Friday, November 22, 2019

The trailer is back to original configuration (mostly)

The proof of concept which led to the modifications:

Extend the tongue of the Aluma 638 Trailer by two feet to: Prevent trailer hitting corner of URRV when backing it up in tight terrain; add room for the carrier rack for the TW200 Dualsport to be mounted in front of the trailer's cargo area.

This allowed me to bring along, during Glamping Trips, both one of the Ural Sidecar Rigs and the Yamaha TW200 Dualsport.  

More info/pics here:  LINK

This worked for a while but then I noticed "flexing" where there'd not been any before.  Not a good thing usually for a trailer.

Found cracks on the longitudinal aluminum support beam onto which the trailer's tongue is attached.  So I had it reinforced by a local welder.

More info/pics here: LINK

The extra reinforcing seemed to work, however, during my recent trip, I noticed that the weld joining the extra two feet of aluminum to the trailer's tongue had cracked apart.

I consulted with the welder who'd done the work, he said he'd fix it for free if I brought the trailer to him.  Trouble is I was near home and he's in Hotchkiss, CO close to the western border of the state!

Further thought and discussion, he agreed I should be able to separate the two foot extension and remove the aluminum "bars" which held the coupler assembly to the original mounting point of said assembly together:

I was at a campsite but with my tools was able to take things apart and put things back together the way the tongue was....repositioning the support wheel and spare tire mount.

 No more flex.  I think my options now are:

1.  Longer trailer, or similar sized one but made of Steel.

2.  Install front hitch on the URRV and mount the HF moto carrier rack onto it.

3.  Decide whether I really need to bring two motorcycles with me on camping trips.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Lotdocking at the Vogel Canyon Recreation Area

Tuesday, Nov 19:

Lotdocking: To camp in a parking lot.

I drove Uma, the URRV with Fiona in tow about 20 miles to the Vogel Canyon Recreation Area intending to camp in its parking lot.  The place is designed as a picnic area with about four metal roof shelters with concrete picnic tables.

There's about 4 hiking trails in the area and nothing for motorcycles so Fiona stayed tied up on the trailer as I explored the area on foot.

In the morning after setting up camp, I started off on the Canyon Overlook Trail (1 Mile) and segued onto the Canyon Loop Trail to check out the petroglyphs area.

 View of the canyon and the cliffsides where the petroglyphs are
from the Canyon Overlook

 Looking back towards the Canyon Overlook

 All I found was the vandalism left behing by dipshits

 Maybe a petroglyph?  Doubtful

 You can see the steps leading to the cliffs where the petroglyphs
were supposed to be

 At this point, I found none!

 Some colorful rocks on the way back to the parking lot along
the Canyon Loop Trail

Side view of the Canyon Overlook, it apparently used to stretch
out further back in the day

In the afternoon, after a late lunch, I went back to the petroglyph area to try and find the darn things.

 Glampsite in the parking lot

The afternoon sun light lit up the rocks rather nicely I thought:

 The cliff face where I finally found some of the petroglyphs

 A wider view of the cliff face with the petroglyphs, you have to get
really close to see them.

I decided to check out the Mesa Loop Trail after leaving the petroglyph area, it basically runs along the bottom of the canyon, headed towards the west.  

Along the way, I saw what appeared to be stone ruins, it looked like old walls of rocks stacked together:

 Old ruins?

 A peculiarly shaped rock formation that caught my eye on the
way back to the Canyon Overlook

By 4PM, it had cooled off quite a bit as the sun was hidden behind some low clouds, so I climbed back to the Canyon Overlook and took the trail back to the parking lot.

After putting away the solar panels, it was time to catch the sunset:

Headed home on Wednesday, there's snow forecasted for the Denver area on Thursday.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Boondocking in the Picketwire Canyonlands

Sunday, Nov 17

Drove from the Queens SWA near Wiley, CO back along the US 50 highway towards La Junta, CO.

From La Junta, it was about 30 miles, 20 of them dirt, to the Withers Canyon Trailhead and its campsites.  There was only one other camper there, a fellow with a VW bus.  Two other cars were there but they were day users with mountain bikes.

The canyon from about 150 feet from my campsite


I liked the colors of the rocks

Sunday's sunset was pretty good:

 Monday Nov 18

After it had warmed up to 50°F (10°C), and with a clear sky and strong sun shining down upon the canyonlands; I went for a short hike along the Picketwire Canyon Trail.

I didn't go far, not much of a hiker these days and my left ankle is still healing from the big sprain I inflicted on it weeks ago.  I went as far as the ruins of an old homestead, at least, that's what it looked like.

We had us a pastel colored sunset tonight, no riding so Fiona was in the same spot as last night.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Boondocking in the Queens State Wildlife Area, near Wiley, CO

Friday, Nov 15:

Drove Uma, the URRV, towing Fiona south of the cesspool that is the Metro Denver area shortly after 9 AM and by 1230 PM had arrived at the John Martin Reservoir located east of Las Animas, CO.

I found the campsite listed by but it was quite unsatisfactory in terms of location and scenery; so I kept moving on.

I decided to check out the next site to the NE, located in the Queens State Wildlife Area north of Wiley, CO.  Checked out a couple of sites and finally settled on a nice flat area that used to serve as a staging area for nearby boat ramps.

The water level of the reservoir has receded well away from said ramps, so it was safe to ignore the "No Parking" signs posted at this obviously decommissioned boat ramp site.

Sunset was not bad:

Saturday, Nov 16:

Woke to the alarm I set to catch the sunrise, which proved to be pretty good:

Though still a bit more cloudy than I would have liked, the day did warm up quite nicely though it did start cooling off early, around 3PM when the winds picked up slightly.

 The Campsite, that's Neegronda Reservoir in the background

Fiona and I motored about the few trails that existed along the periphery of the reservoir, really not much in the way of scenery really.

We then motored east on County Rd C, across US Highway 287 and about three miles to Neeskah Reservoir.  I went past the concrete boat ramp to the sandy spit of land next to the water:

We then explored another county road that bordered the reservoir and came upon the ruins of what must have been perhaps floodgates?  Not sure.

Crossing back across US 287, headed back west towards the camp, I posed Fiona to capture the scenery using the "mid line" method of photography.

There remained one unexplored trail which ended abruptly at the border of a farmer's field:

Returning back to camp, it was time for a late lunch and some afternoon relaxation in the warm sunlight (whenever the clouds didn't block it too much anyways).

Sunset came along and it was pretty good: