Trip Start Jul 17, 2012
41Trip End Aug 22, 2012
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We had a good day today, got Glen's bike fixed at the Colorado Springs (PIkes Peak) Harley Dealership which only cost us around 90 minutes and we were able to log on and do some stuff with the blog while we waited. Had a good chat to a guy from the US Army (Rick?) who was also waiting for his bike to be repaired and he gave us some good local advice on the area.
Upon leaving we wanted to take in what will be the last of the mountain roads for the trip and ventured out to Cripple Creek which is an old gold mining town and full of casinos.
We had a Samuel Adams lager (nice drop) matched with the $5 special of the day being a cheeseburger & fries.
We then left to the sound of thunder as yet another thunder storm rolled in and encouragement from the barmaid who was standing on the footpath having a smoke, and I am glad to say that once again we stayed dry
We then arrived at a road Glen has really been looking forward to riding, Skyline Drive!!
A video will follow but it is basically a one way single lane road across the top of a ridge with sheer drops on both sides, it would not be more than 10 metres wide!!
We rode it twice and really enjoyed it and then had a 30 mile ride to our hotel and into what looked like would be a drenching as the wind picked up and the sky darkened. Once again, we got through dry! :-))
Watching the news tonight I was surprised to see many of the areas that we were riding over the last week are being engulfed by wildfires, Salmon & Great Falls etc. I really feel for the people who have lost their homes in this beautiful part of America and must say am relieved that we are not there now.
So tomorrow for the first time since we were back in the Everglades, we point the bikes towards Jacksonville and embark on our final week 'on the road'
For anyone following our route we head to Amarillo tomorrow then Dallas. Then its Jackson overnight on Sunday then we spend our night at Pensacola Beach before riding about 7 hours back to Jacksonville to complete the circle early next week.
Great to be on the beach to finish as our friendship started many years ago back on the beaches of the Gold Coast. If anybody suggested we would one day embark on this adventure both of us would have laughed.
So today was kind of poignant for me as it was the last day of mountain rides and culminated in a ride (and view) that I have been dreaming of seeing in person for quite a few years. We did a pretty casual run down to Colorado Springs to fix my broken gear shifter (poor old bike, she's been ridden pretty hard these last six weeks) which had been patch repaired by Cliff and I (see previous blog - Storm running). Anyway, a great H-D dealership and very friendly staff (Pikes Peak Harley Davidson). The kind folks even washed the bike for me!!! Awesome, there were some very grubby parts after the 7000 miles plus we have covered thus far
Not long after the fix, we were on the road to Cripple Creek, Colorado. A very quaint and mining oriented town, with parts that looked like it had been hit by the recession - the boarded up and closed shops only added to the atmosphere of a Western mining town with Casinos, outlawmen and lynching trees...... Ether way, a great place to visit and as Cliff mentions above, a great meal was had washed down with a frosty ale (just one....some serious riding was to follow).
Running from storms seems to be a bit of a common theme for us and today was no exception - storm clouds bearing down and thunder rolling as we crossed the street to the bikes. Female readers of this blog might be surprised by the next statement - whilst looking for a road to take us south and out of town away from the storm which was now overhead (many roads available - but most were unpaved and/or dirt) - I asked our barmaid for directions, or rather - I presented our dilemna.....we didn't want to chance another dirt road in the rain (thunderstorm and possibly hail - as we were at 9,500ft) and just needed a road to get us to Canon City..... Our very pleasant barmaid (we think also the owner - a slightly older lady who was great) gave us stirling and very easy directions to keep us on paved roads until Canon City
Eventually we got to where we wanted....the start of Skyline Drive..... an epic moment that had been 2.5 years in the planning and was now finally here...... watch the video and you'll see why.
On to the 'flat lands' now.....but the adventure continues.....