Kawasaki Concours Forum

Riding => Rides and Stories => Topic started by: TJ on January 10, 2013, 01:28:47 pm

Title: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on January 10, 2013, 01:28:47 pm
Wife accepted a new job near Colorado Springs. Please tell me abour riding in Colorado. Has to be an improvement over Alaska! What will tags cost? Any type of inspection? Are there times in the winter you can actually get out and ride?
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: galaxieman on January 10, 2013, 02:33:50 pm
Only ridden there in the summers, but I have a bunch of friends on another forum from that area.  Occasionally see facebook posts about someone who braved it out on a warm day randomly during the winter, but it's usually to work and back.  Mountain passes can have snow LATE in the year, and are pretty much only car or 2-wheel drive Ural with sidecar passable in winter.

Red Mountain pass, 5 June 2010:
(http://www.galaxieman.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/IMG_3584-300x175.jpg) (http://www.galaxieman.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/IMG_3584.jpg)

Same location, 1st weekend of June 2011 (note the giant snowpile behind us):
(http://www.galaxieman.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/wpid1178-20110604-IMG_0242-300x200.jpg) (http://www.galaxieman.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/wpid1178-20110604-IMG_0242.jpg)

Oh, and the road that pass is on is definitely worth riding.  The 'million dollar highway' as Hwy 550 is called, specifically the section between Durango and Ouray is breathtaking. 
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Conrad on January 10, 2013, 02:56:52 pm
Marijuana is legal for recreational use.     8)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: gPink on January 10, 2013, 03:17:30 pm
Don't miss a trick, do you.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: ZG on January 10, 2013, 03:19:58 pm
Marijuana is legal for recreational use.     8)

 :)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: sherob on January 10, 2013, 04:22:48 pm
Legal if you can buy it.   8)

I ride year round... if no snow ice on the road.  The worst part is just getting in and out of your hood if they don't plow your streets... main arteries are usually clear after a snow storm the next day or so.

Always carry bad weather gear in your bags if you plan on riding the mountains... even in the summer... you never know when a rain/snow storm will pop up... even riding some of the slab out here is pretty fun.  8)

Tags are outrageous... value of the bike... when I moved here, my Wing tags were $600!!!!!  :o  No inspection on bikes... emission in certain counties on cars/trucks that burn gas... I think diesel gets a pass, IIRC.  They do set up sniffing vehicles on ramps to slab and catch your plates...  if you pass, you don't need to get tested... pretty cool.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on January 10, 2013, 04:40:54 pm
$600 for tags for only one year? Steep increase over the $35 or so I pay here per year.

Once Oct rolls around we have to park the bikes until mid April, no and's if's or but's about it. Sure will be nice to get out occassionly in the middle ot winter.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: sherob on January 10, 2013, 04:45:33 pm
My 09 C14 this year is ~$250, I'll have to look at the card again... it's on the fridge waiting to be paid.  ::)  Yeah, I was used to $35 in TX. 
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: tonedeaf on January 10, 2013, 08:20:45 pm
Winter riding varies every year, but from the Springs you have the possibility of riding east just about any day (but, any day from  Nov - Mar might also be a blizzard and 10 below). I live in the central mountains at 8,600' and I park the bike for 4 - 5 months every year. If the weather isn't bad, the roads are covered with sand, melting snow and mag chloride.

The cost of registration varies, with the largest part being a specific ownership tax that depends on the age and initial cost of the bike. It goes down every year and after about 5 years it is fairly reasonable -- a new C14, however, is going to be in the hundreds of dollars.

There is great riding out of the Springs: all the Colorado and New Mexico mountains, the grasslands, mesas, buttes and long quiet rides out to the east.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Locol on January 11, 2013, 03:31:47 pm
Riding here is spectacular. I ride in the winter when the weather is sunny, no wind, and above 30 degrees. Very rarely are you not able to ride several days during each of the winter months.

Good gear is a must when riding in the mountains. Weather changes in a heartbeat, even during the summer. Three years ago I got snowed on going over Cameron Pass on August 19. Coming from IL, this flatlander was not used to that.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: stevewfl on January 11, 2013, 04:39:46 pm
I found the place is AWESOME can be *chilly* in Jul (http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j180/stevewfl/bigthumb.gif)


(http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j180/stevewfl/X%20country%20trippin/20110706-DSC_1358.jpg)

Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: sherob on January 11, 2013, 04:45:46 pm
One of the best rides you can have in your life...  8)  I've done this 3 years now... never the same.

http://www.bmwmcc.org/100k_foot.php (http://www.bmwmcc.org/100k_foot.php)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: CRocker on January 11, 2013, 10:34:14 pm
Wife accepted a new job near Colorado Springs. Please tell me abour riding in Colorado. Has to be an improvement over Alaska! What will tags cost? Any type of inspection? Are there times in the winter you can actually get out and ride?

I live thirty miles north of Colorado Springs...so, to address the items you mentioned...here goes...

Colorado riding:  Spectacular!

Tags:  Don't know for a '12 C14...probably similar to my '12 Focus...$700...it's only $59 for my '88 C10...and we do have a state income tax... :o

Inspection:  Not for bikes...cars have emissions testing closer to Denver.

Times in the winter you can actually get out and ride:  YES!

Come on down...and let's go riding!

Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: twowheeladdict on January 12, 2013, 06:52:36 am
Love the roads when I passed through there.  After reading this thread I have no desire to ever move there.  No income tax in TN.  $42 to register vehicles.  Property tax in the hundreds, not thousands.  Insurance on 6 bikes $800 a year.  I think I will keep my base camp here.   8)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Strawboss on January 12, 2013, 07:05:05 am
What everyone else said. Being from fairly flat NE Ohio, we weren't ready for what we saw when we went to the National rally in Frisco. Spectacular mountain vistas, words cannot describe what we saw and most important what we felt. A few passes were still closed in the summer but we made a few of the big ones. The small towns we stopped in were right out of the movies. The secondary roads can be hit or miss sometimes. We still can't figure out why most all of the parking lots were dirt or gravel, I'm thinking major snow could be the thing. We were also surprised at having 4 inches of snow when we left Frisco, and it was almost 80 degrees in Denver an hour later, elevation, and by the time we were an hour outside of Denver, it was flatter than Ohio. We'd like to do it again soon because we are still talking about it 5 years later.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on January 12, 2013, 11:59:26 am
After living in Alaska for 35 years guess I'll just have to get used to paying sales tax and state income tax. Not sure why you commented on TN since the thread was about CO, but the one thing I found out when researching new locations to move to is no matter what the "man" will get its share in one form or another. It might be sales tax, state income tax, or personal income tax. Failing that the property taxes can be high or utilities or insurance. Live in a lower income state then not only are the wages lower but so is the locality pay the goverment pays it's federal employees.

Anyhow, Up here I leave home and can head one of three ways. And believe me it gets really old seeing the same roads all the time, no matter how beautiful the scenery. For the last two years even our summers have sucked with a lot of rain and temperatures in the low 60's. Time for a change. Looking forward to becoming a Bronco fan but the Steelers are still my all time team:)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: twowheeladdict on January 12, 2013, 03:11:18 pm
After living in Alaska for 35 years guess I'll just have to get used to paying sales tax and state income tax. Not sure why you commented on TN since the thread was about CO, but the one thing I found out when researching new locations to move to is no matter what the "man" will get its share in one form or another. It might be sales tax, state income tax, or personal income tax. Failing that the property taxes can be high or utilities or insurance. Live in a lower income state then not only are the wages lower but so is the locality pay the goverment pays it's federal employees.

Anyhow, Up here I leave home and can head one of three ways. And believe me it gets really old seeing the same roads all the time, no matter how beautiful the scenery. For the last two years even our summers have sucked with a lot of rain and temperatures in the low 60's. Time for a change. Looking forward to becoming a Bronco fan but the Steelers are still my all time team:)

I brought up TN to brag.  Why else?  Since I have never lived in a high cost state, FL, TX, AL, and now TN I just can't fathom what people pay in other states for housing, fees, taxes, etc.  I was expressing my shock by revealing the fees in my area.  My 5 acre farm probably cost what a condo will cost in CO. 

BTW: the Redstone Arsenal Area pays a very high wage to cost of living ratio.  Many Army retirees settle in this area.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on January 12, 2013, 04:23:43 pm
How is the ATV riding in Colorado? Just bought a couple of new Brute Force 750's last fall. We like to hunt and fish and can use the RV to haul everything.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: ZG on January 12, 2013, 05:29:38 pm
When are you moving there TJ?
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on January 12, 2013, 06:03:37 pm
Wife needs to be there about mid March. If our house sells early I will go with her otherwise I move when the house sells.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: ZG on January 12, 2013, 07:37:22 pm
Wife needs to be there about mid March. If our house sells early I will go with her otherwise I move when the house sells.

Colorado is much closer to Idaho than Alaska, does this mean you're gonna meet me and Gumby at the rally in August?  :-\
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on January 12, 2013, 08:32:08 pm
Sounds like it could be a good plan but much depends on the selling of our home and the buying of the new one as well as getting all my toys from Alaska to CO. If I get delayed moving out might ride the Connie down the Alcan one last time.
Not sure when I can get online again as we are heading to Costa Rica tomorrow to chase some sun and fish for billfish:)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: sherob on January 13, 2013, 11:15:20 am
Tons of places to use the ATV's to go hunting and fishing... BLM land. 

Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Leo on January 13, 2013, 02:47:40 pm
Copper Mountain, Colorado in June 2008.  Part of my trip to Pike's Peak.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: stewart on February 10, 2013, 06:47:47 pm
Can't comment on the riding, the roads etc....but if you don't already...I'd learn to ski and enjoy winter for what it is. I've been lucky enough to ski three times in CO and would do it again in a heart beat.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Rhino on February 10, 2013, 07:52:49 pm
Wow I just found this thread. Welcome to Colorado! I live just north of Colorado Springs. Weather permitting the riding in the mountains is FANTASTIC!!! Here's a few pics to whet your appetite (but your probably used to this kind of scenery in Alaska):

(http://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-snc6/5613_1022123370083_7999950_n.jpg)

(http://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/34172_1156760375924_856519_n.jpg)

(http://i897.photobucket.com/albums/ac177/sreinschmidt/2012-07-02_13-50-12_657_zps5ce4966a.jpg)

(http://i897.photobucket.com/albums/ac177/sreinschmidt/2011-06-13_08-50-05_124_zpsf85c7d55.jpg)

If you like a little adventure biking.

(http://i897.photobucket.com/albums/ac177/sreinschmidt/259199098_photobucket_518_.jpg)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on February 11, 2013, 12:09:00 am
Took a whooping 7 days to sell our house once it was listed. Looks like I'll be down there about the end of April but it will take at least this summer to get settled in as we need to buy a house and I need to fly back to Alaska and drive the RV and at least one of our trucks down to Colorado. Play time will be limited this year but we are looking forward to becoming Bronco fans, although the Steelers will always remain #1 to us. ;D

Might pick up a new KLR or Triumph 800 once we settle in.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: DenverC-14 on February 11, 2013, 10:36:42 am
Plenty of good roads around. Grab yourself a Butler Map. They have lots of good info and the roads are mostly color coded to the level of fun you can have on them.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Rhino on February 11, 2013, 10:46:55 am
Took a whooping 7 days to sell our house once it was listed. Looks like I'll be down there about the end of April but it will take at least this summer to get settled in as we need to buy a house and I need to fly back to Alaska and drive the RV and at least one of our trucks down to Colorado. Play time will be limited this year but we are looking forward to becoming Bronco fans, although the Steelers will always remain #1 to us. ;D

Might pick up a new KLR or Triumph 800 once we settle in.

Wow! 7 days in this market is quick! PM me when you get settled and lets go for a ride. Most Saturday early mornings I do breakfast rides with a couple of friends with FJR's. We do local mountain roads and generally get home by noon or so. Your welcome to join us, just PM me.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on February 11, 2013, 05:39:55 pm
Will do. Am hoping I can ride by May or June as my right ACL was just replaced last Thursday. I will seriously need a nice long WARM ride by then.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on March 29, 2013, 04:54:53 pm
Sitting in a hotel in Colorado Springs this week looking for a house to buy (found one). You guys sure have some great weather! It was 65 earlier when I was out driving around checking out the local gun stores. Visited Rocky Mountain Cycles, man they got a lot of bikes and stuff in that store!
Can't wait to move in mid May and have my bike delivered.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: sherob on March 29, 2013, 04:57:21 pm
Glad you're enjoying your time down here.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Rhino on March 30, 2013, 08:53:47 am
Sitting in a hotel in Colorado Springs this week looking for a house to buy (found one). You guys sure have some great weather! It was 65 earlier when I was out driving around checking out the local gun stores. Visited Rocky Mountain Cycles, man they got a lot of bikes and stuff in that store!
Can't wait to move in mid May and have my bike delivered.

