 days) riding itinerary ( took us from the town of Dolores to Ouray; Ouray to Buena Vista; Buena Vista to Leadville to Diamond J Ranch; to Steamboat Springs; to Meeker; then backdown Steamboat Springs to Meeker; Meeker to Crested Butte; Crested Bute to Dolores.

I trailered my adventure bike from Los Angeles to Flagstaff, AZ.  The very next day freed from the trailer I rode down to Sedona.


Photo Above:  If you fear heights then this ride is not for you.  Yes, I dropped the bike on two occasions on this very trail.  When I purchased the bike the guy also gave me the original front and rear sprocket.  The aftermarket parts provided a longer riding first gear.  Great for on the road but not so, for trail riding.


Photo above:  Looks easy but, for fear of going over the side, I opted to stay on the inside left where I was easily thrown by the loose and falling rock.


Photo above:  Beautiful and amazing country.  On our ride up we encountered about seven vehicles (Subaru, Jeep, Toyota).


Photo above:  Now this was more my type of riding.  Stopping to enjoy the scenery and take a few pictures.

On the surface that first paragraph you just read plus a few pictures may easily describe this seven day large adventure bike backcountry ride for those that don’t ride.  Here is my first attempt at making this report somewhat useful for anyone wanting to follow one of the best road trips around.


The state of Colorado has more varied high altitude backcountry rides than any other state in the USA.  Given a choice of hiking, bicycle, jeep or motorcycle which would you take to traverse the most country for the least cost?  If you chose motorcycle then you are correct.  And, if you chose an adventure bike then consider your trip through both high altitude passes and single track riding possible.  Yes, we got hailed, rained and snowed on.  The forest service roads changed constantly from loose gravel to no gravel to avoiding cattle, deer, water crossings.  Thanks to riding with good, well prepared friends we all came down the mountain.  Final tally, one went home with a broken ankle, another with hurt ribs, a few bumps, bruises and scrapes.  Lots of broken BMW parts on anything from a 650 to a 1200.  The larger bikes outnumbered the smaller bikes.

To be continued: