Day 13 – 8/11/09

When I started out this morning, I was thinking of heading east across New Mexico.  However, when I got to Flagstaff, I decided to turn north towards Colorado and spend a couple of days riding through the Rocky Mountains instead.  In order to get to Colorado, I had to spend a few hours riding through the same desert I had visited last week.  Fortunately, it was only 90-95 which is actually quite comfortable in the desert.

As I was riding on Rt 160 not far from the Four Corners (a spot where the borders of Utah, Arizona, Colorado, and New Mexico touch) I saw Highway Patrol car.  I checked my speed and I was going 65 which was the posted speed limit.  Just before he passed me he turned his lights on and I though he was going to turn around and stop me.  As I looked in my mirror, I saw that he had turned his lights off so I breathed a sigh of relief and continued on down the road.  Then, I saw why he had his lights on – there was a herd of goats grazing on the side of the road.  Apparently, he was just warning me about the goats.

A view from 10,000 feetAfter stopping in Cortez, CO, I headed north on Rt 145 towards Montrose CO.  This took me through the San Juan National Forest and up into the mountains.  The Colorado Rockies are beautiful.  Much of the ride took me through a valley with steep mountains on both sides.  There were lots of small ranches down in the valley near the river/creek that was at the bottom of the valley.  Gradually, the road climbed up higher into the mountains until I reached about 10,200 feet above sea level.

Telluride Lodge As I started decending the mountains, I stopped in Telluride to see the ski resort.  Telluride is a nice small town that is obviously inhabited by people with money. The town has very nice houses and shops along the main street, bike paths, and its own Visitor Center. There were quite a few on/off ride motorcycles on the streets so I’m guessing that there are trails throughout the hills.

After leaving Telluride, I headed to Montrose where I found a motel and had dinner. Tomorrow, I’m thinking of going up Mt Evans – the highest paved road in North America.

States: AZ, CO
Miles Travelled Today: 457
Total Miles: 5,059

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5 thoughts on “Day 13 – 8/11/09”

  1. hi mark your pictures are breath takening you lived your dream on sky diving good for you a littel more exciting then dunkins parking lot have a safe trip home Joyce

  2. Hi Mark,
    Photos are great. I am reliving my trips out west as I read each days entries. San Juan forest area and mountains are beautiful. A few years ago we had come through that area in the opposite direction – Grand Junction into Durango and then to 4 corners area.

    While we’ve been to a lot of the same places, I have never tried the skydiving. Somehow, I don’t see that on my “bucket list”. I’ll take your word for it that it was fantastic.

    Enjoy the rest of your trip. See next week.

    Judy

    1. Judy – I’ve been to so many National Parks and National Forests, it’s tough to keep track of them all. Sometimes it seems like the entire western part of the US is nothing but parks and forests.

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