Saturday, November 05, 2016

A Foggy Ride on the Pikes Peak Highway

RichardM, motoblogger and fellow Uralista, is currently visiting me here in Centennial.

Today we rode out a bit before 9:00AM and headed south along CO State Highway 83, motoring on my two Ural sidecar rigs, Fiona ('99 Patrol with BMW engine) and Scarlett (2014 Patrol).

RichardM was on Fiona, helping me rack up the remaining miles necessary to complete the break-in period for the rebuilt gearbox done by Bural aka Richard Winter.

We started the ride with temperatures in the low 40's and would end up with a low of 31 degrees Fahrenheit at mile marker sixteen on the Pikes Peak Highway.  Due to snow at the summit, the road was closed by the park rangers at mile marker 16.

Since we heard the road was closed at mile mark 13, we detoured to the Garden of the Gods Park in Colorado Springs to give the weather some time to clear the summit.






After cruising most of Garden of the Gods, we then got on US Highway 24 westbound and soon were heading up the Pikes Peak Highway.  The top half of the mountain was obscured by low lying clouds which were producing snow at the summit we were told.

A few rain drops, which turned into snow flakes, fell on us as we motored up the mountain.  The roads were looking pretty wet and slick but proved to be just wet, no ice.

As mentioned before, we only were able to ride up to mile marker sixteen where further progress was blocked by a park ranger in his truck and some traffic cones:


It was a bit chilly up at this point, just slightly below freezing.  We decided to head back down the mountain instead of waiting with the line of cars that hoped to make it to the summit.


 We were, for quite some time, riding within the clouds, quite foggy.


As we descended beneath the cloud layer, a nice view of Colorado Springs presented itself as we positioned the rigs down a dirt trail away from the cagers who were clogging up the hairpin turns on the highway itself.


Once we got below the treeline, it was basically steady riding to the town of Manitou Springs where we had lunch a a subs/pizza shop.

After this late lunch and some nice conversation with RichardM, we tanked up the rigs nearby and then retraced our route on Highway 83 back to Centennial.  A good day of riding, both rigs did great and best of all, Fiona reached the 19,000 kilometer mark!  This means she's past her rebuilt gearbox's break-in period!  We can now "open her up" to 55-60 mph.

Tomorrow, I'l be working on the RV with RichardM and we'll try and get the gearbox oil changed out one more time.

P.S. Sorry, I forgot to bring ScooterBob along.

16 comments:

Kari Kropf said...

With all that fog I bet the roads look like they are just wandering off into nothingness. Or dropping off into some abyss. Garden of the Gods looks and sounds interesting, though I'll wait for warmer temps.

Charlie6 said...

It was quite thick, that fog/cloud riding. There were times the car ahead of me was barely visible as a dim outline...RichardM said over the intercom he couldn't even see it and he wasn't that far behind me!

SonjaM said...

Dom, two rigs on the road at the same time. That's a very rare sight. T's so awesome that you could go out to play, and given your mindset (I mean both of you) bad weather just makes the trip more spicier. Should I ever have the opportunity to visit I'd like you to be my tour guide, please.

Charlie6 said...

Natürlich SonjaM, I would be happy to be host and guide! Thanks for commenting, and yeah, RichardM and I do tend to seek less than optimum weather conditions.

Arizona Adventure Dude said...

What a great day! We had a Balancing Rock formation out here at one time. But, some idiot Scout master took his troop out for some adventure and toppled it. Karma was in full force as he filmed it, posted it on Facebook, and the now FORMER Scout leader is suffering the penalties of the court.



Charlie6 said...

AZ AD, some idiots just cannot leave well enough alone eh?

Trobairitz said...

Great to see pictures of you two and the two rigs together. Good thing Richard is immune to the chilly weather.

CCjon said...

Hey guys, glad to see you and Richard enjoying the snow-free mountains. Is Richard spending the winter in the lower 48?

That last photo is the money shot, great!

Charlie6 said...

CCjon, no, RichardM will be wintering in AK as usual, he was just here for some meetings related to his part time work in Barrow. Thanks for your comments.

Thomas Osburn said...

Love that last photo. Riding in the clouds is a neat experience, but it nice when they clear. Garden of the Gods is great place to visit also. Great pics again.

Charlie6 said...

Thanks Thomas Osburn, it was almost a window through the snow clouds

VStar Lady said...

Dom ... probably some of my favorite foggy photos. The two of you look awesome on the road together.

Charlie6 said...

Thanks VStar Lady, I liked the fog a lot but was a bit disappointed for RichardM not being able to enjoy the awesome views from up the mountain.

motoventures said...

Looks like a fun, if chilly ride! Glad you got to give Fiona a run too!

Charlie6 said...

motoventures, things went well for both of us. and, we're finally past the 2500km break-in period for Fiona's rebuilt gearbox....had her up to almost an indicated 70mph today briefly. Much better than poking along at 40 mph.

Charlie6 said...

Sorry for the late reply Trobairitz, while I thought RichardM would rate the 31F weather as balmy, he did mention getting cold hands. No heated grips on Fiona you see.