Warm this weekend, cold and snow last weekend. That's the way it works here but I'm guessing still warmer then Alaska. I was out and about yesterday in Colorado Springs on my blue 2010 with black canyon cages, Corbin seat and passenger backrest. I expect to be out and about today (Saturday) as well. If you see me, wave.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on May 11, 2013, 08:35:10 am
Bike will finally arrive with our household goods on May 13th! Ready to ride but I have a question, does the State ever clean the sand off the roads and intersections? It is everywhere around the Springs and Peyton area.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: twowheeladdict on May 11, 2013, 09:13:12 pm
Bike will finally arrive with our household goods on May 13th! Ready to ride but I have a question, does the State ever clean the sand off the roads and intersections? It is everywhere around the Springs and Peyton area.

They probably do what many other states do and let mother nature clean the sand with cleansing rain.  That is unless it is an intersection where one of the politians drive every day.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: CRocker on May 11, 2013, 10:03:16 pm
...I have a question, does the State ever clean the sand off the roads and intersections?

July... :o
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: sherob on May 22, 2013, 03:08:22 pm
... rain and wind.... rain and wind.  8)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on May 29, 2013, 09:34:36 am
FINALLY managed a little free time yesterday since we are still "moving in". Basically I had not rode the Connie since about last July due to seriously crappy weather in Alaska and a bum knee that needed a new ACL.
Forgot how much fun this bike really was and had a seriously hard time staying under the speed limit.

You guys will most likely laugh but it was 75F when I left the garage and that was the warmest day ever seen on the Concours. Damn near perfect. I been kicking around the idea of getting a BMW 1600 GTL but now just think the Connie will stay in the garage for awhile longer:)
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Rhino on May 29, 2013, 10:19:47 am
Glad you got out! I was out and about all weekend. I did see a black C14 yesterday. I can't remember where. Might have been you. Rode down to Rocky Mnt Cycle Plaza. Powers all the way from 83 to Platte. And 83 from Powers to 105.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: TJ on May 29, 2013, 03:48:09 pm
I drove in on 24 from Peyton then headed up Powers to Woodman Rd. Was out and about from about 6:15 to 8 pm. Couldn't miss me as I am now wearing a BRIGHT Hi Vis yellow mesh jacket:).

Did visit Rocky Mountain Cycles last month, that place is HUGE! Keep on looking at the 650 KLR's and keep on trying to talk myself out of getting one.
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: tjung on June 13, 2013, 11:12:22 am
Sorry to dig up a 2 week old thread as my first post, but I felt compelled to comment on this as we rode about 1,000 miles in northern New Mexico and Colorado a few years ago and are planning another in August this year, which is why I got the Concours a few weeks ago.

The million dollar highway and Independence pass near Aspen are very impressive.  One of my favorite lessor known sections was CO Hwy 65 near Grand Mesa (see the link below).  It was 10 miles of moderate twisties deep in a pink canyon.  If I remember right the signs are mostly telling you to slow down to 35-45 on the curves, but you can blast through the whole thing at 80.  Just be sure and stop once or twice to take in the scenery.

https://maps.google.com/maps?saddr=CO-65+S%2FGrand+Mesa+Scenic+Byway&daddr=CO-65+S%2FGrand+Mesa+Scenic+Byway&hl=en&sll=39.165206,-108.206749&sspn=0.187396,0.249939&geocode=FdH5VQIddOiN-Q%3BFZDdVQIdv8uL-Q&mra=me&mrsp=1,0&sz=12&t=m&z=12
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Rasmith on June 28, 2013, 09:18:31 am
I drove in on 24 from Peyton then headed up Powers to Woodman Rd. Was out and about from about 6:15 to 8 pm. Couldn't miss me as I am now wearing a BRIGHT Hi Vis yellow mesh jacket:).

Did visit Rocky Mountain Cycles last month, that place is HUGE! Keep on looking at the 650 KLR's and keep on trying to talk myself out of getting one.

TJ, I'm sure you found this out by now. The antelope in your area are terrible! I bought my bike last year in Flacon and the trips I made on 24 from the Hotel to Falcon, Falcon to DMV in the Springs then back east on 24, I saw 2 Antelope hits and a lot of them in the fields. Was never like that when I lived out there.

Anyway, next time you head west on 24, keep going. Venture up around Green Mtn Falls, Woodland Park, Deckers. Its not too far to make that a day ride
Title: Re: Please tell me about Colorado
Post by: Rasmith on June 28, 2013, 09:21:26 am
Bike will finally arrive with our household goods on May 13th! Ready to ride but I have a question, does the State ever clean the sand off the roads and intersections? It is everywhere around the Springs and Peyton area.

Good luck if it's an intersection with a dip. Got to love above ground culverts. Getting rid of rain water has long been a challenge in that town. Soil is too sandy..All that sand comes from the road sides..